Benintendi excited to play at 'home' vs. Reds

Benintendi excited to play at 'home' vs. Reds

As the Red Sox head to their final road series of the regular season in hopes of getting closer to an American League East title, rookie left fielder Andrew Benintendi gets to experience the thrill of playing at home for the first time on Friday night.

Benintendi, who grew up a Reds fan while living 12 miles from Great American Ball Park, will enjoy all the comforts of home this weekend.

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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Joe Kelly messes with O's fan while warming

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Joe Kelly messes with O's fan while warming

Remember the Orioles fan who spent the last 12 seasons impersonating relievers' stretches in the opposing bullpen?

Well, she's back, and some of the players are growing more aware of her antics.

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MLB.com Columnist

Alyson Footer

Benintendi welcomed home in return to Ohio

Benintendi welcomed home in return to Ohio

CINCINNATI -- Given everything that has happened to Andrew Benintendi in the past few years, it's easy to forget that not long ago -- four years, to be exact -- he was a high school prep, honing his baseball skills on the backfields in Madeira, Ohio, dreaming of someday reaching the big leagues.

The journey took less time than maybe he, or anyone, expected. Three years after he graduated from Madeira High School, Benintendi made his Major League debut for the Red Sox, in August 2016.

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Alyson Footer is a national correspondent for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter @alysonfooter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Sale boatload: Sox ace in elite 300-K club

Sale boatload: Sox ace in elite 300-K club

BALTIMORE -- Chris Sale knew he was approaching a magical milestone, but it wasn't until he heard the roars from the large contingent of Red Sox fans at Camden Yards and received an equally-warm reception from teammates upon his return to the dugout that he knew he got it.

Dress for October: Shop for official Red Sox postseason gear

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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Red Sox going 'extra' mile for wins in 2017

Boston has 15-3 record in games beyond nine innings

Red Sox going 'extra' mile for wins in 2017

There is something "extra" special about the season the Red Sox are putting together.

Yes, Boston is 88-64 and holds a three-game lead over the Yankees atop the American League East. But it's how the club has scratched its way to so many of those victories that makes it stand out from the crowd.

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Andrew Simon is a research analyst for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AndrewSimonMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Red Sox sweep O's, secure playoff berth

Red Sox sweep O's, secure playoff berth

BALTIMORE -- The Red Sox are fending off a surge by the Yankees with a nice hot streak of their own. Backed by an overpowering performance by Chris Sale, who became the first American League pitcher since Pedro Martinez in 1999 to record 300 strikeouts in a season, Boston finished a three-game sweep of the Orioles with a 9-0 victory on Wednesday night.

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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.

Joshua Needelman is a contributor to MLB.com based in Baltimore and covered the Orioles on Wednesday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Spot clinched, Red Sox still seek AL East title

Spot clinched, Red Sox still seek AL East title

BALTIMORE -- When the Red Sox clinched their ticket to the postseason early Thursday morning, they had just landed in Cincinnati.

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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Farrell confident rest will help Devers' defense

Farrell confident rest will help Devers' defense

BALTIMORE -- Though rookie Rafael Devers made errors in five consecutive games leading into Wednesday, Red Sox manager John Farrell is standing by the talented left-handed hitter as his third baseman.

Farrell thinks the recent struggles Devers has experienced on defense is related to fatigue. To that end, Devers was out of the lineup on Wednesday and the Red Sox have an off-day Thursday.

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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Sox first MLB team to sign player from Tibet

Sox first MLB team to sign player from Tibet

BALTIMORE -- The Red Sox will go near and far to find talent, and one of their recent finds is the first player from Tibet to be signed by a Major League Baseball team.

Justin Qiang, a 16-year-old catcher, was signed by Boston for $10,000 in July, and he will play in the Red Sox's instructional league in Fort Myers, Fla., next month. He's listed on the instructional league roster as Renzeng Qiangba, but his full birth name is Qiang Ba Ren Zeng, and he likes to go by his English name: Justin Qiang.

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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bradley robs Davis of HR with leaping grab

Bradley robs Davis of HR with leaping grab

BALTIMORE -- Jackie Bradley Jr. has home run robbery down to a science.

The Red Sox's standout center fielder was at it again Tuesday night while helping his team pull out a 1-0, 11-inning victory over the Orioles.

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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Wild pitch has Sox on cusp of postseason

Wild pitch has Sox on cusp of postseason

BALTIMORE -- The Red Sox have won every which way in extra innings this season. And on Tuesday, they didn't even need a ball to leave the infield in the rally that propelled them to a 1-0, 11-inning victory over the Orioles at Camden Yards.

Orioles reliever Brad Brach, who had pinned his team in a bases-loaded situation by walking Andrew Benintendi and Mookie Betts, uncorked a wild pitch. Jackie Bradley Jr. raced home with the first -- and only --- run of the game. The Red Sox improved to 15-3 in extras and tied a franchise record set in 1943 for the most extra-inning wins in one season.

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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.

Brittany Ghiroli has covered the Orioles for MLB.com since 2010. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli, and listen to her podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Smith contender to land 'pen role in playoffs

Smith contender to land 'pen role in playoffs

BALTIMORE -- The plan was to ease Carson Smith back in his return from Tommy John surgery, and the Red Sox have done that.

But that doesn't preclude Smith from being a legitimate contender to land one of the final bullpen spots on a potential postseason roster.

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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Half whiffs: Kimbrel posting historic K rate

Half whiffs: Kimbrel posting historic K rate

Craig Kimbrel's 2017 season probably doesn't need a detailed sign planted nearby to generate dramatic reactions. It wouldn't hurt, though, to have something concrete to cite when someone says, "He must have struck out half the batters he's faced!"

This exclamation that would usually pass as hyperbole is about to be a fact. The Red Sox's closer is striking out more than 50 percent of the batters that appear before him -- 236 hitters have stepped in, 120 have struck out and only 116 have done anything else. Assuming Kimbrel finishes out the season with his present 51 percent strikeout rate intact, it would be just the second such campaign of 60 or more innings.

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Zach Crizer is a social media coordinator for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Matthew Leach

Twins, Red Sox are top out-making outfields

Statcast's OAA statistic shows best teams at tracking down flyouts

Twins, Red Sox are top out-making outfields

There's no one perfect formula that takes teams to October success. Front-line starting pitching, a deep bullpen and a powerful offense all help, but nothing is a guarantee. With that said, you won't find many clubs in recent years that went deep in the postseason without excellent defense.

And while we often think first of middle infielders, outfield defense can make a big difference too. Think of those 2015 Royals, or last year's Cubs.

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Matthew Leach is an executive editor for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter and read his columns. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Sox give extra effort vs. O's, stay 3 games up

Sox give extra effort vs. O's, stay 3 games up

BALTIMORE -- First, there was the comeback. Then there was the letdown. And then there was one last surge back by the Red Sox, who once again demonstrated their resilience with a 10-8, 11-inning victory over the Orioles on Monday night at Camden Yards.

Andrew Benintendi belted a two-out, two-run single to right off Orioles reliever Miguel Castro for the go-ahead hit -- the one that finally stood up in this back-and-forth contest.

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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.

Brittany Ghiroli has covered the Orioles for MLB.com since 2010. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli, and listen to her podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Key hits, clutch relief behind 'extra' success

Red Sox improve to MLB-best 14-3 in lengthy games

Key hits, clutch relief behind 'extra' success

BALTIMORE -- The Red Sox have emerged into the kings of extra innings this season, using a combination of timely hitting, clutch relief and overall grit that should bode well come October.

Boston added to an impressive string of overtime victories, outlasting the Orioles, 10-8, in 11 innings on Monday night at Camden Yards.

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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Mookie in lineup day after bruising thumb

Hanley to DH on Tuesday or Wednesday; Nunez could return this week

Mookie in lineup day after bruising thumb

BALTIMORE -- The Red Sox had an encouraging Monday on the health front.

Not only was right fielder Mookie Betts back in the lineup just one day after exiting in the fifth inning against the Rays with a right thumb contusion, but Hanley Ramirez will soon play after nearly a week down with a right biceps injury. In Monday's 10-8, 11-inning victory over the Orioles, Betts delivered an RBI single and a big three-run double.

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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

JBJ homers, but Sox's East pursuit slowed

JBJ homers, but Sox's East pursuit slowed

ST. PETERSBURG -- Jake Odorizzi stymied Boston's bats on Sunday in a 3-2 Tampa Bay win at Tropicana Field.

The Rays (73-77) are still clinging to faint hopes of earning the American League's second Wild Card slot. Minnesota holds a 5 1/2-game advantage for that spot. The Red Sox (85-64) are trying to hold off the Yankees and secure the AL East title. Boston's division lead remained at three games after New York lost to the Orioles on Sunday.

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Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005.

Connor Mount is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg who covered the Red Sox on Sunday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Price returns to toss 2 perfect frames

Lefty makes 1st Red Sox relief appearance after 8 weeks out with injury

Price returns to toss 2 perfect frames

ST. PETERSBURG -- Red Sox fans likely need no reminding who closed out Game 7 of the 2008 American League Championship Series, which sent the Rays to their first World Series. In the years since, David Price became an AL Cy Young Award-winning starter and eventually found his way to Boston as a free agent.

Now back from another bout with inflammation in his pitching elbow, Price's role for the rest of the year will see him providing multi-inning relief help, and ideally providing Red Sox fans better memories of the lefty's relief work.

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Connor Mount is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg who covered the Red Sox on Sunday. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

After investigation, MLB fines Red Sox, Yanks

Money will be donated to hurricane relief efforts in Florida

NEW YORK -- The Red Sox have been fined an undisclosed amount for using electronic equipment in an attempt to decipher signs during an August series against the Yankees, Commissioner Rob Manfred announced on Friday afternoon.

Additionally, the Yankees have been fined a lesser undisclosed amount for activity relating to the violation of a rule governing the use of the dugout phone in a prior season. The funds from both fines will be sent to hurricane relief efforts in Florida.

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Bryan Hoch has covered the Yankees for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and on Facebook. Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Porcello steps up, pitches like '16 Cy winner

With Sox relievers needing breather, righty baffles Rays for 7 1/3

Porcello steps up, pitches like '16 Cy winner

ST. PETERSBURG -- The circumstances surrounding Rick Porcello all but required a big start for the Red Sox right-hander. A night earlier, Boston churned through eight relievers in a 15-inning victory over the Rays. A marathon requires a breather for its participants in its aftermath.

"I'm the only guy that got rest last night," Porcello said. "And knowing how many guys we used out of our bullpen [Friday] and how much those guys have thrown over the last week ... it's important to pitch deep into games this time of year. It doesn't matter that there's September callups; those guys were being used, too."

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Connor Mount is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Porcello's gem, Betts' blast keep Sox 3 up

Porcello's gem, Betts' blast keep Sox 3 up

ST. PETERSBURG -- Rick Porcello kept the Rays bats in check for 7 1/3 innings and received enough run support to lead the Red Sox to a 3-1 win over the Rays on Saturday night at Tropicana Field.

The Red Sox (85-63) won for the eighth time in their past 10 games to maintain a three-game lead over the Yankees in the American League East. The Rays (72-77) lost for the seventh time in their past nine games, further diminishing their hopes of becoming the AL's second Wild Card team.

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Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005.

Connor Mount is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Saltalamacchia's ghost story is pretty creepy

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Saltalamacchia's ghost story is pretty creepy

Jarrod Saltalamacchia has 11 years of Major League play under his belt. He was a World Series champion in 2013 with the Red Sox and the current free agent has been spending some time in the booth covering Red Sox games. Another fact you may not know about Saltalamacchia is he has quite a few ghost stories on his resume.

When the Rays fell to the Red Sox, 3-1, on Saturday, Salty took his talents behind the scenes as a color commentator. He was a natural talking about the game, but wanted to squeeze in a few spine-tingling tales to the viewers about his ghost encounters. Especially the times he was staying at hotels on the road.

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Swihart catches for Sox for 1st time since '16

Farrell lauds backstop for handling six relievers in extra-innings win

Swihart catches for Sox for 1st time since '16

ST. PETERSBURG -- It had been a long time since Blake Swihart last caught at the Major League level -- April 12, 2016, to be exact, when he squatted behind the dish for the Red Sox. Disregarding a Major League workload, Swihart hadn't caught in the Minors since Aug. 29.

In Friday's 13-6 win over the Rays, Swihart entered in the ninth inning as a pinch-runner and stayed in to catch six innings, working with five relievers. Welcome back, Mr. Swihart.

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Connor Mount is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kiermaier falls for one of Sale's fastballs

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Kiermaier falls for one of Sale's fastballs

Few have had the opportunity to go up against six-time All-Star Chris Sale. But we can imagine it would be difficult … and perhaps fearful.

When Sale took the mound on Friday night as the Rays hosted the Red Sox, it was Kevin Kiermaier's turn to face the lefty in the top of the third. With a 2-2 count, Sale smoked a two-seam fastball past Kiermaier, who fell for it -- literally -- striking him out.

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Sox rally in 9th, remain 3 up with 7-run 15th

Sox rally in 9th, remain 3 up with 7-run 15th

ST. PETERSBURG -- September baseball. Enough said.

Boston's 13-6, 15-inning win over Tampa Bay on Friday night had six lead changes and featured a little bit of everything -- along with a lot of heart by both teams, tucked away in the 6 hours and 5 minutes that it took to finish.

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Bill Chastain has covered the Rays for MLB.com since 2005.

Connor Mount is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bogaerts shakes off early HBP, goes 4-for-7

Red Sox SS ties it in 9th, delivers 2 hits in 7-run 15th

Bogaerts shakes off early HBP, goes 4-for-7

ST. PETERSBURG -- Grimacing, Xander Bogaerts turned to the third-base dugout, spiked his helmet on the ground and kneeled in pain. A pitch from Matt Andriese had run inside and caught the first batter of the game squarely on the hand.

Eight innings later, Bogaerts would still be on the field, delivering the game-tying RBI single in a three-run ninth. About four-and-a-half hours after that hit-by-pitch, Bogaerts was coming up to the plate for another turn, collecting a single in the 13th.

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Connor Mount is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Petersburg. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.