It'd be supremely disingenuous to suggest that Kyle Drabek's impressive start tonight in any portends a year of brilliance -- he began his turbulent 2011 season with an equally dominant start against the Minnesota Twins -- but it's reason for optimism nevertheless.
Facing a Boston lineup presumably buoyed by a ninth-inning, comeback victory the night before, Drabek was virtually unhittable through his 5.1 innings of work, yielding a solitary run on three hits and three walks. Working with a 3-1 lead, he was promptly removed in the sixth after his command began to wane. I can only assume his patience was equally exhausted after having to endure an evening with Tim McClelland behind the plate.
Drabek's outing helped to relieve the pain of last night's immensely disheartening collapse conducted by Toronto's newest pariah, Sergio Santos. And of course, it goes without saying that Drabek's performance is also encouraging from a developmental perspective.
His newfound maturity was manifest tonight, as he sublimated his implosion impulse when a McClelland squeeze engendered a Jacoby Ellsbury walk to lead off the sixth inning. With his next two outings coming against the Baltimore Orioles and Kansas City Royals, respectively, it's conceivable that he pieces together an April that opens some eyes around the league.