The Boston Red Sox really need to flip a switch if they want to play in the postseason for the fourth straight year. With that, they’ll need multiple players to elevate their game.
Andrew Cashner certainly falls into the group of guys who have to step it up. The right-handed pitcher, acquired last month, was moved to the bullpen after mostly stumbling as a starter since landing in Boston. He made arguably his biggest contribution yet Tuesday, earning his first career save as the Red Sox beat the Cleveland Indians 7-6 in 10 innings at Progressive Field.
After Brandon Workman blew a save opportunity in the ninth, allowing the Indians to tie the game, Jackie Bradley Jr. homered in the 10th to put Boston back ahead. Cashner took over in the bottom half of the frame, and after allowing a leadoff single to Carlos Santana, the 32-year-old retired the next three hitters, striking out the final two.
Getting moved to the bullpen couldn’t have been a great feeling for Cashner, who has spent most of his career as a starter. But when it happened, he got a message from Alex Cora, which the Red Sox manager revealed Tuesday.
“We still have a month and a half for this to happen,” Cora told Cashner, via The Boston Globe. “And you’re going to be a big part of it.”
The message must have gotten through, as Cashner’s time in the bullpen is off to a good start.
Thumbnail photo via Brian Fluharty/USA TODAY Sports Images