Rubby De La Rosa was far from perfect Tuesday night against the St. Louis Cardinals, but he gave the Boston Red Sox reason to believe that he can be a major league starter.
De La Rosa had struggled mightily in games outside of Fenway Park before Tuesday’s game, but he delivered a quality start at Busch Stadium. The right-hander was 0-3 with a 6.04 ERA in his four starts on the road, but he pitched six innings of one-run ball, giving up six hits and three walks while striking out three. He didn’t factor into the decision in the 3-2 loss.
He got himself into a couple of jams — like when he loaded the bases in the fourth — but he was able to get himself out without much damage. The mistakes he made were ones that will hopefully improve with time and experience. Most importantly, he didn’t give up any home runs, which he’s done in five of his 10 starts.
And on a (maybe) unrelated note, De La Rosa was also swinging the bat with much more effort than most American League pitchers. He grounded out to Cardinals starter Lance Lynn in both of his at-bats, but his hustle could tell you something about his work ethic.
Let’s take a look at some other notes from Tuesday’s loss.
— The 3-2 loss was Boston’s 43rd one-run game of the season, which is tied with the Miami Marlins for the most in Major League Baseball. The Red Sox are 21-22 in those games.
— Despite a sudden influx of hot bats just prior to and immediately after the All-Star break, Boston’s offensive struggles are back to plaguing the club. The Sox only managed five hits from three players in their lineup — Dustin Pedroia, Daniel Nava and Yoenis Cespedes.
David Ortiz and Brock Holt both went 0-for-4, with Holt striking out three times.
— Speaking of Cespedes, he was far from the problem Tuesday night. Cespedes went 3-for-4 with two singles and a triple that he earned from a fan interference call. Defensively, he looked much more comfortable in an outfield that’s much less quirky than Fenway’s.
— The Red Sox announced Tuesday that outfielder Shane Victorino’s back surgery was a success. They expect him to be ready for spring training next season.
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