Boston Red Sox

  • After spending the first half of the season rehabbing from numerous injuries, Red Sox lefty Chris Sale made his 2022 Major League debut Tuesday night at Tropicana Field against the Rays. Sale did his part, but the rest of the team couldn’t follow through.

    In his last rehab start in Worcester last week, Sale struggled with control and efficiency walking five hitters on 72 pitches in 3.2 innings. That was night-and-day from his MLB season debut. Sale tossed five scoreless innings against the Rays, allowing just five hits and a walk while striking out five hitters on 78 pitches.

    Throughout the start, Sale spotted his fastball well. His slider had its trademark bite as well, and Sale turned to the pitch in the most high-leverage situations, throwing it for back-to-back outs in a two on, one out situation.

  • While Sale was in the game, the Red Sox managed to build a 2-0 lead. A Franchy Cordero squeeze was followed by a Bobby Dalbec triple in the fifth inning, creating the two-run cushion.

    Once Sale was out of the game though, the wheels fell off. Ryan Brasier was called on for the sixth inning, and allowed two of the first three hitters he faced to reach including issuing a five-pitch walk.

    Brasier was pulled with two on and two out in favor of Matt Strahm. Strahm promptly allowed an RBI single, then in the next at-bat had a line drive hit back to him knock his glove off. His throw to first was offline, and another throw by Cordero home resulted in two more runs scoring, creating the 3-2 final score.

  • Strahm would leave the game with what the team called a wrist contusion. He wasn’t the only Red Sox player to suffer a wrist injury in the game either. Trevor Story was hit in the wrist by a pitch early in the game, and was replaced by Jeter Downs. Both players are expected to undergo X-rays later Tuesday night.

    With the loss, the Red Sox fall to 47-41 on the season, with a 11-22 record in AL East play. Tampa jumps them in the Wild Card standings, with the Rays now a half a game up in the top spot.

    The Red Sox will try to avoid a series loss on Wednesday, when they play the third game of the four-game set. Josh Winckowski will get the ball for the Sox, against All-Star Shane McClanahan for the Rays.