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Boston Red Sox Player Grades: Better Than Expected

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Boston Red Sox Player Grades: Better Than Expected

The Boston Red Sox roster has been a mixed bag so far this season with certain players grossly underperforming. This post is the first one in a monthly series where I grade the Red Sox active roster up until that point in the season.

Grades will be in A-F letter formats and the explanation for the grades will  be underneath each player.

The roster of players is right from the MLB 25-man active roster at the time of writing. So that means any player on the DL will not be graded.

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Starting Pitchers

Chris Sale: A-

15 GS, 9-3, 2.85 ERA, 107.1 IP, 146 SO, .90 WHIP

Sale has been everything Boston has asked for and more this season. When the Red Sox acquired the left-handed ace from Chicago the understanding was he was going to be their No.1, and he has done just that.

Sale gets an A- instead of an A because he showed some inconsistency with a 4.24 ERA in May, but with a 3.07 ERA in June he can certainly have his grade bumped up next time around.

Rick Porcello: D-

16 GS, 4-9, 5.00 ERA, 99 IP, 93 SO, 1.53 WHIP

The reigning CY Young winner has been anything but that this season for the Red Sox. His sinker ball hasn’t been working for him causing the groundball pitcher to throw his fastball more trying to get strikeouts.

In his last start on June 23rd against the Angels the right handed pitcher showed some promise that he can turn his season around soon.

David Price: IC

5 GS, 2-1, 5.14 ERA, 28 IP, 24 SO, 1.39 WHIP

Price only has 5 games started this season for Boston with the 31-year-old recovering from an elbow injury. In theory his starts place him right around May 1st if this was a normal season for him.

So with that being said, Price’s season is to incomplete enough to grade at this point. A sample size of 10 starts is what it will take for me to grade him.

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Drew Pomeranz: C+

14 GS, 6-4, 4.07 ERA< 73 IP, 82 SO, 1.37 WHIP

Pomeranz has been a find piece for the Boston Red Sox this season helping sure up the back end of their starting rotation. He had a brutal stretch of starts between May 09 and May 20th where he failed to pitched past the 4th inning.

After the start in Oakland where he blew up on John Farrell he has settled down and his ERA in June is 3.68. If he continues this up he will be a crucial part of the rotation going forward.

Hector Velazquez: IC

3 GS, 1-1, 5.27 ERA, 13.2 IP, 9 SO, 1.32 WHIP

Velazquez has started 2 games for Boston this season and had one appearance out of the bullpen after Brian Johnson suffered an injury.

The 28-year-old’s sample size is too small for a grade.

Red Sox

Relief Pitchers

Matt Barnes: C-

33 G, 5-2, 3.98 ERA, 31.2 IP, 39 SO, 1.33 WHIP

The Danbury, CT native has been primarily used in the 8th inning by Farrell but his struggles on the road have pushed him into the 7th inning role as of late.

Barnes started the season with a 3.27 ERA in April, but since then he posted a 4.26 ERA in May and a 4.50 ERA in June.

Fernando Abad: B+

23 G, 2-0, 2.57 ERA, 21 IP, 13 SO, 1.24 WHIP

The 31-year-old veteran reliever has somehow appeared in 23 games for Boston despite very few of them being note worthy.

Abad has been sparingly used but has actually been very effective for Boston. His era in April was a 5.06, but since then he posted a 2.16 ERA in May and a 1.23 ERA in June. It looks to be time for Abad to get more opportunities for Boston.

Blaine Boyer: C+

11 G, 0-1, 3.29 ERA, 13.2 IP, 10 SO, 1.54 WHIP

Boyer is 35-years-old and has been a journeyman in MLB. He has only been pitching in Boston since May 28th, but in June he has posted a 3.18 ERA.

Boyer has been suitable as a non-pressure situation for Boston, but the feeling is he isn’t built for any late inning work.

Heath Hembree: C-

33 G, 0-2, 3.74 ERA, 33.2 IP, 34 SO, 1.46 WHIP

Hembree is one of the most used relievers in the Red Sox bullpen. He started off the year with a 1.42 ERA in April. But in May he had a 5.93 ERA. In June he has seemed to settle down a bit with a 3.68 ERA, but his inconsistency is not something Boston needs in their bullpen.

Hembree is a specialist pitcher by nature and should be used as such. His ERA against left-handed batters is 2.84.

Robby Scott:

30 G, 0-1, 2.60 ERA, 17.1 IP, 14 SO, 1.04 WHIP

Scott had a good start to the season with a 1.93 ERA in April and a 1.23 ERA in May, but in June he has posted a 5.06 ERA.

Scott is meant to face right handed pitchers and has a 2.45 ERA against them this season. If Scott keeps up his June performances you could see Farrell move away from him quickly.

Joe Kelly: A+

30 G, 3-0, 1.14 ERA, 31.2 IP, 24 SO, 1.14 WHIP

The starter turned reliever has been electric out of Boston’s bullpen. Farrell used Kelly in the 6th and 7th inning primarily but he is now going to be shifted in the 8th inning role.

Kelly had a 2.70 ERA in April, which is good, but since then he has been untouchable. In May, 0.00, in June, 0.00. Those numbers are filthy. Kelly has the opportunity to be a big part of the Red Sox bullpen down the stretch.

Craig Kimbrel: A+

30 G, 2-0, 0.85 ERA, 31.2 IP, 59 SO, .44 WHIP

The Boston Red Sox closer has been stellar this season for Farrell racking up 20 saves. In May Kimbrel did not give up a run with a 0.00 ERA. In June he has a 1.17 ERA in only 7.2 IP with Farrell seemingly declining to use his closer in key situations as of late.

Boston Red Sox

Catchers

Sandy Leon: C+

137 AB, .248 AVG, 5 HR, 22 RBIs, .706 OPS

Leon has been very capable for the Red Sox after a slow April and has batted .306 in June. If he continues to stay hot and drive his numbers up his grade will continue to go up.

Christian Vasquez: B-

126 AB, .294 AVG, 13 RBIs, .712 OPS

Vasquez started the season off with a solid April and May, but in June the catcher is batting .184 in 38 plate appearances. His recent offensive woes is a big reason that Farrell has opted for Leon as of late.

His hot start to the year still warrants him a higher grade than Leon.

Boston Red Sox

Infield

Xander Bogaerts: A

274 AB, .325 AVG, 5 HR, 34 RBIs, 8 SB, .856 OPS

Bogaerts has been very effective for the Red Sox this season and his average is the highest on the team. He has been very consistent this year for Boston despite his numbers in June dipping to .299 for the month.

It will be interesting to see if Xander’s power numbers tick up as the season goes on.

Deven Marrero: C

91 AB, .165, 3 HR, 12 RBIs, .514 OPS

Marrero is not an offensive minded player, instead he is Boston’s best defensive third basemen in the entire organization.

His AVG in June is .120 though and has caused the Red Sox to try and find another option at third base with Pablo Sandoval‘s season also in disarray.

But the defense of Marrero has helped bring stability to the position and for that he gets a C.

Mitch Moreland: B

240 AB, .267 AVG, 9 HR, 37 RBIs, .815 OPS

Moreland has been a key player in the Red Sox offense but his AVG in June is a .242 causing Farrell to spell in Sam Travis.

That being said Moreland has overachieved his contract already and is an important member of this years Red Sox team.

Dustin Pedroia: B+

216 AB, .292 AVG, 2 HR, 25 RBIs, .736 OPS

Pedroia has dealt with a number of nagging injuries but has been the second basemen that Red Sox fans have come to know and love. Despite being 33-years-old, Pedroia has been very effective for Boston.

Josh Rutledge: C

107 AB, .224 AVG, 9 RBIs, .558 OPS

Rutledge is only batting .184 AVG in the month of June. But his role has been expanded with all the issues at third base and the injury to Pedroia.

It is important not to be too hard on Rutledge given the circumstances.

Sam Travis: IC

22 AB, .409 AVG, 1 RBI, 1 SB, 1.004 OPS

Travis simply does not have enough playing time to make a call on his grade. He has shown some promise, and has a chance to make the list with a grade next time if he gets some more playing time.

Boston Red Sox

Outfield

Andrew Benintendi: B

256 AB, .273 AVG, 10 HR, 40 RBIs, 8 SB, .777 OPS

Benintiendi is a rookie, so his play and problems are something that can be too scrutinized at this time.

After a rough May where he posted a .204 AVG, Benny Baseball has bounced back and is hitting .294 with 5 home runs in June. He has shown some issues in the field as of late but that comes with being a young player.

Benintendi is one player that is a must watch for Boston as the 22-year-old still has a lot more to show fans.

Mookie Betts: B+

285 AB, .270 AVG, 12 HR, 40 RBIs, 12 SB, .830 OPS

Betts is an MVP type player, makes all the plays and helps his team win baseball games. His AVG leaves a lot to desire with a .256 AVG in May and .267 in June.

He has struggled as of late with his average almost falling every game at this point. With Mookie though you get the feeling he will have a month batting over .400.

Jackie Bradley Jr.: B

195 AB, .272 AVG, 9 HR, 31 RBIs, .844 OPS

Bradley’s career average is .242, so batting 30 points higher than that is great for the Red Sox centerfield. Interestingly enough he is normally known for his elite fielding, but the 27-year-old has shown some bad judgement out in the field.

But he is batting .360 in June and his fielding is still at an elite level overall.

Chris Young: C+

131 AB, .267 AVG, 3 HR, 14 RBIs, 2 SB, .737 OPS

Young is a utility type outfielder who plays in certain situations and gives the Three B’s a day off. But he is a key member of the Red Sox bench and has been very consistent as a hitter since April when he hit .241.

Young’s power numbers do need to be higher though with that being a big part of his game. But overall you cannot be mad with what he has done so far this season.

Red Sox

Designated Hitter

Hanley Ramirez: D

217 AB, .240 AVG, 10 HR, 28 RBIs, .746 OPS

Ramirez is batting .200 in June and has yet to be a key part of the Red Sox offense. He has been a big disappointment for the Boston Red Sox this season.

Surprisingly enough his power numbers are up this season. This time last year he only recorded 9 home runs compared to the 10 he has now.

Ramirez has been dealing with a lingering shoulder injury but he still has time to put together a fine season as Boston’s DH. But it will take him to start getting base hits instead of the occasional home run.

Next Boston Red Sox Grades Will Come Out In Mid To Late July

Give me your grades in the comment section below!

Tanner founded Trifecta Network in Spring of 2016 and has been the Chief of Content for the Network since that time. Currently Tanner covers all the sports teams in Boston and has contacts in many of the teams in the city. Before starting Trifecta, Tanner was a Site Expert for the FanSided site Chowder and Champions before leaving to cover Boston teams on the ground as a member of the media for Trifecta.

Boston Red Sox

David Price Pitches In A Different Fenway Park

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David Price

David Ortiz steps to the plate, flies out to right field, and what happens? Vicious boos? Well in the world of David Price, yes.

Price had a tell-all with out of touch baseball writer Bob Nightengale in USA Today with the Red Sox pitcher continuing to show why he isn’t made to pitch in any type of baseball market, big or small.

“It is tough here,’’ Price tells USA TODAY. “There’s just so much more negativity. I’ve never been one for negative stuff. I like surrounding myself by positive people. Even if my wife starts talking negatively, I let her know. I just can’t stand it.

Price claims there is an incredible amount of negativity surrounding Boston. Well, maybe just negativity surrounding him. The 217 million dollar man has been the target of much criticism but all of it is justified and has absolutely nothing to do with his price tag. Fans could care less about how much money a player makes since it is not actually their money. Price getting bashed by fans and members of the media also has nothing to do with his performance on the field. It all stems from him being a big baby and blowing up on Dennis Eckersley on the team plane last year. If Price hadn’t done that no one would care, because lets’ face it, Boston is no longer a tough baseball town.

But hey maybe we are all experiencing a different Boston, a different Fenway Park. A Fenway park where David Ortiz gets booed.

“Oh, yeah, he’ll get booed,’’ Price laughs. “I told J.D. he will love the guys here in this clubhouse but also told him he’ll get booed. He’s a quiet, soft-spoken guy, but he’ll handle it. Besides, everyone gets booed. I heard Big Papi (David Ortiz) get booed many times in Fenway.”

Yes, that is a real quote. That statement alone deserves vicious boos from the Fenway Faithful. When was Ortiz ever booed “many times” at Fenway Park during Prices time in baseball? Even when Terry Francona almost benched the slugger fans were still chanting Papi, Papi.

No shot in hell.

Price making that comment to Nightengale is just a shameful attempt to garner national support for him as he attempts to pitch his way out of a contract he should have never signed. Price blames Boston and the fans instead of himself. He signed the contract, no one forced him to do so. Instead, he has taken shots at the city, the fan base, and the organization. Funny thing is if Price goes out and pitches halfway decent there is no shot he gets booed at Fenway Park this season.

Most of the fans that visit Fenway have no idea who half of the players are and will cheer for anything that walks up to the plate. Boston is no longer a tough baseball town, but don’t tell that to Nightengale.

Now it’s J.D. Martinez’s turn to experience baseball’s toughest environment, where perfection is demanded, nothing less than a World Series championship is good enough and, as Price can attest, where things can get awfully ugly in a hurry.

Welcome to Boston.

You’ve been warned. -Nightengale

Baseball’s toughest environment?

I think not.

The biggest newspaper in town, the Boston Globe, is in John Henry‘s garage. And then one of the biggest sports tv stations is also under team ownership.

Tough?

I think not, more like soft as butter.

Now a direct message to J.D. Martinez: Just don’t be an a-hole like Price and you will be fine. Hit .240 or .320, it literally doesn’t matter in Boston.

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Boston Red Sox Spring Training TV And Radio Broadcast Information

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Boston Red Sox

The Boston Red Sox announced on Tuesday their 2018 Spring Training broadcast schedule.

Of the Red Sox’ 35 exhibition games this spring, 14 will be televised by NESN in the Boston TV market on either the main channel or their NESNplus feed.

In addition to the 14 NESN games, a partnership between them and Boston 25 will bring an additional six games to be broadcasted on Boston 25 in the City of Boston and on NESN throughout the rest of New England.

In terms of radio, the Red Sox Radio network continues to be WEEI which will carry 31 spring training games. There will be three national games on the Spring Training schedule with MLB Network carrying the March 2nd game and ESPN carrying both the March 23rd game and the March 27th game.

Below is the full Boston Red Sox spring training broadcast schedule for 2018

2018 BOSTON RED SOX SPRING TRAINING SCHEDULE
(All Times Eastern and Subject to Change)

Thurs., February 22: Northeastern Univ. in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (NESN/WFXT*)
Thurs., February 22: Boston College in JetBlue Park (NESN/WFXT*)
Fri., February 23: Minnesota in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM)
Sat., February 24: Tampa Bay in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / NESN)
Sun., February 25: Baltimore in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 93.7 FM / NESN)

Mon., February 26: Pittsburgh in Bradenton at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM)
Tues., February 27: St. Louis in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM)
Tues., February 27: Minnesota in Hammond Stadium at 6:05 p.m. (NESN+)
Wed., February 28: Pittsburgh in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM)
Thurs., March 1: Houston in West Palm Beach at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / NESN/WFXT*)
Fri., March 2: St. Louis in Jupiter at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM at MLBN)
Sat., March 3: NY Yankees in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 93.7 FM at NESN)
Sun., March 4: Baltimore in Sarasota at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / NESN)
Tues., March 6: Tampa Bay in Port Charlotte at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM)
Wed., March 7: Minnesota in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM)
Wed., March 7: Philadelphia in Clearwater at 1:05 p.m.
Thurs., March 8: at Tampa Bay in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / NESN/WFXT*)
Fri., March 9: Miami in Jupiter at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM)
Sat., March 10: Minnesota in Hammond Stadium at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / NESN+)
Sun., March 11: Baltimore (SS) in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 93.7 FM / NESN)
Mon., March 12: Toronto in Dunedin at 1:07 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM)
Wed., March 14: Minnesota in Hammond Stadium at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM)
Thurs., March 15: Toronto in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / NESN/WFXT*)
Fri., March 16: Minnesota (SS) in JetBlue Park at 6:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / NESN)
Sat., March 17: Tampa Bay in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / NESN)

Sun., March 18: Pittsburgh (SS) in Bradenton at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / NESN)
Mon., March 19: Philadelphia in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM)
Tues., March 20: Pittsburgh in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM)

Wed., March 21: Tampa Bay in Port Charlotte at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM)
Thurs., March 22: Baltimore in Sarasota at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / NESN/WFXT*)
Fri., March 23: NY Yankees in Tampa at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / ESPN)
Sat., March 24: Houston in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / NESN)
Sun., March 25: Minnesota in Hammond Stadium at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / NESN)
Mon., March 26: Chicago Cubs in JetBlue Park at 6:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / NESN)
Tues., March 27: Chicago Cubs in JetBlue Park at 1:05 p.m. (WEEI 850 AM / NESN/ESPN)

(SS) – Split Squad
Home Games are played at JetBlue Park at Fenway South in Lee County, Florida
* Games broadcast on WFXT in Boston DMA and on NESN through the rest of New England

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Boston Red Sox

Red Sox Trade Bryce Brentz To The Pittsburgh Pirates

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Bryce Brentz

Red Sox Trade OF Bryce Brentz To The Pittsburgh Pirates

The Red Sox have announced that they have traded outfielder Bryce Brentz to the Pittsburgh Pirates for cash considerations. This creates a spot for newly signed JD Martinez on the 40 man roster, and ultimately the opening day 25 man roster.


Last season for the Pawtucket Red Sox, Bryce Brentz hit .271 with 31 home runs and 85 RBI’s. Those 31 home runs was the most out of any player in the Red Sox organization. However his fielding was okay at best.

This season, Bryce Brentz was on track to be the number 4 outfielder for the Boston Red Sox. But with the acquisition of JD Martinez, this would force Bryce Brentz off the opening day roster. Since Bryce Brentz no longer has anymore options, this trade makes sure that the Red Sox get something out of getting rid of him. Otherwise the Red Sox would have just designated him for assignment.

Bryce Brentz Highlights

Here are some of the highlights from last season for Bryce Brentz.



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