Results tagged ‘ Billy Buckner ’

PawSox Players on the Move

Since it’s hard keeping track of minor league free agency each off-season, here is a list of 2012 PawSox players who have moved on since the end of the season.

(Photos: Kelly O’Connor)

And we can’t leave manager Arnie Beyeler off the list. The former PawSox skipper is now the Red Sox new first base coach.

Enjoy your weekend,

-AG

@aaronmgoldsmith
agoldsmith@pawsox.com

Billy Buckner Gone, Red Sox Spring Training Schedule

After a slow start with the PawSox, Billy Buckner settled in and was one of the PawSox most consistent pitchers down the stretch. According to NBCSports.com, Buckner has signed a minor league contract with the Angels.

Buckner lead the Red Sox system in wins (12), games started (27), innings pitched (153.0), and tied for the lead in complete games (2). After allowing 24 runs over his first 23 1/3 innings, Buckner finished both July and August with a 2.21 ERA.

Best of luck to Billy on his return to the Bigs.

According to NBCSports.com, it is not clear if Buckner has been given an Spring Training invite. (Kelly O’Connor)

RED SOX ANNOUNCE 2013 SPRING TRAINING SCHEDULE

Tickets go on sale on Saturday, December 8;

First workouts scheduled for February 12; First games are February 21

BOSTON, MA—The Boston Red Sox today announced their 2013 Spring Training schedule, which features 38 games, including 35 against Major League opponents. The Red Sox will host 20 games at their Spring Training home, JetBlue Park at Fenway South, in the second season of the state-of-the-art complex in Lee County, FL. Tickets for Spring Training games at JetBlue Park will go on sale Saturday, December 8, at 10 a.m. Tickets will remain at 2012 prices and can be purchased at the JetBlue Park box office, online at redsox.com, or by phone at 888-REDSOX6. Fans who require ADA accessible seating may call 877-REDSOX9. Hearing impaired fans may call the Red Sox TTY line at (617) 226-6644.

The Red Sox will open their Spring Training slate on Thursday, February 21, with a single-admission doubleheader against the Northeastern University Huskies and the Boston College Eagles. The first game begins at 1:35 p.m.

With the third World Baseball Classic taking place in March, the Red Sox will host Team Puerto Rico at JetBlue Park in an exhibition game on Tuesday, March 5, at 7:05 p.m. Tickets for this special game will be available at half-price.

Prior to the start of the exhibition season, the Red Sox will hold workouts at the organization’s Player Development Complex at Fenway South. The first workout for pitchers and catchers is scheduled for Tuesday, February 12, and the first full squad workout is set for Friday, February 15. All workouts are open to the public, free of charge.

(All Times Eastern and Subject to Change)

Thursday, February 21 Northeastern JetBlue Park 1:35 p.m.

Thursday, February 21 Boston College JetBlue Park

Friday, February 22 Off Day

Saturday, February 23 Tampa Bay Rays JetBlue Park 1:35 p.m.

Sunday, February 24 St. Louis Cardinals Jupiter 1:05 p.m.

Monday, February 25 Tampa Bay Rays (SS) Port Charlotte 1:05 p.m.

Monday, February 25 Toronto Blue Jays (SS) Dunedin 1:05 p.m.

Tuesday, February 26 St. Louis Cardinals JetBlue Park 1:35 p.m.

Wednesday, February 27 Baltimore Orioles Sarasota 7:05 p.m.

Thursday, February 28 Pittsburgh Pirates Bradenton 1:05 p.m.

Friday, March 1 Pittsburgh Pirates JetBlue Park 7:05 p.m.

Saturday, March 2 Minnesota Twins Hammond Stadium 1:05 p.m.

Sunday, March 3 New York Yankees JetBlue Park 1:35 p.m.

Monday, March 4 Tampa Bay Rays JetBlue Park 1:35 p.m.

Tuesday, March 5 Team Puerto Rico* JetBlue Park 7:05 p.m.

Wednesday, March 6 Pittsburgh Pirates JetBlue Park 1:35 p.m.

Thursday, March 7 Minnesota Twins Hammond Stadium 1:05 p.m.

Friday, March 8 Minnesota Twins JetBlue Park 7:05 p.m.

Saturday, March 9 Baltimore Orioles JetBlue Park 7:05 p.m.

Sunday, March 10 Tampa Bay Rays Port Charlotte 1:05 p.m.

Monday, March 11 Miami Marlins Jupiter 1:05 p.m.

Tuesday, March 12 Toronto Blue Jays JetBlue Park 1:35 p.m.

Wednesday, March 13 Off Day

Thursday, March 14 Minnesota Twins Hammond Stadium 1:05 p.m.

Friday, March 15 Minnesota Twins (SS) JetBlue Park 7:05 p.m.

Friday, March 15 Baltimore Orioles (SS) Sarasota 1:05 p.m.

Saturday, March 16 Tampa Bay Rays Port Charlotte 1:05 p.m.

Sunday, March 17 Tampa Bay Rays JetBlue Park 1:35 p.m.

Monday, March 18 Pittsburgh Pirates Bradenton 1:05 p.m.

Tuesday, March 19 Baltimore Orioles JetBlue Park 1:35 p.m.

Wednesday, March 20 New York Yankees Tampa 1:05 p.m.

Thursday, March 21 Philadelphia Phillies JetBlue Park 7:05 p.m.

Friday, March 22 Toronto Blue Jays Dunedin 1:05 p.m.

Saturday, March 23 Pittsburgh Pirates JetBlue Park 1:35 p.m.

Sunday, March 24 Philadelphia Phillies Clearwater 1:05 p.m.

Monday, March 25 Baltimore Orioles Sarasota 1:05 p.m.

Tuesday, March 26 Off Day

Wednesday, March 27 Miami Marlins JetBlue Park 1:35 p.m.

Thursday, March 28 Minnesota Twins JetBlue Park 7:05 p.m.

Friday, March 29 Minnesota Twins Hammond Stadium 1:05 p.m.

Saturday, March 30 Minnesota Twins JetBlue Park 1:35 p.m.

(SS)—Split Squad Home Games at JetBlue Park at Fenway South in Lee County, Florida

*—World Baseball Classic Exhibition

-AG

@aaronmgoldsmith
agoldsmith@pawsox.com

Sweep Chance in Rochester

Up two games to none in Round 1 of the Governors’ Cup playoffs, the Pawtucket Red Sox have a chance to sweep the North Division champion Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees Friday night in Rochester.

PawSox Playoff Facts:

  • A win would mark the first post-season series sweep by the PawSox in franchise history.
  • It would also send Pawtucket to the league finals for the first time since 2003 when they were swept by Durham.
  • Of the club’s 14 managers since 1973, Arnie Beyeler has become just the third to lead the PawSox to the playoffs in consecutive years (Joe Morgan, 1977-78; Ed Nottle, 1986-87).

Since July 23, Buckner ranks 1st in the International League in wins (7), T-1st in WHIP (0.93), and is 4th in ERA (1.63). (Kelly O’Connor)

  • The PawSox have gone 27 years since winning their last Governors’ Cup Championship in 1984 when they took down the Maine Guides.
  • Since ’84, Pawtucket has won just one playoff series when they beat the Ottawa Lynx in the 2003 semi-finals. It was their first playoff series win in 19 years.

Billy Buckner, one of the league’s best pitchers over the last two months, starts for the PawSox and will be opposed by left-hander Mike O’Connor. Over his last eight starts, Buckner is an outstanding 7-1 with a 1.63 ERA. In fact, the righty has given up less earned runs over his last eight starts (8) than he did over his first two starts with Pawtucket in June (11).

“He’s gotten the ball down and has worked ahead of hitters,” Beyler said from the visiting dugout inside Frontier Field. “When you do that, your stuff becomes more effective. Just the consistency of being more efficient and allowing yourself to get deeper into games.”

My full conversation with Arnie can be heard on the pre-game show tonight starting at 6:50. He also talks about Bryce Brentz, J.C. Linares, and Chris Hernandez.  Hope you can join us tonight along the PawSox Radio Network.

-AG

@aaronmgoldsmith
agoldsmith@pawsox.com

PawSox Road Trip By the Numbers

After a quick two hour northern commute from Louisville, the PawSox team bus pulled in front of the Indianapolis hotel around 1:30 this morning for a four-game series against the Indians.

Aside from Saturday’s shutout loss in Louisville, this has been an offensively charged, and well pitched, road trip for the PawSox. Here are some of the team and individual accomplishments over the first four games of the trip.

  • In the PawSox three wins against the Bats, Pawtucket scored 26 runs on 48 hits – not one was a home run.
  • Despite having enough offense to overcome some poor pitching, the PawSox received a quality start in all three wins (Duckworth, Hernandez, and Buckner).
  • Billy Bucker became the first Pawtucket pitcher to go 7.0+ innings since Justin Germano tossed 8.0 innings scoreless on June 30 at Lehigh Valley. It was his final start before being called-up to Boston.

Bucker went seven innings for the first time this year with the PawSox, his second time overall including his final start on May 30 with the Sea Dogs. (Kelly O’Connor)

  • Daniel Bard finished off a 1-2-3 eighth inning last night with a 95 mph strikeout (11 pitches, 8 strikes). It marked the third time this year Bard has pitched in back-to-back days.
  • Jose Iglesias is looking better and better at the plate. Monday night the PawSox shortstop drew two walks in back-to-back games for the first time in 2012. He now has six walks and 10 strikeouts in 18 games this month.

Helped by drawing more walks recently, Iglesias has raised his on-base percentage to .305. In 101 games with the PawSox in 2011, Iglesias had a .285 OBP. (Kelly O’Connor)

  • Since the All-Star break, Iglesias has reached base in 9-of-11 games with five runs batted in, five walks, and six strikeouts. (On July 13, Iglesias did not reach, but only had one at-bat because of fouling a ball of the inside of his left knee.)
  • Monday night, Chris Carpenter, part of the Theo Epstein compensation from the Cubs, became the first PawSox pitcher in 2012 to hit 100 mph. After watching four games in Louisville, and also asking around, the radar gun in Louisville is usually pretty accurate.

The PawSox go from playing the worst team in the International League to playing the best team. Zach Stewart, part of the Kevin Youkilis deal with Chicago, makes his first road start of the year for the PawSox tonight at 7:05 from Victory Field in downtown Indianapolis. Our pre-game coverage begins at 6:50.

Talk with you then.

-AG

@aaronmgoldsmith
agoldsmith@pawsox.com

Recent Roster Moves Strengthen Outfield

In his first rehab start with the PawSox Thursday night, Carl Crawford played five innings and finished 2-for-3 with a run scored and a pair of singles. With all of the focus on the Red Sox outfielder last night, a number of PawSox roster moves were overlooked.

  • Left-hander Will Latimer was assigned back to Double-A Portland where he actually started last night and tossed four innings.
  • Outfielder Jason Repko, who had homered in each of his last two games, has been placed on the disabled list with a hamstring injury.

Kalish has 15 hits and 11 RBI in his first 10 games this year with the PawSox and hit .217 over 18 games with the Red Sox. (Kelly O’Connor)

  • Although the moves sending outfielders Scott Podsednik and Ryan Kalish had officially happened prior to the break, both played in their first game for the PawSox last night.
  • Righty Clayton Mortensen, the 26th man for the Red Sox day-night doubleheader last weekend against the Yankees, was sent back to Pawtucket and pitched Thursday.

After a disappointing loss last night against Buffalo, the PawSox and Bisons play game two this evening with Billy Buckner (1-3, 6.43) getting the start. First pitch is set for 7:05, pre-game coverage begins at 6:50.

Talk with you then.

-AG

@aaronmgoldsmith
agoldsmith@pawsox.com

Three Games, Two Days, One Game Back

It might only be the final day of June, but this weekend series in Allentown, Pa. against the IronPigs will have a slight playoff feel. As a result of last night’s loss to the Knights, and the ‘Pigs extra-inning win against Rochester, Lehigh Valley now holds the top spot in the North.

The PawSox went 1-7 on the recent homestand – their worst homestand since July 9-19, 2009 when they also went 1-7 versus Buffalo (0-2), Syracuse (0-2), and Indianapolis (1-3). Today is the first time since May 4 that Pawtucket is not in first place in the North standings.

PawSox Notebook:

  • If you think the PawSox slump has been rough, the Gwinnett Braves have lost 14 games in a row. When they split a four-game series at McCoy earlier this month, they were 2.5 games behind first place Charlotte. Now they’re 10 games back and in last place in the South. The Braves are 5-24 this month.
  • Don’t sleep on Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and Syracuse. The Yankees are now just one game behind the PawSox, while the Chiefs are 2.5 back. Syracuse is an impressive 18-10 this month – the best June winning percentage in the league.
  • For the second time this year, the PawSox have hit 30 homers in a month. Columbus, who hit 31 bombs in May, is the only I.L. team to hit over 30 homers in a single month. The PawSox lead the circuit with 87 home runs, two more than the Clippers.

In his first season in the Red Sox system, Justin Germano has gone 8-4, with a 2.60 ERA over his first 16 games (15 starts). (Kelly O’Connor)

Justin Germano, a 2012 International League All-Star, starts tonight against the IronPigs. Tomorrow, in a day-night doubleheader, the PawSox send Tony Pena Jr. in game one, followed by Billy Buckner in game two. The twinbill makes up for a rainout here at Coca-Cola Park in June 4.

First pitch tonight is set for 6:35, we hit the air at 6:20. Talk with you then.

-AG

@aaronmgoldsmith
agoldsmith@pawsox.com

Jose Iglesias Active Tonight vs. Charlotte

After missing 29 games because of a lower back injury, PawSox shortstop Jose Iglesias is back in the PawSox lineup tonight.

“I’m very excited to get back on the field and contribute,” Iglesias said. “I just want to help my team win.”

At the time of his injury on May 25, Iglesias was batting a team-best .341 (28-for-82) in May and had raised his overall average to .269 (45-for-167).

Over three minor league seasons, the 22-year-old Iglesias is a .264 hitter with two homers and 65 RBI. (Kelly O’Connor)

The Cuban shortstop played in a pair of rehab games with short-season Lowell recently. With the Spinners Iglesias went 3-for-8 with a double, walk, and a stolen base.

To make room for Iglesias on the roster, the Red Sox have assigned right-hander Jeremy Kehrt to Double-A Portland. Kehrt made two appearances (one start) for the PawSox.

The PawSox look to snap their season-long eight-game losing streak tonight with a 7:05 first pitch against Charlotte. Billy Buckner (1-1, 7.71) will be opposed by Matt Zaleski (2-2, 5.02).

-AG

@aaronmgoldsmith
agoldsmith@pawsox.com

Bard to Work Out of Bullpen Tonight

Instead of making his second start of the year for the PawSox, tonight Red Sox right-hander Daniel Bard will come out of the Pawtucket bullpen.

“I didn’t want to start if I’m just going one inning,” Bard said from the PawSox clubhouse.

At what point tonight will Bard be pitching? “I’d rather not know,” he said. The hope is to fully replicate the feel of working out of the bullpen where he’s had such success since joining the Red Sox.

Bard faced seven batters in his one inning Friday night. Although he allowed three runs, he only gave up one hard hit, a two-run double to left-center field. (Louriann Mardo-Zayat)

Bard went one inning in his recent start Friday night against Indianapolis. He allowed three runs on two hits while striking out two and hitting two batters as well.

Instead of Bard, Billy Buckner makes his second start tonight for the PawSox, his first against Gwinnett. First pitch tonight from McCoy is set for 7:05, pre-game coverage starts at 6:50.

Talk with you then.

-AG

@aaronmgoldsmith
agoldsmith@pawsox.com

Bill Buckner Joins PawSox

The PawSox are pleased to announce the recent roster addition of Bill Buckner – just not the same Bill Bucker you’re immediately thinking of.

Billy Buckner is a right-handed starting pitcher in his first season in the Red Sox farm system. The modern-day Buckner was promoted to Pawtucket from Double-A Portland on the final day of May when Chorye Spoone was sent to the Sea Dogs.

“I’m not related, but he was a great ballplayer, so it’s not such a bad thing,” Buckner said with a smile. The righty, who has always gone by “Billy,” has a funny twitter handle to go with the misconception associated with his name: @NotthatBB

Remembered exclusively for his fielding error at first base during Game 6 of the 1986 World Series, Bill Buckner had a 22 year Major League career and was a lifetime .289 hitter.

After spending all of last season with Triple-A Colorado Springs (Rockies) of the Pacific Coast League, Buckner is coming off surgery to clean up bone spurs around his elbow.

“The injury came about just from throwing a lot, I believe,” Bucker said. “It really restricted my range, I had to drop my arm-slot down, and it really took a toll on my arm.”

Now healthy and able to pitch effectively every five days, Boston was an attractive organization to sign with during the off-season.

“It seemed [Boston] had a good opportunity…I was familiar with [VP/Player Personnel] Allard Baird when he was over with Kansas City, it just made a lot of sense for me.”

Although there’s no doubt he’ll catch most fans’ attention because of his name, Bucker pitched well enough in the Eastern League to make sure people focus more on what he does on the mound. In ten starts with the Sea Dogs, the right-hander went 4-3, with a 3.20 ERA (20 ER/56.1 IP). Over a somewhat small sample-size, Bucker posted his best strikeout-to-walk ratio since 2007 (3.00: 17-BB, 51-K).

Billy Buckner struck out a season-high 11 batters on April 24 with the Sea Dogs, and tossed Portland’s first complete game on May 30 as part of a double-header. (Gregory Rec/Maine Today)

“I think I just had a good mix [of pitches] in Portland,” he commented. “That was something I thought would take some time – getting command of all four pitches. But it came back fairly quickly and I was able to attack the zone and not show any kind of pattern. I was able to throw any pitch in any count.”

Like the rest of the PawSox players, Bucker is trying to get to Boston and, in his case, return to the Big Leagues. Originally a second-round selection by Kansas City in 2004, the Atlanta resident has made 36 appearances (21 starts) over four Major League seasons (2007-10) with the Royals and Diamondbacks.

“The Big Leagues were a lot of fun and were like nowhere else. That’s where everyone wants to be and we all share that common goal. It’s the best baseball in the world and that’s where we’re all fighting to get to.”

Hopefully for Bucker, his next trip to the Majors will come in a Red Sox uniform. Just so long as he stays far away from first base.

-AG

@aaronmgoldsmith
agoldsmith@pawsox.com

Buckner signed with Boston on March 3 and is pictured above at Spring Training. (Kelly O’Connor).

Goodbye, Ft. Myers

My first Spring Training was a blast.  I saw nine different games, met some terrific people, and learned a lot. I’m timing things right because this morning it’s raining for the first time all week.

Yesterday I went to the PawSox game at the Twins’ facility with my friend Mike Antonellis, the “Voice of the Portland Sea Dogs.” Here are some pics from yesterday’s game.

Former PawSox and Red Sox player, Aaron Bates. Now with the Twins, Aaron was the first player I ever covered to get called up to the big leagues.

Aaron talking with Mike after the game.

Red Sox outfield prospect Alex Hassan playing in his first minor league game since being sent down from big league camp.

Billy Buckner, no relation to Bill Buckner, pitched yesterday for the PawSox. The 28-year-old has appeared in 36 major league games (21 starts) since 2007 with Kansas City and Arizona.

Jeremy Kehrt appeared in seven games (two starts) for the PawSox last year.  The righty pitched for Scottsdale in the prospect-driven Arizona Fall League this past off-season.

The PawSox fell to Rochester 6-2 yesterday with Kehrt getting the start, pitching two innings, and suffering the loss. Both of Pawtucket’s runs came on RBI groundouts in the fifth inning. The only real offensive highlight was a sixth-inning triple by J.C. Linares to right-center. The ground shook when he slid into third base.

This will do it for me from beautiful Ft. Myers.  Today is a camp day for the PawSox (no games), but tomorrow they’ll host Rochester at 1:00 p.m. EST. My broadcast partner Steve Hyder will be down here for a week starting  tomorrow and will have lots of coverage on his blog which can be read here.

Thanks for your terrific readership this week – it’s been a privilege writing for you each day. I’m sure Spring Training 2013 will be even better, but before then, I’m counting down the 11 days until Opening Day 2012 on April 5th at McCoy Stadium.

Hope to see you there.

-AG

@aaronmgoldsmith
agoldsmith@pawsox.com

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