#RedSox Limited to One Run by Pirates in Steve Pearce’s Spring Debut

On a busy day at JetBlue Park, the Red Sox fell to 6-6 in Grapefruit League play and saw their three-game winning streak come to an end on Wednesday following a 6-1 loss at the hands of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Non-roster invitee Josh Smith made the start for the Red Sox in this one.

Going the first two innings, the journeyman right-hander surrendered two earned runs on four hits and one walk to go along with three strikeouts on the afternoon. He was later charged with his first losing decision of the year.

Through three appearances (two starts) this spring, the 31-year-old Smith, who spent parts of 2018 in both the Seattle Mariners and Red Sox organization, owns a 7.94 ERA as well as six strikeouts over 5.2 innings pitched.

From the top of the third inning on, Tyler Thornburg, Colten Brewer, Ryan Weber, Brian Ellington, Dan Runzler, and Adam Lau combined to allow four runs to score on 10 hits, seven walks, and seven punch outs.

Brewer had the cleanest outing of the bunch, as the former Pirates draftee fanned a pair and faced the minimum in a perfect fourth inning.

On the other side of things, the Red Sox lineup was held to one run on just three hits by starter Nick Kingham and the rest of the Pirates staff.

That one run came in the bottom half of the fifth inning, when Sandy Leon drove in Jackie Bradley Jr. from second on an RBI single.

Some notes from this 6-1 loss:

In his 2019 spring debut and first ever Grapefruit League game in a Red Sox uniform, 2018 World Series MVP Steve Pearce went 0/2 batting sixth and manning first base up until the sixth inning.

Andrew Benintendi and Mookie Betts, meanwhile, batting first and second in Boston’s starting lineup, went a combined 2/5 with a single each. Benintendi also struck out once.

Next up for the Red Sox, they welcome the Minnesota Twins to JetBlue for the fourth installment of the 2019 Chairman’s Cup.

Right-hander Kohl Stewart will get the start for the Twins, while left-hander Brian Johnson will do the same for Boston.

First pitch Thursday is scheduled for 1:05 PM ET. ESPN is the way to go once again, as Mookie Betts is set to be mic’d up like Jackie Bradley Jr. was on Wednesday.

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Author: Brendan Campbell

Blogging about the Boston Red Sox since April '17. Also support Tottenham Hotspur.

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