By Ty Anderson, 985TheSportsHub.com
The Red Sox’ bats continued their cooldown Saturday night in Detroit, falling to the Tigers by a 5-0 final.
This is not to suggest that the Sox were hopeless in this contest, as they were able to threaten on a fairly regular basis, and finished the night with eight hits. But their never brought a Boston baserunner to the plate — the Red Sox went 0-for-5 with runners in scoring position — and pushed the Red Sox to just one run in their first 18 innings out of the All-Star break.
And their struggles came against an arm that they’re (apparently) eyeing as a potential trade target.
That’s according to Buster Olney, anyway, who tweeted this in the midst of Mike Fiers’ start against the Red Sox.
Red Sox among a bunch of teams evaluating DET's Mike Fiers as a possible trade target -- and they are doing it first-hand tonight. Fiers opened this game with three scoreless innings; one out in the fourth now.— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) July 21, 2018
Boston’s interest in Fiers makes sense on the surface, as Alex Cora’s pitching staff has been decimated with injuries and inconsistencies as of late; Eduard Rodriguez is on the shelf with a significant ankle injury, Steven Wright’s knee hasn’t gotten any better, and Brian Johnson is currently a fixture in the rotation. This has all lined up Drew Pomeranz, who is 1-3 with an ERA north of six on the regular season, as a potential hero to the rotation upon his return next Tuesday.
In other words, they could use some help.
But Fiers, who was in command in what finished as a 6.1 inning outing with seven hits and six strikeouts, is an odd target in the sense that he’s a No. 4 or 5 starter at the very best. Even in a winning effort, the Red Sox hit him around some, and he got away with pitches that would probably crush him if thrown at any other ballpark.
Cora has familiarity with Fiers dating back to Houston, though, which could make him somebody Cora trusts down the stretch. He would also probably be among the most affordable options on the open market, which is especially helpful for a Boston front office that’s already stripped their farm system bare with countless win-now trades.
Brian Johnson took the loss for the Red Sox in this one. Johnson allowed two runs (both unearned) through five innings of work. Tyler Thornburg, meanwhile, made things worse with three runs allowed in just one inning of relief.
Chris Sale gets the call for tomorrow’s series finale at Comerica Park.
Ty Anderson is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Ty? Follow him on Twitter @_TyAnderson.