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Tanner Houck wins MLB debut: Boston Red Sox rookie strikes out 7 in 5 scoreless innings to beat Marlins

MassLive.com logo MassLive.com 3 days ago By Christopher Smith, masslive.com

Tanner Houck delivered one of the Boston Red Sox’s best pitching performances of the 2020 season in his MLB debut.

The 2017 first-round draft pick out of Mizzou tossed 5 scoreless innings, allowing just two hits and three walks while striking out seven against the Miami Marlins on Tuesday. He earned the victory. Boston won 2-0 at Marlins Park.

The righty recorded nine swings-and-misses. Five came with his slider, two with his two-seamer and two with his four-seamer, per Statcast. He topped out at 95.5 mph with hid four-seam fastball and averaged 93.6 mph. He averaged 92 mph with his two-seam fastball and topped out at 94.7 mph with it (Statcast).

He donated $100 per strikeout for $700 overall to his Pitch For Adoption campaign.

He joined Eduardo Rodriguez, Dave Morehead and Larry Pape as the only Red Sox pitchers to strike out seven and not allow a run in an MLB debut. He became the first Red Sox pitcher to win his MLB debut since Rodriguez in 2015.

Houck’s slider had nasty movement. He used it to freeze Miguel Rojas for a strikeout to end the fourth inning with two runners on base (40-second mark in video below).

He threw a 95.5 mph two-seamer to strike out Jesús Aguilar swinging for his first strikeout, which ended the first inning.

The Red Sox took a 1-0 lead in the top of the sixth inning. Xander Bogaerts singled with one out. Christian Vazquez walked with two outs. Jackie Bradley Jr.'s opposite-field double plated Bogaerts.

Boston jumped ahead 2-0 with Christian Vazquez’s RBI single in the eighth.

Dylan Covey hurled a scoreless seventh and eighth. Ryan Brasier pitched the eighth. Matt Barnes recorded the save.

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