Everything there is to know about Tuesday's Red Sox starter Darwinzon Hernandez

Gabby Guerard
June 11, 2019 - 2:22 pm
Categories: 

The Red Sox will start Darwinzon Hernandez Tuesday against the Texas Rangers at Fenway Park, in what will be his first career major league start.

Baseball America ranks the 6-foot-2, 22-year-old lefty as the Red Sox organization’s No. 1 pitching prospect, with a fastball that reaches the upper-90s, as well as his curveball, slider, and changeup.

Here are some things to know about him.

  • Hernandez debuted in the major leagues April 23 as a relief pitcher in the second game of a doubleheader against the Tigers. In 2 1/3 innings, he gave up four hits and one walk, with four strikeouts and didn’t allow a single run.

 

  • Since then, Hernandez has pitched in 10 games, nine of which were starts, with Double-A Portland, where he is 1-4 with a 5.13 ERA. He has averaged 13.2 strikeouts per nine innings, and has walked 32 batters in 40 1/3 innings. Left-handed hitters have a .149 batting average against him, while right-handed hitters have batted .282.

 

  • Hernandez participated in his first MLB spring training camp in February with the Red Sox as a starter. He was paired with the team’s most experienced starters during the camp, which Hernandez was thrilled about. He shared through translator Daveson Perez, “To see how they prepare to throw their sides, how they went about their sides, and everything about their work, was something that’s very exciting to me.”

 

  • Last offseason, Hernandez put up a 1.59 ERA in the Arizona Fall League, where he was 0-1 after pitching in eight games. He had a .195 batting average against, 24 strikeouts, and six walks in 11 1/3 innings of relief.

 

  • Hernandez made his Double-A debut in Portland at the end of last season where he had 10 strikeouts after pitching just six innings over the course of five games.

 

  • Earlier in the year, Hernandez had started 23 games with High-A Salem, going 9-5 with a 3.56 ERA. He averaged 11 strikeouts per nine innings and walked 60 batters in 101 innings, while batters averaged .220 against him. In his last 10 starts of 2018, he had a 1.88 ERA, a 1.22 WHIP, .209 batting average against, 74 strikeouts, and 10 walks over the course of 52.2 innings, while giving up 11 earned runs.

 

  • Growing up in Venezuela, Hernandez didn’t start playing baseball until he was 15 years old, when a baseball coach in his hometown noticed the size of his hands and thought that they would grip a baseball well. Back in February, he told MassLive through a translator, “I had never played baseball up until that point. And then I started playing. They put me playing with my friends and they put me as a pitcher. It was just a hobby at first. I really liked doing it. I liked striking guys out. Next thing you know, I get an invitation to camp and a lot of major league teams saw me. And thankfully the Red Sox were able to give me that opportunity.”

And now, the Red Sox are giving Hernandez another opportunity: his first MLB career start, tonight at 7:10 p.m.

Related: Tiffany Ortiz releases statement on condition of husband