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Red Sox Send Catcher Vasquez to DL, Uehara May Follow

Red Sox Send Catcher Vasquez to DL, Uehara May Follow

Major League Baseball(BOSTON, Ma.) -- The Boston Red Sox have sent catcher Christian Vasquez to the 60-Day disabled list after being diagnosed with a right elbow sprain.

Vasquez was sent to Dr. James Andrews for a second opinion after an MRI discovered a problem in the right elbow of the 24-year-old catcher.  In a corresponding move, the Red Sox acquired catcher Sandy Leon from the Washington Nationals.

The Red Sox were expected to employ both Vasquez and Ryan Hanigan, whom the team acquired from the San Diego Padres in exchange for third baseman Will Middlebrooks, as a platoon for the team's catching position.

Additionally, the team's closer Koji Uehara will likely start the season on the disabled list after the 39-year-old felt tightness in his hamstring upon concluding a 30-pitch bullpen session.

"I don't know when I'll be back," Uehara said through interpreter C.J. Matsumoto. "It's a day-to-day process. I have to do what I have to do to get ready."

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David Ortiz Dismisses Steroid Suspicion, Says He Belongs in Hall of Fame

David Ortiz Dismisses Steroid Suspicion, Says He Belongs in Hall of Fame

G. Fiume/Getty Images(FORT MYERS, Fla.) -- Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz still believes he is a future Hall of Famer, despite testing positive for a banned substance by the MLB.

"Let me tell you something. Say whatever you want about me -- love me, hate me. But I'm no bulls------. I never knowingly took any steroids," Ortiz wrote on The Players' Tribune website. "If I tested positive for anything, it was for something in pills I bought at the damn mall. If you think that ruins everything I have done in this game, there is nothing I can say to convince you different.''

"In some people's minds, I will always be considered a cheater," Ortiz continued. "And that's bulls---. Mark my words: Nobody in MLB history has been tested for PEDs more than me. You know how many times I've been tested since 2004? More than 80."

"They say these tests are random. If it's really random, I should start playing the damn lottery. Some people still think the testing is a joke. It's no joke," he clarified. "Ten times a season these guys come into the clubhouse or my home with their briefcases. I have never failed a single one of those tests and I never will.'"

Ortiz was one of the players listed in the Mitchell report that was released in 2007 and has been under the microscope since then.

"Some people still look at me like I'm a cheater because my name was on a list of players who got flagged for PEDs in 2003," Ortiz wrote. "Let me tell you something about that test. Most guys were taking over-the-counter supplements then. Most guys are still taking over-the-counter supplements. If it's legal, ballplayers take it. Why? Because if you make it to the World Series, you play 180 games. Really think about that for a second. One-hundred-and-eighty games."

"Your kids could be sick, your wife could be yelling at you, your dad could be dying -- nobody cares. Nobody cares if you have a bone bruise in your wrist or if you have a pulled groin. You're an entertainer. The people want to see you hit a 95-mile-an-hour fastball over a damn 37-foot wall,'' he explained.

The nine-time All-Star has .285 batting average with 466 career home runs in his career and believes he belongs in the Hall of Fame.

"Hell yes I deserve to be in the Hall of Fame," Ortiz wrote. "I've won three World Series since MLB introduced comprehensive drug testing. I've performed year after year after year. But if a bunch of writers who have never swung a bat want to tell me it's all for nothing, OK. Why do they write my legacy?"

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Red Sox Introduce Yoan Moncada

Red Sox Introduce Yoan Moncada

Joe Robbins/Getty Images(FORT MYERS, Fla.) -- The Boston Red Sox introduced second baseman Yoan Moncada on Friday.

Moncada was a highly saught after prospect from Cuba and signed a record $31.5 million deal on Thursday night.

"He's got a really unique combination of skills -- great athlete, speed, switch hitter with power from both sides of the plate, defensive skills," Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington said. "He's an athlete with the ability to play multiple positions if he had to, but he's a natural second baseman."

Moncada will be assigned to a minor-league roster soon, but the Red Sox are still figuring out where they'll put him.

"He's going to enter the minor league system -- there's still development to do," Cherington said. "He's a developing baseball player, but an exceptionally talented one. Obviously, given the investment we're making we believe he can be a very good major-league player for a long time and we're committed to helping him get there, in the right way."

Moncada is ready to get to work and live out his dream of playing baseball.

"I'm just really looking forward to getting back on the field and playing baseball because I've gone so long since I've actually been able to just to go out and play," Moncada said. "I'm looking forward for the opportunity of just being with this organization and very thankful to everyone with the Red Sox who made that possible."

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Rusney Castillo Out Indefinitely with Strained Oblique

Rusney Castillo Out Indefinitely with Strained Oblique

Brian D. Kersey/Getty Images(FORT MYERS, Fla.) -- Boston Red Sox outfielder Rusney Castillo is out indefinitely after an MRI revealed the 27-year-old Cuban had a strained left oblique muscle."He's going to be down for some time," Red Sox skipper John Farrell said. "I don't have a time frame to give you or projected length, but he's going through some treatment to calm down the strain right now, and he'll do rotational exercises and rehab when he's ready for it."Castillo, who signed a six-year, $72.5 million deal with Boston last August, was competing with youngsters Mookie Betts and Jackie Bradley Jr. for the starting center field job.Castillo said the injury will not stop him from being ready for the start of the regular season, but Farrell noted that oblique injuries are tricky."There's caution to the progression, there's no doubt," Farrell said. "(Pain) tolerance, for one. How aggressive you become to build that back. We just want to be careful of a setback, because everything is rotational in this game."Castillo played in 10 games for Boston last season, hitting .333 with two home runs, six RBIs, and three stolen bases.

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David Ortiz Not a Fan of MLB’s New Pace of Play Rules

David Ortiz Not a Fan of MLB’s New Pace of Play Rules

G. Fiume/Getty Images(FORT MYERS, Fla.) -- Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz isn't happy about the new pace of play rules that the MLB has instituted for this year.

The rule states that a batter must keep one foot in the box at all times with some exceptions.

"It seems like every rule goes in the pitcher's favor. After a pitch, you got to stay in the box? One foot? I call that bulls**t," Ortiz said Wednesday.  

"When you come out of the box, they don't understand you're thinking about what the [pitcher] is trying to do," he continued. "This is not like, you go to the plate with an empty mind. No, no, no. When you see a guy, after a pitch, coming out of the box, he's not just doing it. Our minds are speeding up."

"I saw one pitch, I come out, I'm thinking, 'What is this guy going to try to do to me next?' I'm not walking around just because there are cameras all over the place and I want my buddies back home to see me and this and that. It doesn't go that way," Ortiz added. "When you force a hitter to do that, 70 percent you're out, because you don't have time to think. And the only time you have to think about things is that time. So, I don't know how this baseball game is going to end up.''

Red Sox chairman Tom Werner was a member of the committee charged with improving the pace of play, but Ortiz said that he was never asked about what he thought of the new rule.

"It doesn't matter what they do, the game is not going to speed up," Ortiz said. "That's the bottom line. When you argue for a pitch and they got to review it, that takes some time. Is that our fault? No. It's their fault. But we still got to play the game.''

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Red Sox Sign Cuban Prospect Yoan Mancada

Red Sox Sign Cuban Prospect Yoan Mancada

Joe Robbins/Getty Images(BOSTON, Ma.) -- The Boston Red Sox have signed 19-year-old Cuban infielder Yoan Moncada, according to his representative.

The Red Sox will pay the switch-hitting Moncada a signing bonus of $31.5 million dollars, once he passes a pair of physicals. The team will also have to pay Major League Baseball an additional $31.5 million as a tax for surpassing the international bonus money allotment.

Last season, Boston signed Cuban outfielder Rusney Castillo to a six-year, $72.5 million dollar contract.

Moncada is expected to begin his career in the minor leagues with the Portland Seadogs, Boston's Double A affiliate. 

Additionally, the Red Sox have signed Moncada's close friend, 26-year-old Carlos Mesa, according to Moncada's agent, David Hastings.

"He would have gone with Yoan even if the Red Sox had not signed him," Hastings said Monday night. "Carlos will help Yoan with his transition. He speaks English as well as Spanish."

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Red Sox Extend Manager John Farrell

Red Sox Extend Manager John Farrell

Mike McGinnis/Getty Images

(FORT MYERS, Fla.) -- The Boston Red Sox have extended the contract of manager John Farrell through the 2017 season, the team announced Saturday at the beginning of its spring training camp.

"I'm ecstatic to have the extension," Farrell said. "This is a very special place and to be able to be here for a number of years that are in place, we don't take for granted one moment what the expectations are and how we have to deliver on those expectations."

Coming off a 71-91 season the team also announced that it will also extend general manager Ben Cherington past the 2015 season. The exact duration is unknown.

Farrell also addressed several concerns about position players leading into the season; notably Shane Victorino and new third basemen Pablo Sandoval.

"If Shane Victorino is fully capable and fully healthy, he is our right fielder," Farrell explained. "He was one of the best right fielders in the game two years ago. When you come back from injury, you shouldn't have lost your job because of an injury."

After pictures surfaced showing Sandoval with a large protruding gut, some questioned the fitness of the former San Francisco Giant.

"His body type hasn't changed since signing with us," Farrell said. "He's a guy that converted from a catcher to third base position. He's transitioned successfully at it a number of years ago. His body works for him."

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Red Sox Agree to 3-Year Contract with LHP Wade Miley

Red Sox Agree to 3-Year Contract with LHP Wade Miley

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(BOSTON) -- The Boston Red Sox and left-handed pitcher Wade Miley agreed to a three-year contract with a club option for the 2018 season, the team announced on Thursday. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The Red Sox acquired Miley from the Arizona Diamondbacks on Dec. 12 for right-handed pitchers Rubby De La Rosa and Allen Webster and minor league infielder Raymel Flores.

Last season with the D-Backs, the 28-year-old Miley went 8-12 with a 4.34 ERA. He struck out 183 batters and walked 75 in 201 1-3 innings of work.

In 2012, Miley was named to the National League All-Star team and finished second to Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper for Rookie of the Year.

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Red Sox, Rangers Complete Pitching Swap

Red Sox, Rangers Complete Pitching Swap

Major League Baseball(NEW YORK) -- The Boston Red Sox and Texas Rangers have swapped pitchers struggling to find their role.

Rangers vice president of communications John Blake announced via Twitter Tuesday that Boston has sent right-hander Anthony Ranaudo to Texas in exchange for left-hander Robbie Ross, Jr.

Ranaudo, 25, displayed fantastic play in Triple A, compiling a 14-4 record in 2014 with a 2.61 ERA and 111 strikeouts over 138 innings pitched. He made his Major League debut last season, but struggled to find the same groove as his ERA ballooned to 4.81 in 39.1 innings of work.

Ross, 25, struggled last season after a transition from the bullpen to the starting rotation. Posting a 6.20 ERA in 78.1 innings, Ross failed to find a role in the Rangers injury-riddled rotation.  He will likely resume his role as a left-handed reliever with Boston, a role he excelled in during the 2012 and 2013 seasons. In his career, he has a 53.8 percent ground ball rate.

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Red Sox Avoid Arbitration with Porcello

Red Sox Avoid Arbitration with Porcello

Rob Carr/Getty Images(BOSTON, Ma.) -- The Boston Red Sox and Rick Porcello avoided arbitration with a one-year $12.5 million contract. 

Porcello,26 was acquired by the Red Sox in December in exchange for outfielder Yoenis Cespedes.  The Red Sox acquired Cespedes last season in a trade that saw Boston send ace pitcher Jon Lester to the Oakland A's.

Last season with the Tigers, Porcello went 15-13 with a 3.43 ERA over 204.2 innings, allowing 18 home runs while striking out 129 batters. Porcello also led the American League with 

The Red Sox also re-signed reliever Junichi Tazawa to a one-year $2.25 million deal.

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Red Sox Sign Justin Masterson

Red Sox Sign Justin Masterson

Rob Carr/Getty Images(BOSTON) --  A familiar face will soon be re-joining the Boston Red Sox.

While it isn't Jon Lester, who many hoped would return Fenway but instead signed with the Chicago Cubs, Thursday the Red Sox brought back Justin Masterson.

Masterson, 29, who was drafted by the Red Sox in 2006 and played with the team through 2009, signed with the team for one-year $9.5 million.

In 2009, the Red Sox traded Masterson to the Cleveland Indians as part of a package to acquire catcher, Victor Martinez.

Masterson began to struggle last year, posting a 5.88 ERA in 2014. The Indians traded Masterson to the St. Louis Cardinals, but the Red Birds were unable to solve the mechanical issues that have begun to haunt the sinker baller.

The Red Sox will hope that a low-risk signing of a familiar face will provide a boost to a rotation that posted a 4.01 ERA in the 2013 season.

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Lester Defends Self Against Red Sox Fans Criticisms

Lester Defends Self Against Red Sox Fans Criticisms

Robert Rogers/MLB Photos via Getty Images(CHICAGO, Ill) -- Jon Lester officially signed with the Chicago Cubs Saturday, for six-years, $155 million.

In doing so, he chose not to re-join his former team, the Boston Red Sox; a fact that did not sit well with many of the Fenway Faithful. 

Some fans took to Twitter to voice their displeasure at the perception that Lester only followed the money.

One fan named Peter wrote, "Does money change a man's mind about family? If so, don't call us family. Have respect for you but money was your #1 priority." 

This did not sit well with Lester who took the time to respond with, "It does not, and I'm sorry you feel that way Peter but that couldn't be further from the truth," Lester replied.

Some fans made things a little more personal as another accused, "Red Sox org. and Red Sox Nation supported you unconditionally while you battled cancer, not the Cubs. Your values are messed up."

Lester defended his decision and took the high road.

"I know they did, and I love them for it. Sorry you feel that way but I'd like to think my values are some of my best qualities," Lester said.

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ESPN: Red Sox Trade Yoenis Cespedes to Tigers for Rick Porcello

ESPN: Red Sox Trade Yoenis Cespedes to Tigers for Rick Porcello

Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The Winter Meetings have been a hotbed of baseball activity and it continued Thursday morning as ESPN reports that the Boston Red Sox have agreed to send outfielder Yoenis Cespedes to the Detroit Tigers for starting pitcher Rick Porcello.

In the deal, the Red Sox will also send pitcher Alex Wilson and another minor league pitcher.

Cespedes' time in Boston was brief. He played 51 games for the Red Sox after he was the centerpiece of the deal that sent starting pitcher Jon Lester to the Oakland Athletics.

Since coming to Major League Baseball in 2012, Cespedes has lived up to the billing as a power hitting outfielder who plays good defense. In 2014, the 29-year-old Cespedes hit .260 with 22 home runs and 100 RBIs.

Meanwhile, the Red Sox continue to revamp their starting rotation. Still just 25 years old, Porcello went 15-13 with a 3.43 ERA in 31 starts for the Tigers in 2014.

Porcello will be a free agent following the 2015 season.

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ESPN: Red Sox Trade for SP Wade Miley

ESPN: Red Sox Trade for SP Wade Miley

BananaStock/Thinkstock(SAN DIEGO) -- The Boston Red Sox traded pitchers Rubby De La Rosa, Allen Webster, and an unnamed minor-leaguer to the Arizona Diamondbacks in exchange for left-hander Wade Miley, according to ESPNBoston.com's Gordon Edes.

The 28-year-old Miley has pitched four seasons for the Diamondbacks, compiling a 38-35 record with a 3.79 ERA and a 1.323 WHIP.

Miley is expected to be slotted behind Clay Buchholz and Joe Kelly in the Sox starting rotation, and is under team control for the next three seasons.

Meanwhile, the Diamondbacks receive De La Rosa, 25, and the 24-year-old Webster. Both of whom were originally acquired by the Red Sox in the 2012 deal with the Dodgers that sent Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, Josh Beckett, and Nick Punto to Los Angeles.

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Yankes Sign Reliever Andrew Miller, Acquire Shorstop Didi Gregorius via Trade

Yankes Sign Reliever Andrew Miller, Acquire Shorstop Didi Gregorius via Trade

Major League Baseball(NEW YORK) -- The New York Yankees have taken a major step, or make that steps, in making them a playoff contender again. On Friday, the team signed ace reliever Andrew Miller while also acquiring shortstop Didi Gregorius from the Arizona Diamondbacks in a three-team trade.

Miller's deal with the Yankees for four years and will pay him $36 million.

Over the past two seasons, Miller has emerged as one of more dominant relievers in the American League with the Boston Red Sox and Baltimore Orioles.

In 2014, Miller posted a 5-5 record with a 2.02 ERA to go along with 103 strikeouts in 62.1 innings pitched. His strikeout-per-nine-innings ratio of 14.87 was second to only Cincinnati Reds closer Aroldis Chapman.

Meanwhile, Gregorius could very well be the replacement to longtime shortstop Derek Jeter. While he's not known for his bat, he's known as being a great defender at his position.

In order to get Gregorius, the Yankees sent pitcher Shane Greene to the Detroit Tigers while the Diamondbacks acquired pitcher Robbie Ray and infielder Domingo Leyba.

In 2014, the Yankees missed out on the playoffs for the second-consecutive season after finishing 84-78.

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Report: Red Sox Finalizing Deals with Pablo Sandoval and Hanley Ramirez

Report: Red Sox Finalizing Deals with Pablo Sandoval and Hanley RamirezBananaStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The Boston Red Sox have made quite the splash early on in free agency. Multiple outlets report that the Boston Red Sox are close to finalizing deals with free agents Pablo Sandoval and Hanley Ramirez. ESPN reports th...

Red Sox in Pursuit of Jon Lester

Red Sox in Pursuit of Jon Lester

Robert Rogers/MLB Photos via Getty Images(BOSTON) -- The Boston Red Sox have offered pitcher Jon Lester a contract, reports ESPN.com, according to a major league source.

Lester met with the team's owners earlier this week and met with the Chicago Cubs on Tuesday.

The Red Sox traded Lester at the July 31 deadline to the Oakland Athletics after he could not work out a new deal with Boston.

The Red Sox offered Lester a four-year deal worth $70 million in mid-March, but that deal was rejected.

Lester finished last season 16-11 with a 2.46 ERA.

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Red Sox and Reliever Koji Uehara Agree on Two-Year Extension

Red Sox and Reliever Koji Uehara Agree on Two-Year Extension

Jared Wickerham/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The Boston Red Sox were not about to let one of the most dominant relievers in recent years hit the free agent market as the team and closer Koji Uehara have agreed on a two-year deal through the 2016 season.

Even though he'll be 40 years old in early April, the Red Sox are confident that Uehara will keep up his effectiveness out of the bullpen.

In 64 appearances this past season for Boston, Uehara posted a 2.52 ERA, posted a career-high 26 saves, and struck out 80 batters in 64.1 innings pitched.

Uehara came up big for the Red Sox during their World Series season back in 2013. He saved seven games and recorded a .66 ERA in 13 appearances. He was the named the MVP of the AL Championship Series.

Prior to joining the Red Sox in 2013, Uehara pitched for the Texas Rangers and Baltimore Orioles.

In six seasons in the Majors, Uehara is 15-15 with a 2.44 ERA with 61 saves.

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Catcher A.J. Pierzynski Plans to Play in 2015

Catcher A.J. Pierzynski Plans to Play in 2015Ron Vesely/MLB Photos via Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- After just completing his 17th Major League season, which is no easy feat for a catcher, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports A.J. Pierzynski plans to play again in 2015. Pierzynski spent last season w...

Jeter Ends Career with RBI Single

Jeter Ends Career with RBI Single

Jared Wickerham/Getty Images(BOSTON) -- At Fenway Park, the home of the Yankees' archrivals the Boston Red Sox, Derek Jeter received a standing ovation after recording the final hit of his 20 year career. The New York Yankees shortstop singled home a run in the top of the third before being lifted for a pinch-runner.  

The base hit was the 3,465th of his career, sixth most all-time, and gave New York a 3-0 lead en route to a 9-5 win. The 40-year-old removed himself from the game, being replaced by Brian McCann at first base. 

"I had a blast," said Jeter, who made his Major League debut in 1996, winning the AL Rookie of the Year. "Listen, I had an opportunity to do what I wanted to do, the only thing that I ever wanted to do. I know that not a lot of people can say that. I've been fortunate. I've had fun. There is not a thing I would change."

Prior to the game, a ceremony honoring Jeter featured multiple Boston sports icons who could also call themselves "Captain" -- former Red Sox outfielder Carl Yastrzemski, New England Patriots wide receiver Troy Brown, Boston Bruins legend Bobby Orr, current Washington Wizard and former Celtics guard Paul Pierce all paid tribute to the 14-time All-Star.

The Red Sox also donated $22,222.22 to Jeter's Turn 2 Foundation. Almost $600,000 in charitable donations were given to his foundation throughout the course of the season.

Despite not reaching the postseason in his final year, Jeter was a member of five World Series championship teams and is the Yankees all-time leader in hits, stolen bases, singles, and doubles.

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