March 8, 2019

Dustin Pedroia's Debut Goes Well; Darwinzon Hernandez Adjusts, Continues Scoreless Inning Streak

Dustin Pedroia reached base in his lone plate appearance on Thursday, singling off the glove of the shortstop. He raced to second on a wild pitch and came around on Rafael Devers's double, Boston's only run in a 12-1 loss to the Twins.
The guys the last couple of days were like, "You better swing at the first pitch." I haven't seen a pitch in a game since May. I really wasn't going to swing at it, but I saw it up there and am like, "Might as well let it fly."
He swung and missed Kohl Stewart's 93-mph fastball, but later rapped a single.
I was more happy running around the bases and moving around. That was cool. ... You kind of have to be [confident in yourself], you know. ... If I'm not confident about it, it's not going to happen. ... I'm going to play good if I'm out there. That's the bottom line. The only thing holding me back is my knee. If we get that fine, I'll be good.
Pedroia had one fielding chance at second, a routine grounder that he fielded cleanly. Today, Pedroia said he felt "pretty good", reminding the media that his workday had extended beyond the two innings on the field.
While you were at Hooters eating clam chowder with no clams in it, I was still here.
Pedroia is scheduled to play tomorrow against the Mets.

Darwinzon Hernandez pitched three shutout innings this afternoon, but the Red Sox managed only two hits and lost to the Orioles 4-2. (Tzu-Wei Lin doubled in a run in the second inning and Eduardo Nunez singled in the sixth.)

Hernandez issued a walk and hit two batters in the first inning, but escaped trouble thanks to two strikeouts and a caught stealing. After a chat with catcher Christian Vazquez, Hernandez pitched a clean second and, after giving up a hit to start the third, got two ground balls for a force and a double play.
In the first inning, I was a little fast. My mechanics were a little off. When I came into the dugout, Christian Vazquez talked to me and so did the pitching coach. They told me [to] calm down and not be so fast. Thanks to those guys, I was able to lock in and control my tempo.
Manager Alex Cora was impressed:
He slowed down and his delivery was a lot cleaner in the second inning. For a young kid, he let the stuff play in the strike zone and did a good job. ... [H]e looks like he belongs.... This is a guy that is going to contribute. I'm not saying March 28 or in September; in between that, he's going to be a part of this and he's going to make an impact.
Hernandez has thrown seven shutout innings this spring, with four hits, four walks, and 10 strikeouts.

On Wednesday, Triston Casas, 19 years old and the Red Sox's first-round draft pick last year, took batting practice against Chris Sale, Nathan Eovaldi, and Matt Barnes.
I saw 20 pitches, I swung at probably 12 or 13. I didn't make contact once. ... I'm not sure if [Sale] was just trying to groove the first one. But at first I was like, "Man, this doesn't look too bad." But then he brought the next one with a little two-seam grip and it almost hit my back hip, and I was like, "Oh, OK, now we're getting somewhere." Then he flipped me a slider, and I almost came out of my shoes taking it. ... Man, I've got a lot of work to do if I want to get to that level to be able to hit those guys. ... I'm definitely a little taken aback. 
Nick Northcut, a 19-year-old third baseman, was amazed by Eovaldi's splitter.
[Eovaldi] came right at us. The split, I don't know how guys pick that up. It just comes out of his hand, and it's literally like it just stops right in front of you and drops straight to the ground. I'd never seen a split-finger like that before. Ever.

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