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RED SOX NOTEBOOK

Struggling Ryan Weber renews focus on striking with his sinker, and getting outs

Ryan Weber has allowed four home runs in seven innings this season, including this two-run blast to the Orioles' Rio Ruiz last month.
Ryan Weber has allowed four home runs in seven innings this season, including this two-run blast to the Orioles' Rio Ruiz last month.Matthew J. Lee/Globe staff

Nate Eovaldi and Martin Perez have combined on a 3.82 earned run average in the six games they have started for the Red Sox this season. The team has won four of those games.

The starters in their other six games have a 10.06 ERA. Not surprisingly the Sox have lost every time.

For the Sox to have any chance at contending for a playoff spot with 48 games remaining, they need to find a competent pitcher for at least one more rotation spot.

There’s little evidence that will be Ryan Weber. But the righthander will get another chance on Friday night when the Sox open a three-game series against the Toronto Blue Jays.

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Weber is 0-2 in two starts, allowing nine earned runs on 10 hits — four of them home runs — and seven walks in only seven innings.

In 13 career starts dating back to 2015, he is 1-7 with a 6.63 ERA and 1.41 WHIP.

Weber hasn’t pitched since July 31 when he couldn’t get through the fourth inning against the Yankees. He took advantage of the two extra days to add a second bullpen session to his pre-start preparations.

“Working on the cutter, sinker, fastball mix to the glove side part of the plate. Kind of keeping lefties honest,” he said. “Trying to get back to my strength, which is throwing that sinker for strikes.”

Weber has faced 38 batters this season and doesn’t have a strikeout. He needs to induce ground balls or weak contact in the air to be effective.

Ryan Weber delivers against the Yankees last month in the Bronx.
Ryan Weber delivers against the Yankees last month in the Bronx.Al Bello/Getty

“Mainly the location of that sinker to the edge of the plate to both lefties and righties is really the key for me to have success,” Webber said. “Obviously the execution has been a little shaky.

“Seems like I’ve been getting beat on my third or fourth best offering and haven’t got beat on my sinker. When I have success it’s throwing that sinker and getting quick outs.”

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Weber has remained in the rotation largely because the Sox don’t have a better alternative. But he likely needs to pitch well Friday to hold that spot.

Schedule changes

Major League Baseball announced a series of adjustments to the schedule to make up games that were postponed by positive tests for COVID-19. Although the Red Sox did not have any games postponed, they were affected by the changes.

The Aug. 19 home game against the Phillies will now start at 1:35 p.m., not 7:30 p.m. The Phillies now have a doubleheader against Toronto in Buffalo the next day.

What was a two-game series at Philadelphia on Sept. 8 and 9 is now a doubleheader on Sept. 8 starting at 4:05 p.m. The second game will not start any earlier than 7:05 p.m. because it will be carried on FS1.

The Red Sox will get a chance to see the famed Phillie Phanatic next month.
The Red Sox will get a chance to see the famed Phillie Phanatic next month.Matt Slocum/Associated Press

The Sox will have Sept. 9 off.

The Sept. 14-16 series at Miami will now be played Sept. 15-17. The Sox will have Sept. 14 off. The first two games will be at 6:40 p.m. with the series finale at 1:10 p.m.

That series was adjusted so the Marlins can play the Phillies on Sept. 14.

Jays name starters

The Blue Jays set their rotation for the series. Tanner Roark will start Friday and Matt Shoemaker on Sunday. They have not decided on a starter for Saturday. Roark last faced the Sox in 2018 when he was with the Nationals. He allowed nine runs on 10 hits over seven innings. Xander Bogaerts and J.D. Martinez had home runs … Starting Friday, the Sox are scheduled to play 17 games in as many days … Through Thursday, Martinez led the majors with seven doubles. Rafael Devers and Kevin Pillar were among those tied with fifth with four.

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Peter Abraham can be reached at peter.abraham@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @PeteAbe.