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David Ortiz and Hanley Ramirez

2015 Red Sox Opening Day Roster Set

From worst to first to worst… to first?

The Boston Red Sox, a season removed from a world championship, are set to open the 2015 regular reason today in Philadelphia against the Phillies, the first time in team history that Boston will open against a National League opponent. The Red Sox, who followed the 2013 championship season with a last place finish in the American League East, the second such finish in three seasons, will be managed for a third year by John Farrell. Boston will play an additional road series in New York against the Yankees before opening Fenway Park next Monday versus the Washington Nationals.

Many familiar faces return from last season, including designated hitter David Ortiz, who will start the opener at Citizens Bank Park as the first baseman, first baseman Mike Napoli, second baseman Dustin Pedroia, shortstop Xander Bogaerts, outfielder Shane Victorino, and starting pitcher Clay Buchholz. Another familiar face who returns as a starter this season is outfielder Mookie Betts, who will likely play his first full season at the major league level and has already drawn interest as a dark horse MVP candidate.

Some of the new faces are already familiar to fans of the Boston nine. Outfielder Hanley Ramirez, who came up through the Red Sox farm system as a shortstop and appeared in two games with Boston before being part of a trade in November 2005 for Josh Beckett and Mike Lowell, returns to the fold, as does starting pitcher Justin Masterson, who appeared in 67 games for Boston in 2008 and 2009. Other new players include third baseman Pablo Sandoval, who played for seven seasons in San Francisco and won three World Series with the Giants, including last season, and pitcher Rick Porcello, who came as part of a trade with Detroit for Yoenis Cespedes.

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    Featured Player - Koji Uehara

    Born: 3 April 1975 in Neyagawa, Osaka, Japan
    College: Osaka Taiiku University (JP)
    Signed in 2009 by the Baltimore Orioles

    Fun Fact: The Japanese-born Uehara pitched with the Yomiuri Giants for 10 seasons in the Central League in Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB). He was twice honored with the Eiji Sawamure Award as the top starting pitcher in NPB. Former teammates include Hideki Matsui, Hideki Okajima, Gabe Kapler, and John Wasdin. ...more on Koji Uehara.

    Other Red Sox players: Dustin Pedroia, Clay Buchholz, David Ortiz

    Red Sox Legend - Jimmie Foxx

    Years with Boston: 1936-1942
    Position: First Base

    Fun Fact: Double X held the Red Sox franchise record for most home runs in a single season (50) between 1938 and 2006. ...more on Jimmie Foxx.

    Other Red Sox legends: Luis Tiant, Dwight Evans, Manny Ramirez

    This Week in Red Sox History

    27 July 1935 - Lefty Grove hits a grand slam in a 7-6, extra-inning loss, one of only four Red Sox pitchers to hit a bases-loaded home run in club history.

    27 July 1965 - Playing both ends of a doubleheader at Fenway Park, Tony Conigliaro hits three home runs, with two in the first game and a grand slam in the second one, but Boston loses both games to Kansas City by scores of 7-3 and 10-8, respectively.

    27 July 2011 - David Ortiz hits his tenth career grand slam in a 12-5 win over the Royals at Fenway Park. The slam brings Big Papi's RBI total with the Red Sox to 1,000, only the fifth player in team history with at least 1,000 RBI in a Boston uniform.

    27 July 2013 - The Red Sox win 7-3 over the Orioles in Baltimore as Stephen Drew homers twice and ties a career-high with five RBI. David Ortiz, after striking out in the seventh inning following what he perceives as a bad call on a 3-0 pitch, destroys the dugout phone with his bat, then proceeds to curse out home plate umpire Tim Timmons.

    28 July 1959 - Earl Wilson becomes the first African American player to pitch for the Red Sox, throwing a scoreless inning in a 5-3 loss in the opener of a doubleheader in Cleveland.

    28 July 1965 - An errant pitch strikes right fielder Tony Conigliaro in the wrist during Boston's 6-0 win and forces the young slugger to miss 24 games.

    28 July 1979 - Boston executes its third triple play of the season to tie a mark held by eight other teams, including the 1924 Red Sox, as Dennis Eckersley shuts out the Rangers 1-0 in Arlington.

    28 July 2011 - Dustin Pedroia extends his hitting streak to 25 games with a solo home run in the eighth inning of a 4-3 loss to the White Sox in Chicago. The Red Sox second baseman goes 0-for-4 the next night to end the streak.

    28 July 2013 - Former Red Sox first baseman George Scott passes away at the age of 69 in Greenville, Mississippi.

    29 July 1903 - Patsy Dougherty becomes the first player in franchise history to hit for the cycle but Boston loses 15-14 to New York at Huntington Avenue Grounds, with Cy Young giving up all 15 runs.

    29 July 1911 - Smoky Joe Wood throws a no-hitter in a 5-0 win for the Red Sox over the St. Louis Browns.

    29 July 1988 - Playing both ends of a doubleheader, Jody Reed collects seven hits in nine at-bats as Boston sweeps Milwaukee at Fenway Park.

    29 July 1990 - The Red Sox collect 12 doubles in one game, an American League record, in a 13-3 win over the Tigers in Detroit.

    29 July 2003 - Switch-hitter Bill Mueller becomes the first player in history to hit grand slams from both sides of the plate in one game as the Red Sox third baseman hits three home runs and drives home nine in a 14-7 win over the Rangers in Texas.

    30 July 1936 - The Red Sox become the first American League team and second major league club to travel by airplane when they charter a flight from St. Louis to Chicago.

    30 July 1991 - Carlos Quintana ties an American League record by driving in six runs in one inning as Boston crushes Texas 11-6 at Fenway Park. A grand slam off old friend Oil Can Boyd in the third inning is followed later in the same frame with a two-run double off Wayne Rosenthal.

    30 July 2011 - The Red Sox bat around in the fifth and ninth innings of a 10-2 win over the White Sox in Chicago.

    30 July 2012 - In a moment of frustration, right fielder Ryan Sweeney ends his season when he punches a door in the dugout after his eighth inning at-bat, fracturing his left knuckle, in a 7-3 Red Sox win over the Tigers at Fenway Park.

    31 July 1959 - Three days after his debut, Earl Wilson makes his first major league start, pitching 3-2/3 hitless innings but allowing nine walks in an eventual 6-5 Red Sox win in Detroit.

    31 July 1997 - The Red Sox perhaps make the best deal in franchise history when they send Heathcliff Slocumb to the Mariners in exchange for future All-Stars Jason Varitek and Derek Lowe.

    31 July 2004 - Nomar Garciaparra departs after seven-plus seasons in Boston, traded to Chicago in a blockbuster four-team deal that brings shortstop Orlando Cabrera and first baseman Doug Mientkiewicz to the Red Sox.

    31 July 2006 - For the second time in three days, designated hitter David Ortiz hits a game-winning hit, this time a three-run home run in the ninth inning, as Boston beats Cleveland, 9-8. It marked the fourth time this season and the 12th time in his Red Sox career that Ortiz had ended a game with a walk-off hit. Ortiz also ties a club record with his 14th home run for the month.

    31 July 2008 - Outfielder Manny Ramirez is traded to the Dodgers as part of a three-team deal while the Red Sox receive outfielder Jason Bay from the Pittsburgh Pirates.

    31 July 2013 - The Red Sox win 5-4 over the Mariners in 15 innings thanks to a two-out, bases-loaded single from Stephen Drew. Boston's 10th walk-off win of the season vaults the Sox back into first place in the American League East.

    31 July 2014 - Well out of contention, the Red Sox trade away several pieces of last year's World Series championship team, including Jon Lester and Jonny Gomes to the Athletics, John Lackey to the Cardinals, Andrew Miller to the Orioles, and Stephen Drew to the Yankees. Drew's trade for utilityman Kelly Johnson marks the first trade between Boston and New York since 1997. Boston also receives two-time All-Star Home Run Derby winner Yoenis Cespedes from Oakland.

    1 August 1962 - Five weeks after Earl Wilson's feat, Bill Monbouquette throws the second Red Sox no-hitter of the season at Comisky Park as Boston bests Chicago, 1-0.

    1 August 1973 - Boston defeats New York 3-2 at Fenway Park in a game that features a brawl that begins when Yankees backstop Thurman Munson barrels into Carlton Fisk hard at home plate; both players come up swinging and are eventually ejected.

    1 August 2013 - The Red Sox rally from a 7-1 deficit to win 8-7 over the Mariners at Fenway Park. Boston score six times in the bottom of the ninth and wins it when Daniel Nava, in his second at-bat of the inning, hits a one-out single over the head of the drawn-in center fielder. It is Boston's 11th and final walk-off win of the season.

    2 August 1940 - Joe Cronin hits for the cycle in a 12-9 Red Sox victory over the Tigers in Detroit.

    2 August 2009 - Boston bangs out 23 hits in an 18-10 win over Baltimore at Camden Yards. Eight different Red Sox players have multiple-hit games, including newcomer Victor Martinez, who goes 5-for-6 with a double and four RBI.

    Fenway Park Feature - Monster Seats

    Fun Fact: The first player to hit a home run into the Monster Seats was former outfielder Manny Ramirez, who hit a solo shot on an 0-2 count off Tampa Bay Devil Rays pitcher Steve Parris on 16 April 2003. ...more on the Monster Seats.

    Other Fenway Park features: Retired Numbers, Pesky Pole, The Lone Red Seat