May 8, 2013; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Red Sox catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia (39) speaks to starting pitcher Allen Webster (64) during the first inning against the Minnesota Twins at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

Prospect Webster Walloped in Starter Debut, 15-8, Papi's hit streak ends at 27, Sox share First with Orioles


Brimming with confidence, after his strong showing in his Major League debut on April 21, Red Sox #4 prospect Allen Webster felt ready to extend his success tonight at Fenway; instead, a football game broke out, ending 15-8 Twins.

Webster was clobbered for eight runs in just 1 2/3 innings in a 15-8 loss that allowed the Orioles to claim half of 1st place in the AL East; Baltimore and Boston are now 21-13.  St. Louis now leads MLB with a 21-12 record.

The loss allowed the Orioles to claim half of 1st place in the AL East; Baltimore and Boston are now 21-13.  St. Louis now leads MLB with a 21-12 record.

Big Papi’s hitting streak ended at 27, when Ortiz took an 0-5 collar.

14 of the 18 players who started the game got at least one hit.

The highlight of the long evening at Fenway came in the first inning, when Jonny Gomes hit a grand slam to tie the game at 4, and Stephen Drew added an RBI single to put the Sox ahead 5-4 at the end of the First frame.

Given a reprieve and one-run lead Webster continued to look more like a suspect than a prospect; he coughed up a HR to Pedro Florimon to tie the game and, after facing 11 batters and with 8 earned runs charged to him, Webster headed for an early shower with an 11.74 ERA.

Not the performance that Sox manager John Farrell had anticipated yesterday:

“I think everyone looks forward to seeing that guy on the mound,” Farrell said of Webster. “He’s got great stuff. He showed he’s got very good poise in the first outing that he made for us. We’ll see it again tomorrow night.”

Enter Felix Doubront, who was sent to the bullpen to rest his forearm strain, to relieve Webster, who was summoned from Pawtucket to start for Doubront, who was smacked around for 6 runs in 5 1/3 innings.

The AL record for most runs scored by two teams in a game is 36; two games are tied for the record, but the Red Sox played in both of them, and won both games:

AL

Boston 22 vs. Philadelphia 14

  36

06-29-1950

Boston 19 vs. Texas 17

08-12-2008

The MLB record for most runs scored by two teams in a game is 49:

Chicago 26 vs. Philadelphia 23

  49

08-25-1922

Tonight’s loss is the latest calamity to befall the Sox; Yesterday Will Middlebrooks and David Ross collided pursuing a foul ball.

Former closer Andrew Bailey is on the disabled list with a right forearm strain.

Former closer Joel Hanrahan has an ailing right forearm since Spring training and now appears to be headed for an evaluation for a Tommy John operation.

The closer job now belongs to Junichi Tazawa.

Lacking both command and location, Webster managed to get only five outs with 5 Ws and 2 Ks.

Webster: “The team did all they could to help me out…I just went back out there and if I had thrown a zero we’d probably win the game, but I didn’t.”

Farrell: “Right from the start, just the inability to establish a certain pitch to a given area to get a strike when needed and when he got behind in the count, then he’s obviously at a disadvantage,…And against this team, if there isn’t a secondary pitch to command behind in the count, we saw it tonight what they can do.”

Reliever Ryan Pressly (1-0) blanked the Sox for 4 innings for the win.

Commenting on the temporary loss of closers “Thumbalina” Bailey and “Hurtin’ ” Hanahan, Farrell said:

“Koji [Uehara]‘s done an excellent job in that seventh, eighth inning for us…With the addition of Craig Breslow in that mix, I feel like we’ve gotten more options to match up in that bridge to Junichi as a closer, and I like the fact that Junichi’s got power to his pitch mix.

“He’s been effective against lefties and righties as well. I think the late-inning guys we have here do a very good job of controlling the running game. All things considered, Junichi is the choice.”

Tazawa: “I had always concentrated on the task at hand,” Tazawa said. “That has been my mindset from the beginning. Both of those guys have gone down, so I guess there’s a chance [to close]. But I’m just going to focus on what’s at hand.”

Then there is Closer Plan D: Temperamental Problem Child Alfredo Aceves, starting for Pawtucket, is 2-0 with a 1.38 ERA in his first two outings.

Farrell: “He’s going to be evaluated independently based on his ability to execute with the consistency that we outlined when we optioned him to Pawtucket,” said manager John Farrell. “While he’s in the starting role there, we feel like that’s the best place for him to gain that consistency, and yet he wouldn’t be the only option if a need were to continue to arise to support the bullpen.”

It is very likely that Webster will be sent back to Triple-A Pawtucket to continue his development into a #3 rotation starter for GM Cherington’s “Next Great Red Sox Team.” [circa 2014-15]

Sox Pitching coach Juan Nieves observed obviously:  “Rome was not built in one day…[You] back to square one and keep on working on whatever you have to do. Cy Young Award winners are working on their craft every day. It’s no different.”

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Twins’ Kevin Correia (3-2, 2.83 ERA) will  face John Lackey (1-2, 3.52) is the series finale tomorrow.

BOX: http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/gameday/index.jsp?gid=2013_05_08_minmlb_bosmlb_1&mode=box&c_id=bos

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Tags: Allen Webster

  • John Fahrer

    This was actually his second outing, not a debut.

    It is just one game and one tough stretch, but this club does have some obvious flaws. Middlebrooks is struggling to hit and/or reach base, Ciriaco’s not a viable defensive third baseman, and the back end of the rotation is a big question mark.

    They will hopefully be getting Franklin Morales back soon. That should help for the time being. But if a worthwhile starter from outside the organization becomes available, the club would be wise to look into acquiring him.

    Third base-wise, they really should’ve been aggressive in signing Eric Chavez this past offseason. I know Middlebrooks is just day to day. But he’s hitting below .200 and hasn’t done much of anything against teams not named the Toronto Blue Jays. Might have to send him down and woo a Chipper Jones or Scott Rolen.