For Felix Doubront, a landmark more important than a win
|06.19.13 at 6:25 am ET|
Felix Doubront was denied a victory on Tuesday night when closer Andrew Bailey could not preserve the 1-0 lead to which his starter clung so compellingly in a career-best eight-inning effort on Tuesday. Still, while that left Jonny Gomes to make a walkoff winner of Bailey (and underscore the notion that wins and losses do not always indicate how well someone pitched), Doubront’s outing mustn’t go unnoticed.
Until Tuesday night, Doubront had never recorded a single out in the eighth inning as a professional — whether the big leagues or any level of the minor league system. But on Tuesday, he went a career high eight innings, allowing three hits and striking out six. Tuesday night’s start was his first shutout outing of the season, and even more impressive was the zero under the walk column, something he had done only one other time this year.
When asked if he did anything different that made him more effective this game, Doubront replied, ‘Today I wasn’t thinking of mechanics, just focused on throwing this pitch.’ Doubront, who is averaging 4.4 walks per nine innings pitched, had command of each of his pitches in the nightcap of the double header, and sailed through the Rays’ lineup for eight innings.
Doubront was extremely efficient, throwing 93 pitches. A pitcher who needed 104 pitches in five innings the last time he faced the Rays (on May 16) never threw more than 13 pitches in any given inning on Tuesday. Indeed, his efficiency made it fair to wonder why manager John Farrell lifted him at a time when his workload remained relatively light.
“That’s Andrew’s job. Felix more than did his work in an outstanding effort on his part tonight,” Farrell said of his decision to replace Doubront with Bailey. “I thought Felix pitched a heck of a game for us obviously, by the eight shutout innings. It’s the deepest he’s gone this year in the eight innings completed felt like he more than did his job tonight. One run spread on the board, go to Bailey, things didn’t work out.”
For his part, Doubront said he was not disappointed by Farrell’s decision to take him out of the game after eight innings. Instead, he was buoyed by both the fact that, in the end, the Sox claimed a 3-1, walkoff win and by the fact that his outing offered a potential springboard to future success.
“It wasn’t disappointing. That’s the game. We trust our closer. That happens. We got the win. That’s important,” said Doubront. “This game gives me more confidence. I needed this. I needed this to get more confident, trust more in my pitches. I’ll go the next game and try to do the same and stay in one page, this page. And stay like that. I’m going to get better results and win games and help the team to win.’
Latest from Bleacher Report
- David Ortiz Discusses Retirement from Baseball, Time with Red Sox
- Jackie Bradley Jr. Is Now a Red Sox Star
- Big Papi Cementing His Legend with a Bang
- Ortiz Passes Banks, Mathews for 22nd Place on MLB's HR List
- Red Sox's High-Octane Offense Fueling Rise Back to Prominence
- Red Sox Score Double-Digit Runs for 4th Consecutive Game
- Red Sox 1st Team Since 1999 to Score 13+ Runs in 3 Straight
- Weekly Notes: Rodriguez to start tomorrow for Pawtucket
- Cup of Coffee: Ball shines again for Salem
- The Write-Up: Eduardo Rodriguez
- Cup of Coffee: Kemp homers twice, Light hits 101
- Cup of Coffee: Moore comes through in the clutch for Salem
- Cup of Coffee: Moncada wins it in extras
- Cup of Coffee: Elias's career night powers Pawtucket
- Cup of Coffee: Benintendi drives in two to boost Couch, Sea Dogs
- Cup of Coffee: Kelly eyes return to Boston with 10 strikeouts
- Weekly Notes: Benintendi promoted and Red Sox under investigation