Boston Red Sox Knuckleballer Steven Wright Showing Signs Of Excellence
Boston Red Sox pitcher Steven Wright has had a long and tough road to the majors, last season the knuckleballer pitched his way into the All-Star game and was for the majority of the season a legit Cy Young candidate. All of this promise and success game to a screeching halt after Red Sox manager John Farrell sent Wright out to pinch run for David Ortiz, a decision that resulted in Wright injuring himself diving back to the bag costing Wright what would have been a phenomenal season.
Wright is now working his way back into top form and so far this Spring Training he is looking like the pitcher that made the All-Star game last season.
Making his second Grapefruit League start Saturday, the knuckleballer pitched three hitless innings against the Twins, and how not only allowed one baserunner in five frames. This time out he worked up to 41 pitches before going back down to the bullpen for another 14.
If all keeps going down this road, Wright should be in line to be the starter in Game 4 of the regular season. That game will be in Detroit against the Tigers.
“It’s really encouraging to see him throw as many strikes as he did,” said Red Sox manager John Farrell. “He came back in some counts. He threw a 3-2 knuckleball in one scenario. Quietly he continues to build up the pitch count and the innings.”
Farrell added, “The biggest thing is to not be interrupted. Given where we are in the calendar, the number of opportunities left to build the pitch count, it’s critical for us to get them to the desired number, and that would be 85-90 by the time we break.”
If Wright can continue this early success there is a good chance he will remain in the starting rotation once David Price returns in mid-to-late April with Drew Pomeranz potentially being the odd man out.