It had been almost two weeks since Brandon Workman pitched in a game for the Red Sox, and while Friday’s start against the Yankees wasn’t terrible, it appeared that the Sox starter had some cobwebs to dust off in a 6-0 loss in the Bronx.
After striking out Brett Gardner to start the bottom of the first, Derek Jeter singled to right and advanced to third on a double by Jacoby Ellsbury. Jeter scored the first Yankee run of the night on a sac fly by Mark Teixeira, but Carlos Beltran grounded out to end the inning and keep the damage at one.
Workman shut the Yankees down 1-2-3 in the second after Brian McCann popped out, Brock Holt robbed Brian Roberts of a home run, and Ichiro struck out.
Kelly Johnson drew a walk to lead off the bottom of the third and moved up to second on a sac bunt by Gardner. Jeter then laced his second single of the game that got Johnson to third, and the bases were loaded after Workman walked Ellsbury. Workman struck out Teixeira swinging for the second out, then got Beltran to ground out to first to get out of the jam.
Workman allowed a leadoff single to McCann in the bottom of the fourth, but looked like he may get out of it after getting Roberts and Ichiro to pop out. Johnson and Gardner made him pay for two mistakes, however, as they hit back-to-back home runs to put the Yankees ahead 4-0 before the Sox could get out of the inning.
Workman kept the Yankees from adding to their lead in the fifth, with a one-out single by Teixeira representing the only New York baserunner.
Workman got two quick outs in the sixth after Roberts and Ichiro flew out to Jackie Bradley Jr., then struck out Johnson for his second 1-2-3 inning of the game.
Another 1-2-3 in the seventh got Workman through 21 outs without giving up anymore damage. That would be all he would see in the game, with John Farrell going with Craig Breslow in the eighth after his starter threw 108 pitches. Workman’s final line on the night was seven innings pitched, allowing four runs on seven hits with two walks and five strikeouts.
Before the game, Workman had never allowed more than three earned runs in a big league start. Friday was also just the second time in his career that he allowed multiple home runs in a game, the first time in one he started. His success earlier in the season was not a fluke, however, so it may have just taken a start to get back in the swing of things after not pitching in 12 days.