Doug Fister tweaks mechanics, sees better results in st…

BOSTON – Doug Fister hadn’t fared well in four starts entering Monday for the Red Sox. 

The right-hander had posted a 7.58 ERA over 19 innings as a starter in Boston.

But when David Price landed on the disabled list last week, the Red Sox turned to Fister. The veteran right-hander, who the Red Sox acquired in late June off waivers, had been making incremental progress in the bullpen fixing his mechanics and stride. 

It all came together on Monday night against the Indians when Fister pitched seven scoreless innings before allowing a two-run homer in the eighth en route to a 6-2 Red Sox win. 

Fister finished with two runs allowed on five hits and two walks while striking out five over 7 2/3 innings. He threw 108 pitches, 67 for strikes. 

Brandon Workman entered in the eighth and recorded the final four outs of the game to help Fister pick up his first win with the Red Sox.

“He pitched a gem here tonight,” manager John Farrell said after the game. “Mentioned the other day about the work that he’s been doing when he went to the bullpen, some adjustments to his stride direction that’s allowed him to refine his release point. Tonight, big effect by a big slow curveball in addition to a lot of sink to his fastball.”

The only inning Fister ran into trouble was the second, when he allowed a single, a fielder’s choice and then a walk. But he struck out the next batter and got a ground out to end the inning.

“He and Vazquy teamed up tonight, and they were able to use his sinker in to righties, use both sides of the plate,” Farrell said. “Just his personal knowledge of who he is as a pitcher and knowing that he wasn’t feeling right for a stretch of starts there where the ball was up in the strike zone a lot, and the work that he did to correct it is a credit to him.”

The right-hander knows his work isn’t done yet, but was pleased with the results on Monday. 

He explained that his body was flying open too much in the midst of his delivery, forcing his arm slot higher, which in turn took away his deception and led to balls creeping up in the strike zone, easier for batters to hit.

“There has been a lot of work for it, whether it’s coaches or catchers,” he said. “A lot of bullpens, a lot of video gone into it. It’s something we’ve put a lot of work into it and started to see some good results with it. We just have to continue to strive to get better.”

Follow MassLive.com Red Sox beat reporter @jcmccaffrey on Twitter. She can be reached by email at jmccaffr@masslive.com.

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