On Monday, Boston Red Sox pitcher Rubby De La Rosa pitched a gem. Going seven strong innings allowing just one hit while walking three and fanning three hitters, De La Rosa got the win— improving his record to 2-2. There was a lack of offensive support despite the strong outing and Boston won the game just 1-0. Boston is the king of losing one run games this year, and would have lost this one if it were not for such a strong outing by the 25-year-old flamethrower. This is why it is clear, at least to this reporter, that Rubby De La Rosa is here to stay for the Boston Red Sox this year.
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On the year, De La Rosa is boasting a 2.84 ERA in four starts for the Boston Red Sox, totaling 25 1/3 innings. His strikeout totals are high at 23 and his walk total is low at just seven, showing signs that Rubby has regained command on all of his pitches. So far this year, De La Rosa has given Boston two spectacular outings and two not-so-good outings. In a pair of outings De La Rosa has thrown seven innings of shutout ball and in the other two, he let up four runs on 5 2/3 innings of work.
Obviously De La Rosa would be a better pitcher if he was more consistent, but those two great outings against Tampa Bay and Minnesota are a glimpse at what Rubby could one day be down the line. Those are weaker teams in contrast to the teams which he struggled against—Detroit and Baltimore, but other pitchers would not perform as well against those stronger clubs either.
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When Clay Buchholz and Felix Doubront return from the Disabled List, Boston will need to make some decisions on what to do with the young fire-baller whose fastball regularly approaches 100 mph in games. The way Clay Buchholz pitched in his first rehab start will help the Red Sox buy some time, as he gave up a pair of home runs and three total earned runs on 4 2/3 innings of work for the Paw Sox. Also, keep in mind, De La Rosa is outperforming Workman in the rotation, as Workman has a 3.21 ERA in five starts totaling 28 inning in which he has walked 11 batters while fanning just 21. This may not seem like much of a difference, but the walk totals are high and Workman works better out of the bullpen anyways.
Overall, the Boston Red Sox are in a tough spot, but a great one at the same time. They have a plethora of pitching talent which is great since their only problem is to decide who to keep and who to give the boot. Hopefully Boston will find a way to make it all work so that Rubby and Workman both get to stay in the big leagues, but baseball is as much a game of number crunching as it is a game of anything else and it will be interesting to see how it plays out.