Thu May 23 06:42am EDT
Shane Victorino should have known better, being the hyper sort he is. Not to mention that he must be aware of Koji Uehara's reputation for energetic greetings. And yet, Victorino found himself unprepared for Uehara's celebration machine in the Boston Red Sox dugout Wednesday night at Chicago's U.S. Cellular Field.
The result? Major league comedy.
After he retired the White Sox 1-2-3 in the eighth inning, Uehara did what he often does when coming back to the dugout: He enthusiastically high fived everyone and everything in his path from one end to the other. His teammates seemed focused, from Dustin Pedroia to Will Middlebrooks. Mike Napoli even got in an athletic stance and put up two hands for a "high ten." Even clubhouse attendants put their palms at the ready.
When he came upon Victorino, who was seated on a forward bench, kind of slumped and staring off into space, Uehara didn't pause for this teammate to perk up and raise a hand — so he slapped Victorino on the right shoulder.
Mon May 13 12:31pm EDT
Patrolling the outfield in Fenway Park takes some getting used to. That's something that first-year Red Sox outfielder Shane Victorino can attest to after a scary collision with the right-field wall sent him to the hospital Sunday.
As you'll see in the video above, Victorino — aka "The Flyin' Hawaiian" — goes full speed into the wall chasing a home-run ball in the Boston Red Sox-Toronto Blue Jays game. The impact of his crash can be seen in how his body flings back toward the field, but his glove flies over the wall.
Victorino got up and even stayed in the game for two more innings. But the team wasn't taking any chances, eventually pulling him and sending him to the hospital. Red Sox manager John Farrell said after the game:
Sat Apr 20 07:08am EDT
Not long after law enforcement officials captured Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on Friday night, the Boston Red Sox excitedly tweeted that baseball would be returning to Fenway Park on Saturday afternoon.
— Boston Red Sox (@RedSox) April 20, 2013
It was also announced that Saturday's game will be broadcast by MLB Network, with a special pregame show beginning at 12:30 p.m. ET. Standard blackout rules apply in the Boston and Kansas City markets. Part of the pre-game ceremonies was an American Flag drop by first-responders and volunteers from the Boston community. Billie Weiss, the assistant team photographer for the Red Sox, captured the must-watch video above during preparations.
Obviously this is a big day for the city of Boston as evidenced by the celebrations in the streets late Friday night into Saturday morning and even the reactions from all around the country — including Citi Field in New York — and there's nothing bigger in town than a Red Sox game at Fenway. It might even feel like opening day all over again. After spending four terrifying days (that probably felt like four months) wondering and waiting, they can finally get back to normal and turn their pent up anxiety into positive energy.
Fri Apr 19 03:18pm EDT
OFFICIAL: Tonight’s Red Sox game at Fenway Park scheduled for 7:10pm has been postponed to support efforts of law enforcement officers.
— Boston Red Sox (@RedSox) April 19, 2013
The New England Patriots postponed a Friday press conference that had already been postponed once. It was originally scheduled for Tuesday. Not word yet on when the Red Sox-Royals game will be made up, but it would likely be a doubleheader this weekend, if the Red Sox get the all-clear to play ball.
ORIGINAL POST: Twenty-four hours ago, the Boston Red Sox tweeted, "see you tomorrow" with a picture of Fenway Park and that "B Strong" logo. Now — with the city locked down while authorities hunt for the second Boston Marathon bombing suspect — it's still unclear whether that will actually happen.
Tue Apr 16 05:24am EDT
Born and raised just outside of the Twin Cities, left-hander Glen Perkins of the Minnesota Twins also attended college at Minnesota before being taken in the first round of the 2004 draft by his home-town team. Success at the major league level didn't come quickly; Perkins had a 4.81 ERA over his first 303 innings. Only when the Twins converted him to relief, in 2011, did Perkins begin to thrive.
How is he going to maintain success? By staying humble, staying at one with nature as a fisherman and hunter, staying up on the latest advanced statistics and by running as little as possible. Perkins, who engages fans like few other pro athletes on Twitter, delved into his personal philosophies during a recent Answer Man session inside of the visitor's clubhouse at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City.
David Brown: You tweeted Monday night you were watching the national (men’s basketball) championship game with Eddie Vedder. What?
Glen Perkins: Haha. Yeah, he was in town (in Kansas City) and we had met him last year in Seattle. He was in town to see a friend and we (some of the Twins players) had rented a room just to watch the game and he came by and hung out.
DB: What did you talk about?
GP: Really, everything but. We drew parallels about traveling, and what we do — being nervous in front of crowds. He’s a huge sports fan and a basketball fan. We ended up talking a lot about the game.
DB: You also appear to have an online relationship with Dwight Yoakam. Confirm or deny:
GP: Oh, yeah. It’s funny that I tweeted when Robinson Cano switched to Jay-Z [as his agent]. Dwight Yoakam, I’ve listened to him my entire life. His image is about a 180 from Jay-Z, so I tweeted that maybe I should switch my agent to Yoakam. And the next day, I check my phone and he had responded. He’s like, if you move to Los Angeles and play for the Dodgers, maybe we can work this out. So we’ve been going back and forth since. He actually played a concert in Minneapolis a week after we left spring training, which was disappointing because I wanted to go. It would have been fun.
DB: Should he act more?
GP: Yes, no question about it. I know he’s done a few things, but him in “Wedding Crashers” is one of the funniest scenes I’ve ever seen.
DB: Let’s say your fondest wish comes true and the Twins buy a bullpen car. What would you want it to look like?
Mon Apr 15 06:52pm EDT
Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone affected by the explosions at the Boston Marathon. #prayforboston
— Boston Red Sox (@RedSox) April 15, 2013
Before the first explosion, it was a great day in Boston. It was Patriots Day, an annual holiday that aligns with the Boston Marathon and a Red Sox home game to give way to a city-wide celebration. School is out. People are off work. Many baseball fans traditionally walk to the marathon's finish line after leaving Fenway Park.
The Red Sox had won their game in fantastic fashion. A bottom of the ninth walk-off double by Mike Napoli, smacked off the Green Monster, gave the Red Sox a 3-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays. Celebrations ensued and most certainly spilled out into the Boston streets.
Forty minutes later, the first explosion came. And then another. Right there, near the finish line of the marathon as people were crossing. Authorities are still putting together the pieces — how many died, how many were injured, who was responsible — but it was quite obvious the sporting world, and America as a whole, were shook.
Sun Apr 14 03:13am EDT
The Juice returns for season No. 6! It's almost eligible for free-agency! Stop by daily for news from the action, along with great photos, stats, video highlights and more.
The Oakland A's win streak had to end sometime, and that's precisely what it did on Saturday as they fell to the Tigers, 7-3. I'm sure they would have preferred the loss come against anyone other than Detroit and their ace Justin Verlander since that's the same combination that knocked them out in the ALDS last postseason, but that's how it all lined up.
Verlander, who allowed one run over six innings, got plenty of support from his offense in the win. Torri Hunter, Prince Fielder and Jhonny Peralta all homered off Brett Anderson before his fifth inning departure to give the former Cy Young a 5-1 run lead. Oakland never challenged the rest of the afternoon, and Anderson gladly takes responsibility.
''I never really got into a rhythm,'' Anderson said. ''Solo home runs don't usually beat you. The three-run homer was kind of the tip of the iceberg. That's a good lineup. I made some mistakes and they made me pay for them.''
The A's were a little short-handed as well thanks to injuries suffered in Friday night's win. Left fielder Yoenis Cespedes was placed on the 15-day disabled list before the game with a strained muscle in his left hand. Fellow outfielder Coco Crisp is dealing with a strained left groin and continues to be day-to-day.
Mon Mar 04 04:29am EST
Ryan Howard is looking like a beast this spring — with a ridiculous home run Sunday sure to add to the whispers that the big slugger might be back.
The Philadelphia Phillies first baseman, whose career started so high by winning Rookie of the Year and MVP in his first two seasons, was in unfamiliar territory last season. He stunk.
Coming off an achilles tendon injury in the 2011 playoffs, Howard didn't play until July. Then he hit .219/.295/.423 in 72 games with the under-achieving Phillies, all easily career lows.
It's too early for the full "Ryan Howard is back!" proclamation, exclamation point and everything. But we'll say this: So far this spring, Howard is swinging like a guy with something to prove — and, consequently, he's making baseballs fly very far. Case in point: This one he annihilated on Sunday against the Toronto Blue Jays. It left the stadium and was sent to play in traffic outside Bright House Field.
Fri Jan 18 07:35pm EST
Friday was arbitration deadline day around baseball, which means teams, agents and arbitration eligible players had until 1 p.m. ET to exchange salary figures to be used in the event the sides can’t reach an agreement before hearings begin in February.
Of course an agreement doesn’t necessarily need to be reached today to avoid a hearing. A contract can be signed at any time between now and their scheduled date, but it’s often the point where all parties decide they’re tired of the process and are ready to iron out a short-term deal.
Now, we freely admit it’s not what you'd call a thrilling 24-48 hour period as the headlines and figures tend to get a repetitive and the signings are just formalities since the players remain under team control, but it’s in an active time and it can be interesting to see how certain players are valued.
So it's with that said that we give you a little breakdown on some of the most significant deals — whether they're the biggest names, best bargains or otherwise notable — that were struck.
The big names
• Buster Posey: one-year, $8 million with San Francisco Giants
In his first year of arbitration, reigning National League MVP and two-time World Series champion Buster Posey received a hefty pay raise, going from $615,000 to $8 million. Despite his accolades, that’s a higher figure than most were expecting, but it’s likely this is just a precursor to an extension as the two sides are expected to begin negotiations soon. He’s under Giants control through 2016 regardless of that outcome.
• Hunter Pence: one-year, $13.8 million with San Francisco Giants
And the award for highest arbitration salary goes to...
Not bad for a guy many thought would be non-tendered after posting a .253 average and .425 slugging percentage in 2012. That's probably the way the Giants should have gone, too, considering Pence earned a cool $10.4 million last season. They knew he'd receive a raise, because that's how the system works, and now they're stuck paying him above his likely value on the open market. But I guess it's not the worst scenario since it's only a one-year agreement.
• Matt Garza: one-year, $10.25 million with Chicago Cubs
The 29-year-old right-hander has been the subject of trade rumors pretty much dating back to Opening Day of last season, and maybe even before, but has so far stayed put in Chicago. That probably won't be the case when this year's trade deadline comes around as he's finally set to hit the open market next winter.
• Jacoby Ellsbury: one-year, $9 million with Boston Red Sox
After a breakout campaign in 2011 that nearly won him an MVP award, Ellsbury was limited to 74 games in 2012 due to shoulder and lat injuries. That results in only a modest raise from his $8.05 million salary. He'll reach free agency for the first time after 2013, and it's said the Red Sox are open to trading Ellsbury after adding Shane Victorino and Jonny Gomes during the offseason.
• Doug Fister: one-year, $4 million with Detroit Tigers
For some reason it feels like Fister has been around for seven or eight years now, but he's actually a first time arbitration eligible player this winter. The 28-year-old right-hander has been very solid over parts of four seasons, and has posted 2.83 and 3.45 ERAs in back-to-back full seasons. He'll return to Detroit as a cornerstone of their rotation and stands a good chance for a big raise next winter.
• Jason Heyward: one-year, $3.65 million with Atlanta Braves
Another first timer in arbitration, Heyward settles for a very reasonable figure after cracking 27 home runs and stealing 21 bases in 2012. He's a big time superstar in the making. obviously, and it's likely the Braves will explore a long-term deal as his salary in arbitration will only sky rocket from here.
Jonny Venters, 1.625 million, would also qualify as a nice little bargain for Atlanta.
Other notable signings
• Ian Kennedy: one-year, $4.26 million with Arizona Diamondbacks
According to CBS Sports' Jon Heyman, Kennedy's settlement is only $85,000 short of the record for first time eligible pitchers. Only David Price and Dontrelle Willis earned more.
• Neftali Feliz: one-year, $2.9 million with Texas Rangers
Feliz played catch for the first time on Friday since undergoing Tommy John surgery in August. He should be able to pitch sometime late in 2013, but clearly won't be near full strength until 2014.
• Matt Wieters: one-year, $5.5 million with Baltimore Orioles
It's no secret Wieters is interested in a long-term deal with Baltimore, and the sooner the Orioles get that taken care of the better for them. He's another first time eligible player who has set the salary bar high in his initial go round.
• Phil Hughes: one-year $7.15 million, and Joba Chamberlain: one-year, $1.875 million with New York Yankees
It's the final year for Hughes, who can enter free agency after the season. He earned 3.2 million in 2012. Meanwhile, this is a huge season for Chamberlain, who has only appeared in 49 games over the past two seasons after Tommy John surgery in 2011 and suffering a dislocated ankle last season.
We're still awaiting resolutions on key players such as Chase Headley, Sergio Romo and Mat Latos, and those certainly may not come in today. But this really only scratches the surface of activity that we've seen over the past couple days. To catch up or stay up to date, you can check out the complete rundown by jumping over to SB Nation.
Thu Jan 17 12:25pm EST
On opening day of the winter meetings back in December, the Boston Red Sox and Mike Napoli tried making a splash by agreeing to a three-year, $39 million contract for him to play first base. But first word of the deal, tweeted by Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, included what became a significant caveat:
pending a physical
The physical wasn't routine. Napoli apparently suffers from a chronic hip condition that has gone unreported over the course of his career. Napoli and the Red Sox still wanted each other, but there was no way Boston was going to be indebted for nearly $40 million.
After six weeks of negotiations, the parties agreed Thursday to a one-year, $5 million salary for Napoli that includes bonuses which could kick up the total to $13 million, about the average annual value of the original deal. Still, it's a loss of $34 million in guaranteed money. Not exactly hitting it big in free agency. And he must stay off the disabled list — as it relates to his hip condition — to get all of the money.