- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 8, 2015

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - A pair of well-traveled veterans spoiled Rick Porcello’s debut as the highest-paid pitcher in Red Sox history.

Jeff Francoeur hit a three-run homer, Aaron Harang took a one-hitter into the seventh inning and the Philadelphia Phillies beat Porcello and Boston 4-2 Wednesday night.

After the Red Sox beat the Phillies 8-0 on Monday, Porcello (0-1) signed an $82.5 million, four-year contract through 2019. But he didn’t have ace stuff against Philadelphia on a cold, chilly night. Porcello allowed three runs and six hits in six innings.

“One big mistake was the difference,” Porcello said of the pitch to Francoeur. “Sometimes that’s all it takes. I left a slider up in the middle of the plate. I wanted it down and away.”

Harang (1-0) gave up two hits, walked one and struck out eight in 6 1-3 innings in his first start for the Phillies. Jonathan Papelbon got four outs against his former team for his first save.

Francoeur went deep for the first time in two years for Philadelphia’s first runs this season.

Xander Bogaerts hit an RBI single off Ken Giles in the eighth to cut it to 4-1. Giles struck out pinch-hitter David Ortiz with two runners on for the first out. But he walked Pablo Sandoval to force in a run with two outs.

Papelbon entered and retired Hanley Ramirez on a deep drive to left with the bases loaded to end the inning. Ramirez hit two homers, including a grand slam in Boston’s 8-0 win on opening day.

“We hit some balls to left that just hung up there,” Red Sox manager John Farrell said, referring to the wind that kept Ramirez’s drive in the park. “Conditions are part of the game.”

The Red Sox got Porcello from Detroit in an offseason trade for slugger Yoenis Cespedes. They made sure he wouldn’t test free agency after the season by giving him the most lucrative contract for a pitcher in franchise history.

“It’s all business when I’m on the mound,” Porcello said. “I didn’t think about it.”

Porcello ran into trouble in the sixth when he walked Darin Ruf on a close 3-2 pitch. Cody Asche followed with a single. Francoeur then drove one out to left-center for his first homer since June 16, 2013, for Kansas City at Tampa.

Harang retired the first 11 batters he faced before Sandoval lined a single to center for his first hit with the Red Sox.

Chase Utley’s sacrifice fly in the seventh inning made it 4-0.


Mike Napoli started at first base instead of Ortiz, the Red Sox normal designated hitter. Ortiz was 0 for 4 with three strikeouts in the opener. Daniel Nava started in right field for Shane Victorino, partly because of the weather conditions. Victorino had back surgery last year.


Red Sox: RHP Joe Kelly, who was slowed by a right biceps injury in spring training, will make another start in the minors before joining the rotation. Knuckleballer Steven Wright will start at the New York Yankees on Saturday in his place.


RHP Justin Masterson makes his first start for the Red Sox since 2009 in the series finale Thursday night. Masterson, who was traded to Cleveland six years ago, was 7-9 with a 5.88 ERA for the Indians and St. Louis last year. RHP David Buchanan takes the mound for Philadelphia. He was 6-8 with a 3.75 ERA as a rookie in 2014.

The teams will wear retro 1915 baseball caps on Wednesday. The Red Sox beat the Phillies in the World Series that season.


Follow Rob Maaddi on Twitter: https://twitter.com/AP_RobMaaddi

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