Red Sox Notes: Doug Fister’s Performance An Encouraging Sign Amid Slump

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The Boston Red Sox are down, but they’re not completely out just yet.

The Red Sox dropped their fourth consecutive game in a 2-1 loss to Baltimore on Sunday as the Orioles completed a three-game sweep, leaving Boston with just a 2.5-game lead over the New York Yankees for first place in the American League East. But while it may seem like it was all doom and gloom at Fenway Park, there was an important development that came out of the loss.

After a rough first inning saw Doug Fister give up two runs, the right-hander settled down and blanked the Orioles for the next six innings. It wasn’t the flashiest stat line — Fister allowed five hits with two walks and seven strikeouts over seven innings — but it should have been enough for the Red Sox to win. And after Fister one-hit the Cleveland Indians in a complete-game effort Tuesday, there’s reason to believe the 33-year-old might have been a steal for the Red Sox.

Fister is 3-2 with a 3.41 ERA since David Price hit the disabled list on July 28, which bodes well for Boston as long as the offense returns to form. He’s held off the AL Central-leading Indians twice — he gave up two runs over 7 2/3 innings against Cleveland on July 31 — and the O’s still have one of the best lineups in baseball despite their .500 record.

Essentially, Fister is getting good at the right time and could prove to be an instrumental piece of the Red Sox’s rotation down the stretch.

Here are some more notes from Boston’s loss.

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— It was an encouraging day for Rafael Devers, too, as the Red Sox third baseman went 2-for-4 with two doubles and Boston’s lone RBI. Devers was two for his last 27 with eight strikeouts in that span heading into Sunday’s contest.

— Boston’s current four-game skid is tied for the longest this season, matching a stretch from July 22 to July 25. The Red Sox started heating up immediately after that, so they’ll be looking to do the same when they begin a three-game series with the Blue Jays in Toronto on Monday.

— Sunday’s game was the first time the Orioles swept the Red Sox since June 2015.

— The Red Sox are batting .206 in their last four games to go with .097 average with runners in scoring position. That’s not ideal.

Thumbnail photo via Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports Images

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