Monday’s Spring Training game saw the Red Sox traveling about an hour and a half up the Florida coast to Bradenton to meet one of last year’s great stories, the Pittsburgh Pirates, who took the Cardinals to the brink of elimination last year before succumbing in the National League Division Series. This game was slated to feature the first game action for Koji Uehara and Junichi Tazawa.
One bit of news that came out yesterday that projected starter Jake Peavy was not be able to start Monday because he cut his hand at his home, cutting open a container of fishing lures. Considering stitches were applied to the hand, it could have been much worse. As many of us are, Peavy is day-to-day.
As the old adage goes, you never have too much pitching. Brandon Workman took the mound in Peavy’s place today and was roughed up a bit, surrendering five hits, including two run homers to Russell Martin and Pedro Alvarez, over 2 and 1/3 innings, to push the Pirates out to a 6-1 lead. The Red Sox showed off some power of their own. Bryce Brentz homered in the seventh inning and Mike Carp followed with a homer of his own to tie the score in the 8th. Prized prospect Henry Owens came on for a scoreless seventh, but in the eighth inning the Pirates pushed across the game winner, to take the game 7-6. The Red Sox fall to 1-3 in the Spring.
As far as the other story lines go, the aforementioned bullpen stalwarts Uehara and Tazawa completed their 2014 initial appearances successfully, each holding Pittsburgh off the board in their respective inning. Garin Cecchini is making the most of his playing time, reaching base twice on walks and making a good play on a slow roller. A.J. Pierzynski got in the hit column twice, including a double, and left the game after rolling his ankle. He had a scheduled day off Tuesday anyway, so don’t take his absence for any kind of sign.