Caution the wisest approach after Price is hit with liner


BOSTON — Win No. 92 on Wednesday put the Red Sox one away from matching their regular-season total both in 2017 and 2018, an incredible mark to reach with 28 games still to go. A 14-14 record will give the Sox and rookie manager Alex Cora the franchise record for wins, 106.

The Sox swept the Marlins in two games at Fenway Park, an appropriate rebound from being swept by the Rays in a three-game set over the weekend. The 11-run seventh inning was a season-high for one frame and the most the Sox had scored in a single inning since May of 2009, when they hung a 12-spot on the Indians.

The carousel inning wasn’t the lasting image of the game, though — or really the most important moment. It was David Price deflecting a third-inning line drive that left Austin Dean’s bat at 102 mph. The ball was headed for Price’s head, but his quick reflexes brought his hands in front of his face, sending the ball off his left wrist.

He didn’t miss a beat. The ball ricocheted off Price to first baseman Steve Pearce, who fielded it and flipped on to Price. The lefty still had the presence of mind to cover the bag even after the scare. That was the last out of the inning, and immediately after catching it, Price looked down at his wrist and headed for the clubhouse. He was done at that point, replaced by Hector Velazquez.


Good news came in the form of negative X-rays. 

“I’m just taking it day by day, see where it’s at tomorrow,” Price said. “If it feels good enough to put a ball in it, we’ll do it. If not, we’ll just take it day by day.”

Whether Price makes his next scheduled start, in Atlanta on Monday, sounds up in the air. But Alex Cora hinted his preference would be to push Price back. That would be the wisest choice considering how important he is to the team’s postseason run. The easy choice, really.

“We talked about it,” Cora said of possibly pushing Price back. “We haven’t talked to David about it. We’ll sit down and go from there. His next start is in Atlanta, so the swinging [a bat without the DH] part of it is never good. He understands where we’re at and what we need from him. 

“One thing for sure, we talk about Chris [Sale], his workload, David went a month and a half being great in seven [innings], and eight and seven. I’m not saying rest is the perfect situation here, but we’ll talk about it with him.”

Price will want to pitch, but as cautious as the Sox have been with Sale lately, they should be with Price as well. He may feel great Thursday and over the weekend, but an extra day or two — particularly with the benefit of expanded rosters coming — makes too much sense considering how well Price has been pitching in the second half and the other arm issues he’s had.


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