Worth the wait: Shaw notches first hit
BOSTON -- Bouncing between Triple-A Pawtucket and the Red Sox this season, Travis Shaw kept envisioning what it would be like to get his first Major League hit.
On Tuesday night at Fenway Park, Shaw finally got his answer. Recalled for the fourth time earlier in the day, Shaw got that elusive hit -- a one-out single -- in the second inning, helping the Red Sox to a 4-3 win over the Marlins.
He was far from done. Shaw, who got the start at first base due to Mike Napoli's struggles, belted two more singles and finished the night 3-for-4 with a run scored. The one run came in a three-run seventh inning that proved to be the difference in the game.
Coming into Tuesday's game, Shaw had seen action in six contests, including one start at first base, and gone 0-for-9.
"Once you get that first one out of the way, you can relax. I have been searching for that every time I came up," said Shaw, who is the No.19-ranked Red Sox prospect. "After that first one, I was trying not to do too much and just get one in my zone. I wanted to continue it every at-bat."
After the game, Shaw had the ball from his first hit proudly displayed in his locker. He also checked his phone, only to see it lit up with text messages and voicemails.
The first phone call he planned to make after leaving the Red Sox clubhouse was to his father, Jeff, who celebrated his 49th birthday on Tuesday. The elder Shaw spent 11 years in the Majors as a pitcher, including the 1990 season with the Cleveland Indians, where one of his teammates was Red Sox manager John Farrell.
"Hopefully this will be one for him to remember. It is definitely one for me to remember," Shaw said. "He'll probably be more pumped up than I am."
Farrell was impressed with Shaw's balance at the plate and his ability to stay through the middle of the field.
"Good swings. Even before he gets his first big league hit here tonight, when he was with us previously, he took some good swings on some pitches," Farrell said. "You get a chance to see a guy over a couple of Spring Trainings, and you see their confidence, their maturity. He has come a long way in probably the two years that he's been in big league camp and Spring Training."
While shuffling between Triple-A and the Majors hasn't been easy for Shaw, he's done his best to cope with the changes.
"When you go back down, you think about how you missed an opportunity to get that first hit. It is what everyone searches for," Shaw said. "This one has been a little different for me. I've never really experienced the up and down stuff, and coming up here and not playing as much as you are used to.
"For me, it's all about staying in a rhythm as best I can. I've been able to do that and am grateful for my opportunities up here thus far."