(AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here...
highlighting the big storyline. Because there's nothing quite as
satisfying as a good morning dump.
The inning started out promising, but in the end it was all too predictable with Andrew Bailey on the hill.
relief pitcher was sent out in last night’s seventh inning with the Red
Sox holding a 5-4 lead on the Blue Jays. This was Sox manager John
Farrell giving Bailey a chance to regain some confidence. It wasn’t an
easy task facing the top of the Toronto lineup, and, at first, it looked
like it would work.
Bailey came out and looked like a new
pitcher. His velocity was up, touching 95 and 96, as he got his fastball
going and struck out Jose Reyes and Jose Bautista to start the inning.
But it only took one fastball, thrown to Edwin Encarnacion, to erase
As soon as the Jays designated hitter made contact, the crowd knew.
As the ball towered through the dark summer sky, Bailey watched as it
landed in the center field bleachers, then bent over like he was struck
in the stomach.
It took one pitch to knock Bailey out of the game. One pitch for the Jays to tie the game. And one pitch to erase the positives.
Such is life as a pitcher and that life has been a rough one for Bailey.
Herald - Battered Andrew Bailey holds out hope
The Sox won last night's game, their 49th victory on the year (tied with Pittsburgh for the most wins in baseball) so we don't need to stress too much over Bailey's inability to be good.
In the short time he's held the role, Koji Uehara has been rock-solid as Boston's closer. It's not often that a team has to rely on option C for closer duties, and it's even more rare that option C is as good as Koji. We have Ben Cherington to thank for that. I don't know that anyone is going to be disappointed if we have to roll with Uehara in the 9th over the final 1/2 of the season. We're in good hands.
So Bailey doesn't need to worry about trying to earn that job back. He just needs to focus on getting guys out. The Sox can be patient and wait for him. They're finding ways to win games. Role players are stepping up and contributing. This is nowhere near a time to panic as far as Bailey is concerned.
That all said, having another dependable late innings pitcher as the team makes a run at their division would be huge. If Bailey has to be shut down, sent down, or just not counted on, I don't know too many people that are going to be confident that this bullpen can hold up for the next 4 months.
What you don't want to see is Cherington forced to trade some assets for a late year bullpen rental. We're not there yet, but another month and a half of Bailey getting lit up and we just may be.
Rest of the links:
Herald - Jonny Gomes on the spot | Notebook: Stephen Drew hamstrung | Globe - Gomes puts Boston ahead in 7-5 win over Toronto | Drew hopes to miss only a few days | CSNNE - Webster settles in for six solid innings | Gomes' pinch-hit single saves the day | WEEI - Paul Pierce offers Dustin Pedroia a reminder: Staying with one team isn't always easy | Stephen Drew unsure how much hamstring will set him back