After losing the first two games of the series, the Red Sox tried to staved off a sweep on Thursday night in Pittsburgh. Red Sox starter Brandon Workman quickly found himself down a run, after he walked Ike Davis with the bases loaded and forced in a run. An inning later, the Red Sox put a run of their own on the board as Mookie Betts singled in Christian Vazquez from second base. With the score now tied in the fourth inning, the Pirates regained the lead on an RBI single by catcher Chris Stewart. The following inning, Starling Marte added a third run Pirates lead by blasting a solo home run over the left field fence. Overall, it was a very “bend but don’t break” start for Brandon Workman. While the right-hander held the Pirates to three runs in five innings pitched, the damage could have been a lot worse considering Pittsburgh collected seven hits and three walks. On the flip side, the 25-year old collected six strike outs (the most in his last ten outings), and showed poise by getting out of some big jams with limited damage. After Workman left the game, three different Red Sox relievers combined to toss 3 innings of no-hit baseball. Down by a run in the bottom of the ninth, the Red Sox loaded the bases with only one out, but their rally fell short as Mark Melancon retired the next two batters in succession.
- Out of all the young pitchers that the Red Sox feature on their roster, Allen Webster is perhaps the most confusing. The 24-year old has posted some terrific minor league numbers, both this season and in the past. In his minor league career, the right-hander holds a 3.40 ERA in over 720 innings pitched. However, when pitching in the major leagues Webster holds an ERA over 7.00 in 16 starts. But while Webster’s struggles are frustrating, they’re certainly not uncommon. Current Red Sox ace Clay Buchholz can relate to the rookies early career gaffs, and has subsequently taken him under his wing. (Allen Webster still striving for big-league consistency)
- Now that the Red Sox have Rusney Castillo locked up for the next seven years, are they now turning their attention to the next Cuban sensation? Despite Boston’s log jammed outfield and right-handed heavy line-up, Yasmani Tomas would give the Red Sox what every team is in the market for — power. Tomas, 23, has drawn comparisons to Chicago White Sox slugger and fellow Cuban Jose Abreu, and is currently one of the top free agents this offseason. While the Red Sox certainly won’t be alone in the bidding for the Cuban defector, Tomas’ former teammate Rusney Castillo could offer a unique bargaining advantage. (Has Rusney Castillo blazed trail for Cuban slugger Yasmani Tomas to join Red Sox?)
- After running through tests and visiting doctors, Brock Holt still isn’t ready to return to the Red Sox line-up. Holt, who sustained a concussion after colliding with Dustin Pedroia in late August, hasn’t played since September 5th, but with 9 games remaining this season John Farrell isn’t ruling out his return to the line-up. However, should the super-utility man miss the final two week of the season the Red Sox are prepared to discuss a Fall Instructional League stint with the 28-year old. (Brock Holt could pay in instructional league after Red Sox’s season)
- Allen Craig’s brief Red Sox career hasn’t gone as smoothly as he or the fans would have liked it to. In 22 games, the right fielder has collected just eight hits and twenty-eight strike outs in his first sixty-six at-bats. But the Red Sox know what kind of player Craig is, and know what he can offer the team in 2015. Prior to this season, the 30-year old posted a batting average over .300 in three consecutive seasons, and tallied over 90 RBI in 2012 and 2013. With an offseason of strength training, Craig should be his normal self in 2015. (Allen Craig aiming to end season with Red Sox on strong note)
- Both Rusney Castillo and Mookie Betts offer the Red Sox similar skills in the line-up, but could their redundancy lead to a problem in the Red Sox outfield? Ben Cherington doesn’t think so. Even in an outfield as crowded as Boston’s, the general manager prefers to keep the outfielder in the fold. Of course, Cherington knows that he can’t keep all the outfielders that currently occupy spots on the depth chart, so it will be interesting to see how the Red Sox accommodate for Betts. (Room for both Rusney Castillo and Mookie Betts)
- Tweet of the day: The odds aren’t in their favor…
Christian Vazquez singles to right. Only nine more chances for the Red Sox to be no-hit.
— Tim Britton (@TimBritton) September 18, 2014