Greetings from Spring Training – March 11, 2017

Chris Murphy is a Today in Sports subscriber and a contributor to The Remy Report for his week at spring training. Chris will be sharing his pictures and observations while there.

Red Sox fans meet Chris Sale. He was in complete command for four shutout, as Red Sox beat the Tampa Bay Rays 2-1. Sale breezed through the lineup by throwing what we can only assume are all his pitches. Fastball touching 97, changeup in the mid 80’s, slider and curveball ranging all the way down to 74. Add the fact that he works very quickly and he is sure to be a fan favorite for that reason as well.

Beyond that things to note were 3 nice defensive plays turned in by Pablo Sandoval. One of them starting a double play turned by Dustin Pedroia who continues to be the best at the pivot that these eyes have ever seen. Joseph Monge, one of Red Sox top 20 prospects made a strong throw in the 7th to cut down a runner in the 7th. Still, after Sale left, the game dragged and might be described as a good game to catch up on reading the season preview in the program.

One thing any fan couldn’t help notice is the Sox plan to be more aggressive against shifts and on the base paths. Both Pedroia and Bette took third against the shift and Pablo Sandoval tried to drop down a bunt. Another thing to be noted was Sandy Leon stayed home to catch Sale and Christian Vazquez traveled down the road to play the Twins. May indicate who #1 catcher is.

Pre game on back fields, there were two intrasquad games. Travis Lakins impressed by stringing out side in his first inning. Ryan Scott looked like someone to watch on the other field after tripling and hitting several balls deep in BP.

A tip for fans. Keep an eye on field 1 and 2 before road games. Red Sox regulars Bradley, Young, Benintendi and others were taking BP there and then signed autographs before heading out to play the Twins down the road.

Game time temperature was 83, but fortunately it warmed up to 88 as the game progressed.

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