The Boston Red Sox lost 5-4 to the New York Yankees on Friday night. Don’t look at Eduardo Rodriguez when casting the blame though. For the second straight start, the left-hander was in control. Could he be returning to the dominant pitcher we saw over the first two months?

It looked like it would be a long night for Eduardo Rodriguez. He walked two men in the first, but managed to escape the inning without allowing a run.

That wasn’t the case though, as that ended up being the Yankees biggest threat against Rodriguez. The 24-year-old finished the night going six scoreless innings, allowing just two hits and two walks, while striking out seven.

Rodriguez left the game with a 3-0 lead.

Matt Barnes did his job, working a scoreless seventh. Addison Reed had a tough time in the eighth though, and it led to the Yankees taking a 5-3 lead.

The Red Sox were able to score one in the ninth, but still lost 5-4.

While a loss is tough to swallow, it’s even more rough when the loss is to a division rival.

The fantastic work of Eduardo Rodriguez is a great consolation prize though. After being one of the Red Sox best pitchers through May, he’s had a lot of problems. Rodriguez suffered through injuries, and four straight questionable starts.

On August 4 though, he allowed two runs on four hits and two walks through six innings. He managed five strikeouts as well.

That was a promising start, and one the Red Sox hoped Rodriguez could build on. It looks like he did just that by giving Boston his best outing in over two months.

On the year, Rodriguez now has a 4-3 record with a 3.80 earned run average. He has a 1.23 walks plus hits per inning pitched (WHIP) and opponents are hitting .226 against him. Walks have been an issue (34 in 87 2/3 innings) but his 96 strikeouts are extremely promising.

The Red Sox actually have a pretty solid starting rotation right now. If Eduardo Rodriguez can return to form, it’s hard to point out any true holes.

Hunter Noll is a Staff Writer for Outside Pitch MLB. Follow him on Twitter

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