Despite the Red Sox 4-3 extra-inning loss Sunday in Oakland, there was one very encouraging sign. The Sox have something in Brandon Workman.
Workman kept the A's off balance all day and the right-hander took a no-hitter into the seventh inning before an infield hit from Coco Crisp and a home run by third baseman Josh Donaldson cost him the game.
Donaldson would later win it with a bloop single off newest Red Sox reliever Matt Thornton in the 11th.
Manager John Farrell said he was tempted to take Workman out after Crisp’s hit. However, the manager felt the rookie could handle Donaldson, who had struck earlier. “In retrospect, there’s no second-guessing on my part as far as the matchup in that situation,” Farrell said.
Workman was at 103 pitches when the manager lifted him for Craig Breslow.
The Red Sox right-hander, who was 8-2 between Portland and Pawtucket this year, retired 17 of the first 18 batters he faced. He was also well aware of the scoreboard. “I knew [the no-hitter] was going on, but it wasn’t something I was worried about. I was still just trying to execute pitches," Workman said. “Not giving up any hits was great while it lasted.”
If Workman is able to help the Red Sox this season, be it in the rotation or the bullpen, it will take pressure off a pitching staff that is dealing with injuries to Clay Buchholz, Franklin Morales and recently lost Andrew Miller for the year.
Farrell was impressed with what he saw out of the rookie, "He gave us an outstanding effort. He didn’t show any kind of fear for the situation. He was poised. Very good mound presence. Good composure. Definitely had very good stuff.”
Farrell is currently lining up the pitching rotation out of the All-Star break and it looks like Workman will get another shot next Tuesday against the Rays at Fenway Park.
Thoughts on the performance by Workman? Comment below.