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Monday January 23, 2017
Posted: Jun 13, 2014

When Papi is on, so are the Red Sox

Clearing the Bases

BOSTON - Before Thursday's game at Fenway Park, Indians manager Terry Francona was again asked about his feelings toward Red Sox ownership ("I don't wake up in the morning bitter (but) I won't forget").

Boston manager John Farrell was again asked about his team's woeful offense. "I firmly believe this will turn," Farrell said. See today's column.

Farrell also said the offense does not depend solely on the production of Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz. Of course, Boston needs more players to contribute. But Ortiz's value cannot be minimized.

Ortiz hit a two-run homer in Boston's 5-2 win Thursday.

Boston's record when David Ortiz records at least one RBI: 16-6.

Boston's record without an Ortiz RBI: 14-30.

Having Mike Napoli (i.e. Ortiz's protection in the lineup) return certainly helps.

New lead-off hitter Brock Holt (.336) is a surprise

And Daniel Nava's resurgence is welcomed. Nava was banished to Pawtucket a second time on May 31, only to be called back June 2 because Mike Carp went on the DL. Since then, Nava is batting .409 (9-for-22).

The Red Sox beat a good right-handed pitcher (Josh Tomlin) on Thursday. Now they face Justin Masterson tonight. John Lackey goes for Boston.

Pawtucket starter Steven Wright (1-1, 1.35 ERA) struck out 10 in seven innings: 3 H,1 R, 1 BB. Will his  knuckler play in the big leagues?

Mookie Betts (.278), Travis Shaw (.299) and Christian Vazquez (.271) all had two hits for the PawSox.

The Sea Dogs' scheduled completion of a suspended game, plus the regularly-scheduled game in Altoona were both rained out Thursday. That means a busy schedule (basically four games) next Friday and Saturday at Hadlock Field when the Curve visit. Don't know yet how that affects Henry Owens' start, which figured to be next Friday.

Salem's Luis Diaz (6-3, 3.33) threw six scoreless innings: 7 H, 2 BB, 5 K.

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