Archives for July 7, 2018
Boston Red Sox at Kansas City Royals
Where: Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City, Missouri
KANSAS CITY – (Wire Service Preview) – The Boston Red Sox are perfect since leaving Yankee Stadium last weekend and will try to stay hot when they continue a three-game series at the Kansas City Royals on Saturday. Behind another outstanding start from Chris Sale and three home runs, the Red Sox cruised to a 10-5 win in the series opener Friday night.
Boston improved to 4-0 since dropping two of three to the Yankees, and it has outscored opponents 28-12 during the winning streak. J.D. Martinez had one of the three home runs and leads the majors with 27, while Mookie Betts went deep for the 22nd time as the Red Sox became the first team to reach 60 wins. Kansas City is careening toward a fire sale and has dropped seven in a row. David Price, who is 4-0 with a 2.13 ERA in his career against the Royals, opposes Kansas City rookie Brad Keller in Saturday’s matchup on the mound.
TV: 7:15 p.m. ET, Fox
PITCHING MATCHUP: Red Sox LH David Price (9-6, 4.28 ERA) vs. Royals RH Brad Keller (2-3, 2.09)
After going 4-1 with a 2.90 ERA in five June starts, Price opened July by letting up a season-high eight earned runs in 3 1/3 innings at Yankee Stadium on Sunday. He served up five home runs in the outing and has allowed eight over his last three starts. Salvador Perez is 5-for-14 with three home runs against the one-time Cy Young Award winner, who owns a 1.56 ERA in three career games (two starts) at Kauffman Stadium.
Keller continues to impress since being inserted into the rotation and is coming off his first career complete game, although it came in a hard-luck loss at Seattle on Sunday. He has yielded one run in 15 innings over his last two starts to lower his ERA as a starter to 2.14. The 22-year-old tossed two scoreless innings of relief over two relief appearances at Fenway Park in early May.
1. Red Sox OF/1B Steve Pearce has three multi-hit efforts in five games in which he has had an at-bat since being traded to the team late last month.
2. Royals 2B Whit Merrifield has hit safely in eight straight games and has an RBI in each of the last four.
3. Boston RHP Tyler Thornburg allowed a run in one inning of relief on Friday in his first outing since Oct. 2, 2016.
Boston 10, Kansas City 5
Where: Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City
KANSAS CITY – Mookie Betts clubbed his 100th career home run, Chris Sale struck out 12 over six innings of one-run ball for his 100th win and the Boston Red Sox routed the host Kansas City Royals 10-5 on Friday night at Kauffman Stadium.
Betts’ solo blast to lead off the game was his 22nd of the season and his 16th career leadoff blast, extending his own franchise record.
The American League MVP candidate joined Ted Williams, Jim Rice and Tony Conigliaro as the only players to hit 100 homers with the Red Sox before the age of 26.
J.D. Martinez added a two-run shot in the second inning for his major-league-leading 27th homer, and Xander Bogaerts also hit a two-run homer in the frame.
Boston starter Sale (9-4) allowed five hits and walked one while lowering his season ERA to 2.36.
The Red Sox have won four straight games following a three-game sweep of the Nationals in Washington. They lost two of three games to the Yankees in New York before that.
Boston extended its lead over New York atop the AL East to two games.
Mike Moustakas hit a two-run homer and Alcides Escobar, Adalberto Mondesi and Whit Merrifield added one RBI apiece for the Royals, who suffered their seventh loss in a row.
Kansas City starter Jason Hammel (2-11) surrendered eight runs on nine hits with one walk over two innings.
Boston made quick work of Hammel with a pair of four-run innings to lead off the game. After Betts’ homer in the first, Brock Holt had a two-run single and Sandy Leon added an RBI single.
Escobar put the Royals on the board with his RBI single in the second. Mondesi pushed another across with a groundout in the seventh.
Boston reliever Tyler Thornburg made his season debut after missing the first 88 games recovering from right shoulder surgery. He allowed a leadoff triple in the seventh, giving up the run on Mondesi’s groundout.
Jackie Bradley Jr. hit an RBI double for the Red Sox in the top of the eighth.
Moustakas homered in the eighth off Red Sox reliever Brandon Workman. Merrifield’s RBI single in the ninth made it a five-run game.
Red Sox left-hander David Price (9-6, 4.28 ERA) opposes Royals righty Brad Keller (2-3, 2.09) on Saturday night.
–Field Level Media
Anthony exercised his $27.9 million option for 2018-19 last month, a major burden to a Thunder tax bill that swelled further with the re-signings of Paul George and Jerami Grant and the addition of Nerlens Noel. Rather than paying a record $310 million between payroll and luxury tax, Oklahoma City could cut more than $100 million off that total by parting with Anthony.
Per the report, the Thunder could drop Anthony via trade, the stretch provision — allowing the Thunder to stretch the remainder of his salary over three seasons — or a combination of a buyout and stretch.
Anthony, 34, was acquired in September from the New York Knicks in exchange for Enes Kanter, Doug McDermott and a second-round pick. Among the reported potential suitors are the Houston Rockets and Miami Heat, though neither are likely to trade for Anthony, per reports.
—Tony Parker, the point guard of four San Antonio Spurs championship teams, is leaving the team after 17 seasons and signing with the Charlotte Hornets, according to multiple reports.
Parker, 36, will sign a two-year, $10 million contract with Charlotte, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported. Parker averaged just 7.7 points and 3.5 assists in 55 games last season, losing his starting spot to Dejounte Murray.
In Charlotte, Parker will play behind All-Star guard Kemba Walker but is expected to have a bigger role than he would have had with the Spurs. He reportedly had offers from the Spurs and Denver Nuggets.
–The Sacramento Kings have signed restricted free agent Zach LaVine to a four-year, $78 million offer sheet, The Undefeated reported. The Chicago Bulls have two days to match the offer sheet if they want to retain the 23-year-old guard.
According to ESPN, the Bulls did make an offer to LaVine, but “it’s not nearly as strong as the Kings’.” After coming over to Chicago in the Jimmy Butler trade last summer, LaVine averaged 16.7 points, 3.9 rebounds and 3.0 assists in 24 games last season, missing much of the season because of lingering effects from a torn ACL suffered the previous season.
–The New Orleans Pelicans have agreed to re-sign point guard Ian Clark for one year at the veteran’s minimum, according to multiple reports.
Clark, 27, played for the Pelicans last season after stints with Utah, Denver and Golden State. He averaged 7.4 points, 1.5 assists and 1.7 rebounds in 74 games last season, but upped those numbers to 10.5 points, 1.8 assists and 2.2 rebounds after DeMarcus Cousins ruptured his left Achilles tendon in January.
–Free-agent center Kyle O’Quinn agreed to a one-year, $4.5 million deal with the Indiana Pacers. O’Quinn will back up Myles Turner while further bolstering Indiana’s second unit. The Pacers also signed small forward Doug McDermott and shooting guard Tyreke Evans in free agency this month.
The Pacers also waived Alex Poythress — whose contract was not guaranteed — and renounced the free-agent rights to Trevor Booker and Joe Young to open up additional cap space.
—Gary Trent Jr., the 37th overall pick who played one season at Duke, signed a three-year deal with the Portland Trail Blazers, guaranteeing him more money overall than a handful of first rounders.
According to NBC Sports, he’ll be guaranteed $3.919 million over the life of the deal, which is more than picks Nos. 25 to 30 will earn over their first two seasons.
–Field Level Media
WHITE SULPHER SPRINGS – Kelly Kraft took control of the leaderboard with a career-best 7-under-par-63 Friday at the second round of A Military Tribute at The Greenbrier. Kraft, who began the day in sole possession of fourth place, is at 13 under through 36 holes. One stroke behind him are first-round leader Webb Simpson, who shot 67, and India’s Anirban Lahiri, who surged 22 spots up the leaderboard with a career-low 9-under 61, the low round on the day at The Greenbrier’s Old White TPC in White Sulphur Springs, in West Virginia.
Jason Kokrak holds sole possession of fourth at 11 under, and Whee Kim of South Korea and Harold Varner III are tied for fifth one stroke further back.
Kraft is entering the weekend in first place for the first time in three seasons on the PGA Tour since returning from a stint on the Web.com Tour.
“Anytime that you’re leading a PGA Tour event, it goes to show … these are the best players in the world out here,” Kraft told the Golf Channel. “I’ve been up there before and I know I can play out here. And I’m just looking for two more low ones.”
Kraft, who carded a 64 on Thursday, started on the front nine and made the turn at 4 under after birdies on Nos. 8 and 9. He added a birdie on the 11th before bogeying the par-5 12th, though he rebounded to birdie three of the next four holes.
“I kept putting myself in makeable situations on the greens, and I rolled a lot of them in,” Kraft told the Golf Channel.
Kraft, seeking his first Tour title, had his best finish this season at the Corales Puntacana Resort & Club Championship in March, where he finished third. He missed the cut at last week’s Quicken Loans National and endured a stretch of six straight missed cuts from mid-April to late May.
“I’ve kind of changed my attitude a little bit, starting with last week,” Kraft said. “I felt like I played good last week, just a couple of breaks here and there and you miss the cut. It’s easy to do out here. But I’ve changed a couple of things with my attitude and I just feel like I’m ready to keep playing good.”
Lahiri came out the gates firing in starting on the back nine. He birdied the first three holes and four of his first five to make the turn at 4 under, and he once again went on a run with three straight birdies from Nos. 2 to 4. Lahiri finished his day with birdies on Nos. 8 and 9 as part of his second straight bogey-free performance.
Lahiri has one round over 70 at his last three events.
“I’ve been feeling good over the last two weeks, I’ve seen the improvement on the golf course,” Lahiri told the PGA Tour website. “I’ve tried to plug the gaps that I’ve found over the last two weeks, and I’m happy that, more than anything else, I haven’t dropped a shot.
“I’m not thinking about that — the focus is to put myself in the best position that I can, and that’s a big positive for me.”
Simpson, who briefly flirted with the possibility of a historic round of 59 on Thursday before settling for a career-best 61, put himself in a hole early Friday. He birdied the 10th before a double bogey on the 12th and bogey on the 13th. A birdie on the 16th helped him make the turn just 1 over, and four birdies from Nos. 4 to 8 salvaged his round.
“I’ve been hitting my mid and short irons well, so I just told myself that walking off 13 and stayed patient,” Simpson told the Golf Channel.
Defending champion Xander Schauffele is part of an eight-way tie for eighth, along with Chilean 19-year-old Joaquin Niemann, at 8 under. Greenbrier member Phil Mickelson is tied for 33rd at 5 under, and part-time resident Bubba Watson is tied for 24th one stroke ahead of him.
The cut line for the event set at 3 under.
–Field Level Media