May 2, 2018

G30: Red Sox 5, Royals 4

Royals  - 120 000 001 - 4 10  0
Red Sox - 000 310 10x - 5 10  0
There have been 31 games in Red Sox history in which a Boston player has hit three home runs. Only five players have done it more than once.

Jim Rice, Mo Vaughn, and Nomar Garciaparra did it twice. Ted Williams did it three times (with two of those games coming in his 16th season at age 38).

Mookie Betts - playing in just his fifth season, who won't turn 26 until October - has done it four times.

Betts is also the first player in baseball history to have four games with three home runs before the age of 26.

Betts missed two games because of hamstring tightness and played only a handful of innings at the end of last night's extra-inning loss, but he didn't miss a beat on Wednesday afternoon. He singled in the first and hit solo home runs in the fourth, fifth, and seventh innings.

He also hit three home runs on April 17, so he has done it twice in his last 11 games started.

J.D. Martinez hit a two-run shot in the fourth which tied the game at 3-3 after Drew Pomeranz (6-8-3-2-3, 89) had put the team in an early 3-0 hole. Pomeranz looked horrible through into the third inning, but he got out of a bases-loaded/one-out jam with a double play. He pitched three more innings, allowing only two singles, and looked far more comfortable. Joe Kelly, Matt Barnes, and Craig Kimbrel worked out of the pen.

Pomeranz walked the leadoff batter in the first and allowed a double. After a strikeout, he got a gift double play to escape further trouble. Salvador Perez flied to deep center. Whit Merrifield tagged and scored from third and Jorge Soler was doubled off second base -- even though Merrifield and (I think) the third base coach were yelling at him to get back to second. Two more singles and a two-run double into the right-field corner from Drew Butera made it 3-0 KC in the second. Pomeranz gave up a double and a single to start the third and issued a one-out walk before getting Jon Jay to ground into a 4-6-3 double play.

Danny Duffy (6.2-10-5-1-6, 111) faced only nine batters through the first three innings (despite Betts's first-inning single). Duffy would allow seven hits and one walk over the next two innings.) Betts led off the fourth with a homer to left-center. Hanley Ramirez walked with one out and Martinez went deep to roughly the same spot. Betts came up with one out in the fifth and again homered over the Wall. Ramirez doubled and Martinez singled, but Duffy escaped. Betts hit his third dong into the end of the Monster Seats that are closest to center field.

The Red Sox have now hit eight home runs against left-handed pitchers this season - and Betts has hit five of them.

Betts leads the Red Sox - and all of major league baseball, actually - with 11 home runs. He is on pace for 59 this season. Martinez is second on the Red Sox with 6.

The Human Element: First base umpire Fieldin Culbreth had two calls overturned in the sixth inning. In the top half, he called Jay safe at first on a fielder's choice and the call was overturned and ruled a double play. Then in the bottom of the inning, he called Eduardo Nunez safe at first on a pickoff throw from Duffy. That call was also overturned. ... CB Bucknor had a call at second overturned in the third inning.
Danny Duffy / Drew Pomeranz
Betts, RF
Benintendi, LF
Ramirez, 1B
Martinez, DH
Bogaerts, SS
Devers, 3B
Nunez, 2B
Leon, C
Bradley, CF
If Pomeranz's fastball velocity is not better than the 87-89 he showed last Friday, it will be a long afternoon.

Manager Alex Cora did not enjoy the Red Sox's performance last night, especially in the field:
Awful. Awful. That was a horrible game. Yeah we were lucky we were playing 13 innings, honestly. That was bad. Mental mistakes. Physical mistakes. All kinds of mistakes. That was awful.

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