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Clay Buchholz pitches Red Sox past Pirates 4-1

By ROB BIERTEMPFEL
Associated Press
  •  

BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) Clay Buchholz pitched three hitless innings, Mike Carp hit a long homer and the Boston Red Sox beat a Pittsburgh Pirates split squad 4-1 on Sunday.

Buchholz faced nine batters and got five outs on grounders. He walked one and struck out one.

Jackie Bradley Jr., trying to win a job in center field, gave the Red Sox a 2-0 lead in the second by grounding a two-run single into right field.

In the third, Carp hit his second home run of the spring onto the boardwalk in right-center.

Pirates right-hander Charlie Morton worked the first three innings and allowed three runs (one earned) on five hits.

Pittsburgh was hitless until the sixth, when Gregory Polanco led off with an infield single.

STARTING TIME

Red Sox: Buchholz breezed through the first two innings on 17 pitches. The only ball hit out of the infield during that stretch was Jaff Decker's blooper, which was caught by left fielder Alex Hassan.

Pirates: Morton struggled in his third outing this spring. He let six of his 16 batters reach base.

''It was just bad,'' Morton said. ''I was falling behind hitters. When I was ahead of hitters, everything turned out OK. The problem was I didn't get ahead of many.''

TRAINER'S ROOM

Red Sox: Right-hander Jake Peavy, who has a gash on his non-pitching hand, is expected to start Thursday. Peavy threw a simulated game Saturday. ... Outfielder Shane Victorino (lower back tightness) will play Monday or Tuesday. ''It won't be both,'' manager John Farrell said. The Red Sox are off Wednesday.

Pirates: Travis Ishikawa played in his first spring game after sitting out with a tight right hamstring. As the designated hitter, he went 0 for 2 with a strikeout. Ishikawa came to camp as a fringe candidate for a backup spot at first base and right field, but likely is ticketed for Triple-A Indianapolis.

ROSTER BATTLES

Red Sox: Bradley is getting pressure from Grady Sizemore for a spot on the opening-day roster. Sizemore did not travel to Bradenton, but is expected to be in the lineup Monday and Tuesday. If Sizemore shows he's healthy and wins the spot, Bradley would likely begin the season at Triple-A Pawtucket. Bradley went 1 for 4 with two RBIs on Sunday. He is 4 for 21 with five strikeouts this spring.

Amid reports that the Red Sox are unhappy with the play of third baseman Will Middlebrooks, Farrell declined to discuss whether the team would reconsider re-signing infielder Stephen Drew. ''I really don't have anything to say about Drew,'' Farrell said. ''He's a free agent and that's where it stands.''

Pirates: Chris Dickerson, who hit .238 in 56 games last season with Baltimore, is trying to make the roster as a fifth outfielder. Dickerson has a .262 career batting average, but his forte is defense. ''He's quick, he's got instincts and savvy,'' outfield coach Rick Sofield said. ''Chris was covering ground (Saturday) as well as any center fielder I've been around. He's the real deal on defense.''

CALL TO THE `PEN

Red Sox: Francisco Cordero has pitched well so far, but still faces an uphill battle to crack the opening-day bullpen. The 38-year-old right-hander last pitched in the majors in 2012 with Toronto and Houston. Cordero tossed one scoreless inning Sunday and has allowed three hits in four scoreless appearances.

''He's not pitching like a guy who's been out for a year,'' Farrell said. ''He's thrown a lot of strikes. He's made the necessary adjustments. As a pitcher gets deeper into his career, he has to pitch a little bit more and use an assortment of pitches, rather than just relying on velocity. He's showing that in spring training.''

Pirates: The back-end combo of setup man Mark Melancon and closer Jason Grilli dominated in what was the second spring outing for each pitcher. Grilli got two strikeouts and a foul popup. Melancon struck out Hassan and David Ross and got Carp on a grounder.

 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
 
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Players of the Game
Boston

M. Carp
AB 3
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
Pittsburgh

C. McGuiness
AB 1
R 0
H 1
HR 0
RBI 1
 

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Boston Red Sox
Jackie Bradley , CF4012000.190.261.238
Alex Hassan , RF4000021.167.250.222
  Justin Henry , RF0000000.000.000.000
Mike Carp , LF3121000.222.300.667
  Blake Swihart , DH1000010.333.429.333
David Ross , C3010010.111.111.111
Brock Holt , 3B3010002.214.214.286
Bryce Brentz , RF2120100.400.455.850
Garin Cecchini , 3B3000004.214.313.286
Travis Shaw , 3B3100012.059.200.118
Deven Marrero , SS3000012.308.500.385
Dan Butler , C1000010.200.429.200
Mookie Betts , 2B1000000.000.000.000
Aneury Tavarez , RF0100100.000.500.000
Carlos Rivero , 3B1000001.000.000.000
David Chester , 1B1000011.000.000.000
Derrik Gibson , SS10110001.0001.0001.000
Totals344842813  
BATTING
HR - M Carp (2)
RBI - J Bradley 2 (3); M Carp (3); D Gibson (1)
Boston Red Sox
Clay Buchholz (W,1-1) 3.00001102.25
Andrew Miller 1.000003010.13
Dalier Hinojosa 2.00000104.50
Rubby De La Rosa 2.041100011.25
Francisco Cordero (S,2) 1.00001100.00
Pittsburgh Pirates
Jaff Decker , LF2000010.150.190.250
Chris Dickerson , LF2000010.400.526.533
Travis Snider , RF2000010.400.400.733
Pedro Alvarez , 3B2000000.273.360.500
Andrew Lambo , RF2000000.100.182.100
  Chris McGuiness , 1B1011100.400.471.533
Travis Ishikawa , DH3000012.000.000.000
Jordy Mercer , SS1000100.267.450.333
Robert Andino , SS2000010.059.111.059
Chris Stewart , C2000000.000.083.000
Gregory Polanco , CF2010001.300.300.550
Chase d'Arnaud , 2B2100011.200.200.400
Nevin Ashley , C2000002.000.125.000
Alen Hanson , SS1010000.400.455.400
Mel Rojas , LF1000000.286.286.714
Willy Garcia , RF1000000.000.000.000
Blake Davis , 3B1010000.333.333.667
Totals29141266  
BATTING
2B - B Davis (1)
RBI - C McGuiness (3)
BASERUNNING
SB - C d'Arnaud (1)
CS - J Mercer (1)
Pittsburgh Pirates
Charlie Morton (L,1-1) 3.05311111.13
Jason Grilli 1.00000200.00
Mark Melancon 1.00000200.00
Tony Watson 1.02000000.00
Zack Thornton 2.00000202.08
Yao-Hsun Yang 1.01111104.50