Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Weekly Red Sox Hitter Notes: August 4th

Other than a disappointing Saturday, Mike Napoli has been mashing for the Red Sox lately.
By Adam Lowenstein (@StatsAdam)

The non-waiver trade deadline came and went last Friday and Ryan Cook came to the Red Sox from the Oakland Athletics for a player to be named later. Then, on Sunday, Boston placed Rick Porcello on the 15-day disabled list with a right triceps strain and activated Cook.

Henry Owens will take Porcello’s spot on Tuesday, but there also have been some interesting substitutions in the lineup over the last week.

Utility Man Brock Holt has seen his batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage all fall over the last month. He had been swinging the bat better recently with a five-game hitting streak, but then matched a season-high three strikeouts on Sunday to end the streak.

SS Xander Bogaerts had his fifth four-hit game of the season on Saturday in the Red Sox’s 11-7 win over the Tampa Bay Rays. Although the Rays retaliated from Scott Souza Jr.’s broken hand to hit Bogaerts on Sunday, he was fine and finished with two runs scored in the loss.

DH David Ortiz continues to like his home field, as he moved his 2015 home on-base plus slugging percentage to .895 on Sunday. Although he has more home runs on the road than at home this season, he has been better in practically every other offensive category when he sees the Green Monster in left.

LF Hanley Ramirez, who recently said that he wants to continue to be in the outfield next season, left Sunday’s game soon after fouling a ball off his knee in the eighth inning. Unfortunately, it was another week without a home run, as he is approaching his season-worst streak of 21 games without leaving the yard. Sunday’s 2-for-4 performance moved his homerless streak to 17 contests.

1B Mike Napoli
did not seem to be hustling on Saturday when he went 0-for-5, but he has otherwise been hitting the cover off the ball recently. On Friday, he hit the go-ahead home run that proved to be the difference.

3B/1B Travis Shaw
was recalled from Pawtucket on Saturday and more than doubled his Major League Baseball hit total that day with a single, double and two home runs. Then, he made it six hits in two days, as he went 2-for-4 on Sunday. We will see if he continues to start instead of Pablo Sandoval.

RF Rusney Castillo
has continued to start in right field, and has recorded hits in five of his last seven games. Although Friday and Sunday were 0-for-4 performances, he went 3-for-4 and drove in three runs on Saturday.

C Ryan Hanigan made it seven consecutive games with a hit on Sunday. It is his longest streak since going eight in a row in early 2012.

CF/RF Jackie Bradley Jr., who was recalled last week, has just one hit since the beginning of July. To be fair, he has just 18 plate appearances. Unfortunately, during that span, he has an OBP of .222 and SLG of .067.

BN/RF/LF Alejandro De Aza
has been losing playing time recently even after Shane Victorino was traded. His last two starts came on July 28 and 31, but he did advance his hitting streak to four games.

BN/C Blake Swihart
collected a couple of two-hit games last week. Although he is the team’s backup, the Red Sox have a strong future at catcher.

DL/CF Mookie Betts
made a tremendous play on Tuesday to rob Jose Abreu of extra bases, but upon further review, the umpires changed Betts’ catch to a home run. After falling into the bullpen, Betts suffered a concussion and had to be placed on the seven-day disabled list.

BN/3B Pablo Sandoval
battled dehydration and a forearm contusion last week, which led to Josh Rutledge and Shaw making a combined three starts at third base. The worst part about this recent absence is that he was getting his bat going right before it.

For more sports coverage, follow Adam Lowenstein on Twitter at @StatsAdam. Statistics used from Baseball-Reference.com.

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