Red Sox Aiming To Shore Up Defense After Some Spring Training Sloppiness

John FarrellFORT MYERS, Fla. — Defense likely will be a point of emphasis over the next few weeks at Boston Red Sox spring training.

The Red Sox committed eight errors in two spring training games against the Baltimore Orioles on Saturday, resulting in a pair of losses that dropped Boston’s Grapefruit League record to 2-7-1. The Red Sox committed six errors in an extra sloppy nightcap that ended with a 13-2 Orioles rout.

“Long day. We got our reps in,” Red Sox manager John Farrell said after Saturday’s second game. “(But) we can do much better defensively. There’s no question about it.”

Uninspiring defense has been a common theme for the Red Sox of late, as Boston also committed three errors in its game against the St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday. The Red Sox’s infield, in particular, has struggled, with the unit committing four errors in Saturday’s second game, including two in the seventh inning that opened the door for an eight-run frame.

“I can’t say that there’s a common thread because you’re looking at guys that have played the positions that they’re at, particularly in tonight’s game, where things got away from us defensively,” Farrell said. “And yet, we’re working each day to shore the infield defense up.”

Jonathan Herrera committed two errors, and Heiker Meneses and Garin Cecchini each committed one in Saturday’s second game. Boston’s other errors were charged to pitcher Brayan Villarreal on an errant pickoff attempt and outfielder Jonny Gomes on a base hit into left field. Pitcher Alex Wilson and first baseman Mike Carp were charged with miscues in Saturday’s first game in Sarasota.

The Red Sox committed the eighth-fewest errors (80) and were tied for the seventh-best fielding percentage (.987) in Major League Baseball in 2013.

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