Boston Red Sox: Doug Fister the team’s pocket ace

BOSTON, MA - SEPTEMBER 6: Doug Fister /

Doug Fister has gone from being lustily booed to heralded over the past month as the Boston Red Sox creep closer to a playoff berth.

On a team full of Cy Young Award winners and nominees, there is one pitcher who has emerged to the front of the pack for the Boston Red Sox.

It’s not Chris Sale, who has been merely mortal over the past month. And I’m not proclaiming the exploits of Drew Pomeranz, who rightfully deserves accolades of his own.

Today I tip the cap to Doug Fister.

Claimed off waivers in late June, Fister was seen as a stop gap pitcher until Eduardo Rodriguez–and others–recovered from injuries.

When David Price hit the disabled list as well–with no other alternatives heeding the call from the minor leagues–Fister stuck with the Red Sox.

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This was despite a 1-5 start to his Boston career. Even for a fifth-starter, Fister was not bringing quality to the Red Sox. He struggled through July, failing to go six innings until the final game of the month.

All signs looked to him washing right of Boston with due haste.

A meeting with the Cleveland Indians changed all that.

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Inconspicuous as the day was, July 31 was a turning point for Boston’s season. And the same can be said about Fister.

Including the victory over the Indians on that day, Fister has gone 5-2 with a 2.80 ERA.

Horrendous early, Fister’s current line (5-7, 3.91 ERA 65 K’s) is more than respectable. He’s also been a solid veteran presence and–at this point–solidified himself as a number three starter in a playoff rotation.

He’s thrown a complete game in this span and even magically transmitted secrets via his mouthguard.

Fister has upped the ante in his last three starts. He’s thrown seven innings in each of these starts, allowing only four earned runs while striking out 21. (He’s 2-1 in these starts as Boston’s offense continues to perform a disappearing act from time to time.)

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If Fister can continue his late-season revival, the Boston Red Sox top three pitchers will be a playoff force. They may not be the rotation envisioned at the start of 2017, but they’re getting the job done. And for a team desperately seeking consistency, Fister appears to be the man to provide just that.