Sunday, March 9, 2014
Craig Breslow was supposed to be the pitcher in the spotlight at Hadlock Field Tuesday night. But it turned out another reliever got the coveted news at the end.
Breslow, coming back from shoulder tendinitis, is still a rehab appearance or two (or three) away from joining the Red Sox. He failed to get an out in Tuesday's game. See the game story.
The other reliever, Daniel Bard, pitched a scoreless sixth, needing only 10 pitches. It figured that he might come out to pitch the seventh, but there turned out to be a good reason for Bard calling it a night. After the game, he was called up to Boston. See the previous blog.
Not sure how long Bard will stay with the Red Sox. John Lackey is tentatively scheduled to start at Fenway on Sunday. If that happens, Alfredo Aceves will be thankfully returned to the bullpen, and someone will go to Pawtucket (Alex Wilson? Bard?).
And when Breslow is ready to come back ... but we're getting ahead of ourselves.
Two other pitchers worth noting for their Tuesday performances: Rubby De La Rosa and Henry Owens.
De La Rosa, one of the prospects received in the mega-deal with the Dodgers (can Boston ever thank LA enough for that one?), is still coming around from Tommy John surgery. He has been rocked early, but pitched three scoreless innings Tuesday: 1 H, 2 BB, 1 K.
Owens, the touted left-handed prospect, lowered his ERA to 1.71 in advanced Class A Salem, pitching six shutout innings: 3 H, 1 BB, 6 K. Owens, 20, is only two years out of high school. And he has made only four starts for Salem. So it is too early to talk about a promotion to Portland ... but keep on eye on him.
Now for the hitters:
Jackie Bradley Jr. went 2-for-3 with 2 walks for Pawtucket. Since he's come down to Triple-A, he's batting .400 with a .526 on-base percentage ... Bryce Brentz (.262) went 2-for-4 with his second home run.
In Portland, second-baseman Heiker Meneses continues to show improvement. He came here last year as a 20-year-old, was overwhelmed and eventually sent back to Salem. This season, Meneses is batting .357 and he knows how to run the bases. Meneses, who already has an inside-the-park home run this year, hit two triples and a double Tuesday night. Scored the winning run on a wild pitch in the 10th.
Xander Bogaerts (.311) went 2-for-5 ... Travis Shaw (.305/.462 on-base percentage) was 1-for-3 with two walks.
Salem third baseman Garin Cecchini (.328) went 2-for-4 with his second home run.
Kevin Thomas covers baseball and basketball for the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram. He wisely moved to Maine in 1994 after working for the St. Petersburg Times. He is married to Nancy and they have nine children.
Follow his thoughts on the Boston Red Sox and Portland Sea Dogs on Clearing the Bases
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