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  • i just got the scoop from the dark side....sorry keith ....south was bagged by an overzealous mod...he'll be back

    in the mean time we need to pick up his slack

    REDS 9, RED SOX 8
    at Fort Myers, Fla.
    Thursday, March 3

    Red Sox at the plate: Jed Lowrie, competing with Julio Lugo for the starting shortstop's job, belted two hits and scored a run. Paul McAnulty, trying to win a spot coming off the bench, belted a two-run double in the bottom of the third, helping to offset his error in the top of the inning. He later added a two-run homer.

    Red Sox on the mound: Lefty Jon Lester was impressive in his second Grapefruit League start, firing two hitless innings and striking out two while throwing a mere 20 pitches. Hideki Okajima worked a scoreless third inning. Ramon Ramirez, acquired in an offseason trade for Coco Crisp, struggled in the fourth, getting tagged for four hits, four runs (three earned) and two homers.

    Junichi Tazawa made his first appearance against Major League hitters, firing a 1-2-3 inning. Tazawa hadn't allowed a run in his three games, the first two of which were against Boston College and Northeastern University.

    Up next: The Red Sox have their first off-day of Spring Training on Wednesday. They will be back at City of Palms Park on Thursday for a noon ET exhibition against Puerto Rico's World Baseball Classic entry. Clay Buchholz will start that game for Boston. Closer Jonathan Papelbon will make his second exhibition appearance.


    • I'm driving down to Orlando to see the Sox take on the Braves on March 30th. Man, I need my baseball fix!!
      My 2011 adopted poster.........and and

      Adopted by: and


      • Originally posted by kmcgough25 View Post
        I'm driving down to Orlando to see the Sox take on the Braves on March 30th. Man, I need my baseball fix!!
        sweet...i wish i was down there


        • i just talked to south and he asked that the sox fans try to help the team in the baseball elimination game...those bastids are trying to get rid of us


          • "Does that make any sense? A guy with a herniated disk flies three hours in the teeth of a snowstorm to get a shot that could be administered in the training room at City of Palms Park. Who does that? And we are supposed to believe this is no big deal?" -- 3.4.09, Dan Shaughnessy, Boston Globe


            • youk certainly has a strange way of holding the bat prior to the pitch being thrown


              • Smoltz is champing at bit, but reined in


                FORT MYERS, Fla. -- When his new teammates take the field at roughly 1 p.m. ET for each of those Grapefruit League home games, John Smoltz, as ecstatic as he is to be with the Boston Red Sox, can't bear to watch.

                "That's tough for me because it's hard for me to watch guys throw off the mound or even throw in a game, because it just makes me want to do more," Smoltz said. "The weirdest thing is, I have to separate myself from that or I'll drive myself crazy. It's hard, because you want to be a part of everything, but I just can't indulge too much and be tempted."

                And that is why this is probably the oddest Spring Training of Smoltz's career, which is now entering season No. 22, and first out of Atlanta.

                For 21 years, Smoltz has pushed and pushed and pushed to get everything out of himself at every possible second. Now, the Red Sox -- because of the way their team is set up and because of how crucial they think Smoltz can be for the stretch run -- have put restraints on the 42-year-old righty. The loose timetable for Smoltz to open his 2009 season is June 1.

                Though Smoltz -- who Red Sox doctors viewed as a freak of nature this winter after seeing how well his right shoulder had responded from surgery last June -- would love to push the envelope, he knows what his new employers are doing is the right thing. That doesn't mean it's easy.

                "It's much harder than I expected," Smoltz said. "And I knew that. I mean, I knew it would have its challenges. Each day I come here with a little bit of a mind-set to play a game with myself, and trick myself that this is part of what I need to do. It's the only way to get through it, because otherwise you get pretty bored."

                So instead of trying to throw a certain number of pitches or induce a set amount of swings and misses, Smoltz tries to reach certain milestones in his rehab exercises. Yes, it's monotonous, but he needs some type of competition.

                How is the shoulder?

                "Great," Smoltz said. "Everything is great. There's nothing holding me back right now. It's just a matter of the program. It's different. It's got me more under wraps. That's fine."

                As obedient as Smoltz has been, the Red Sox still know they better keep an eye on him.

                "We knew throwing a rein around him is something we would have to do sometimes," said Red Sox manager Terry Francona. "Every time you turn your back he goes from [playing catch] from 100 to 130 feet. That's just the way he's built. We actually respect it, and we really like it, but we knew we would have to do this. He's on board, but he feels good and wants to keep going. We'll keep him in line. He's here early every day and he works hard. He's doing fine."

                In actuality, Smoltz's Spring Training will start at roughly the same time his new teammates depart for Boston to open the 2009 season against the Tampa Bay Rays.

                He'll pitch off a mound for the first time in late March, and progress to some type of game environment shortly thereafter.

                "My Spring Training will really be in April," Smoltz said. "I'm always one that wants to be ready as fast as possible. June 1 is the target. We'll just see how it progresses. There's no sense in me being teased in my mind about anything other than June 1."

                The other oddity for Smoltz about his new situation is that he's gone from being essential -- yes, the Braves leaned on him so heavily for two decades -- to being the proverbial cherry on top of a sundae.

                "This team has a lot of talent," Smoltz said. "That's what makes this a lot of easier, knowing you're not needed as much. I obviously like to be depended on, but this is just a bonus here. They've got everything that you could possibly want."

                That everything includes an ace with Smoltz-like numbers in October in Josh Beckett. And also a lefty emerging as one of the best in the American League in Jon Lester. There is Daisuke Matsuzaka, who has won 33 games over his first two seasons. And Tim Wakefield, who is in Smoltz's age bracket, and is so dependable each year. Jonathan Papelbon is one of the best closers in the league. The setup crew is loaded. Smoltz looks around and marvels at the pitching talent the Red Sox have assembled.

                "It's definitely a great scenario for everyone involved," Smoltz said. "The only word I can even think of is luxury. It's a big luxury. When you have that kind of luxury, you're in a position to do very well."

                For Smoltz, the measuring stick for success has always been October. Amid the bright lights of the postseason, Smoltz is 15-4 with a 2.65 ERA. But the Braves didn't participate the last three years.

                "It's an empty feeling after 14 years in a row of getting geared up for it," said Smoltz. "I just have to pace myself and not get carried away with it because that's the time of year where you have to execute and prove yourself every single time. You can't rest on past experience because it's not going to guarantee your future. That's what is so special about that time of year."

                And yes, the prospect of the postseason -- an event the Red Sox have become regulars at during the Theo Epstein/Francona regime -- is what has made the slower timetable doable for Smoltz.

                "There's no doubt that is the carrot," Smoltz said. "Again, it's a luxury."
                My 2011 adopted poster.........and and

                Adopted by: and


                • PUERTO RICO 9, RED SOX 5
                  at Fort Myers, Fla.
                  Thursday, March 5

                  Puerto Rico at the plate: Ivan "Pudge" Rodriguez, who is still trying to land a job with a Major League team, went 3-for-5, scored two runs and had one RBI. Ramon Vazquez, who spent the first three months of the 2005 season with the Red Sox, was 2-for-3 with an RBI. Another former Sox player, utility infielder Alex Cora, got a hit off the bench and scored a run. Bernie Williams, playing against Boston for the first time since '06, was 0-for-2.

                  Red Sox at the plate: Leadoff man Jacoby Ellsbury went 2-for-3 with a double. Brad Wilkerson bashed a solo homer. Chris Carter, battling with Wilkerson for a spot on the bench, went 3-for-3.

                  Red Sox on the mound: Clay Buchholz navigated through some jams to turn in a respectable outing, giving up three hits and one run over two innings while striking out two. Closer Jonathan Papelbon fired a 1-2-3 inning in his second outing of the spring. Highly touted relief prospect Daniel Bard pitched two scoreless innings and overpowered Rodriguez for a strikeout in the ninth.

                  Up next: The Red Sox will host the Marlins on Friday afternoon at 1:05 ET at City of Palms Park. Ace Josh Beckett makes the start, and he will be followed out of the bullpen by Takashi Saito and Hideki Okajima.


                  • FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Other than the fact that Josh Beckett is pitching against his old team, there's not a lot of news coming out of Red Sox spring training this morning. But we do have lineups. (No Hanley Ramirez, though.)

                    Brad Penny will get his shoulder checked out by Dr. Tom Gill, who just arrived in Florida. Manager Terry Francona seemed to indicate that it was more precautionary than anything, and that he is not overly worried about Penny. But for a player who spent last season mostly off the field with shoulder issues, there is always the possibility that something could be wrong. We'll try to get you an update after the game.

                    J.D. Drew is expected to get about three at bats in today's game.

                    Following Beckett will be Takashi Saito, Hideki Okajima, Manny Delcarmen, Ramon Ramirez, and Adam Mills.

                    Right now the pitchers are all participating in another round of PFPs (pitchers' fielding practice) on the field during batting practice time. It's been a little while since the Sox have done these drills. John Smoltz is once again taking part, as he did in the first part of camp (though he wasn't required to).

                    And here are the lineups...

                    Red Sox

                    1. Josh Red****, RF
                    2. Julio Lugo, SS
                    3. Jason Varitek, C
                    4. J.D. Drew, DH
                    5. Jeff Bailey, 1B
                    6. Jed Lowrie, 3B
                    7. Zach Daeges, LF
                    8. Chip Ambres, CF
                    9. Ivan Ochoa, 2B

                    Josh Beckett, SP


                    1. Emilio Bonifacio, 3B
                    2. John Baker, C
                    3. Jeremy Hermida, LF
                    4. Wes Helms, 1B
                    5. Mike Stanton, CF
                    6. Cody Ross, RF
                    7. Cameron Maybin, DH
                    8. Chris Coghlan, 2B
                    9. Robert Andino, SS

                    Chris Volstad, SP


                    • RED SOX 5, MARLINS 3
                      at Fort Myers, Fla.
                      Friday, March 6

                      Red Sox at the plate: Right fielder J.D. Drew, playing for the first time in six days, served as the DH and went 1-for-3. Outfield prospect Josh Red**** got the start in the leadoff spot and went 3-for-5. Julio Lugo and Jed Lowrie added two hits each. First baseman Jeff Bailey contributed two RBIs, and left fielder Zach Daeges got the scoring started for Boston with a two-run homer in the second inning.

                      Red Sox on the mound: Ace Josh Beckett turned in solid three innings, allowing two hits and no runs while striking out two. Takashi Saito was unscored upon in one inning of relief, striking out two. Okajima got knocked around a little in his inning, giving up two hits and two runs.

                      Grapefruit League records: Red Sox 3-5; Marlins 1-5.

                      Up next: The Red Sox visit the Tampa Bay Rays in Port Charlotte, Fla., on Saturday at 1:05 p.m. ET, with veteran knuckleballer Tim Wakefield taking the mound. Jacoby Ellsbury, Lowrie and Josh Bard are all expected to make the trip.


                      • that's friggin funny....i didn't realize the filter takes out anything with d-i-c-k in it....people are actually named *****


                        • RAYS 15, RED SOX 7
                          at Port Charlotte, Fla.
                          March 7, 2009

                          Red Sox at the plate: Jeff Bailey entered Saturday's game with a .462 average for the spring and quickly showed why with a double off James Shields to start the second inning. He then scored Boston's first run when Josh Bard grounded out. Bailey again doubled in the fourth, this time off Grant Balfour.

                          Rays at the plate: Jason Bartlett produced a run in the first inning using his speed. After getting hit by a Tim Wakefield knuckleball, Bartlett moved to third on a groundout then scored the first run on another groundout. Shawn Riggans had an RBI single and Chris Richard an RBI double in the three-run second. Jon Weber had six RBIs, hitting a three-run double in the sixth and adding a three-run homer in the eighth.

                          Red Sox on the mound: In his third appearance this spring, Wakefield allowed four runs (two earned) on two hits, a walk and a hit batter while fanning three over four innings. The veteran hurler has allowed four earned runs in seven innings this spring.

                          Rays on the mound: Shields made his first appearance of the spring and allowed one run on two hits, while striking out two in two innings. His first strikeout of the spring came against Jed Lowrie, who swung and missed a changeup. Brian Shouse, the heir apparent to Trever Miller as the team's left-handed specialist, pitched a scoreless third, getting a ground ball that turned into a tailor-made double play. Balfour made his first spring appearance and delivered the final out of a scoreless fourth the hard way when he took a line drive off his right bicep before throwing out Nick Green at first.

                          Grapefruit League records: Red Sox 3-6; Rays 5-4

                          Up next: The Rays will travel to Fort Myers, Fla., for a rematch wtih the Red Sox on Sunday afternoon at City of Palms Park in a 1:05 ET contest. Right-hander Justin Masterson will start for Boston and will be followed by right-handers Jonathan Papelbon, Daniel Bard and Junichi Tazawa.


                          • RED SOX 8, RAYS 2
                            Fort Myers, Fla.
                            Sunday, March 8

                            Red Sox at the plate: Julio Lugo made his strongest showing yet in his quest to reclaim his job as the starting shortstop, going 3-for-3 with two RBIs and drawing a walk. Top hitting prospect Lars Anderson went 1-for-3, scored a run and drove in a run. Zach Daeges belted a two-run homer, and Jonathan Van Every added a solo shot.

                            Red Sox on the mound: Righty Justin Masterson fired three scoreless innings, allowing one hit and striking out three. Closer Jonathan Papelbon gave up two hits over his one inning of work, but struck out three. Fireballing prospect Daniel Bard turned in another impressive performance, striking out the side and not allowing a baserunner in his inning on the hill.

                            Grapefruit League record: Red Sox 4-6; Rays 5-5

                            Up next: Lefty Jon Lester, who is reportedly on the verge of signing a five-year contract extension, makes the start for the Red Sox in Monday's 1:05 p.m. ET game at Bradenton, Fla., against the Pirates. Takashi Saito, Hideki Okajima and Manny Delcarmen will get work out of the bullpen.


                            • lugo batting .533 this spring...he was gonna be the starter anyway, they need to showcase him for somebody to take him off our hands....and with lowell being questionable for the start of the season lowrie will be needed at 3rd

                              what wasn't mentioned in the recap is that bowden gave up another run in 1 inning of work...his spring era 16.88....ouch....luckily they don;t need him and he can take his time building up to being the stud he will eventually be


                              • jon lester signs extension

                                5 years $30 million

                                $13 million club option for 2014

                                outstanding....could be an absolute steal if he continues to pitch like he did last season