Red Sox

Christian Vázquez made sure Alex Cora knew Brayan Bello was injured from Astros dugout

"Obviously, he’s very important."

Brayan Bello
Boston Red Sox pitcher Brayan Bello holds his back as he leaves the field during the fourth inning against the Astros. AP Photo/David J. Phillip

If Alex Cora hadn’t noticed that pitching prospect Brayan Bello was in discomfort on Wednesday, the Red Sox would have been fine — an old friend was on the case.

According to Cora, former Red Sox catcher Christian Vázquez flagged him from the Astros dugout to note that Bello looked uncomfortable during his fourth-inning appearance in the Red Sox’s 6-1 loss.

“There was a catcher on the other side paying a lot of attention too, pointing it out,” Cora told reporters. “I’m like ‘I got it.’ Hopefully it’s nothing serious and in X amount of days he can be okay.”


Bello and starter Rich Hill were supposed to reset the bullpen for the Red Sox, but Bello threw just 16 pitches. He hit 97.7 mph on his four-seam fastball and 97.4 on his sinker, according to Baseball Savant.

The Red Sox were sad to see their good friend Vázquez dealt at the trade deadline, although Red Sox fans might be encouraged by the early performance by Enmanuel Valdez, the primary prospect target in the deal. Valdez — who has excellent numbers in both AA and AAA this season — hit an opposite-field homer in his second at-bat with the WooSox on Wednesday.

Still, that won’t make Vázquez’s good friends on the MLB roster feel much better.

“I don’t want to say in particular [the Red Sox waved] the white flag, but it was a big move,” Xander Bogaerts told reporters on Tuesday. “[Vázquez] was a big piece of the team, but it was at least trending that direction.”

As for Bello, Cora said the 23-year-old wanted to keep going briefly.

“Obviously he’s very important,” Cora told reporters. “He felt like ‘Give me one more pitch to get this thing over with.’ But if I let you throw and you get really hurt, I’ll be going to Caguas (Cora’s hometown).”


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