Red Sox manager John Farrell acknowledged Wednesday that Pablo Sandoval's weight is an issue.
It's the first time Farrell has addressed this topic since spring training, when he was in full support of Boston's new acquisition. The burly third baseman got thrown out at home on a ball he should have scored on Wednesday night against the White Sox and had to be lifted from the game two innings later due to dehydration. "There are ongoing efforts to support that, to try to get him in the best shape possible," said Farrell. "That's something Pablo has dealt with his entire career. It continues to be addressed."
Pirates acquired RHP Joe Blanton from the Royals for cash considerations.
Blanton was designated for assignment by Kansas City on Tuesday to open a 40-man roster spot for new ace Johnny Cueto. Blanton had a strong 3.89 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, and 40/7 K/BB ratio in 41 2/3 innings (four starts, 11 relief appearances) this season for the Royals and should be an asset as a swing man down the stretch for Pittsburgh.
Yasiel Puig went 2-for-4 with a home run and three RBI in Wednesday's 10-7 come-from-behind triumph over the A's.
The homer off Jessie Chavez was his seventh of the season. For Puig, the big game could not have come at a better time, as his name is currently being batted around the rumor mill. He's having a down year, slashing .254/.326/.433, but it'd be a surprise to see LA's sharp brass sell low on a world-class talent under team control cheaply through 2019. We'll see.
Brett Lawrie went 4-for-5 with a pair of doubles, a homer, three runs scored and four RBI in a loss Wednesday to the Dodgers.
He also stole a bag in the monster performance. Lawrie started at third tonight, but he's expected to also draw starts at second base in the wake of Tuesday's Ben Zobrist trade. He's slashing .280/.314/.412 and is on pace for 14 homers, 67 RBI, 54 runs and eight steals.
Mike Bolsinger yielded two runs on eight hits in five innings Wednesday in a no-decision against the A's.
Moved up to start after ace Clayton Kershaw was scratched due to a sore hip, Bolsinger struck out three and walked three in a pedestrian performance. Bolsinger, who entered 5-3 with a 2.79 ERA in 15 starts, is no doubt hoping the Dodgers' rumored trades for starting pitching don't knock him out of the rotation.
Jesse Chavez scuffled Wednesday night against the Dodgers, surrendering three runs over five innings in a no-decision.
Chavez got a gift when opposing starter Clayton Kershaw was scratched before first pitch, but he couldn't capitalize. The 31-year-old hurler hasn't completed seven innings in a month-and-a-half and he'd given up four runs in three of his four July outings before tonight, causing his ERA to jump from 3.02 to 3.53 after tonight's outing. He'll try to turn things around against the Orioles on Monday, kicking off a two-start week.
Colby Lewis allowed two runs over six innings Wednesday in a win over the Yankees.
Lewis struck out five and walked none in winning for the 11th time this season. He's one of just 12 pitchers in baseball with that many victories, though his ERA is a far less impressive 4.42. In fairness, the ERA reflects a couple of huge beatings and doesn't perfectly reflect how well he's pitched, either. Still, there isn't really any mixed-league value here.
Masahiro Tanaka yielded four runs and nine hits in six innings Wednesday in a loss to the Rangers.
Most of Tanaka's issues this year have been with the home run ball. Tonight, though, he never allowed one. However, he did walk three and strike out just three. He had just one previous three-walk start this season and none with as few strikeouts. In fact, he had a 71/10 K/BB ratio in his previous 11 starts. So, this one looks like an aberration. He gets a bumbling Red Sox lineup next time out.