Boston Red Sox ace Chris Sale duels Tigers Justin Verlander
It’s never easy when you see your ace go out there and see him get little to no run support. That was the case in Chris Sale‘s first start on the season. The Sox ended up winning in 12 innings off of Sandy Leon’s three-run home run leaving Sale without the victory. Second start for him should have brought a little bit more luck right? What were the odds that Chris Sale would get more than a run of support in his second start of 2017? I’d like to assume that he’d get at least 2 – 3 runs of support. The least they could do after giving him nothing in the first go.
The flu bug has been ruthless to the Red Sox. Xander Bogaerts just returned from bereavement and the Sox still have several players out of commission. Sale spun another gem in his second outing today. Sale went 7 2/3 innings allowing 2 runs on 5 hits, walking one and striking out 10. His ERA went up from 0.00 to 1.23 on the season. The Sox managed to get him just one run of support which they scored in the 2nd inning. Brock Holt grounded into the double play scoring Mitch Moreland.
Through 7 innings, Sale allowed one run on three hits and had 9 strike outs. How painful is that? You’re pitching a heck of a game and you’ve been handed just one run of support. Injuries aren’t the cause for the lack of offense. The Red Sox have lost several key members of their squad to the flu and now Jackie Bradley Jr. is out with a hyper extended knee injury putting him on the disabled list. The one good bit of information that came out of today? David Price threw 20 pitches. I’ll take that as a good sign.
The one thing the Sox need to have before Sale’s next performance is a solid line up because I don’t think anyone saw and 0 – 1 start for him to begin 2017. I sure as heck didn’t. I also didn’t see the Sox going 3 – 3 through the first 6 games of the season. In 5 of the 6 games so far, the Red Sox have only managed to score in one inning. In those games the Sox are 2 – 3. With Hanley Ramirez out of commission, the Sox are missing one of their key bats.
It also hasn’t helped that Pablo Sandoval and Andrew Benintendi haven’t been able to swing a consistent bat. Benintendi has only managed three singles since his opening day bomb to right field. Benintendi is hitting 3/19, that’s just .158 with just 1 RBI. Panda is 0/11 since his 2/4 performance including the three run homer. Panda is hitting just .130 on the year with one home run and 4 RBI’s. That’s not going to cut it, not even close. What we’ve learned through six games is that the Sox need to be able to get on base more consistently and need to stop grounding into double plays. Our luck has got to change. Hopefully it’ll begin with Drew Pomeranz making his season debut against the Orioles in their next match up.
Photo Credit – John Bazemore – AP Photo