The Red Sox looked somewhat better Tuesday, but not good enough take home the win.
Boston’s pitching began to turn itself around in Tuesday’s crushing 1-0 loss to the Oakland Athletics in one of the staff’s best performances of the season so far. Chris Sale threw a solid six innings for the Sox, followed by scoreless efforts from Brandon Workman and Ryan Brasier.
In total, the Sox allowed just three hits, struck out four, and walked three while permitting just one run to score the entire evening.
Sale allowed only a solo homer to Matt Chapman in the first inning, and Red Sox manager Alex Cora was generally pleased with what he saw in his ace.
“The velocity wasn’t there but for whatever he had, he did a good job keeping them off balance and giving us a chance to win,” Cora said after the game, as seen on “NESN Sports Today.”
Instead, it was the Boston offense that once again failed to perform Tuesday, leaving the pitching staff with little wiggle room to work with. Boston left all seven men on base, including six in scoring position, and struck out nine times in its loss to the A’s.
Cora chalked some of this up to the A’s outstanding defensive performance but was honest about the Sox’s luck as of late.
“Right now, nothing’s going our way,” he said.
The Sox will have a chance to change their luck on Thursday when Nathan Eovaldi will take the mound. The righty will be looking for his own bounce-back performance after giving up six earned on eight hits in his season debut. (The Sox did happen to win that game by a score of 7-6.)
Here are some other notes from the Red Sox-Athletics game:
— Sale looked much better in his second start of the season than he did in his first. The southpaw had much more control over his breaking ball, though he was careful in using his fastball with hitters.
Despite letting up a homer in the first inning, Sale settled down quickly, allowing just one earned run on three hits. He only struck out one batter, though, tying a career low as a starter.
— The bullpen had an improved their performance on Tuesday, as well. Brandon Workman and Ryan Braiser combined for three strikeouts and one walk over two scoreless innings of work.
— A’s center fielder Roman Laureano made another spectacular play to halt the Sox’s chances of making a comeback in the ninth inning.
Xander Bogaerts crushed a double into left field with one out in the top of the ninth inning and attempted to reach third on the play. But for the second night in a row, Bogaerts was thrown out thanks to Laureano’s strike to third.
Laureano on Monday made an incredible throw from shallow center field to gun down Bogaerts at the plate.
— This is the second game in a row that the Red Sox’s offense has failed to score a single run. They weren’t shut out in consecutive games at any point last season.
— The Sox have been outscored 42-24 on the season.