Price, Kimbrel Fail To Impress in Home Opener
Though the weather held up and Boston got a good day for baseball at Fenway Park, things took a turn for the worse as the Red Sox dropped their home opener, today, to the still undefeated Baltimore Orioles by a score of 9-7.
While the offense showed up for Boston and put early runs on the board, scoring three in the first inning thanks to RBI singles from Xander Bogaerts, David Ortiz and Hanley Ramirez, new staff ace, David Price, didn't shine in his first home start at the Fens.
After getting out of the first two innings unscathed, Price broke down in the top of the third, as he allowed O's first baseman Chris Davis to drive in two on a base hit. Baltimore's left fielder Mark Trumbo followed the Davis at-bat with his own successful trip to the plate as he launch a 3-run home run to right field, hanging a five spot on Price for the inning.
Although Price had just the one bad inning, his overall numbers were not indicative of the front line ace he has proved to be in the past, much like on Opening Day in Cleveland.
Price finished the day with five innings pitched and surrendered the five earned runs on five hits and two walks. The lefty did strike out eight batters, however, although his ERA ballooned to 5.73 by day's end.
The Sox' offense refused to quit on their ace, however, as they battled back twice to even the score at 6-6 heading into the final inning.
Unfortunately for Red Sox' fans, that's where things got worse for them. After entering the game in, albeit, a non-save situation, new Boston closer Craig Kimbrel made Price's day look good by comparison.
Kimbrel, who's known for his electric stuff out of the pen, did manage to record two strikeouts in his lone inning of work, though it was the outs he was unable to get that ruined his first day in front of his new home crowd and lost the game for his club.
The right hander walked two Orioles hitters in front of Davis, who is one of the league's top power threats. That's when Kimbrel gave up the only hit of his brief outing; a no-doubt 3-run shot off the batter's eye in dead center field.
Boston tried to battle back in the bottom half of the ninth, scoring one run, but ended up coming up two runs short.
While the loss is a tough one to take for the Fenway faithful, who saw both their new ace and new closer falter on the day, there's still reason for hope.
After all, it's only game one of 81 home games on the season and six of 162 overall. Also both Price and Kimbrel have the pedigrees that lead you to believe this game was more of an aberration than a sign of bad days to come.
So give it time Sox' fans. Their are more important players to worry about on this team. These two will probably be just fine.