Wade Miley may not be pitching for his spot in the rotation on Saturday afternoon when he faces the Yankees. But another poor performance would give the Red Sox plenty of reason to consider it.
Miley is 1-2 with an 8.62 earned run average in four starts. He has pitched only 15⅔ innings in those four games and put 28 runners on base.
The lefthander lasted 2⅓ innings against Baltimore on Sunday, allowing six earned runs in an 18-7 loss.
“I don’t think it’s any big adjustment. I need to get back to pitching like I am capable of,” Miley said. “I know I’m better than I have showed. You have to simplify what you’re doing. I’ve been making the game harder than it needs to be.
“I’m giving the hitters too much credit. Not to say they’re not good, because they are. But I need to throw strikes and get after them.”
Manager John Farrell said on Friday Miley needs to do a better job when he has runners on base.
“There’s ongoing maintenance and ongoing conversation [about] those moments where some traffic happens on the basepaths and ways to keep that under control and continue to manage a pitch-to-pitch approach and fighting the urge to wanting to overthrow or go a little too quick in some of those situations,” Farrell said. “Those are all areas that are being addressed.”
Opponents are 7 of 13 with four extra-base hits with runners in scoring position against Miley and 9 of 26 with men on base.
“You have to get ahead of guys. I’ve been 1-0, 2-0 too often,” Miley said. “I need to get back to the basics and get back to having fun playing baseball.”
Miley is in his first season with the Red Sox after being acquired from the Arizona Diamondbacks. That transition, he said, is not to blame.
“Maybe you put extra pressure on yourself because you want to do good in front of these guys. But at the same time I can’t recall thinking that while I’m out there,” Miley said.
“It’s hard to explain what I’m feeling. I’ve watched video trying to find a problem rather than realizing there’s really no problem. You just have to enjoy the game again.”
Miley faced the Yankees April 10 and allowed two runs on four hits over 5⅓ innings.
“Maybe that helps. I’ll have a game plan going in,” he said.
Farrell has said for several weeks that he preferred not to use Allen Craig in right field at Fenway Park. Craig is a below-average outfielder based on defensive metrics and there’s a lot of ground to cover in right field at Fenway.
But the desire to get another righthanded bat in the lineup against New York starter CC Sabathia trumped that. Through four games, righthanders were hitting .345 against Sabathia and lefthanders .133. David Ortiz was the only lefthanded hitter in the Sox’ lineup.
The move paid off when Craig homered to left field in the fourth inning. It was the first home run of the season for Craig and only his second in 130 at-bats with the Red Sox.
“I just try to do the best that I can to compete in that situation and any opportunity that I’m given. That’s my focus, just competing,” Craig said.
Craig otherwise struck out two times. He is hitting .135.
’75 team honored
The Red Sox will honor the 1975 American League champions on Tuesday during a pregame ceremony. That team lost a classic seven-game World Series against the Cincinnati Reds.
Rick Burleson, Bernie Carbo, Reggie Cleveland, Cecil Cooper, Denny Doyle, Dick Drago, Dwight Evans, Carlton Fisk, Bill Lee, Fred Lynn, Roger Moret, Jim Rice, Diego Segui, Luis Tiant, Jim Willoughby, Rick Wise, and Carl Yastrzemski are scheduled to attend the ceremony.
The Red Sox will wear throwback jerseys for the game against the Tampa Bay Rays.
Other players expected to attend are Tim Blackwell, Steve Dillard, Bob Heise, Buddy Hunter, Rick Kreuger, Tim McCarver, Andy Merchant, Rick Miller, and Bob Montgomery.
NESN analyst Jerry Remy missed the game because of illness. Dennis Eckersley called the game with Don Orsillo . . . Shane Victorino, who is on the disabled list with a strained right hamstring, has been running with more intensity and should be able to start a minor league rehabilitation assignment next week. Farrell suggested it would be with Triple A Pawtucket or Double A Portland . . . When Ortiz singled in the third inning, it gave him a 26-game on-base streak against the Yankees in games played at Fenway. He last failed to reach against the Yankees at home on Aug. 6, 2011 . . . Former Red Sox reliever Andrew Bailey, who signed with the Yankees in 2014, suffered a setback with his surgically repaired right shoulder while pitching in the minors. The 30-year-old Bailey has not pitched in the majors since 2013 with the Sox.
Castillo PawSox DH
Rusney Castillo was the DH for Pawtucket on Friday, going 0 for 4. It was his second game back since coming off the International League disabled list. Castillo, who missed 18 days with a shoulder injury, isn’t expected to return to right field until next week . . . Phillies senior adviser Charlie Manuel was in Salem, Va., to the see the Single A Salem Red Sox face Potomac. The lineup included center fielder Manuel Margot, a well-regarded prospect who could be the centerpiece of a potential trade with the Phillies if the Red Sox make a play for lefthander Cole Hamels . . . A fire alarm sounded at Fenway during the third inning. The Red Sox said it was triggered at a concession stand and there was no emergency . . . Legendary singer/songwriter James Taylor will be at Fenway on Sunday to introduce his new song and video “Angels of Fenway.” The song touches on the Red Sox-Yankees rivalry. Taylor is playing at Fenway Park Aug. 6 with special guest Bonnie Raitt.