Stewart on nine-run debut: 'I was too inconsistent'


Stewart on nine-run debut: 'I was too inconsistent'

ANAHEIM -- Zach Stewart knew even before he took the mound Wednesday night that, thanks to some roster considerations, his stay with the Red Sox would be brief.

What he couldn't have known is how brief his outing was going to be, too.

Stewart lasted just three innings and was shelled for nine runs on 10 hits, becoming the first Red Sox pitcher in a century to allow nine runs in his debut.

"I was too inconsistent," confessed Stewart after the Sox were drubbed by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, 10-3, "and those guys are too good to leave those many balls over the plate. I felt like I was making some good pitches and then, I'd turn around and leave the ball over the ball over the heart of the plate or leave a slider up or something like that."

"He didn't locate today," said catcher Ryan Lavarnway who had caught Stewart at Triple A, "the way that he had when I had him at Pawtucket. He threw two-strike curveballs that didn't bounce and to the Angels' credit, they didn't miss him. I've seen him pitch better than that. I know he's got it in him."

"He got too many pitches up," said Bobby Valentine. "He has to pitch down in the zone to be effective and he just wasn't able to do that tonight. It's tough to come up and make a start against this team and have things go back from the first hitter."

Indeed, it got ugly for Stewart in a hurry. After allowing two singles, a double and a homer to the first four hitters he faced, he found himself trailing 4-0.

"Basically, you're trying to stop the bleeding," he said reflecting back on the first. "You just keep competing."

After the first, he allowed another run in the second before the Angels began bashing him again in the third with four more extra-base hits and four runs.

Valentine was asked if he thought about taking Stewart out earlier rather than embarrass him.

"He had two outs in the third inning (before the Angels added on)," reasoned Valentine. "I was trying to get him through the third inning. I was deathly afraid of using the entire bullpen tonight."

"I try not to look at that," Stewart said of being pulled. "I feel like it's my game at that point and whenever they make that decision, that's up to them."

Stewart was optioned back to Pawtucket immediately after the game -- as was the plan all along -- and now he'll have to sit and consider how it all went so wrong, so quickly for him in his Red Sox debut.

If there's a positive, Lavarnway said Stewart didn't quit or feel sorry for himself.

"He took it like a pro," said the catcher. "He never backed down. I never saw his shoulders bow down. That wasn't easy for him, I'm sure, but he handled it like a pro."

Still, it was tough.

"It's always difficult," acknowledged Stewart. "You never want to have a start like that, but it's one of those things that all you can do is turn the page and go from there. You have to flush these and just go on to the next one. You can't just keep carrying them around and thinking about them.

"I'm going to take it and learn from it and take the mistakes I made and try not to make them anymore."

Robbie Ross Jr. is getting elbow checked out

Robbie Ross Jr. is getting elbow checked out

Red Sox reliever Robbie Ross Jr.'s tough 2017 has reached a potentially scary moment.

Expected to be the team's lead lefty out of the bullpen, Ross has twice been demoted and struggled in the majors. Now, he's on the disabled list at Triple-A Pawtucket with inflammation in his throwing elbow — a health situation that might explain why he wasn't pitching well in the big leagues.

The Red Sox expect to know more about Ross' situation later in the week.

Ross hasn't pitched in game for Pawtucket since he was most recenlty optioned. If the 27-year-old was indeed hurt in the majors, it's possible he could retroactivley wind up on the major league disabled list. Ross was demoted May 19, and is on the DL retroactive to May 25. 

Per, Ross sat at 93 mph with his fastball on May 12. He dropped down to 92 in the following appearance, and the next two outings were at 91 mph. He averaged 94 mph in 2016.

Ross had a 7.00 ERA in eight major league appearances this year, striking out nine and walking five in nine innings. He posted a 3.25 ERA in a 2016 season where he established himself as a key member of the 'pen.

Ross said he was shocked when he was demoted for the first time this year. 

Robinson Cano, Guillermo Heredia homer in Mariners' 5-0 win over Red Sox


Robinson Cano, Guillermo Heredia homer in Mariners' 5-0 win over Red Sox

BOSTON (AP)  Christian Bergman rebounded from a miserable start with seven shutout innings and the Seattle Mariners halted Boston's season-high six-game winning streak with a 5-0 victory over the Red Sox on Sunday.

Robinson Cano hit a two-run homer and Guillermo Heredia a solo shot for the Mariners, who averted a three-game sweep with just their second win in nine games. Seattle was shut out the first two games.

Bergman (2-2) allowed four hits, walked two and struck out two. He got a lot of help from his infielders when they turned a double play in each of the first four innings.

Three relievers completed the combined five-hitter, with closer Edwin Diaz getting the final three outs despite two errors by infielders.

Bergman was tagged for 14 hits and 10 runs over four innings in a loss his previous start.

Rick Porcello (3-6) gave up 11 hits, but only two runs in 6 1/3 innings.

Seattle finished one off its club record for most double plays turned in a game.

After being shut out for the first 21 innings of the series, the Mariners moved ahead 1-0 in the fourth when Kyle Seager raced home from third after Porcello bounced a pitch that went over catcher Sandy Leon's right shoulder and onto the screen. Seager had doubled leading off and advanced on Danny Valencia's single.

Heredia homered over the Green Monster in the eighth and Cano sent his into the center-field bleachers an inning later.


Mariners: RHP Hisashi Iwakuma, on the disabled list with right shoulder inflammation, had another bullpen session Sunday because he wasn't happy with one a day earlier.

Red Sox: Manager John Farrell said 3B Pablo Sandoval, out since late April with a sprained right knee, will stay on his rehab assignment at Triple-A Pawtucket to get his "timing going" with more at-bats.


Seattle sent Saturday's losing pitcher, RHP Rob Whalen, to Triple-A Tacoma and brought up RHP Ryne Harper from the same club.

The Red Sox also made moves with pitchers, sending Saturday's winner, lefty Brian Johnson, to Triple-A Pawtucket and promoting RHP Blaine Boyer for a day. Boyer will go back down Monday when ace David Price is activated.

Boyer made his Red Sox debut, retiring the only two batters he faced.


Mariners: RHP Sam Gaviglio (0-1, 1.38 ERA) is set to make his third major-league start when they open a two-game series Monday at Colorado. RHP Tyler Chatwood (4-6, 4.50) is scheduled for the Rockies.

Red Sox: LHP Price makes his season debut Monday in Chicago against the White Sox after being sidelined since early spring training with a strained left elbow.


More AP baseball coverage: