Red Sox's Napoli spurs 7-run inning with broken-bat homer
FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) Mike Napoli started a seven-run fourth inning with a broken-bat homer and Justin Masterson allowed one run in 5 2-3 innings as the Boston Red Sox rolled to a 14-2 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Monday night.
Napoli had his bat sawed off on an inside pitch from Brian Duensing. The Red Sox went on to score six more times in the inning off Duensing. Xander Bogaerts, Mookie Betts and Dustin Pedroia hit run-scoring doubles.
''It was a weird feeling,'' Napoli said. ''I think the bat might have broken the last time I was up because it just exploded in my hands.''
The outburst was some good news after the Red Sox placed catcher Christian Vazquez on the 60-day disabled list with a right elbow sprain earlier in the day. Vazquez will get a second opinion Wednesday from orthopedist James Andrews in Gulf Breeze, Fla., and could be facing season-ending Tommy John ligament-reconstruction surgery.
Masterson scattered five hits while striking out four and walking one. He had given up nine runs in 12 1-3 innings in his previous four starts.
Twins reliever Blaine Boyer made an emergency start and pitched 1 2-3 innings in place of Kyle Gibson, who had the flu.
Twins: Boyer found out he was starting just a few hours after the Twins told him he had made the team and been added to the 40-man roster.
''It was a load off my shoulders when they told me,'' Boyer said. ''It was one of those surreal moments for me. I'm very excited to be in the big leagues.''
The 33-year-old Boyer has pitched in parts of eight major league seasons with five teams and had a 3.57 ERA for the San Diego Padres last year in 32 appearances. The Twins signed him during the offseason to a minor league contract and he has allowed just two runs in 12 1-3 spring innings.
He gets a $750,000 salary while in the major leagues and $100,000 while in the minors. He can earn $100,000 in performance bonuses: $25,000 each for 35, 40, 45 and 50 games pitched.
Red Sox: Masterson, one of the most extreme groundball pitchers in the major leagues, felt his sinker was the best it has been all spring.
RED SOX ADD CATCHER
Coinciding with Vazquez going on the DL, catcher Sandy Leon was acquired from the Washington Nationals for cash considerations.
Leon will join the Red Sox on Wednesday and is expected to be in the starting lineup for their game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Port Charlotte. Boston has just five exhibition games remaining before opening the season next Monday at Philadelphia.
Leon will compete with veteran non-roster invitee Humberto Quintero for the backup catcher's job. Ryan Hanigan will be the starter now that Vazquez is sidelined.
In 34 major league games with the Nationals over the past three seasons, Leon hit .189 with three doubles, one homer and five RBIs. He is a career .236 batter in the minors.
''We're looking to add depth at the position,'' Red Sox manager John Farrell said. ''We have good reports on his receiving ability and we're going to take as good a look at him as we can.''
Twins: Gibson will not make another start until he is at least healthy enough to first throw a bullpen, manager Paul Molitor said. ... C Josmil Pinto caught three innings in a minor league exhibition game Monday after passing concussion tests earlier in the day but there is not yet a timetable for when he will play in a major league game.
Red Sox: LHP Matt Barnes has been scratched from his scheduled start Tuesday because of food poisoning. ... RHP Koji Uehara, sidelined with a strained left hamstring, will throw a bullpen Tuesday but Farrell does not expect the closer to be ready for opening day.
Twins: LHP Tommy Milone will pitch Tuesday at home against the New York Yankees and RHP Masahiro Tanaka.
Red Sox: RHP Anthony Varvaro will start as both Boston and Tampa Bay plan to use all relief pitchers while setting up their rotations for the beginning of the season.