Updates from Thursday, Aug. 14
Yoenis Cespedes is back in the lineup, according to the Red Sox:
8/14 vs. HOU: Holt SS, Pedroia 2B, Ortiz DH, Cespedes LF, Napoli 1B, Nava RF, Middlebrooks 3B, Bradley Jr. CF, Vazquez C, Webster RHP— Boston Red Sox (@RedSox) August 14, 2014
According to CBS Sports Eye on Baseball, the Cuban star left with a bruise on his right hand:
Bruised right hand for Cespedes, say the Red Sox.— Eye on Baseball (@EyeOnBaseball) August 13, 2014
It is unclear how serious the bruise is and whether it will cause him to miss future games, but the ailment comes at a bad time for both Cespedes and the Red Sox.
Since being acquired by Boston from the Oakland Athletics in the trade that sent pitcher Jon Lester out west, Cespedes has truly started to find his form. That much was apparent when Cespedes clubbed a home run to dead center field Tuesday against the Reds, per ESPN Stats & Info:
Yoenis Céspedes' HR for Red Sox last night was his longest of the season pic.twitter.com/10wMQnfK0X— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) August 13, 2014
Cespedes carried his hot hitting into Wednesday's tilt, as he extended his hitting streak to eight games, according to Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe:
Cespedes with an RBI single to extend hit streak to 8 games and it’s 3-3. Holt had doubled, extending his streak to 7 games.— Pete Abraham (@PeteAbe) August 13, 2014
The two-time defending Home Run Derby champion has 19 home runs and 74 RBI in total on the season, and he has added a dangerous element to the Boston lineup that was previously missing.
Many have taken notice of that fact, including teammate David Ortiz, per Nick Cafardo of The Boston Globe.
He's one scary dude up there. He's got real big-time power. When he comes up there, pitchers are a little afraid. He hits those line drives and he can hurt you. As he gets more experience in the league he's going to get better and better. He's going to get more selective and swing at good pitches. That comes with experience. He's been in the league not even three years, so little by little he's going to figure out the strike zone.
Cespedes seems like a great fit for the Red Sox and Fenway Park, and there is no doubt that his arrival has helped soften the blow of losing Lester in the eyes of many Red Sox fans.
The 28-year-old star figures to be the cornerstone of Boston's lineup for years to come, so the Red Sox must take a cautious approach. They are 53-65 and out of the AL East race, so there is no incentive to rush Cespedes back.
Even if the injury is extremely minor, giving him a day or two off wouldn't be a bad idea. The Red Sox are looking toward 2015 and beyond, and Cespedes will be a huge part of their success moving forward.
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