BOSTON -- First impressions of the Boston Red Sox’ 6-2 win over the Seattle Mariners:
Rick Porcello overcame a rough opening and spotty command to provide a quality performance.
The biggest reason he did well was he didn’t walk anyone.
Zero free passes.
So the solo home run only hurt a little, and that was only one of two extra-base hits.
He located his curve and change-up better as the game progressed -- particularly his changeup -- and that played huge in his six-strikeout performance.
The most important piece of Porcello’s outing came in both the fifth and sixth innings. After Boston scored its first run in the fourth, Porcello came out and only gave up the one base hit -- on a bunt -- but nothing else in the top of the fifth.
The Red Sox took their first lead in the bottom of the fifth, and Porcello went back out to finish his outing 1-2-3 -- striking out the last two guys he faced.
Saturday was more a display of mental toughness from Porcello than stuff, something Boston’s starting rotation desperately now more than ever.
First Red Sox win in June with the other team scoring first.
Entering Saturday’s game, the Red Sox had dropped all seven games this month when the opposition scored first. Although Boston couldn’t retaliate until the middle of the game, Porcello settled in, and his counterpart couldn’t do the same.
Red Sox took advantage of poor pitching management by Seattle.
Adrian Sampson was running out of steam in the fourth inning when his fastball stopped sitting in the low 90s consistently.
Although it’s typical for a pitcher to fatigue, he completely fell off to start the fifth, barely hitting 91. And Sampson wasn’t exactly painting the corners all day either.
Given he’s a rookie, Seattle manager Scott Servais should’ve had the pen ready sooner.
But that worked out perfectly for the Red Sox offense.
Hit and run attempt with Christian Vazquez may have seemed basic, but it could be just enough to get his bat going.
Sometimes small ball attempts like that are all a hitter needs to get a lift from his slump.
Oddly enough, Vazquez doubled his next time up -- probably not a coincidence.
But it’s still remains to be seen if he can do it again -- and regularly.
Hanley Ramirez seems to have found his comfort zone.
Boston’s first baseman put together a 2-4 day and scored a run on the eighth inning error, running through Brian Butterfield blatant stop sign at third base.
Ramirez is fun to watch when he approaches the game loosely -- even if he makes questionable decisions.
Nick Friar can be followed on Twitter: @ngfriar