Wednesday August 07, 2013 | 06:00 AM

Matt Barnes retired the first two batters Tuesday night, but both required full counts and a total of 15 pitches. Eventually, Barnes' pitch count ran up to 101 and he did not make it out of the sixth inning.

As Barnes mixed in his curveball, he got more swings and misses. Five of his seven strikeouts came on curveballs.

If you look at Barnes' record with the Portland Sea Dogs (5-8) and his ERA (4.40), you wonder why Baseball America listed him as Boston's top pitching prospect, especially with the promotions of his Portland teammates, Brandon Workman, Drake Britton and Anthony Ranaudo.

But that is where hype is getting in the way of perception. Britton was drafted out of high school in 2008, Workman and Ranaudo out of college in 2010. All three are ahead of Barnes (drafted out of UConn in 2011) in their development.

Barnes shows the stuff (120 K's in 94 IP) - and he did have a 1.74 ERA in July - but he is still developing.

For more on Barnes' start on Tuesday, see today's story.

Barnes' start was a marathon, in comparison with the one-inning performances by Boston's Steven Wright (1 H, 3 R, 2 BB, 1 HBP, 1 K) and Pawtucket's Keith Couch (3 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 3 K).

Boston, Pawtucket and Portland gave up a total of 30 runs on Tuesday.

And Boston won, 15-10. Jacoby Ellsbury homered twice (insert the sound of a cash register as agent Scott Boras adds to his "case" for a 9-figure contract in free agency).

Rays lost, Orioles won. Yankees lost. Here are the standings: 

AL EAST
Red Sox 69-46
Rays 66-46 (1.5 games back)
Orioles 62-51 (6)
Yankees 57-55 (10.5)
Jays 53-60 (15)

Pawtucket got two home runs from Jeremy Hazelbaker (.269), giving him 10 ... Will Middlebrooks (.259) also hit his 10th home run.

Portland catcher Christian Vazquez (.277) went 2-for-3 and is batting .343 in his last 28 games ... Despite their loss, the Sea Dogs remain in the Eastern League playoff hunt: 

EL East Wild Card Race
Trenton 59-56
Portland 56-59 (3 games back)
New Britain 55-60 (4)
New Hampshire 54-59 (4)

Left-handed pitcher Brian Johnson, a first-round pick out of the University of Florida last year, seemingly has been on the DL more than the mound in his early career. He made a nice start with Greenville on Tuesday: 6 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 5 K.

Tonight, Boston's Ryan Dempster (6-8, 4.54) tries to get back on track, while Houston throws rookie right-hander Jarred Cosart (1-0, 0.96 in his four major league starts).

Chris Hernandez, recently sent down from Pawtucket, starts for Portland.

 


 

 

 

 

About this Blog

Kevin Thomas covers baseball and basketball for the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram. He wisely moved to Maine in 1994 after working for the St. Petersburg Times. He is married to Nancy and they have nine children.

Follow his thoughts on the Boston Red Sox and Portland Sea Dogs on Clearing the Bases

Follow his thoughts on the Boston Celtics and Maine Red Claws on Holding Court


Subscribe to the
Holding Court RSS

Subscribe to the
Clearing the Bases RSS

Previous entries

April 2014

March 2014

January 2014

December 2013

November 2013

October 2013

More

September 2013

August 2013

July 2013

June 2013

May 2013

April 2013

March 2013

February 2013

January 2013

December 2012

November 2012

October 2012

September 2012

August 2012

July 2012

June 2012

May 2012

April 2012

March 2012

February 2012

January 2012

November 2011

October 2011

September 2011

August 2011

July 2011

June 2011

May 2011

April 2011

March 2011

Further Discussion

Here at PressHerald.com we value our readers and are committed to growing our community by encouraging you to add to the discussion. To ensure conscientious dialogue we have implemented a strict no-bullying policy. To participate, you must follow our Terms of Use.

Questions about the article? Add them below and we’ll try to answer them or do a follow-up post as soon as we can. Technical problems? Email them to us with an exact description of the problem. Make sure to include:
  • type of computer or mobile device your are using
  • exact operating system and browser you are viewing the site on (TIP: You can easily determine your operating system here.)
Prefer to respond privately? Email us here.