Red Sox Strut to Betts and Porcello

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Aug 26, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Rick Porcello (22) delivers a pith during the first inning against the Chicago White Sox at U.S Cellular Field. Mandatory Credit: Caylor Arnold-USA TODAY Sports


First off, on the Strut calendar is to remove Junichi Tazawa from consideration. The new semi-closer has clearly demonstrated from his brief sample at that position that there is a 50/50 chance between good and bad things happening. This plagues the entire bullpen.

Alexi Ogando and Robbie Ross can lull one into a sense of comfort only to have it disintegrate with a series of walks, home runs or other hitting mayhem. There must be some type of unknown pitching infection that the CDC has not located that apparently is centered in the Red Sox bullpen?

The week out of the pen did witness a rare occurrence as Craig Breslow got a save and Tommy Layne a win. Even the four walks in a row by Tazawa managed to get him a Hold – is there a more disingenuous stat in pitching?

However, Heath Hembree and Ross restored order on Sunday by breaking a tie – in favor of the Mets.

Henry Owens saw his nemesis arise in a start against the Mets – walks. This time it was four in five innings that were somewhat offset with six strikeouts. Owens allowed only one earned run, but his pitch count reached 108 and an early exit.

Wade Miley certainly gave up a bushel of hits in Chicago. In 6.2 innings the White Sox collected 13 (career high) on the way to giving Miley a loss. Miley followed up in New York by quickly giving back three runs in a game that saw Boston grab a lead.

Joe Kelly had started the road trip with a nice win in Chicago. Kelly went seven innings, allowing two runs. Of course he gave up his mandatory home run in the game, but kept the walks to just one. Kelly was not done as he followed up in New York with one run allowed in 7.1 innings against the Mets to capture his sixth August win.

Kelly would certainly be a worthy choice for a Strut, but not this week. There was even a more dominant performance that, like Kelly’s, may bode well for the future.

Rick Porcello was placed on the DL a few weeks ago and that decision was questionable. Porcello did have an “injury,” but this appeared to be similar to the injury Joe Kelly “suffered” that gave him some Pawtucket time to reevaluate his pitching prowess. Ditto for Porcello.

Apparently the in season vacation had an impact as Porcello tossed a gem of a game against the Chicago White Sox. A 94 pitch and seven inning effort with no runs, no walks and five hits allowed to match the five strikeouts.

This could a pitching mirage or it could be the real deal and the next month will decide which. If Porcello has truly adjusted or somehow discovered and remedied a flaw, then departed GM, Ben Cherington, can put a plus on his résumé for dishing out a long-term contract to Porcello.

Porcello can strut – at least until his next start.

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