The Boston Red Sox are reeling, and it showed in a big way on Thursday.
With his team trailing 16-5 to the Tampa Bay Rays, Red Sox manager Ron Roenicke put infielder Jose Peraza on the mound to give his battered staff a rest, only to see Peraza leave after taking a line drive off his knee.
Rather than use an actual pitcher, catcher Kevin Plawecki took over on the mound. Incredibly, his batterymate was backup shortstop Tzu-Wei Lin, who had played six positions as a professional but never went behind the plate before Thursday. Christian Vazquez - the team's primary catcher - ended up at second base in the shuffle.
Not only did Plawecki - who was making his fifth career mound appearance - get the Red Sox out of the ninth, but he drove in a run in the bottom of the ninth to officially notch an RBI as the "pitcher."
The 17-8 loss ended a woeful four-game series for the AL-worst Red Sox, who were outscored 42-22 by Tampa Bay. The five actual pitchers Boston sent to the mound Thursday gave up 16 runs on 19 hits, with starter Kyle Hart surrendering seven in two innings.
The one piece of good news for the Red Sox is that Peraza was not seriously injured, and his X-rays returned negative, according to Chris Cotillo of MassLive.