June 9, 2017

G60: Red Sox 5, Tigers 3

Tigers  - 200 100 000 - 3 11  2
Red Sox - 000 200 03x - 5 11  0
Jackie Bradley's long two-run homer in the eighth inning snapped a 3-3 tie and gave the Red Sox a come-from-behind victory in the first game of a short, five-game homestand.

Brian Johnson (4.1-8-3-1-2, 105) and the Red Sox fell behind almost immediately. Johnson's fourth pitch of the night was hit for a home run by the Tigers' #2 batter, Nicholas Castellanos. Three consecutive singles later in the inning gave the Tigers a 2-0 lead. Mike Mahtook led off the fourth with a solo shot.

The Red Sox began their comeback in the bottom of the fourth when Mitch Moreland (3-for-4) homered. Andrew Benintendi singled and Hanley Ramirez drew a walk. Bradley singled, scoring Benintendi with the second run, but Ramirez was thrown out at third base. That baserunning blunder seemed to short-circuit the rally. Although Sandy Leon walked, Pablo Sandoval grounded into an inning-ending double play. (Actually, of the five pitches Detroit starter Jordan Zimmermann (6-6-2-3-3, 94) threw to Leon, four of them were in the strike zone. But home plate umpire Chad Fairchild saw the count as 4-1 rather than 1-4.)

Fairchild also made what will end up being one of the worst ball-strike calls of the year, in the first inning (see #4):

The Tigers tried increasing their slim lead in the fifth, but Heath Hembree pitched out of trouble. Victor Martinez reached on a one-out infield single, Johnson's last batter. J.D. Martinez greeted Hembree with a double and Detroit had runners at second and third. But Hembree put a "0" on the scoreboard, getting two outs from two batters with two pitches, as Justin Upton flied to right and Mahtook grounded to shortstop.

Moreland doubled to start the home half of the sixth, and was on third with one out, but could not score.

Alex Wilson (who pitched for Boston in 2013-14) was on the mound for Detroit in the eighth. Xander Bogaerts singled and went to second when Wilson made an error on a pickoff attempt. Moreland followed by hitting Wilson's next pitch for a single, and Bogaerts scored the tying run. Wilson retired Benintendi and Ramirez on outfield flies, but Bradley crushed a 1-1 pitch to deep right-center. The home run was measured at 457 feet, the longest of Bradley's career.

Then it was up to Craig Kimbrel. He sat Ian Kinsler down with a called third strike, battled Castellanos for 10 pitches before getting him to pop to first, and struck out Miguel Cabrera swinging.

The Yankees beat the Orioles 8-2, so the Red Sox remain 3 GB.

NESN continued its use of the left-hand column of pointless information (despite nothing but scorchingly negative comments from fans online), but while I was watching the game, it seemed like it appeared less often. That's better than a continuous presence, but it remains a horrendous intrusion and must be completely eradicated.

Someone posted "DO and Eck both doubling down on calling tonight's SP Brian 'Compete Game' Johnson", so I looked at some facts: Johnson's shutout of Seattle on May 27 was the first nine-inning CG of his professional career. Only three of his 93 minor league starts were complete games - and each of those was only seven innings (two in 2014 and one in 2015). So that nickname is a little premature.

Finally, this exchange from the SoSH game thread:
joe dokes: "In case anyone was wondering, there's no amount of alcohol that will make Dave O'Brien tolerable."

Fragile Freddie: "I have been testing this theory since April 5, 2016 and so far you are correct."
Jordan Zimmermann / Brian Johnson
Betts, RF
Pedroia, 2B
Bogaerts, SS
Moreland, 1B
Benintendi, LF
Ramirez, DH
Bradley, CF
Leon, C
Sandoval, 3B
Dustin Pedroia, who sprained his left wrist on May 28, returns to the lineup tonight.

Brian Johnson gets the ball for his third start of the year, filling in for the injured Eduardo Rodriguez. In his last start, Johnson pitched a complete-game, five-hit shutout against Seattle. ... Jordan Zimmermann allowed one run in six innings against the Red Sox on April 8, but has pitched poorly since then (6.47 ERA in 10 starts).

1 comment:

Jere said...

"I have been testing this theory since April 5, 2016"

I've been testing it since 2007! (Including radio.)