Joe Boyle blasted as Athletics get shut out by Red Sox

The Oakland Athletics were shut out for the second time in 5 games

Boston Red Sox v Oakland Athletics
Boston Red Sox v Oakland Athletics / Lachlan Cunningham/GettyImages

The Oakland Athletics suffered another shutout, this time at the hands of the Boston Red Sox. It's the second time in five games that the A's have failed to score, and they drop to 1-4 on the season.

Joe Boyle got roughed up in 2.2 innings. He gave up 8 runs on 8 hits and walked 4 with 4 strikeouts while failing to get out of the third inning.

The A's defense wasn't much help, as they put up 5 errors in those first three innings. Manager Mark Kotsay told reporters “I wish I had an answer for the defense right now. They’re going to have to get better. That's just all there is to it".

That's the polite way to put it. The A's had to work around errant throws by Shea Langeliers, Lawrence Butler, Ryan Noda, and Boyle, as well as a dropped fly ball by JJ Bleday. Despite all of the errors, just one of the runs Boyle gave up was unearned.

As Martin Gallegos of noted, the Athletics have now committed 13 errors in their first five games. It's the most errors in the first five games in Oakland's history.

In addition to the poor defense, the Athletics' offense failed to show up. Red Sox starter Tanner Houck shut the A's down, going 6 innings, allowing just 3 hits while striking out 10. Chase Anderson pitched the final three innings for the Sox, notching 3 more strikeouts with just one hit allowed.

A's shortstop Darell Hernaiz struck out 3 times on the day. He remains hitless to start the year and has committed one of the A's 13 errors.

Like Hernaiz, infielder Abraham Toro has yet to notch his first hit in an A's uniform. He struck out twice today and has just one walk in his first 8 plate appearances.

The lone bright spot on the day was Kyle Muller coming in to relieve Boyle. The lefty threw 5.1 innings while allowing just one hit and striking out six. Muller pitched well enough during spring training to compete for the 5th rotation spot but the A's went with Boyle instead.

Muller has pitched well in his first two relief appearances this year and if things keep trending in the same direction, he could find himself back in the rotation sooner than later.

Last year was incredibly difficult for Athletics fans, as the team got out to a historically poor start. The way things are looking to start 2024, we might be in for more of the same.

We'll have to hope Kotsay can get the clubhouse going as the A's find themselves in another tough battle on Tuesday. The Red Sox will send their Opening Day starter, Brayan Bello, to the mound. Bello pitched well in his debut season in 2023 and earned a $55 million extension from the Red Sox earlier this winter.

The Athletics will send lefty Alex Wood to face off against Bello. Wood got hammered in his first start against the Guardians. The A's need him to get back on track.