Padilla fires four shutout innings of relief in loss

Padilla fires four shutout innings of relief in loss

Padilla fires four shutout innings of relief in loss
DETROIT -- While the lead story of Sunday's 13-12 loss for the Red Sox was the inability of two relief pitchers to convert save situations, another member of Boston's bullpen produced a heroic effort.

Veteran Vicente Padilla came on in relief of a shaky Clay Buchholz to give the Red Sox four shutout innings vs. the Tigers. Padilla walked none and struck out four.

Both the length and the results were impressive, when you consider Padilla's Spring Training was interrupted by a hamstring injury and he didn't have time to get stretched out.

"I feel very good, happy to go in there and help the team," Padilla said. "I felt healthy, and that was good in that aspect. But in another aspect, we didn't win the game."

But that was no fault of Padilla's.

Was Padilla surprised he was given the opportunity to pitch four innings, his highest relief total since 2001?

"No, they were asking me if I felt good, and I said, 'Yeah.' So I kept on pitching," Padilla said.

When will Padilla be available to work after this 51-pitch performance?

"When they need me," Padilla said.

Lefty Franklin Morales also turned in a stellar effort for the Red Sox in defeat, reeling off two scoreless innings and striking out three. It was his 19th straight scoreless outing on the road.

"Franklin Morales pitched great," said manager Bobby Valentine.

Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brownie Points, and follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.