BOSTON (CBS) — The season started ominously for Red Sox lefty Drew Pomeranz, who began 2017 on the 10-day disabled list with a left forearm flexor strain. But the big lefty quelled a lot of short-term fears on Tuesday with a strong first outing for the major-league club.
Pomeranz went six strong innings in the Red Sox’ 8-1 win at Fenway Park, limiting the Baltimore Orioles to just one earned run on four hits with one walk. The lone Orioles run scored on a groundout by Jonathan Schoop off reliever Heath Hembree in the seventh inning, after manager John Farrell lifted Pomeranz from the game.
Speaking to reporters after the game, Pomeranz said he was happy about how he felt physically and mechanically leading into the start.
“Things clicked in warmups today and I just felt really good out there,” Pomeranz told WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Jonny Miller. “I took that out to the mound and just tried to hold it out there for as long as I could.
“That’s the best I’ve felt in a long time. Put it that way.”
Pomeranz got going early on in the game, striking out the Orioles’ Craig Gentry on a 94-mph fastball in the first inning. He also got out of a second-and-third, one-out jam in the second inning, getting both Schoop and J.J. Hardy to fly out to escape the inning unscathed.
Farrell complimented the surprising power on all of Pomeranz’s pitches in his outing.
“Tonight, [there was] maybe a little bit more power than anticipated,” said Farrell. “The action on his curveball was sharp, tight … just the overall power was very encouraging to see tonight from Drew.”
The big question for Pomeranz, whose 170.2 innings in 2016 were by far a career high, is whether he can keep going strong for a full season and avoid long-term injuries. But the southpaw is certainly off to a good start and that bodes well for the back end of the Red Sox rotation.