Morales good, though not good enough, against Indians

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Morales good, though not good enough, against Indians

CLEVELAND Franklin Morales wasnt at his best Saturday night against the Cleveland Indians, but just about everyone agreed he pitched well enough to win.

The Sox left-hander struggled with his command while allowing four walks and a hit batsman in 5 13 innings of work. But he also allowed only a pair of hits and three runs, plenty good enough to keep the Sox in a game they eventually lost by a 5-2 score at Progressive Field.

I thought he was really good," said Bobby Valentine. "He threw a ball 3-1 down the middle to Brent Lillibridge for a home run and seemed to lose his control in the last inning. Other than that, he pitched pretty good. He pitched pretty damned good.

In the other games he had really good control of his offspeed stuff. Tonight he wasnt getting his curveball called for strikes and his changeup was just missing. But he pitched well enough to win. There is no doubt about that.

Morales dropped to 3-3 on the season and his sixth-inning performance was what eventually doomed him. He walked a pair of batters one intentionally and one not and hit a batter to load the bases, and was lifted from a 2-2 tied game with one out in the inning. Andrew Miller relieved Morales and allowed a Michael Brantley sacrifice fly to left field that scored Asdrubal Cabrera.

That proved to be the winning run, and that was the inning that Morales was kicking himself about after it was all over.

I tried to throw my curveball for strikes and I missed, said Morales. Sometimes thats the game. You try to avoid mistakes and make your pitches all the way through, but I missed in a few situations. I missed a couple of pitches in the sixth and got behind the count. Sometimes you miss and that happens some times.

I tried to hold my team in there the best I could and the guys tried to keep us in there the best they could in the field. It just wasnt meant for us today.

Instead the Sox lefty -- who has a 2.94 ERA and 57 strikeouts in his last 15 outings, dating back to June 3 -- will go back to the drawing board encouraged by the six strikeouts in 5 13 innings that easily display the kind of dominant stuff hes bringing to the pitchers mound as a starter.

Merloni: 'One good start' could change things for David Price in playoffs

Merloni: 'One good start' could change things for David Price in playoffs

Gary Tanguay and Lou Merloni talk all Boston Red Sox postseason and cover David Price's bad postseason pitching, Drew Pomeranz heading to the bullpen, and if the Sox should feel pressure to clinch AL East sooner than later.

Pomeranz 'pretty comfortable' with potential move to bullpen

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Pomeranz 'pretty comfortable' with potential move to bullpen

NEW YORK -- If Drew Pomeranz is going to be part of the Red Sox' postseason plans, the team will likely have a better idea about that question by Thursday afternoon.

Pomeranz, who was scratched from his final scheduled start on Thursday because of soreness in his left forearm and general concern about his 2016 workload, will throw a 30-35 pitch bullpen.

If he responds well, he could then see some relief action over the final weekend at Fenway to determine his readiness for the playoffs.

"Before we even begin to map out a potential relief appearance over the weekend,'' said John Farrell, "we've got to get through that next step.''

Pomeranz pitched well in his last start at Tropicana Field over the weekend, but has been dealing with some discomfort in his forearm.

"I've had some soreness here, late in the year,'' Pomeranz said. "I've thrown more innings than I have ever (before), so we kind of sat down and talked about the best course of action the rest of the way.''

Pomeranz described what he felt as "just some soreness, probably from never covering this time of the year. It's a spot I've never been in before. We just decided the best thing to do was not making this last start and talk about maybe sliding into the bullpen.''

The lefty is no stranger to the bullpen, having pitched there as recently as last season while with Oakland.

"I've had the benefit of doing pretty much everything (in terms of roles),'' he said. "I'm pretty comfortable in any situation. If they see me helping there, obviously, that's where I want to be. But I don't know if it's a sure thing. We'll have to see how it goes.''

Meanwhile, another sidelined starter, Steven Wright, is expected to rejoin the team in Boston Friday. Wright threw a bullpen off the mound earlier this week in Fort Myers as he attempts to come back from inflammation in his shoulder.