SEATTLE — The Red Sox have what manager John Farrell termed “a lot of moving pieces” with their rotation and tough decisions will be made in the coming days.
On Tuesday night, Jake Peavy added to the uncertainty with another poor performance.
Peavy allowed seven runs in five innings as the Seattle Mariners thumped the Red Sox again, 8-2, before a crowd of 20,015 at Safeco Field.
“When you don’t do your job and get beat, it’s frustrating. There’s no other way to say it,” Peavy said.
The Red Sox are 1-5 on their 10-game road trip and Peavy has two of the losses. His viability in the rotation is now in question.
The Red Sox are 5-11 in games the 33-year-old righthander has started with five losses in a row. Peavy is 1-6 with a 4.93 earned run average and hasn’t won a game since April 25. He has a 5.87 ERA in his last five starts.
The Sox have to make a roster move on Wednesday before activating Clay Buchholz from the disabled list and manager John Farrell didn’t dismiss the idea that Peavy could be involved.
“We’re considering everything that is available to us,” he said. “We’ll take a look at everything.”
Peavy forcefully said he had no injury concerns, although Farrell mentioned some groin issues the pitcher has dealt with.
The Sox used similar words in describing Buchholz in May when his ERA swelled to 7.02. Then Buchholz went on the disabled list a few days later with what was said to be a hyperextended left knee.
Peavy pitched well for the Red Sox in the final two months of last season after being acquired from the White Sox. But this season has so far been the worst of an impressive career.
“It’s been mistakes on the plate that he hasn’t been afforded an opportunity to get by with them,” Farrell said. “When he’s made mistakes on the plate, that’s when he’s paid for them.”
Peavy said Tuesday he felt good about the work he’d done between starts. But his problems started in the first inning.
Endy Chavez led off with a single to center field before James Jones drew a walk. Peavy got Robinson Cano on a fly ball to center but Kyle Seager doubled down the right field line as the ball took a tricky hop over the glove of first baseman Mike Napoli.
Chavez scored and Jones went to third. A sacrifice fly by Logan Morrison made it 2-0.
The lead grew to 3-0 in the second inning. No. 8 hitter Brad Miller walked and scored on a two-out triple to right field by Chavez.
Brock Holt’s two-run homer in the fourth inning got the Red Sox back in the game and Peavy believed he had settled in.
“You have to try to hold it there at 3-2,” he said. “We did, we had some good innings to a point where I was putting myself in a position to pitch deep in the game.”
Instead Peavy allowed four runs in the fifth inning.
Seager belted a three-run homer with one out, the ball crashing into a window of the “Hit It Here Cafe” down the line in right. Peavy threw a cutter down and in, right where the lefthanded hitter could do damage.
With two outs, Mike Zunino hammered a fastball into the Seattle bullpen in left field.
Peavy has allowed 16 home runs, matching Tampa Bay’s David Price for the most in the American League. Peavy has allowed at least one homer in 12 of his 16 starts.
With the Sox down, 7-2, deposed starter Felix Doubront came out of the bullpen for the first time since Game 4 of the World Series. He retired six of the seven batters he faced.
Seattle, which has won five straight and eight of 10, used five pitchers and held the Red Sox to eight hits. The Sox left 12 runners on base and were 0 for 9 with runners in scoring position.
They are 4 of 41 with runners in scoring position on the road trip and a hard-to-believe 6 of 70 in the last 11 games.
Seattle starter Erasmo Ramirez had walked 11 batters over 15 2/3 innings in his previous three starts. His control problems continued in the first inning as he walked Dustin Pedroia, David Ortiz and Daniel Nava.
Nava walked on five pitches, loading the bases with two outs for A.J. Pierzynski.
Ramirez threw a changeup wide of the strike zone and Pierzynski tapped it to second to end the inning.
Pierzynski was unapologetic for his lack of patience against a pitcher struggling to throw strikes.
“He threw the pitch I was looking for. He threw me a changeup. I was trying to hit it to left center,” he said. “I 100 percent knew he was going to throw me a changeup and I was 100 percent looking for it. He threw it where I wanted it. It just didn’t work out.
“Next time I’ll take my chances again and I’ll get his ass. I’m going to do whatever I can do. … I’m going to play the game the way that I’ve played it for the last 15 years.”
Said Farrell: “What played out in the inning, obviously [Ramirez] was having command issues. We know A.J.’s an aggressive hitter; you kind of live and die by the aggressiveness in his case. When it’s hot, it’s very productive.”
The Red Sox left a runner stranded in the second and two more in the third inning. After Ortiz walked and Napoli singled, Nava fouled out and Pierzynski flied to right.
Down 3-2, Napoli singled and Nava walked with one out in the fifth inning. Joe Beimel, the well-traveled 37-year-old lefthander, came in and struck out Pierzynski before getting Xander Bogaerts to ground into a force.
Ramirez allowed five hits and walked five over 4 1/3 innings but only the two runs.
The Sox stranded two more runners in the seventh inning. After Napoli walked and Nava singled, Maine native Charlie Furbush came in and got Pierzynski and Bogaerts on foul popups.
Pierzynski left nine runners on base. He is 2 of 30 in his last nine games with no extra-base hits and two RBIs.
“I know I haven’t hit the way I know I can hit,” Pierzynski said. “Somebody’s going to pay. Hopefully it starts tomorrow. I know we have better hitters than what we’ve put out there.”Peter Abraham can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.