Boston Red Sox

May 17, 2019; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Rick Porcello (22) pitches during the first inning against the Houston Astros at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

By Matt McCarthy,

The Red Sox ran into trouble in the late innings, giving up three runs in the eighth inning as part of a 3-1 loss to the Houston Astros Friday night at Fenway Park.

W: Will Harris (1-0)

L: Rick Porcello (3-4)

S: Roberto Osuna (11)

Here are three takeaways from the loss:

1. Porcello stumbles late:

Rick Porcello cruised through seven scoreless innings of work, but left on a sour note after surrendering the go-ahead two-run home run to George Springer in the eighth inning.

Springer now has 17 home runs in 2019. He is hitting .320 with a 1.065 OPS.

Porcello went seven-plus innings, giving up two runs on six hits. He walked one and struck out three.

2. Brasier struggles again:

Ryan Brasier came on in relief of Porcello and allowed a big insurance run to score. He walked two and unleashed a critical wild pitch that setup a Josh Reddick sacrifice fly.

Brasier has now given up six runs in his last 7 1/3 innings. With Marcus Walden and Brandon Workman out-pitching Brasier, Alex Cora should consider reevaluating his bullpen hierarchy for the time being.

3. Sox struggle with runners on:

The Red Sox didn’t lack chances in the loss. Boston put up nine hits, but went 1-for-11 with runners in scoring position and stranded 10 men on the night.

The Sox lone run came on a Christian Vazquez single in the sixth inning. Vazquez is hitting .311 on the year.

You can hear Matt McCarthy on 98.5 The Sports Hub’s own Hardcore Baseball podcast and on various 98.5 The Sports Hub programs. Follow him on Twitter @MattMcCarthy985.

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