With a sweep in their sights, the Red Sox played their third game north of the boarder on Wednesday night. In his first career start against the Blue Jays, right-hander Joe Kelly was solid in 6 innings of work, allowing just 2 runs on 3 hits, while striking out 4. Opposite of Kelly, Toronto’s starter Marcus Stroman was equally tough on the Red Sox offense, and yielded just 2 runs on 5 hits over 7.2 innings. Boston’s only offense of the night came in the 6th inning on a David Ortiz RBI single and a run scoring passed ball. With the Red Sox leading by slim 2-1 lead in the 7th, the Blue Jays put the tying and go-ahead runners on base against Joe Kelly and Junichi Tazawa. Before he could even record an out, Tazawa served up a 3-run home run to Danny Valencia which put the Blue Jays on top for good. Despite Wednesday’s 5-2 loss, the Red Sox managed to escape Toronto with a series win, which is their first since their brief two game stop in Cincinnati 2 weeks ago. Boston will enjoy an off day on Thursday, and resume play with a 3 game set in Tampa Bay.
- It was announced on Wednesday that newly acquired Red Sox outfielder Rusney Castillo has obtained a United States working visa. With the proper paperwork now in hand, the 27-year old is eligible to see in game action with the Red Sox, but will likely require a quick tune up in the minors before making his big league debut. In the time spent awaiting his visa approval, the Cuban defector has been working out at the Red Sox facility in Fort Myers. (Agent: Rusney Castillo eligible to start playing in games)
- Mike Napoli’s titanic blast into the 5th deck at the Rogers Center on Tuesday night served as a reminder of the down-tick in power across the league. Ten years ago, it use to be commonplace to see a batter demolish a pitch into the deepest depths of a stadium, but since then the game has evolved both policy wise and talent wise. While the MLB’s stringent drug-testing mandate could be responsible for the leagues power outage, some consider the league-wide uptick in pitching to be the main culprit. (It’s time to recalibrate what it means to be a power hitter)
- David Ortiz rejoined the Red Sox line-up on Wednesday night, after a nagging foot kept the designated hitter sidelined for two games. Ortiz’ injury came in the 4th inning of Sunday afternoon’s game, when the 39-year old fouled a ball off his right-foot and was later lifted for a pinch-runner. Ortiz showed no signs of pain or discomfort on Wednesday, collecting 2 hits and an RBI in 4 at-bats. (Ortiz back in lineup after two game absence)
- This season, Brock Holt has rapidly become a fan favorite around Boston. Red Sox Nation has embraced the scrappy infielders ability and willingness to leave his native position, and adapt with great success all-around the field. But we all know what the 26-year old is capable of on the field, it’s his off-field quirks that make Holt an even more interesting member of the Red Sox. (20 questions: The legend of Brock Holt)
- In any other circumstance, Mookie Betts would figure into the Red Sox plans for the 2015 season, but with a crammed outfield and Dustin Pedroia manning second base, the 21-year old’s future in Boston remains uncertain. Betts’ rise to the MLB this year is pretty remarkable, considering that he started the season as a AA second baseman, and is now the Red Sox center fielder. Since being recalled from the minors, Betts has impressed Red Sox coaches and front office with his advanced approach at the plate, his ability to adapt to new positions, and his speed on the base paths. (Despite uncertain future, Mookie Betts adds speed and flair to Red Sox)
- Tweet of the day: Not a bad idea
Tazawa should really never pitch in Toronto again.
— Matt Collins (@MattRyCollins) August 28, 2014