BOSTON (CBS) -- The Red Sox' pitching staff is easing its way into the season.
With Tuesday's matinee marking the fifth game of the year, each member of the rotation has been able to make a start. Thus far, a quality start has remained elusive.
Rich Hill made the start in Tuesday's game. Though his issues were more related to lackluster corner outfield defense, his line said that he allowed three runs in 4.1 innings pitched. He was lifted in the fifth after issuing a one-out walk to Robbie Grossman.
A day earlier in Detroit, Michael Wacha was taken out after 4.1 innings of work, during which he allowed just one run. Unfortunately for Wacha, the Red Sox gave him just one run of support, and Boston lost, 3-1.
That start came after Tanner Houck needed 78 pitches to record 10 outs in Yankee Stadium on Sunday night. Threes were wild for Houck, who issued three walks and allowed three hits while striking out three Yankees in that outing. The bullpen was able to pitch in with 5.2 scoreless innings, albeit with Ryan Brasier allowing a pair of inherited runners to score after he relieved Houck in the fourth.
On Saturday, Nick Pivetta turned in the longest start of the season by going 5.2 in New York, but he also was tagged for four runs and the loss. He served up a two-run homer to Giancarlo Stanton in the sixth inning to spoil an otherwise solid outing.
And on Opening Day, Nathan Eovaldi stayed in the dugout after pitching out of a jam to escape the fifth inning unscathed, following a single and a hit-by-pitch. Eovaldi allowed three runs on the day -- first off a two-run homer by Anthony Rizzo in the first inning, then on a Stanton solo homer in the fourth.
Combined, the five starters pitched 22.2 innings, allowing 14 earned runs for a 5.56 ERA on the first time through the rotation. Obviously, with the pitchers making their first starts of the season, they're not expected to go too deep into games, or to throw too many pitches. Still, the effectiveness in those short outings certainly leaves something to be desired.
With Chris Sale and James Paxton still a long way away from joining that crew, the five current starters in the rotation have left themselves some room for improvement early in the year.
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