Napoli homers, Santana sharp as Red Sox beat Twins 8-5
FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) Mike Napoli had a two-run homer in a seven-run sixth, and the Boston Red Sox beat Minnesota 8-5 on Thursday night after Twins starter Ervin Santana turned in five scoreless innings of one-hit ball.
Dustin Pedroia also drove in two runs for the Red Sox, and Pablo Sandoval had two hits and an RBI.
Hanley Ramirez, a converted infielder now playing left field for Boston, went 0 for 4 and misplayed a ball that fell in front of him. That allowed Jordan Schafer to score for a 2-0 Twins lead.
Red Sox starter Rick Porcello gave up one run and five hits in four innings during his final tuneup for the regular season. He struck out three and walked none.
''He's strong,'' Boston manager John Farrell said. ''He had a chance to work on all of his types of pitches. I thought he did a great job of pitching in some tough situations. He has shown the ability to make some key pitches with runners in scoring position. So he has had a great camp.''
Santana had two strikeouts and issued one walk.
The Twins settled on their 25-man roster in their first season with Hall of Famer Paul Molitor as manager.
Reserve outfielder Shane Robinson, formerly with the St. Louis Cardinals, was informed he would make the team before the game. Afterward, Chris Herrmann learned he would make the club as a backup catcher to Kurt Suzuki. Fellow candidate Josmil Pinto was optioned to Triple-A, and Eric Fryer was reassigned to minor league camp.
Infielder Doug Bernier was told he would be reassigned to minor league camp when spring training ends.
The 27-year-old Herrmann, from Tomball, Texas, has played in 95 big league games but until now had not made an opening-day roster.
''It's a tremendous feeling,'' he said. ''It's something that I haven't felt ever before, and I've been up and down several times. And those are great feelings, but this one is special. I've been working very hard to get to where I am today and to be a part of this team. I'm just very happy with the way I've been playing, and hopefully I can carry it on into the season.''
Molitor said he learned during spring training that these decisions are not easy.
''Some of them are more difficult than others,'' Molitor said. ''When you talk about the integrity and character that all of these people have, you don't like giving them the bad news. I try to do it the best that I can. ... But I'm happy with where we're at.''
Red Sox C Christian Vazquez had Tommy John surgery on his right elbow performed by Dr. James Andrews. Vazquez was placed on the 60-day disabled list and will miss the entire season.
''I don't know of many players who enjoy playing their particular position more than Christian does,'' Boston general manager Ben Cherington said. ''It's important to him. Catching is important to him. He loves it. He works hard at it. It's part of who he is and his identity. And he's going to do it for a long time, but he's not going to be able to do it for a little while.''
RHP Ricky Nolasco pitches for Minnesota against Boston LHP Brian Johnson on Friday night as the teams meet for the third of four consecutive games.