Latest Red Sox loss worst combination of injuries and insult

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Pablo Sandoval was in no mood to speak with reporters. The walking boot on his left foot did all the talking for him as he exited, limping slightly, a Boston Red Sox clubhouse reeling from one of the ugliest losses of the year.

Panda and catcher Blake Swihart were both "day-to-day" after sustaining injuries to their left ankle and left foot, respectively, in a 7-4 defeat at the hands of the Kansas City Royals Saturday night.

At the same time, David Ortiz was angry that he had been ejected by home-plate ump Bruce Dreckman, wondering what "this [expletive] game is coming to." And starting pitcher Rick Porcello was at a loss to explain how he squandered a 4-1 lead en route to his sixth straight losing decision.

All in all, this was a night the Red Sox would just as soon forget. How easy that will be may depend on what happens Sunday morning when Sandoval and Swihart report for duty. Or do not report for duty.

"Blake sprained his left foot and Pablo sprained the (left) ankle," said manager John Farrell. "We'll check them when they come in in the morning. Undetermined right now if we're going to need to make a (roster) move."

Both were X-rayed at the stadium.

"Blake's is at the base of the fifth toe. There was no facture there, nothing structurally bone-wise on Pablo either," Farrell said.

Sandoval was hurt amid the five-run fifth inning when the Royals erased a 4-1 deficit as Porcello (4-8) went into what's become a familiar meltdown for the right-hander who signed a four-year contract this spring for $82.5 million.

With a runner on third, Lorenzo Cain lashed a hot shot down the left-field line that Sandoval made a difficult stop on. Awkwardly, he turned to tag the runner, who was safely back on the base, then he turned around, double-clutched and threw wildly to first. The tying run scored and the Royals were off and running for just their second victory in their last nine meetings with the Red Sox.

Farrell said Panda was hurt on the throw.

Swihart hurt his foot with a hard slide into third at the top of the inning.

"I just jammed it in the bag. My foot's sore," Swihart said. "It just started getting more and more sore."

Ortiz was ejected after hitting a single off hard-throwing Kelvin Herrera in the seventh. He flipped his bat in front of home plate, then seemed to exchange words with home plate umpire Bruce Dreckman after he got to first.

"All I have to say is this situation between players and umpires is getting to the ridiculous point," Ortiz said. "Because it seems to me like it's more of a feeling than reality. I'm an 18-year veteran of this league and when I was coming up it seemed like you were respected for that. But it seems like it doesn't work that way any more."

Ortiz said he was thrown out for arguing about the called strikes, not where the bat landed after the hit.

"What is wrong with putting the bat in front of the plate? Every time you swing the bat, the bat ends up in front of the plate, as far as I know. I don't think that was the issue. The issue was I was complaining about two pitches that were balls and he called them strikes."

For Porcello, this is six bad starts in a row. He gave up six runs on eight hits, gave up two home runs, hit two batters and committed a balk. Most worrisome is the trend which has developed. Twelve times in 12 different innings since the start of the season, Porcello has allowed runs to the opposition in the immediate half-inning after his teammates have scored for him. It's something that's been discussed with him on more than one occasion.

"I think every pitcher is aware the inning following (your team's scoring) you're looking to make quality pitches in that inning," said Farrell. "A number of pitches found the middle of the plate. The big inning has been kind of the issue. As far as moving out of the rotation, that hasn't been discussed."

A downcast Porcello said he did not think he balked, the call that moved runners from first and second to second and third and shifted the momentum squarely to KC.

"I felt like I did a good job of keeping the ball down," he said. "It's these innings that are taking me out of the games and taking our team out of games. I've got to keep grinding. I've got to keep fighting and make sure they don't put up these big runs. Grit your teeth and keep going after it."