Tag: Junichi Tazawa

machi getty

Jean Machi named Red Sox closer


Junichi Tazawa has been showing signs of fatigue throughout the second half of the 2015 season and he walked four of the six batters he faced in an ugly appearance Friday night against the New York Mets.

Jean Machi contributed 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief in that same game and he earned a save on Saturday evening against the leaders of the National League East race with another spotless frame.

So you probably could have predicted that this announcement was coming at some point Sunday from interim Red Sox manager Torey Lovullo …

Machi owns a rough 5.21 ERA in 46 2/3 total innings this season between San Francisco and Boston, but the out-of-contention Red Sox will simply roll with what’s currently working as they play out the string.

And That Happened: Sunday’s scores and highlights

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Blue Jays 12, Angels 5: The Angels are skidding out of it, losing four in a row and falling into third place behind the Rangers. Here the Jays do what the Jays do best: bash the hell out of the opposition. They even spotted the Angels a four-run lead after an inning. I guess you need a handicap sometimes. Edwin Encarnacion went 4-for-4 with a homer and four RBI and the Blue Jays are now back in first place in the AL East. The Jays scored 36 runs in the three-game series.

Indians 4, Yankees 3: Francisco Lindor had three hits including the go-ahead homer in the eighth off of Dellin Betances of all people. He homered and had three hits on Saturday too. Bad news for the Yankees, apart from the fact that they lost this game, was that CC Sabathia was forced to exit in the third inning with right knee pain. That’s the knee he had surgery on last year, ending his 2014 season. He’s going to have an MRI, but he’s almost certain to hit the disabled list. That’ll leave the Yankees with a rotation of Tanaka, Eovaldi, Nova, Severino and Pineda. Which, um, not to be rude or anything, consists of five starters, all of whom have been better than Sabathia this year. Though the big man has had a couple of decent starts this year, maybe this is a blessing in disguise. Or, at the very least, a sink-or-swim moment for the Bombers’ rotation.

Rangers 4, Tigers 2: The Rangers take three of four from a Tigers team which, for half a second, thought it might be righting the ship. Nah. Cole Hamels allowed two runs on eight hits over six innings and Mike Napoli and Chris Gimenez homered. Funny sequence here as Adrian Beltre got ejected for arguing balls and strikes from the dugout. Except Beltre claimed it wasn’t him barking, it was Prince Fielder. Who, quite conveniently, had the day off yesterday. Even Fielder, quite conveniently, claimed it was him barking. Beltre:

“My teammate over there (Fielder) was the one who said something — he even said, ‘It was me, 84,’ but I guess I was the ugly one and got thrown out,” Beltre said. “I don’t know if he confused 84 with 29, we’re always wrong, the players. Umpires are always right.”

Then manager Jeff Banister was ejected for arguing and for not sending Beltre out of the dugout following his ejection. All kinds of lulz here, made all the funnier when you’re winning the game.

Diamondbacks 4, Reds 0: The Reds get swept, losing their ninth straight game. Chase Anderson threw shutout ball into the seventh inning. Not bad for a guy who was optioned to the minors on Tuesday and only was in this one because Jeremy Hellickson got hurt. But then again, it may be harder to face a Triple-A team than the Reds right now. At least the Triple-A team hasn’t given up.

Phillies 2, Marlins 0: Trading away all the guys who made the Phillies great for a few years has really sucked, but Phillies fans have to be at least somewhat optimistic about the future when they see stuff like Aaron Nola pitch eight dominant innings. Three hits, no runs and only one opposing runner advancing beyond first base. That’s the thing about a last place year: there’s always something to latch on to. Something that let’s you say “you know, it’s gonna be better.” And even if it doesn’t get better for a while, I think some of the purest joy of being a major league baseball fan is seeing some young kid come up and figure it out in the bigs. Some days he’s lost, some days he’s not, but when he puts a nice outing together like this, you don’t think about the losses. You don’t think about contracts and possible trades. You just think “look at this kid!” There’s always another kid to give you hope like that.

Twins 4, Orioles 3: Manny Machado was a shortstop prospect, but found his home at third base thanks to a combination of injuries and J.J. Hardy being too good to move off the position. Yesterday, after some substitutions, he played short for the first time in the bigs, taking the position in the twelfth inning and it cost Baltimore when he misplayed an Eduardo Escobar grounder, allowing Escobar to reach second base. Then Jimmy Paredes, playing Machado’s usual position at third base, made an error which allowed the go-ahead and eventual winning run to score. Hardy is hitting the DL now thanks to a groin injury. Miss U already, J.J. The Twins sweep the O’s in the four-game series.

Royals 8, Red Sox 6: The Royals mounted a four-run rally when they were down two in the ninth to win 8-6. Could’ve been more but leadoff hitter Omar Infante was thrown out at home trying to stretch a triple into an inside-the-park homer. Junichi Tazawa probably think he dodged a bullet with that, but three of the next four batters singled and then Eric Hosmer knocked in two of them in with yet another single. Following a walk, Mike Moustakas doubled in two more. Moustakas had four RBI on the day with an earlier RBI double and a homer as well.

Nationals 9, Brewers 5: On Friday Yunel Escobar collided with a fan while tracking down a foul ball and hurt his neck. That caused him to be out of this game, allowing Danny Espinosa to hit a three-run, go-ahead double in the third inning. Anthony Rendon and Wilson Ramos homered. The Nats are still five games back, though, because the Mets . . .

Mets 5, Rockies 1: . . . won their third in a row, sweeping the Rockies. Logan Verrett, making a spot start for Matt Harvey, looked a lot like Matt Harvey, at least in the box score, allowing one run over eight innings, striking out eight. Only five runs for the Mets after scoring 28 in the previous two games, though. Must be slippin’.

Astros 3, Dodgers 2: Jason Castro smacked a walk-off homer in the bottom of the tenth. This was the Astros’ fourth walkoff win in eight games. More importantly, it was the series sweep over the Dodgers, keeping their lead in the West at four over the surging rangers and five and a half over the other Los Angeles team.

Cubs 9, Braves 3: Five homers for the Cubs, two of which came off of Kris Bryant’s bat. Dexter Fowler, Miguel Montero and Kyle Schwarber went yard as well. A scary moment here, however, as a fan was sent to the hospital after being hit by a foul ball. The second such incident in as many days.

Athletics 8, Rays 2: It was a close game until the bottom of the seventh when the A’s put up a seven-spot. Makes me think of a 7 and 7, which I remember my parents making for people at weird parties they held in the 70s but which I’m pretty sure no one drinks anymore. Hell, you can hardly find 7-Up anyplace anymore. What the hell happened to 7-Up? It was the un-cola.

Mariners 8, White Sox 6: Robinson Cano had a two-run homer and Nelson Cruz drove in two with a double. The M’s avoid a three-game sweep. Cano on why it’s nice to avoid a three-game sweep with a Sunday win:

“Like I told the guys in the dugout, it’s good to end it up with a happy Sunday,” Cano said. “You can have a nice evening. You don’t have to go to bed and, `What do we have to do win a game?”

Better yet, you can avoid a case of the Mondays.

Cardinals 10, Padres 3: Four runs in the first inning are all the Cards would need but they added six more anyway. Stephen Piscotty homered twice and drove in five. The Cards avoid a sweep and a case of the Mondays too.

Pirates 5, Giants 3: The Pirates scored three first-run innings off of Ryan Vogelsong and never trailed. Homers from Andrew McCutchen and Pedro Alvarez gave them a greater margin for error later. Not that they needed it. The Giants scored two unearned runs and the Pittsburgh bullpen allowed jack squat from the sixth inning on. The Pirates are only three and a half games back of the Cardinals now.

Jean Machi, not Junichi Tazawa, will replace Koji Uehara as Red Sox closer

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Red Sox closer Koji Uehara is out for the rest of the season with a fractured wrist, but manager John Farrell told Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe that Jean Machi, not Junichi Tazawa, will get first crack at ninth-inning duties.

Tazawa has been Uehara’s primary setup man and has a 3.25 ERA in 252 career innings, but Farrell indicated that he’d rather keep him in the same role.

Machi has all of three career saves, was claimed off waivers from the Giants last month, and has allowed four runs in four appearances for the Red Sox, so turning to him as the new closer is … well, let’s just say surprising.

Uehara is signed for $9 million next season, so the job figures to be his again heading into 2016.

Red Sox closer Koji Uehara is out for the season with a fractured wrist

Koji Uehara AP

Koji Uehara took a line drive off his right wrist while closing out Friday’s win–throwing to first base to get the final out–and the Red Sox announced that he’ll miss the remainder of the season after being diagnosed with a non-displaced fracture.

Uehara finishes the season with 25 saves and a 2.23 ERA in 40 innings, holding opponents to a .188 batting average while posting a 47/9 K/BB ratio. It’s a spectacular performance for any reliever and especially so for a 40-year-old who came into the season with plenty of questions marks attached after he struggled down the stretch in 2014.

Uehara is under contract for $9 million in 2016 and figures to remain the Red Sox’s closer. Junichi Tazawa is expected to take over ninth-inning duties for the final seven weeks of the season after doing excellent work as Uehara’s setup man for years, including a 3.19 ERA and 48/7 K/BB ratio in 48 innings this season.

John Farrell and Wade Miley had an argument in the dugout this evening

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There was some drama in the Red Sox dugout earlier this evening, as left-hander Wade Miley had an argument with manager John Farrell after being informed that he was being taken out of the game. You can watch the video here.

It was a rough outing for Miley, who allowed five runs on nine hits over four innings. He allowed a total of three home runs, including a solo shot to Manny Machado in his final inning of work. Miley and Farrell exchanged words before walking down into the tunnel to complete their conversation in private.

Steven Wright and Junichi Tazawa combined to allow an unearned run over four innings in relief of Miley and David Ortiz hit his first home run since May 19, but Boston’s comeback fell one run short in a 6-5 loss. The Red Sox were swept in the series and now sit at 27-34 on the season, in last place in the American League East and seven games behind the first-place Yankees. Oh, and they are set to begin a series tomorrow against the Blue Jays, who have won eight straight and are the hottest team in the majors. Frustration is mounting.

Farrell was asked about the situation with Miley after the game: