Sox observations: Franchy Cordero looks lost at the plate


It was a rough day all around for the Boston Red Sox against the Seattle Mariners Saturday at Fenway Park.

Nathan Eovaldi struggled out the gate with four runs allowed in the first two innings. The Red Sox offense couldn't overcome the early deficit as Seattle starter Chris Flexen turned in a dominant outing. The right-hander allowed only one run on four hits in seven innings.

Highlights: Eovaldi roughed up, Sox bats silenced in loss to Mariners

Here are three quick observations from Boston's 8-2 loss, which brings its record to 13-9 on the season.

Franchy Cordero looks overmatched

Saturday was a day to forget for most of the Red Sox lineup, but especially for Franchy Cordero. Acquired in the Andrew Benintendi trade during the offseason, Cordero was supposed to provide some pop in the bottom half of the order. That hasn't panned out so far.

Cordero earned the dreaded golden sombrero, going 0-for-3 with three strikeouts vs. Seattle. The 26-year-old has now struck out in eight of his last 11 at-bats. Through 17 games, he has yet to hit his first Red Sox homer and his batting average is right on the Mendoza line.

Those numbers are alarming, but it's worth noting Benintendi hasn't exactly been tearing it up for the Royals so far this season either. The ex-Sox outfielder's numbers are pretty similar to Cordero's to this point.

There's still time for Cordero to figure it out, but he may see his playing time dwindle with more performances like this one. Perhaps we'll see top outfield prospect Jarren Duran get a shot at the big league level sooner rather than later.

Red Sox pitching is regressing

After a hot start to the 2021 season, the Red Sox rotation is beginning to scuffle. Eovaldi's lackluster outing followed a less-than-stellar performance by Martin Perez on Friday and a miserable showing by an ice-cold Garrett Richards Wednesday against Toronto.

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Over the last 10 games, Red Sox starters own a 5.03 ERA. Boston has a 4-6 record over that span.

No one expected the Sox rotation to be lights out in 2021 following an abysmal 2020. Eduardo Rodriguez's return provided some optimism, but behind him are a handful of question marks. Those questions have come back into focus during this recent stretch.

The Mariners might be legit

Like Boston, Seattle entered the season with low expectations but has exceeded through the first month. The Mariners now are 13-8 on the season, only a half-game behind the scorching-hot Oakland Athletics in the American League West. They've won seven of their last 10.

Point being, the Red Sox lost to a solid baseball team on Saturday. The Mariners are seventh in MLB in runs scored and 10th in team ERA. Their bullpen has been among the game's best with a sparkling 2.50 ERA, trailing only the New York Yankees and Toronto Blue Jays.

This isn't to say Seattle will be in the mix for the AL West crown, but it's trending in the right direction. With plenty of young talent on the roster and in the pipeline, the Mariners are a team worth monitoring going forward.

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