Red Sox Live Blog: Twins Double Up Red Sox in Grapefruit League Opener


Red Sox Live Blog: Twins Double Up Red Sox in Grapefruit League Opener

Postgame, Twins 8-4: A box score has just been handed over. Some highlights:

  • The Twins had six extra-base hits and were 5-for-7 with runners in scoring position.
  • Ryan Kalish and Mike Cameron had the two stolen bases for Boston.
  • Oscar Tejeda and Mark Wagner had errors.
  • Josh Beckett and Clay Buchholz combined to allow a run on two hits (both off Beckett) in four innings.

Cameron drew praise from Terry Francona after the game. In a losing effort in which two of his best starters had positive outings, the one thing that stuck out to Francona was Cameron’s play. He looked to be moving very well, went back nicely on a few balls in center and ran the bases well.

Look for more on Cameron in another story on the site. Thanks for following tonight.

Final, Twins 8-4: OK, so some things happened while I was gone.

The Red Sox tacked on two more runs after Lars Anderson’s solo blast in the eighth. It was the bottom of the eighth when Jarrod Saltalamacchia started talking to us, and the Twins proceeded to rally for two runs.

Then, as we waited for the last three outs to be made rather than rush back up (trust us, it takes a long time at this park), the Red Sox got one more on a Mark Wagner solo shot.

Sorry for the relative lack of game coverage on this one. Such is life when they hold meetings with the media in the middle of the game.

Anyway, we will have more coming your way on Beckett, Buchholz and Mike Cameron.

Look for the live blog Monday when these two teams meet again at City of Palms Park. It is a 1:05 p.m. start.

8:58 p.m.: Lars Anderson just slugged a solo homer to get the Red Sox on the board. Jarrod Saltalamacchia is about to speak to the media so I’ll be back in a bit.

End 7th, Twins 6-0: Scott Atchison works the seventh inning in much the same way that he did much of last year.

It was not overpowering, but he threw strikes, worked quick and got outs. Three of them. In a row.

It’s basically a minor league lineup for both teams now, with so many changes it is not work mentioning.

Lars Anderson will lead off the eighth.

Mid 7th, Twins 6-0: The Sox remain scoreless but we did get a chance to see Mike Cameron leg out an infield hit.

Cameron stole a base early on and has had to use his legs quite a bit in center field tonight. He looks like he is moving very well at this stage.

Scott Atchison will work the seventh for Boston.

End 6th, Twins 6-0: Former Red Sox outfielder Jeff Bailey just took Dan Wheeler deep with a solo blast and the Twins were threatening for more, but a play at the plate cut down another run.

After an error by Oscar Tejeda, a Twin of indeterminate name ripped a double to left, but a Twin of indeterminate name was gunned down at home.

Aside from Clay Buchholz and Josh Beckett in the first inning, Red Sox pitchers have been knocked around a bit.

Mid 6th, Twins 5-0: Darnell McDonald, Jed Lowrie and David Ortiz go extremely quick in the sixth.

Dan Wheeler is making his Red Sox debut on the mound. Daniel Nava is in left. Oscar Tejeda is at second base.

End 5th, Twins 5-0: Well, we didn’t get to see all of it, but what we witnessed of Hideki Okajima’s first outing of the spring was pretty rough.

The Twins loaded the bases on Okie with no outs. He struck out Drew Butera before Joe Benson ripped a three-run triple to center field, over the head of Mike Cameron.

An RBI single by Tsuyoshi Nishioka made it 5-0 before Okajima was able to get the final two outs.

It’s extremely early, so it might not mean a thing, but Okajima will want to have a better result next time.

On a side note, Nichioka was extremely impressive in this one.

8:17 p.m.: Look for more on the night for Josh Beckett and Clay Buchholz in a separate story.

The short end of it is that Beckett felt he rushed a little bit, probably the result of some adrenaline, but otherwise felt fine.

Buchholz was told he will pitch in four days, which would give him the start Friday night at the Yankees. When informed of his opponent, he joked that he would be facing “the underdogs.”

Presumably, Beckett will go Thursday. Daisuke Matsuzaka, Jon Lester and John Lackey are to start in the next three days.

8:15 p.m.: Back to the press box after hearing from both Josh Beckett and Clay Buchholz, who threw 18 pitches in two perfect innings.

As we walked in we see Hideki Okajima loading the bases with no outs in the bottom of the fifth. The Twins still lead 1-0 but are threatening.

7:49 p.m.: Josh Beckett will meet with the media now. Be back in a bit to update you.

End 3rd, Twins 1-0: A 1-2-3 inning for Clay Buchholz, who strikes out Drew Butera to begin things.

The Hooters girls are throwing baseball from the top of the Red Sox dugout. Several players on the top step, just in case.

Mid 3rd, Twins 1-0: A Darnell McDonald single with two outs is all the Red Sox get in the third.

Pat Neshek was the new pitcher for Minnesota.

Clay Buchholz is jogging on for his first action of the spring. Josh Beckett threw 23 pitches (15 for strikes) and was hammered on a few of them.

End 2nd, Twins 1-0: With two outs in the second, Chris Parmelee ripped a double to right.

Jason Repko followed with a bomb to left. From what I was told, as I cannot see that portion of the field, Darnell McDonald pulled the ball back to prevent a home run.

Repko did cruise into third with an RBI triple for the first run of the game. Alexi Casilla then lined a shot right at right fielder Ryan Kalish.

Jim Thome led things off with a routine grounder to second. If Thome had any speed or was not in Feb. 27 mode in terms of his hustle, he would’ve been on first, for Jed Lowrie bobbled the ball twice.

For what it’s worth, Lowrie looked shaky in a few infield practices this week. Just slightly. Maybe something to watch.

Mid 2nd, 0-0: Kevin Youkilis has been the most active of the big-name Red Sox players so far this spring.

Youkilis had the defensive play of the day and a three-run homer in the win over Boston College on Saturday and begins the second inning of this one by legging out an infield hit.

He gets erased when Tsuyoshi Nishioka makes a pretty play up the middle.

Mike Cameron reached on that fielder’s choice and stole second, but Nishioka made another great play to rob Jarrod Saltalamacchia of a hit. First baseman Chris Parmelee dove to nab a Ryan Kalish shot and then flipped to Carl Pavano covering for the final out.

Some really nice leather in that inning for the Twins.

End 1st, 0-0: The highlight for the Minnesotans in the opening frame was the first at-bat for new second baseman Tsuyoshi Nishioka.

Some members of the media were even standing in the press box to get a good glimpse of the 2010 Pacific League batting champ.

Josh Beckett greeted Nishioka with a 93 mph fastball that the 26-year-old Japanese import swung through. A few pitches later he was out on a sharp grounder to short, part of a 1-2-3 inning for Beckett.

Mid 1st, 0-0: Pretty good beginning for Carl Pavano, who won 17 games for the Twins last year.

Pavano strikes out both Darnell McDonald and Jed Lowrie before inducing an easy grounder to first off the bat of David Ortiz.

McDonald actually fell over swinging at something off-speed from the big right-hander.

Josh Beckett time.

7:05 p.m.: There is someone dressed as an oversized orange on the field and bugs the size of small birds buzzing the press box. Must be time for some Grapefruit League action!

The Twins have taken the field. Carl Pavano is on the bump.

6:57 p.m.: Plenty to watch for tonight on the Red Sox side of things.

Certainly, we are all eager to see Josh Beckett get started after a difficult 2010 season. He threw two innings in his first start of last year’s spring training, so we should expect the same. Clay Buchholz had a very rough outing his last time on this mound. Not that it mattered much, but we will keep an eye on how he looks.

The expectation is that Mike Cameron will get more time in right field going forward, but he makes his debut in the field at center. With both Jacoby Ellsbury and J.D. Drew being eased into things, Cameron may swap back and forth quite a bit. Once the regular season commences, expect him to be in right more often.

We also are treated to a potential glimpse of the future with Jose Iglesias at shortstop and Ryan Kalish in right. It is possible that by 2012 those guys will be the regulars at those two spots.

Finally, we will be asking Jarrod Saltalamacchia how he felt handling Beckett and Buchholz.

We just had a moment of silence for Hall of Famer Duke Snider, who passed away earlier Sunday.

6:42 p.m.: As the Red Sox, sporting grey pants and blue tops, stretch down the line in right, here are a few Mayor’s Cup notes for you.

Boston has won four straight cups, all after Minnesota won six of seven. Overall, the Twins own a 10-8 advantage in the annual series and a 56-49-1 edge in games.

The public address announcer recently introduced both teams by name and the Red Sox received a much louder ovation. The teams share this town, but there are certainly more Boston fans in attendance.

Now, Red Sox players in the dugout are throwing what appears to be oranges into the stands, part of a truly Floridian promotion.

6:10 p.m.: By now you may have heard about some of the day’s news.In case you haven’t, here is a quick rundown.

Red Sox manager Terry Francona told reporters this afternoon that he has spoken with reliever Bobby Jenks and Chicago White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen and believes that the war of words between the two sides is over.

“That’s over,” Francona said, according to The Boston Globe. “Spoke to Bobby. Went back and forth with Ozzie, not speaking, but just messages. I’m confident that will be over. I don’t care if they like each other. But Bobby’s a Red Sox and you need to move on. I think he understands that.”

Jenks also met with reporters and has said he will move on from the whole mess. Jenks and Guillen, and Guillen’s son, Oney, have been at each other for a few months and the White Sox skipper ratcheted it up Saturday.

Not much was being accomplished between the two sides. Let’s just hope it’s done with.

Also, Dennys Reyes threw 32 pitches Sunday, according to various reports. He will throw to hitters in a couple of days.

We expect to see Carl Crawford and J.D. Drew in a game Monday and Jonathan Papelbon is among those slated to relieve Jon Lester on Tuesday. At that point, all of the big names will have played, with the exception of Jenks, who is about four days away from appearing in a game, and Adrian Gonzalez.

5:15 p.m.: Hammond Stadium happens to be one of my favorite parks down here, but my seat tonight in the press box affords my a view of about 60 percent of the field.

Bear with me on anything that goes to left field, third base and shortstop. I promise to have the best coverage anywhere of plays made in right!

Here is your Twins batting order against Josh Beckett:

Denard Span, CF
Tsuyoshi Nishioka, 2B
Jason Kubel, RF
Jim Thome, DH
Danny Valencia, 3B
Chris Parmelee, 1B
Jason Repko, LF
Alexi Casilla, SS
Drew Butera, C

3:40 p.m.: It is another sunny day in Lee County, and the Mayor’s Cup is on everyone’s mind as the Red Sox and Twins prepare to do battle.

Here is the starting lineup for Boston:

Darnell McDonald, LF
Jed Lowrie, 2B
David Ortiz, DH
Kevin Youkilis, 3B
Mike Cameron, CF
Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C
Ryan Kalish, RF
Lars Anderson, 1B
Jose Iglesias, SS

You can expect Carl Crawford and J.D. Drew to get their first action of the spring Monday. Crawford was away on a family matter for part of the weekend. Drew is being eased in a bit.

8 a.m.: Josh Beckett will be on the mound Sunday night when the Red Sox begin their Grapefruit League schedule against the Minnesota Twins at Hammond Stadium.

Beckett will be looking to take the first step in rebounding from a 6-6 season. He will be followed on the mound by Clay Buchholz, Brandon Duckworth, Hideki Okajima, Scott Atchison and Dan Wheeler.

Carl Pavano will start for the Twins in the first of five games between the two teams for the Mayor’s Cup. Boston won five of seven meetings last spring to win the cup for the fourth straight time.

First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m.

On Saturday, the Red Sox swept their annual doubleheader with Boston College and Northeastern at City of Palms Park. They took the opener against the Eagles 6-0 and then routed Huskies 13-2.

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