June 15, 2018

G71: Mariners 7, Red Sox 6

Red Sox  - 006 000 000 - 6  9  0
Mariners - 120 010 12x - 7 10  3
The linescore alone will convey that this was a shitty game. If you bother to look a little closer, you will see that it was worse than that.

Rick Porcello (6-7-4-1-9, 100) started off poorly. Jean Segura hit his seventh pitch of the night out of the park. Porcello gave up a double and a single to start the second. A force play scored one run and a single by Mike Zunino made it 3-0.

James Paxton recorded three strikeouts after an infield error allowed Mookie Betts to reach base in the first. He retired the Red Sox in order in the second. Jackie Bradley singled to begin the third, but Paxton struck out Sandy Leon. ... And then he slowly, but surely, imploded.

Betts grounded the ball into the shortstop hole and Segura (who committed the first-inning error on a grounder hit directly to him) made a one-hop throw that skipped past first baseman Ryon Healy. Betts was given a hit, but Bradley took third on Segura's second error. Brock Holt grounded a single through the hole into left. J.D. Martinez flied to deep right and Mitch Haniger, who did not look very confident out there last night, drifted back with little urgency. He reached up and the ball glanced off his glove. The Red Sox had the bases loaded. (The play was originally ruled a hit, then quickly changed to an error, then changed back to a hit before the game was over. It should have stayed as an error.)

Mitch Moreland hit a sinking liner to third that Kyle Seager tried (and failed) to backhand. The ball went into left field - for an E5 - and two runs scored, giving Boston a 3-2 lead. Paxton fell behind Xander Bogaerts 3-1 and X lofted a fly to right-center that carried into the stands, similar to his home run to left-center last night. Boston was up 6-3 on the XXX-rated dong. Rafael Devers grounded a single into right-center and Eduardo Nunez walked.

With Paxton (2.1-6-6-1-4, 74) having faced nine batters and thrown 40 pitches in the inning, manager Scott Servais finally called the bullpen. Chasen Bradford retired Bradley on a liner to first and Leon on a grounder to second.

Ron Whalen took over in the fourth and retired the first nine batters he faced. At the same time, the Mariners got back into the game. Porcello got the first two outs in the fifth, but singles by the top three hitters in the order - Dee Gordon, Segura, and Haniger - gave Seattle its fourth run. Porcello walked Nelson Cruz, but left the bases loaded when Seager grounded to second.

Heath Hembree gave up a leadoff home run to Zunino in the seventh, cutting the Red Sox's lead to 6-5.

In the top of the eighth, against Ryan Cook, Devers singled and Nunez walked. With one out, Andrew Benintendi pinch-hit for Leon and grounded Cook's first pitch to third, where Devers was forced. The Mariners then walked Mookie Betts intentionally, even though first base was not open. Nunez moved to third and Benintendi went to second. Holt took a ball and two strikes before lining out to left.

Matt Barnes gave the game away in the bottom of the eighth. He struck out Seager but walked Healy on four pitches. Andrew Romine pinch-ran. Ben Gamel singled to left and pinch-hitter Denard Span doubled to right, scoring both runners.

The Red Sox made Edwin Diaz work a bit in the ninth. Martinez singled on a 2-0 pitch and Blake Swihart went in to run. Moreland struck out. Swihart stole second with Bogaerts at the plate and X eventually walked.

With two men on, things looked promising. But the game was over four pitches later. Devers popped the first pitch to shortstop. Nunez fouled off two pitches before grounding to first.

The Red Sox left seven men on base in the final three innings. ... The Yankees blanked the Rays 5-0, so there is once again a two-team tie atop the AL East.
Rick Porcello / James Paxton
Betts, RF
Holt, 2B
Martinez, LF
Moreland, 1B
Bogaerts, SS
Devers, 3B
Nunez, DH
Bradley, CF
Leon, C
Paxton has a 1.87 ERA over his last eight starts (including a no-hitter in Toronto on May 8).

7 PM: Rays/Yankees.

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