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Napoli garners two hits, Brentz goes yard

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Highly-touted Red Sox prospect Anthony Ranaudo's first performance against Major League hitters was a dazzling one, as the righty retired all six Twins batters he faced Friday afternoon.

Ranaudo, who is ranked the club's No. 6 prospect, notched four strikeouts and threw 24 pitches, 19 of them for strikes.

But most of the offensive highlights in the game belonged to the Twins, who notched an 8-2 victory over the Red Sox in the Grapefruit League opener for both teams.

"There was definitely some adrenaline there," Ranaudo said. "I think all the older guys kept the situation light for me. I had a lot of fun when I was going out there. That's the approach I took. I was just trying to have fun with it and get that first one under my belt."

Veteran Mike Pelfrey turned in a strong performance for Minnesota, holding Boston to one hit in his two innings of work.

"It's fun," Pelfrey said. "You get excited. The adrenaline starts going again and that competitiveness comes back. It's fun. It's hard sometimes. I think you have goals coming in and you want to work on some things, but then you get into it and it's like, 'Oh, hey, let's go.' It's competitive. Instead, you kind of lose sight of what you wanted to do. I thought I did a good job with most things. I'd have liked to have been a little better down and in on right-handers, but I'll continue to work on it."

It was a tough debut for Red Sox righty Dalier Hinojosa, who was roughed up for four hits and three runs over 1 2/3 innings.

Trevor Plouffe, Oswaldo Arcia and Wilkin Ramirez all notched RBIs for Minnesota in a three-run fourth.

Mike Napoli went 2-for-2 on a day Boston's other regulars were quiet.

Sox lefty reliever Andrew Miller, pitching for the first time since suffering a broken left foot July 6, looked rusty, issuing three walks and allowing three runs in two-thirds of an inning.

Arcia ended Miller's outing with a sacrifice fly and then Chris Colabello hit a two-run double off reliever Mike McCarthy.

Boston finally cracked the scoreboard in the sixth when No. 9 prospect Bryce Brentz homered to center field off reliever Casey Fien.

Former closer Francisco Cordero, who signed a Minor League deal with the Red Sox a couple of weeks ago, pitched a scoreless inning, working around two hits.

"With Coco, I thought he came out and threw the ball as anticipated," said manager John Farrell. "He got into fastball counts and he has the ability to throw a slider or changeup, depending on the hitter."

Up next: Veteran catcher A.J. Pierzynski will make his debut with the Red Sox in Saturday's 1:05 p.m. ET contest road game against the Twins on MLB.TV. Grady Sizemore, who played against Northeastern University on Thursday, will face Major League pitching for the first time since 2011. Daniel Nava will play his first game this spring, starting in left field. Prospect Allen Webster draws the start.

Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brownie Points, and follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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