This early in spring training is not the time to worry about final scores. Today, the Minnesota Twins beat the Red Sox 6-2. The offense was limited after a Daniel Nava solo homer in the top of the first. Grady Sizemore went 1-3 and Garin Cecchini was 2-3 in an otherwise limited offensive performance.
But what really matters in this spring camp is the performance and results of the young pitchers looking to steal a spot on this year’s staff.
Allen Webster got the start this afternoon against the Twins and struggled. In 1.2 innings of work, Webster allowed four hits and three runs to put the Sox down 3-1 after one inning despite Nava’s solo homer. Webster needed 45 pitches to record just five outs.
Feb 21, 2014; Ft Myers, FL, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcherAllen Webster
(right) listens to catcherDan Butler
(left) during spring training at JetBlue Park. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
Pitch location had been an issue for Webster during his brief time with the big club last season and was again today according to new Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski. After the game, Pierzynski said Webster had difficulty keeping the ball down in that first inning but that he was much better down in the zone in his second inning of work. A.J. said that’s the Webster that has been and can be successful.
Again, spring training is still in its infancy but Webster has a lot of competition in camp as he looks to secure a place in the majors.
Unfortunately, today was Webster’s turn and he was more bad than good. That will need to change if he hopes to see Fenway Park later this summer.