The Boston Red Sox started off the second half of the season with a win over the New York Yankees, and they’ll soon get a look at how the rest of the year could go.
The Red Sox mashed their way to a 5-3 victory in New York on Friday, pulling ahead with three home runs off the bats of Ryan Hanigan, Travis Shaw and Xander Bogaerts. And in a few days’ time, Boston will get to see its newest starter on the mound.
Drew Pomeranz, who came to Boston from the San Diego Padres in exchange for top pitching prospect Anderson Espinoza, will make his first start for the Red Sox on Wednesday, and everyone is pretty excited about it.
“We feel we’ve got a very special offense in place,” Red Sox manager John Farrell said Friday, per The Providence Journal’s Brian MacPherson. “To take advantage of the timing of it, we gave up a very good pitcher to acquire Drew, so we’re looking forward to him getting in our uniform.”
Pomeranz has a tall task ahead of him, as he’ll make his Red Sox debut at Fenway Park against the National League’s current No. 1 team, the San Francisco Giants. But the lefty told Farrell in a phone conversation Thursday that he’s up for the challenge.
“He was very clear about coming into a winning situation and the opportunity to pitch for a contender,” Farrell said, per MacPherson. “He’s eager to come in and pitch in this environment.”
Concerns about Pomeranz’s innings pitched have arisen, as he’s already at a career high with 102 in 17 starts and should surpass the 22 starts he made in 2012. But Farrell doesn’t think that’s actually something to worry about.
“This is someone who’s 27 years old and physically developed,” Farrell said. “We’re not dealing with a young pitcher. Like we do with every pitcher, we’ll monitor this start to start as we go. I don’t foresee this as a hard cap.”
Here are some more notes from Friday’s game.
— Friday’s starter Steven Wright had a good outing despite giving up three runs in the sixth. Wright retired 14 of his first 15 batters and stuck to his knuckleball, even in 3-2 counts, as he’s gotten beat up trying to mix in some of his weaker secondary pitches in tough spots.
“(Friday) I felt pretty confident with my knuckleball,” Wright said, per the Boston Herald’s Evan Drellich. “I got beat with my fastball a lot my last three outings. (Friday), it was like, if I walk a guy, I’m not going to sit there and get beat on my third best pitch.”
— David Ortiz got himself into some hot water after making comments about his desire for the Red Sox to sign designated hitter Edwin Encarnacion and starter Jose Fernandez. Major League Baseball reportedly was going to look into the comments for possible tampering, but that doesn’t bother Ortiz much.
“Tampering, I don’t write no paycheck,” Ortiz said Friday, per Drellich. “I can say whatever I want. I’m not a GM or a team owner or whatever, you know, I mean if I say tomorrow that I want to play with LeBron James, am I tampering?”
That’s not technically true that Ortiz can say whatever he wants, but Drellich reported that Big Papi is expected to only receive a reminder of the tampering rules.
— Speaking of Ortiz, he’s tied with Seattle Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano with 6-1 odds to win the American League MVP, according to Bovada. He trails Mike Trout (7-2), Josh Donaldson (15-4), Jose Altuve (5-1) and Manny Machado (11-2), and teammates Mookie Betts (12-1), Xander Bogaerts (16-1) and Jackie Bradley Jr. (25-1) come in right behind him.
The Red Sox also have some AL Cy Young contenders, as Steven Wright is tied with Toronto Blue Jays starter Aaron Sanchez with 12-1 odds to win behind Chris Sale (4-5) and Danny Salazar (9-4). Rick Porcello also is in the conversation with 25-1 odds behind Cole Hamels and Chris Tillman (both 16-1).
Thumbnail photo via Kamil Krzaczynski/USA TODAY Sports Images
Thumbnail photo via May 11, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; San Diego Padres starting pitcher Drew Pomeranz (13) throws the ball against the Chicago Cubs during the first inning at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
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