BOSTON -- Through their first 29 games this season, the Red Sox's inability to capitalize on opportunities has become glaringly apparent.
The team is hitting just .223 with runners in scoring position, which is 12th in the American League and 23rd in the Majors. The issues were never more obvious than after being swept in a day-night doubleheader Thursday against the Rays.
Case in point: Shane Victorino leading off with a double in the bottom of the ninth inning with the Red Sox down, 6-5, in Game 2. David Ortiz moved Victorino to third with a grounder that put the tying run just 90 feet away. However, Mike Napoli and Xander Bogaerts struck out looking to end the game.
"As situations have presented themselves where we have missed opportunities, you could say there has been some frustration that has filtered in," said Red Sox manager John Farrell.
The Red Sox started a similarly ill-fated rally in the eighth inning of Game 2. Bogaerts led off with a double, and A.J. Pierzynski sacrificed him to third. Yet Will Middlebrooks struck out and Dustin Pedroia grounded out.
Between the two games, the Red Sox combined to leave 21 runners on base.
"Calmness has to take place on the mound and in the box," Farrell said. "Guys are grinding. We have bunched some hits together, but the most important thing is that we are doing a good job to create the opportunities."
Farrell has mixed and matched the Red Sox lineup to try to find one that can stick. However, doing that has proved to be more difficult than expected.
"I don't want to go away from the strength of this team," Farrell said. "As we got back to full health, we were more willing to do that when we had a bottom third that we needed to do that with. We still possess some extra-base threats there, and we don't want to take that strength away from guys.
"Two days ago, we were talking about how improved the offensive approach has been. Now, we are talking about changes. We aren't going to change our approach."
Fans to get up-close look at Ortiz in documentary
BOSTON -- A documentary entitled "David Ortiz In the Moment", which promises to give a close-up look at the life and accomplishments of the Red Sox designated hitter, will air on EPIX July 17 at 8 p.m. ET.
The special, produced by Relativity Sports in conjunction with Major League Baseball Productions, will trace Big Papi's path from the Dominican Republic to his stardom with the Red Sox.
"David Ortiz is a larger-than-life baseball star," said Mark Greenberg, EPIX CEO and president. "From his leadership role helping guide the Red Sox to win three World Series titles to his civic work in the U.S. and the Dominican Republic to the compassionate, funny and empathetic way he embraced and comforted Bostonians and all of America following last year's Boston Marathon bombing, he is a true inspiration."
The documentary follows the nine-time All-Star, three-time World Series champion and Red Sox legend during the past two seasons, including Boston's championship run last fall. It also chronicles the drama on and off the field that the nation witnessed throughout a very emotional run to the title for both the city and the club.
"Very few people get to see my life outside of baseball -- I am looking forward to sharing my story with all my fans," Ortiz said. "I am proud to work with EPIX, Relativity Sports and MLB on this project."
Farrell pleased with Nava's strides in Triple-A
BOSTON -- Red Sox manager John Farrell said Friday that he's been getting promising news on the progress of outfielder Daniel Nava, who was optioned to Triple-A Pawtucket on April 23.
"He's back to an approach that we saw last year," Farrell said. "Defensively, he's played all three outfield positions, including designated hitter."
In six games with Pawtucket, Nava is hitting .333 with one double, one home run and three RBIs.
The demotion was a hard pill to swallow for Nava, who was a pivotal part of the Red Sox's championship run last season.
"The disappointment of going down hasn't filtered into his work between the lines, and he's swinging the bat well," said Farrell.
Quinn Roberts is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.