There were a number of bright spots for the Red Sox on Sunday afternoon at Fenway Park.

Trevor Story posted his first big game since returning to the club last week, smacking three doubles as part of a four-hit performance against the Tigers. Boston also received a useful start from Kutter Crawford and big flies from Justin Turner and Adam Duvall.

But among the most encouraging signs for the Red Sox was the outing from Garrett Whitlock, who was activated from the injured list and made his first big league appearance since July 2. The right-hander’s two innings in which he only allowed one unearned run helped Boston secure a 6-3 victory and a series win over Detroit.

Alex Cora, who highlighted Whitlock’s importance to the Red Sox before the finale, was pleased with what he saw from the 27-year-old.

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“He was good,” Cora told reporters, per MassLive. “Throwing strikes. The ability to hit the outside part of the plate against righties over and over and over again is really good. You saw it — two innings today, (which) helped (Josh Winckowski and John Schreiber get some rest).”

Whitlock’s impressive return to the mound came two days after Chris Sale looked very solid in his first appearance since June 1. And Tanner Houck, who hasn’t pitched for Boston since June 16, might not be too far away from his own return to the majors.

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All told, the Red Sox pitching staff soon could be in very good shape for the home stretch of the regular season.

Featured image via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images