Red Sox Notes: Rick Porcello Laments Ugly Pair Of Outings To Start Season


There’s really no dressing up Rick Porcello’s outing Friday night.

The Red Sox right-hander was one of two pitchers to get pounded by the Diamondbacks in Boston’s 15-8 loss to Arizona at Chase Field.

Porcello was tagged for seven runs over 4 2/3 innings, allowing 10 hits with three walks and five strikeouts, giving up a pair of home runs.

It was the continuation of what’s been a bad start to the season for Porcello, the pitching staff and the Red Sox as a whole. At times, such as the first two innings against the D-Backs, Porcello looked somewhat in control, allowing just one hit over the two frames while tossing a 1-2-3 second.

But as has been the case plenty of times for Porcello in his career, once things went off the rails, they really went off the rails. And his reaction showed it, taking some frustration out on a water cooler in the dugout after a rough fourth inning.

The performance from Porcello came on the heels of another clunker last Sunday against the Seattle Mariners, and after Friday’s game, the righty expressed quite a bit of frustration.

“Very frustrating,” Porcello said, as seen on NESN’s Red Sox postgame coverage. “I’m not doing my job right now, I don’t take that lightly. Going to do whatever I can to get back on track this week and for my next one. This one’s on me, I take full responsibility for these first two starts, I’m not throwing the ball the way I need to, so got to turn it around quick.”

Here are some other notes from Friday’s Red Sox-Diamondbacks game:

— Not that it’ll come as much consolation to Porcello, but Brian Johnson also delivered a simply horrid performance.

The southpaw, who was one of two options to start Sunday, got tagged for seven runs on six hits. Four of those runs came on a Ketel Marte grand slam.

In three outings this season Johnson had been mostly good, but Friday quite clearly was not a sterling moment of his career.

With Johnson throwing 39 pitches, it seems more likely Hector Velazquez will start in the series finale.

— So how bad have Red Sox starters been altogether?

Through nine games this season, the Chris Sale-David Price-Nathan Eovaldi-Eduardo Rodriguez-Porcello group has combined to go 0-7 with a 9.60 ERA over 40 1/3 innings. They’ve struck out 35 and walked 25, surrendering 16 home runs.

The 16 dingers they’ve given up is more than many teams (both the rotation and bullpen) have allowed all season.

— There was at least one bright spot out of the bullpen: Tyler Thornburg.

The right-handed reliever allowed a single in a scoreless seventh inning, though the result hardly was in doubt when he entered the game (the Sox were losing 14-1). Still, his stuff was pretty good, which is an encouraging sign.

— In an effort to not totally gas the bullpen, Sox manager Alex Cora had Eduardo Nunez pitch the eighth inning.

Nunez, who couldn’t help but laugh much of the time, got the first two batters to ground out and fly out before giving up a homer to Alex Avila. Nunez responded to the dinger by getting a fly out to end the inning.

— Mookie Betts had a pretty solid night at the dish, going 3-for-5 with two RBIs, two runs scored with a two-run homer. He also drilled a ground rule double.

Boston Red Sox infielder Eduardo Nunez
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