Where: Fenway Park, Boston
BOSTON — Who could blame right-hander Doug Fister if he was pitching with a bit of a chip on his shoulder Sunday afternoon at Fenway Park? Fister was facing the Los Angeles Angels, the team that released him on Thursday after three minor league outings, for the Boston Red Sox, the team that claimed him off waivers on Friday.
But the Angels (40-39) got the final say, taking the game 4-2, and the series.
Fister went six innings, giving up three runs on seven hits with three walks and six strikeouts. He took the loss, falling to 0-1 with a 4.50 ERA.
“Quality outing,” Boston manager John Farrell said. “He’s a bang-bang play away from a scoreless outing. I thought he held his stuff really well through the entire time that he was on the mound. Good life to his fastball, good sink. Threw a number of good cutters. I thought he pitched in to both lefties and righties effectively. That was a very good start on the part of Doug today.”
He was bested by Angels rookie right-hander Parker Bridwell, who went 6 2/3 innings, giving up two runs on seven hits with no walks, four strikeouts and a hit batter. Bridwell earned the win, improving to 2-0.
“It was much needed and Parker just keeps coming in and keeps us in games in some pretty tough places,” said Angels manager Mike Scioscia. “It’s great to watch.”
Bridwell needed just 75 pitches, 52 for strikes.
“That was partly on their part, too, swinging early,” Bridwell said. “Once I figured out what they were doing, I had to be more precise with fastball location. I was happy with the way first three or four went. I wasn’t throwing very many stress pitches. It was them swinging early and me being able to keep the ball down.”
Fister pitched a lightning-fast and efficient, 1-2-3 first inning, needing just 10 pitches, including a three-pitch strikeout of leadoff batter Cameron Maybin. But in the second inning he gave up three runs — Juan Graterol’s two-run single was the big hit — as the Angels sent six batters to the plate.
“That was the small hiccup and, unfortunately, I got to do a better job than that,” Fister said. “I got to execute some pitches and make sure that guys don’t do what they did. So that’s on me.”
Boston (41-34) cut the deficit as Mitch Moreland led off the bottom of the inning with his 11th home run of the season. Jackie Bradley Jr. got Boston to within a run when he led off the fifth with his 10th homer of the season.
The Angels added a run in the ninth off Boston closer Craig Kimbrel, pitching for the first time since June 18. Ben Revere led off with a single, scoring on Kaleb Cowart’s one-out single to right. Cowart, who was called up before the game to make his season debut, went 2-for-3 with a walk, two RBI and a run scored.
“He had a great game,” Scioscia said. “Kaleb had about 30 minutes of sleep and came out and took his groundballs.”
Yusmeiro Petit earned his first save, going two scoreless innings.
NOTES: Red Sox LHP David Price developed a cracked fingernail on the middle finger of his throwing hand during Saturday’s loss to the Angels. Manager John Farrell expects Price to make his next scheduled start. … Angels LHP Tyler Skaggs suffered a setback Saturday as he tries to make his way back from a strained oblique. He was schedule to pitch in his first rehab game on Saturday, but was scratched because of general soreness in his oblique and abdominal area. He was able to throw on Saturday and is expected to join the team at Dodger Stadium on Monday, going through a full evaluation. … Boston LHP Eduardo Rodriguez, on the disabled list since June 2 with a right knee subluxation, is expected to make his first rehab start Thursday with Double-A Portland, throwing about 75-80 pitches. Angels INF Yunel Escobar was out of the lineup again on Sunday after injuring his thumb on a diving play in Friday’s game. Scioscia said he is improving. … Red Sox LHP Brian Johnson, on the DL since June 15 with left shoulder impingement, threw his first bullpen session on Sunday. Farrell said Johnson would continue to progress with bullpen sessions before there is a plan to get him into games. … 1B/DH Albert Pujols is expected to play one of the two games at Dodger Stadium starting Monday. The most likely scenario would be for him to play Monday, with the Dodgers starting LHP Rich Hill. … RHP Bud Norris, on the DL with right knee inflammation, has begun aggressive long toss, manager Mike Scioscia said. The Angels are hoping he can pitch from a mound this week.