The Red Sox suffered a 10-0 blowout loss Saturday afternoon, as the Tigers got to Josh Beckett for seven runs on five homers and the Tigers bullpen held down the fort for an injured Doug Fister to keep the Sox off the board.
The trouble started early for Josh Beckett, with Miguel Cabrera taking him deep to left field in the first inning for two runs. While Beckett settled down nicely in the second, the Tigers would get some stronger contact in the third, and then really break through in the fourth with Prince Fielder and Alex Avila hitting the second and third Detroit homers of the game. Cabrera would grab another in the fifth, as would Fielder, leaving Beckett with seven earned runs in under five innings of work.
The Sox' lineup, meanwhile, had done nothing against Doug Fister but waste opportunities, and would fair no better when Fister suddenly left the game in the middle of an at bat to Ryan Sweeney in the fourth. Duane Below allowed just one hit in recording seven outs, and a combination of Octavio Dotel, Phil Coke, and Joaquin Benoit would follow up with three more scoreless innings to end the game.
Beckett Lacking: Beckett did not seem terrible early on, showing good movement on his fastball and getting some results in the second and third innings. As the game wore on, however, he would simply leave the ball over the plate time-and-again, allowing the Tigers' best hitters to take big swings at bad pitches. It's a terrible beginning to the season for a pitcher the Sox can't afford to have go through his typical even-year struggles.
Looking Foolish: Mike Aviles and Cody Ross are doing a terrible job of making good on their spring training performances. Not only did they combine to go 0-7 with four strikeouts, but they looked terrible in doing so, with Aviles seemingly lost as to what he should and shouldn't swing at, and Ross generating the type of wind speed with his swings-and-misses that he might well have powered the whole city of Detroit.
Messy: There's simply no other way to describe Boston's play right now. It's as if they stepped right out of September 2011 into Detroit. Bad in the field, bad at the plate, bad at the mound, and with everything that could go wrong doing so.
Looming Specter: We're only two games into the season, but it's hard not to look ahead all the way to game six. Last year's 0-6 start has left Sox fans traumatized on some level. One can't help but think that the longer it takes for that first win, the harder it will be to shake the specter of 2011.
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