Webster demonstrates poise against Rays

Webster demonstrates poise against Rays

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- One of the big concerns the Red Sox had with right-hander Allen Webster last year is that when he faced adversity on the mound, he had a tendency to let it snowball.

Webster demonstrated in Sunday's Grapefruit League start against the Rays that he is maturing in that department.

Though his linescore (four-plus innings, three hits, two earned runs, three walks, three strikeouts) was hardly dazzling, Red Sox manager John Farrell saw plenty of positives.

"I thought today, Allen Webster continues to grow as a pitcher," Farrell said. "There were some things that happened today that are gonna happen to him from time to time behind him. And I thought he did a great job of maintaining his poise, continuing to make pitches. He continued to keep the ball on the ground and keep things from becoming a big inning when you give the opposition one or two outs in an inning. I thought he did an outstanding job of minimizing that."

Webster projects to start the season as a starter for Triple-A Pawtucket. But he wants to prove to the Red Sox that they can depend on him if a need arises. He felt Sunday might have helped his case.

"I felt like it was a big improvement -- an improvement I needed. I feel real confident coming out of it," said Webster.

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.