The Boston Red Sox need someone to step up in the back end of their starting rotation.
A night after left-hander Drew Pomeranz lasted only four innings and allowed six runs, spot starter Kyle Kendrick was pounded by the Milwaukee Brewers in a 7-4 loss at Miller Park on Wednesday night.
The 32-year-old right-hander was unable to give the Red Sox’s bullpen a much-needed night off, as he surrendered six runs in just 4 1/3 innings of work.
While Chris Sale, reigning American League Cy Young winner Rick Porcello and lefty Eduardo Rodriguez have ranged from stellar to serviceable, the other members of the rotation haven’t been able to get the job done consistently.
Sale, Porcello and Rodriguez have combined to throw 124 1/3 innings and compile a 2.90 ERA so far this season, while Pomeranz, Kendrick, Steven Wright and Brian Johnson have tossed 68 1/3 innings and accumulated a 7.38 ERA in the process.
“We got an off day Monday,” manager John Farrell said as seen on NESN’s Red Sox postgame coverage. “So how we rearrange some things is yet to be determined. Our bullpen has been overtaxed the last couple games, so we’ve got some conversation to have here.”
And while reinforcements could be on the way soon in the form of left-hander David Price, the Red Sox will need to find a way to shore up their starting pitching depth in case of another injury, like the season-ending knee surgery that befell Wright, or in case Pomeranz continues to struggle as he did Tuesday night in Milwaukee.
The Red Sox’s best option in Triple-A Pawtucket appears to be Johnson, who turned in another good performance Tuesday when he tossed seven shutout innings, and was serviceable in his lone big-league start of the season, a win against the Toronto Blue Jays on April 19. But with Wright sidelined, and Price’s return date still uncertain, the Red Sox might need to acquire rotation depth in the near future.
Here are more notes from Red Sox vs. Brewers.
— Shortstop Xander Bogaerts also extended his hitting streak to 13 games with a first-inning double. Dustin Pedroia also extended his hitting streak to eight games with a single in the first inning.
— Hanley Ramirez exited Wednesday’s game in the fourth inning with a muscle spasm in his right trapezius. Mitch Moreland took over for Ramirez at first base.
— Price is set to make his first rehab start Sunday for Triple-A Pawtucket.
— Moreland currently is on pace for 673 plate appearances. He never has had more than 518 in a season.
— Henry Owens gave up four runs in five innings Wednesday for Triple-A Pawtucket. That equals the total number of runs the left-hander had given up over his first five starts of the season.
Thumbnail photo via Benny Sieu/USA TODAY Sports Images