Bobby Dalbec set to make first career start at shortstop for Red Sox

As the Red Sox look to bounce back against the Blue Jays on Wednesday night, Bobby Dalbec will be making his first-ever start at shortstop.

With Xander Bogaerts out of the lineup due to back spasms and Enrique Hernandez starting at second base in place of a banged-up Christian Arroyo, Dalbec will serve as Hernandez’s double play partner.

While Dalbec has never started a game at shortstop in the major-leagues, he did play four innings at the position last season without committing an error. The 27-year-old also logged three innings at short as a minor-leaguer in 2018, though he never saw time at the position during his three seasons at the University of Arizona.

Dalbec will become the fourth different player the Red Sox have started at shortstop this season, joining the likes of Bogarts, Arroyo, Hernandez, and Jonathan Arauz. The right-handed hitter, who will bat seventh on Wednesday, is currently slashing .206/.279/.364 with 11 home runs, 32 RBIs, and 35 runs scored in 105 games (319 plate appearances) for Boston this year.

With Dalbec handling things at shortstop, Rafael Devers will start at third base and Franchy Cordero will start at first base. Alex Verdugo, Jarren Duran, and leadoff man Rob Refsnyder make up the starting outfield from left to right. Tommy Pham, like Bogaerts, is not available because of back spasms.

Brayan Bello, who was just activated from the injured list after missing the last three weeks with a left groin strain, is making his fourth start and sixth overall appearance of the season. Reese McGuire will be catching the rookie right-hander.

First pitch from Fenway Park is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. eastern time on NESN.

(Picture of Bobby Dalbec: Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)


Nick Pivetta allows just 1 hit over 7 scoreless innings as Red Sox hold on for 5-3 win over Pirates

The Red Sox scored four runs out of the gate and held on for a series-opening win over the Pirates at PNC Park on Tuesday night. Boston defeated Pittsburgh by a final score of 5-3 to improve to 58-59 on the season and 7-9 in interleague play.

Making their first trip to Pittsburgh in nearly seven years, the Sox received an early boost from the top half of their lineup. Matched up against Mitch Keller to begin things on Tuesday, Tommy Pham led off the first inning with a line-drive single.

Rafael Devers and J.D. Martinez followed by drawing back-to-back walks to fill the bases for Alex Verdugo, who drove in his side’s first run on a groundball single to right field. Christian Arroyo and Eric Hosmer tacked on two more with run-scoring singles of their own, though Hosmer’s — a 214-foot fly ball — deflected off the glove of Pirates rookie Oneil Cruz before landing in left field.

With the bases still full, Enrique Hernandez came through in his first plate appearance in more than two months by lifting a 350-foot sacrifice fly to left field to plate Verdugo. An inning later, Pham reached base again on a one-out single. He moved up to second base when Martinez drew a walk and scored from there after Pirates centerfielder Bryan Reynolds failed to catch a 366-foot line drive off the bat of Verdugo.

That sequence of events gave the Red Sox a five-run lead, which was plenty big for Nick Pivetta. Making his 24th start of the season on Tuesday, Pivetta allowed just one hit and three walks to go along with six strikeouts over seven scoreless innings of work.

The one hit Pivetta surrendered came with two outs in the bottom of the first and put runners at first and second. The right-hander did not buckle, though, as he proceeded to get Kevin Padlo to ground out to himself to extinguish the threat.

From there, Pivetta settled in by retiring 18 of the next 20 batters he faced through the end of the seventh. Of the 99 pitches the 29-year-old threw on Tuesday, 63 went for strikes. He induced a total of eight swings-and-misses in the process of picking up his ninth win and lowering his ERA on the season to 4.28.

In relief of Pivetta, Austin Davis received the first call out of the Boston bullpen from manager Alex Cora. The left-hander made things interesting in the eighth by loading the bases with one out on two singles and a walk. That prompted Cora to turn to John Schreiber, who struck out Reynolds on a nasty slider and was one strike away from ending the inning.

Unfortunately for the Red Sox, Schreiber served up a bases-clearing, three-run double to Gamel on another slider at the bottom of the strike zone. All three of those runs were charged to Davis as the Pirates trimmed the deficit down to two runs at 5-3.

Matt Barnes was called upon to end it in the ninth. He did just that by punching out Cruz and Rodolfo Castro and retiring Greg Allen on 12 pitches to earn his third save of the season (and first since May 21) to secure the win.

So, despite going hitless from the second inning on, the Red Sox picked up their fourth win in their last five games. Pham led the way with two singles and two runs scored out of the leadoff spot while Verdugo, Arroyo, and Hosmer, had one hit and one RBI between them.

Next up: Hill vs. Contreras

The Red Sox will go for their third straight series victory in Wednesday’s contest against the Pirates. Veteran left-hander Rich Hill will get the start for Boston and rookie right-hander Josh Winckowski will follow out of the bullpen. Fellow righty Roansy Contreras is slated to take the mound for Pittsburgh.

First pitch from PNC Park is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. eastern time on NESN.

(Picture of Nick Pivetta: Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

Michael Wacha tosses 7 scoreless innings in first start since June 28 as Red Sox blank Yankees, 3-0, to earn series victory

The Red Sox won their second straight series against an American League East opponent with a shutout victory over the Yankees on Sunday night. Boston defeated New York by a final score of 3-0 to improve to 57-59 on the season.

Matched up against Jameson Taillon out of the gate, leadoff man Tommy Pham set the tone right away in the first inning. Pham led off by ripping a line-drive double to left-center field. He moved up to third base on a Rafael Devers groundout and scored the game’s first run on an RBI groundout off the bat of Xander Bogaerts.

Michael Wacha took over from there. Making his first start since June 28 after being activated from the 15-day injured list earlier in the afternoon, Wacha showed no signs of rust in his return to the mound. The veteran right-hander kept the Yankees off the scoreboard while scattering two hits and one walk to go along with a season-high nine strikeouts over seven strong innings of work.

After retiring the first 14 batters he faced, Wacha saw his bid for a perfect game come to an end when he gave up a softly-hit two-out single to Miguel Andujar. He then issued his first and only walk of the evening to Isiah Kiner-Filefa before getting Kyle Higashioka to ground out to Devers at third base.

Wacha yielded a one-out single to Andrew Benintendi in the sixth but left him there by fanning Aaron Judge and Josh Donaldson. He ended his night by punching out two more in a scoreless top of the seventh.

Finishing with a final pitch count of 89 (59 strikes), Wacha threw 36 four-seam fastballs, 21 changeups, 19 cutters, eight curveballs, and five sinkers. The 31-year-old hurler induced a game-high 10 swings-and-misses with his changeup and also averaged 93.8 mph with his four-seamer. He picked up his seventh win and lowered his ERA on the season to 2.44.

Moments before Wacha recorded the final out of the seventh, Devers broke out in the latter half of the sixth. After Pham led the inning off with another single, Devers promptly clubbed a 433-foot two-run home run to deep right field off Taillon.

Devers’ 25th homer of the season left his bat at a blistering 110.4 mph. It also gave the Red Sox some breathing room in the form of a 3-0 lead.

In relief of Wacha, Ryan Brasier received the first call out of the Boston bullpen from manager Alex Cora. Brasier made quick work of the Yankees in the eighth to pave the way for Garrett Whitlock, who did the same in the ninth to secure the victory and his fourth save of the year.

All told, three Boston pitchers (Wacha, Brasier, and Whitlock) combined to toss nine scoreless innings in which they only gave up two hits and one walk while striking out 11.

Offensively, Pham went 3 for 4 with two runs scored out of the leadoff spot while Devers went 2 for 4 with two RBIs and one run scored. Both of Devers’ hits left his bat at more than 110 mph. They were the two hardest-hits of the game, per Baseball Savant.

Also of note, Sunday’s contest took all of two hours and 15 minutes to complete.

Next up: On to Pittsburgh

The Red Sox will enjoy an off day on Monday before traveling to Pittsburgh to take on the Pirates on the road for the first time since September 2014. Nick Pivetta is slated to get the ball for Boston in Tuesday’s series opener while fellow right-hander Mitch Keller is expected to do the same for Pittsburgh.

First pitch from PNC Park is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. eastern time on NESN.

(Picture of Michael Wacha: Brian Fluharty/Getty Images)

Tommy Pham comes through with walk-off single in 10th inning as Red Sox come back to defeat Yankees, 3-2

The Red Sox walked off the Yankees in 10 innings at Fenway Park on Friday night. Tommy Pham immersed himself into the storied rivalry by lifting Boston to a 3-2 victory over New York.

Well before that, though, Nathan Eovaldi made his 18th start of the season for the Sox. The veteran right-hander grinded through six innings, allowing two runs on eight hits and two walks to go along with three strikeouts on the night.

The first of those two runs came right away in the top of the first inning. After issuing a one-out walk to Aaron Judge, Eovaldi gave up an RBI double to Anthony Rizzo. Two innings later, Judge took Eovaldi 429 feet over the Green Monster for his 46th home run of the season to give the Yankees a 2-0 lead.

J.D. Martinez got the Red Sox on the board in the fourth inning by driving in Alex Verdugo, who led off with a double, on a run-scoring single up the middle. That cut the deficit in half, but it was all they could get off Yankees starter Domingo German, who tossed six-one run innings.

Eovaldi, meanwhile, settled in by retiring nine of the final 12 batters he faced from the fourth inning on. He gave up a one-out single to old friend Andrew Benintendi in the sixth, but that was immediately negated when Jose Trevino popped into a force out at second base.

All told, Eovaldi finished with a final pitch count of 108 (70 strikes). The 32-year-old hurler induced a total of 11 swings-and-misses while averaging 94.4 mph with his four-seam fastball. His ERA on the season now sits at 4.15.

In relief of Eovaldi, Matt Barnes received the first call out of the Boston bullpen from manager Alex Cora. Barnes yielded a one-out single to D.J. LeMahieu and promptly plunked Judge, but he got out of that by punching out Rizzo and Josh Donaldson in back-to-back fashion.

From there, Ryan Brasier retired the side in order in the eighth before Garrett Whitlock did the very same in the ninth to hold the Yankees at two runs. In the latter half of the inning, the Red Sox were down to their final three outs and matched up against All-Star closer Clay Holmes.

Holmes got a slumping Rafael Devers to ground out to short, but then issued back-to-back walks to Xander Bogaerts and Verdugo. Martinez then came through once again by driving in Bogaerts on another RBI single up the middle to knot things up at two runs apiece.

Verdugo, who advanced to third on the play, represented the potential winning run as Yankees manager Aaron Boone pulled Holmes in favor of Wandy Abreu. The lefty fanned Eric Hosmer and then got Christian Arroyo to line out to send the game into extras.

Whitlock came back out for the 10th and stranded runners at second and third while striking out Donaldson and Gleyber Torres. Arroyo, having recorded the final out of the ninth, started the bottom of the 10th inning at second base. Jaylin Davis moved him up to third on a softly-hit groundout.

After Reese McGuire reached base on a bunt single, Pham delivered with the hit of the night: a walk-off single down the left field line off Lou Trivino that scored Arroyo from third. Comeback completed.

With the win, their second straight, the Red Sox improved to 56-58 on the season. They still trail the Orioles by four games for the third and final American League Wild Card spot.

Next up: Crawford vs. Montas

The Red Sox will go for their second consecutive series win over an American League East opponent on Saturday night. Rookie right-hander Kutter Crawford will get the start for Boston while former Red Sox pitching prospect Frankie Montas will do the same for New York.

First pitch from Fenway Park is scheduled for 7:15 p.m. eastern time on FOX.

(Picture of Tommy Pham: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Eric Hosmer comes through with game-winning RBI double as Red Sox end losing streak with 4-3 victory over Orioles

The Red Sox have done it. They have won a series against another American League East team.

Yes, it may have only been one game, but Thursday’s contest against the Orioles at Fenway Park counted as a series, according to The Elias Sports Bureau. Boston therefore clinched its first series win of the season against a divisional opponent with a 4-3 victory over Baltimore.

Matched up against Dean Kremer to begin things on Thursday, the Sox got off to a quick start. Right out of the gate, Xander Bogaerts and Alex Verdugo went back-to-back on a pair of two-out doubles in the first inning. The two traded places to give their side an early 1-0 lead.

Two innings later, Jarren Duran led the bottom of the third off with a hard-hit single and promptly scored all the way from first base when Tommy Pham ripped an RBI double down the left field line. Pham moved up to third on a Rafael Devers sacrifice fly and scored from third on a Bogaerts sacrifice fly to make it a 3-0 game in favor of Boston.

To that point in the contest, Josh Winckowski had been cruising right along. Making his 11th start of the season for the Sox, the rookie right-hander took his shutout bid into the sixth inning before running into some trouble.

After giving up a leadoff single to Cedric Mullins and issuing a five-pitch walk to Adley Rutschman, Winckowski recorded the first two outs of the inning. He then served up a two-run triple to Terrin Vavra, who proceeded to score from third base on an infield single off the bat of Austin Hays.

Winckowski attempted to field the 62.3 mph grounder, but struggled to get the ball out of his glove before making a late underhanded toss to first baseman Eric Hosmer. Hays was initially called out by first base umpire Mark Carlson, but the Orioles challenged the call on the field and it was overturned.

Hays proved to be the last batter Winckowski would face. The 24-year-old hurler wound up allowing three runs on six hits, two walks, and two strikeouts over 5 2/3 innings of work. He threw 93 pitches (63 strikes) and raised his ERA on the season to 4.69.

Austin Davis came on to record the final out of the sixth and did just that to keep the 3-3 stalemate intact going into the bottom half of the inning. Kremer got the first two outs rather quickly before issuing a seven-pitch walk to J.D. Martinez. He was then pulled in favor of Nick Vespi.

Hosmer greeted the new O’s reliever by driving in Martinez all the way from first on a 394-foot RBI double to deep center field. Hosmer’s second hit of the night allowed the Red Sox to jump back out to a 4-3 advantage.

From there, Matt Barnes struck out two and stranded one in the seventh before John Schreiber closed things out by recording the final six outs of the game to notch his fourth save of the year.

With the win, the Red Sox improved to 55-58 on the season. They currently trail the Rays by 4 1/2 games for the third and final American League Wild Card spot.

Also of note, Bogaerts’ first-inning double was the 300th two-base hit of his career. He became the 11th player in Red Sox history to hit 300 doubles with the team, but only the second to do so before turning 30. Carl Yastrzemski first accomplished the feat in 1969.

Next up: Eovaldi vs. German

The Red Sox will now welcome the first-place Yankees into town for a three-game weekend series that begins Friday night. Nathan Eovaldi will get the start in the opener for Boston while fellow eight-hander Domingo German will do the same for New York.

First pitch from Fenway Park is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. eastern time on NESN and MLB Network.

(Picture of Eric Hosmer: Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox endure more bullpen struggles in 8-4 loss to Braves; Tommy Pham homers in third straight game

The Red Sox were swept by the Braves at Fenway Park on Wednesday night. Boston fell to Atlanta by a final score of 8-4 to extend its losing streak to four and drop to 54-58 on the season.

Nick Pivetta, making his 23rd start of the year for the Sox, allowed three runs on five hits and two walks to go along with five strikeouts over six quality innings of work.

All three of those Braves runs came in the top half of the fourth. After giving up a leadoff single to Austin Riley, Pivetta had Eddie Rosario on the ropes with two outs. With the count full, he pinpointed a 93.7 mph four-seam fastball on the outside corner of the lower half of the strike zone.

It should have ended the inning. Home plate umpire Adam Beck instead called it a ball and Rosario took his base. Three pitches later, Pivetta served up a towering, 403-foot three-run shot to Marcell Ozuna on a 91.9 mph four-seamer that was left over the heart of the plate.

Ozuna’s blast over the Green Monster gave Atlanta its first lead of the night at 3-0. Boston countered in its half of the fifth inning when Bobby Dalbec scored from third base while Tommy Pham grounded into a 5-4-3 double play.

That was the only run the Red Sox got off Braves starter Kyle Wright. Pivetta, meanwhile, ended his night on a positive note by retiring seven of the final eight batters he faced after giving up that homer to Ozuna.

The 29-year-old right-hander finished with a final pitch count of 108 (69 strikes) while keeping his ERA on the season at 4.51. He hovered around 93.8 mph with his four-seamer, which was slightly up from his yearly average of 93.3 mph, per Baseball Savant.

In relief of Pivetta, Darwinzon Hernandez got the first call out of the Red Sox bullpen from Red Sox manager Alex Cora. The left-hander struck out the first Brave he faced in Ozuna, but then gave up a base hit to Michael Harris II that was followed by a two-run home run off the bat of Vaughn Grissom, who was making his major-league debut for Atlanta on Wednesday.

Grissom’s first career homer traveled 412 feet over the Green Monster to give the Braves a 4-1 lead. Hernandez got through the rest of the seventh inning unscathed, but has now allowed 16 earned runs in 6 2/3 innings with the Red Sox this season. That is good for an ERA of 21.60.

In the latter half of the seventh, Dalbec greeted new Braves reliever Dylan Lee with a one-out single. Jaylin Davis, who was pinch-hitting for Jarren Duran, followed with a line-drive base hit of his own to put runners at first and second for Pham, who responded by depositing a 412-foot three-run home run to dead center field.

Pham’s 14th big fly of the season was also his third in his last three games with Boston. It trimmed Atlanta’s lead down to just one run at 5-4 heading into the eighth inning.

Despite his team being in desperate need of a shutdown inning, Ryan Brasier was not up to the task in the eighth. Brasier yielded back-to-back one-out singles to Matt Olson and William Contreras before Rosario ripped an RBI double to left field to plate Olson and Ozuna lifted a sacrifice fly to center field to score Contreras.

That sequence of events made it a 7-4 contest in favor of the Braves. Austin Davis recorded the final out of the eighth before Kaleb Ort gave up another run-scoring single to Dansby Swanson in the top of the ninth. In the bottom half of the inning, veteran closer Raisel Iglesias made quick work of Dalbec, Davis, and Pham to end the game.

All told, four different Red Sox relievers (Hernandez, Brasier, Davis, and Ort) combined to give up five runs on seven hits over just three innings. Offensively, the Sox went 2-for-7 with runners in scoring position and left six runners on base as a team.

Rafael Devers, Xander Bogaerts, and J.D. Martinez went a combined 1-for-12 with two strikeouts, both of which belonged to Martinez. Alex Verdugo accounted for his side’s only two walks.

By getting swept by the Braves in this brief two-game interleague series, the Red Sox now find themselves trailing the Orioles and Rays (58-52) by five games for the third and final American League Wild Card spot.

Next up: Winckowski vs. Kremer

The Red Sox will next welcome the Orioles into town for a quick, lockout-induced one-game series on Thursday. Josh Winckowski is slated to start for Boston while fellow right-hander Dean Kremer will do the same for Baltimore.

First pitch from Fenway Park is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. eastern time on NESN.

(Picture of Nick Pivetta: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox acquire Tommy Pham from Reds

The Red Sox have acquired outfielder Tommy Pham from the Reds in exchange for a player to be named later or cash considerations, the team announced Monday night.

According to The Boston Globe’s Alex Speier, the player to be named later going from Boston to Cincinnati is not expected to be a prominent prospect.

Pham, 34, signed a one-year, $6 million contract with the Reds back in March. That deal included a $6 million mutual option and a $1.5 million buyout, so it is worth $7.5 million in guaranteed money.

In 91 games with Cincinnati this season, the right-handed hitter batted .238/.320/.374 (92 wRC+) with 11 doubles, one triple, 11 home runs, 39 RBIs, 57 runs scored, seven stolen bases, 42 walks, and 100 strikeouts over 387 plate appearances.

Defensively, Pham has seen all his playing time this year come in left field, registering seven outfield assists and three defensive runs saved across 716 innings at the position. He also has past experience in center and in right field.

A former 16th-round draft pick of the Cardinals, Pham broke in with St. Louis in 2014 before putting his name on the map three years later, when he finished 11th in National League MVP voting.

The following July, the Cardinals traded Pham to the Rays. The Las Vegas native spent the next season-and-a-half in Tampa Bay, where he had the chance to get acquainted with Chaim Bloom.

Since being traded from the Rays to Padres in December 2019, shortly after Bloom left for Boston, things have not gone all that well for Pham. Dating back to the start of the 2022 season, he owns a .701 OPS over his last 277 games between San Diego and Cincinnati.

In late May, Pham made headlines when he slapped Giants outfielder Joc Pederson across the face during batting practice at Great American Ballpark because of a dispute centered around fantasy football. He was handed down a three-game suspension as a result.

(Picture of Tommy Pham: Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)