Sox pitching woes continue in blowout loss to Blue Jays


The Boston Red Sox were blown out by the Toronto Blue Jays in Sunday's game at Fenway Park, 18-4.

It was another rough outing for Sox starter Martin Perez. The southpaw lasted only 1 1/3 innings with five runs allowed on six hits.

Ryan Weber, who was called back up to the big-league club Sunday, didn't fare any better in relief. He allowed a whopping 11 runs on 13 hits in 5 2/3 innings pitched.

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Here are three quick takeaways from Boston's second straight loss, which brings its record to 39-27.

First-inning struggles continue

The Red Sox lead the league with 29 comeback victories this season. That's a nice stat to read after a walk-off win, but Boston's slow starts are becoming a worrisome trend.

After Sunday's abysmal showing, Red Sox starters now have a 5.79 ERA in the first inning this year (42 earned runs in 66 innings). You don't need us to tell you that's less than ideal.

Perez allowed five hits for four runs (two homers) and a walk in the first inning of Sunday's defeat. Nathan Eovaldi (7-3, 4.11 ERA) will look for different results in Monday night's series finale. He allowed 11 hits and five runs over 5 2/3 innings in his last start vs. Houston.

The Red Sox rotation has been a mess

Boston's starting pitching woes go far beyond just the first inning. The rotation has been miserable from top to bottom for the last couple of weeks and has steadily declined over the first three months of the campaign.

Perez hasn't helped matters over his last couple of starts. After a stretch of brilliance, he's come crashing back down to earth to allow 10 earned runs in his last 2 2/3 innings.

Eduardo Rodriguez was supposed to be the de facto ace of the staff. Instead, he owns an alarming 6.03 ERA.

Nick Pivetta started the season off strong, but his ERA inflated to 4.28 after allowing six runs (four homers) in five innings during Saturday's loss to Toronto.

Altogether, Red Sox starters have allowed 40 earned runs in 39 innings (9.23 ERA) in nine games since last Saturday in the Bronx.

“It’s one week, guys,” Pivetta said Saturday. “At the end of the day, we’ve held together really, really strong and put some really good starts in. There’s no room for panic here. There’s no room for making a big deal out of it. It’s baseball."

Sunday's results certainly won't lower the panic meter.

The Blue Jays lineup is terrifying

As much as the Red Sox pitching staff deserves blame, the Blue Jays lineup deserves credit. You could make a serious argument it's the best offense in the majors right now, especially after Sunday's onslaught. 

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. went 3-for-5 with a home run and 3 RBI as he continues his American League MVP campaign. The 22-year-old leads MLB with 21 homers.

Marcus Semien notched his 15th homer of the year. Teoscar Hernandez crushed two three-run bombs. Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Cavan Biggio, Bo Bichette and Rowdy Tellez each added to their home run totals. Those eight homers (the most ever allowed by the Red Sox at Fenway) have Toronto leading MLB with 98 on the year.

And to think this Blue Jays lineup will add George Springer to the mix when the slugger returns from a right quad strain. Scary.

The Red Sox will look to split the four-game series Monday night with first pitch set for 7:10 p.m. ET.

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