<
>

No teeth (yet) to Hamels rumors

7/21/2014

TORONTO -- A few quick topics to note while watching the Sox in Toronto:

* The Cole Hamels-to-the-Sox rumors, while making some modicum of sense, shouldn’t be taken too seriously, one major league source said Monday. The Phillies are actively shopping Cliff Lee, who came off the disabled list Monday night to start against the Giants, and are much more apt to keep Hamels.

* The Kansas City Royals had a scout here Monday. The Royals were reported last week to have some interest in Jonny Gomes.

* If the Red Sox are shopping Koji Uehara, they’re being very quiet about it. One big-league scout said he has heard no chatter regarding the Sox closer.

* So far, no takers on A.J. Pierzynski, who was released July 16 by the Sox and is free to sign with any team for the big-league minimum. A source close to Pierzynski had said when he was designated that the 37-year-old catcher wanted to keep playing.

* Shane Victorino, having played in four straight games (two in Pawtucket, two in Boston), was given the night off. The Sox are playing their next seven games on artificial surfaces, so manager John Farrell said the club will be prudent in monitoring Victorino’s use.

* Ryan Lavarnway, on the disabled list since May 30 with a fractured hamate bone in his left wrist, began a rehab assignment Monday with Double-A Portland. One small measure of comfort for Lavarnway; during his time on the DL, he has been paid his big-league salary, not at a minor-league rate. Lavarnway started at first base for the Sea Dogs.

* One striking aspect of the recent Sox streak is the limited impact David Ortiz and Dustin Pedroia have made. Ortiz was 1-for-13 in the Royals series, was batting .182 since July 9 (when the Sox began their run) and was hitless in 11 at-bats after his first two trips to the plate Monday. He had driven in nine runs since that date before hitting a two-run homer in the fourth inning. Pedroia, meanwhile, was batting .188 (6-for-32) since July 9. Daniel Nava (8-for-17, .471) and Brock Holt (15-for-37, .405) have been the hitting stars, while Jackie Bradley Jr. and Stephen Drew were both hitting .333.

* Drew’s last three-run home run before Monday night: Aug. 21 in San Francisco, off Mike Kickham