Red Sox Notes: Ron Roenicke Expects Team To ‘Play Hard’ Despite Looming Trade Deadline

The Red Sox won their third game in a row Friday night

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The Red Sox won their third straight game Friday against the Orioles. But that wasn’t even the biggest story of the night.

Boston traded relief pitchers Heath Hembree and Brandon Workman to the Philadelphia Phillies in the midst of its eventual 8-5 win over Baltimore at Camden Yards. The Sox received Nick Pivetta and Connor Seabold in return.

The trade deadline isn’t until Aug. 31 and it’s unclear whether the Red Sox are done or have more up their sleeve. And even though manager Ron Roenicke admitted the team is building for the future, he still expects his guys to bring their A-game every night.

“I want to win as much as anybody,” Roenicke said on his Zoom postgame press conference. “I understand (the trade). I understand everything that goes on. I’ve seen it happen a lot. That?s just the way it goes. Hopefully we?ll still play good ball and have some fun.

“These guys are still going to play hard. There’s no question.”

Boston certainly played hard Friday night and were able to pick up the win, despite losing two of its members mid-game.

Xander Bogaerts, J.D. Martinez and Rafael Devers all had home runs, Colten Brewer had a strong start with four innings of shutout ball and Darinwzon Hernandez had a strong return to the mound.

Now if the Red Sox can keep this up and string together some quality wins, as well as play hard every night despite the uncertainty, well then they may be able to get out of last place in the American League East.

Here are some other notes from Friday’s Red Sox-Orioles game:

— Roenicke admitted he was hopeful the Red Sox would get the trade done before first pitch. But nothing really has gone as planned in 2020.

“They were nice enough to stay around to the end of the game and wanted to talk to the guys,” he said.

— Boston now is without a closer with Workman off to Philly. But Roenicke hinted toward Matt Barnes “getting most of the opportunities” to close out games.

“I?m sure he?ll probably get most of the opportunities,” Roenicke said. “But if it matches up better with him in the eighth inning and another closer in the ninth, we?ll do that. I don?t think I?m just going to limit him to doing it for one inning.”

Josh Taylor and Austin Brice also are candidates depending on the matchup.

Barnes gave up a hit in the ninth inning of Friday’s win and picked up the save.

— Alex Verdugo continued his hitting streak, extending it to 12 games.

The outfielder went 2-for-4 with a run scored in the win.

— Hernandez returned to the mound for the first time this season after a bout with COVID-19. And he certainly looked good.

The left-hander surrendered a hit and a walk with three strikeouts.

The chain around his neck broke while he was on the mound, though, but that really was the only downfall of his outing.

Boston Red Sox pitcher Brandon Workman
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