Make it eight in a row for the Red Sox, with the latest coming in blowout fashion. David Price took the mound for a solid outing and the offense backed him up by exploding for twelve runs. It was rad. Oh, and Sam Travis homered. Again.
The Red Sox offense did some things
While the team as a whole has been on a roll over the last week or so, the Red Sox lineup has been inconsistent, doing just enough to win. That was not the case against the Pirates on Tuesday, as they put twelve runs on the board behind a well-rounded and relentless attack. There were two homers in the contest that combined to score a little less than half of the game’s runs. The first came off the bat of Rafael Devers, who hit a two-run blast in the second off Pirates starter Joe Musgrove. Devers also singled and drew a walk in this game while crossing the plate three times as he continues to impress just about everyone this spring. Speaking of impressive springs, the second homer came from Sam Travis. The first base prospect hit a two-out, three-run dinger in the sixth off Pirates reliever Tyler Jones. It was Travis’ fifth home run of the spring heading into a year in which he desperately needs to find a way to produce consistent in-game power. Granted, he’s done this in spring training before so I’ll wait until it happens in the regular season before getting excited, but him mashing now is certainly better than him not mashing.
Those were the only two long balls of the afternoon, but it certainly wasn’t all of the damage done by the Red Sox offense. Mookie Betts continued to turn things around after his ice-cold start to camp, smacking a pair of singles and scoring a run while also driving one in. Mitch Moreland, meanwhile, is trying to earn himself as much regular season playing time as possible, and he made the case today. The first baseman went 3-3 with a double and two singles while also scoring a run and driving one in. Getting back to the outfield, Andrew Benintendi had a multi-hit game of his own, putting up a double and a single with two runs scored and two runs driven in. Minor leaguer Ryan Scott had the other Red Sox extra base hit, coming in the form of a double and Ivan De Jesus had a multi-hit game with a pair of singles. Also getting singles in this game were: Hanley Ramirez, Jeremy Barfield, Eduardo Nuñez and Brock Holt. These are the kind of performances we’ll be looking for from this 2018 Red Sox lineup.
David Price has another solid day
After getting a late start to the spring — by design, of course, along with the other Red Sox starters — Price has been one of the most impressive players in camp this year. He took the mound again on Tuesday, and while he wasn’t quite as dominant as he’s been in other outings he was still very solid. The lefty made it through five full innings in this game, making it through the first two with ease, setting down six in a row. He got himself into trouble in the third, though, allowing a leadoff homer to Jordan Luplow before allowing a pair of doubles to give Pittsburgh another run. After getting out of that third, Price got back into the swing of things allowing just a walk over the next two innings. Obviously we’d prefer to see five dominant innings from the guy we hope can be a legitimate co-ace with Chris Sale this summer, but it’s also nice to see Price be able to come back strong after a rough inning rather than letting it snowball.
After Price was removed, the Red Sox turned to a pair of right-handed relievers who have a chance to serve middle relief roles from day one. Heath Hembree got the sixth, and he had a good day. The righty didn’t allow a run and recorded one strike out, with just one runner reaching base with a single. Hembree has quietly been very good this spring, and while his lack of minor-league options likely guaranteed him an Opening Day roster spot regardless he has likely helped garner some confidence from his coaches. Brandon Workman was up next, and his seventh inning was fine, though not perfect. The righty allowed a pair of singles but got out of it unscathed thanks to a timely double play. Workman came back out for the eighth as Alex Cora continues to try and get some multi-inning outings out of his middle relievers, and this one wasn’t great. He allowed two solo home runs to minor leaguers before being pulled with two outs in the frame. Minor league righty Ryan Brasier finished things off, allowing one run in the ninth due to a double from old friend Ryan Lavarnway.