May 31, 2018

G57: Astros 4, Red Sox 2

Red Sox - 002 000 000 - 2  6  1
Astros  - 200 200 00x - 4  7  0
Drew Pomeranz may have pitched a little better against the Astros than he has in his last few starts, but the results were still poor. Pomeranz (5-5-4-2-5, 87) pitched more than four innings for the first time in four starts, but he allowed five hits, two walks, and four runs. His ERA rose slightly, from 6.75 to 6.81.

Houston took a 2-0 lead in the first on a walk to Alex Bregman and Carlos Correa's ninth home run of the year.

The Red Sox tied the game in the third. Jackie Bradley doubled to deep center and, with one out, Andrew Benintendi walked. Both runners scored on Xander Bogaerts's double to left. But Benintendi exhibited yet more stupidity on the bases, running through third base coach Carlos Febles's stop sign and just barely getting a hand on the plate before he was tagged. The Astros challenged the play, and it was upheld. Bogaerts took third on the throw home, but Mitch Moreland (K) and J.D. Martinez (6-3) could not get him in.

The Astros regained the lead in the fourth. J.D. Davis singled and Tim Federowicz hit a ground-rule double to right-center with one out. Tony Kemp chopped the ball to first. Moreland fired home, but Davis was safe. Marisnick bunted towards first. This time, Moreland threw to Bogaerts for a force at second, but Federowicz scored. Marisnick ended the inning when he was caught trying to steal second.

Boston did not make much noise after that. Benintendi singled and stole second with two outs in the fifth, but Bogaerts flied to center. Rafael Devers doubled with two down in the sixth before Brock Holt hit a soft liner to second. Benintendi singled to begin the eighth, but he was stranded there. With two outs in the ninth, Sandy Leon singled and Bradley walked, but Blake Swihart flied to left-center.

In addition to not having Mookie Betts in the lineup for the fifth consecutive game, the Red Sox pulled Dustin Pedroia from the original lineup because of soreness in his left knee. Alex Cora said that if this was September, Betts would be in the lineup. So perhaps he will be back tomorrow. The Red Sox swept the Blue Jays without him, but now that they are playing a good team, they need The Man Named Mooke.

NESN's Jerry Remy, on Davis sliding home safely in the fourth:
Watch and see where the tag is. Is it on that right - excuse me, left - knee before the foot gets to the bag? That's the question.
Indeed. That is always the question on a tag play at a base. Does the runner's foot touch the bag (or plate) before the runner is tagged by the fielder?

In the second inning, Devers collided with Astros pitcher Lance McCullers on a play at first base. Both players tumbled to the dirt as Devers was called out. The Red Sox's trainer came out to check on Devers and when both men walked back towards the visitors' dugout, NESN's Dave O'Brien speculated that Devers might be hurt and leaving the game. He had clearly forgotten that less than one minute earlier, the umpire called Devers out. So of course he was returning to the dugout! Most batters who ground out or fly out do eventually return to their team's dugout!
Drew Pomeranz / Lance McCullers
Benintendi, CF
Bogaerts, SS
Moreland, 1B
Martinez, DH
Pedroia, 2B  Devers, 3B
Devers, 3B  Holt, 2B
Holt, RF  Leon, C
Leon, C  Bradley, CF
Bradley, CF  Swihart, RF
Still no Mookie.

Pomeranz - 6.75 ERA in seven starts - must be running out of chances to remain in the Red Sox's rotation. (At least, I hope he is.)

In his last three games, Pomeranz has failed to pitch more than four innings: 11.1 innings, 18 hits, 13 runs, 11 walks, 11 strikeouts, 9.53 ERA. Opponents have hit .346/.460/.558 for a 1.018 OPS.

The Astros (35-22) lead the Mariners by one game in the AL West. Their pitching has been otherworldly. Houston has a 2.68 team ERA, tops in MLB and near one full run lower than the #2 team in the AL: the Red Sox at 3.56.

The last time an AL team finished a season with a team ERA as low as 2.70 was 1972 (Orioles (2.54) and Athletics (2.58)). Since 1918, it has happened only six times: 1966 (White Sox), 1967 (White Sox), 1968 (Orioles, Cleveland), and 1972 (Orioles, Athletics).

WARNING: The Red Sox radio broadcast will feature Tim Neverett, Dale Arnold, and Roger Clemens.


Clem said...

Clemens warning noted, but how is Arnold in the booth? I didn't get to hear him tonight. I had a brief stretch of being in earshot of his shared WEEI show a few ears back, and at first I kind of liked him, then I started to wonder how much of it was just contrast with nearly every other WEEI personality and their drunk uncle shtick.

allan said...

I have not heard him in a couple of years, but I recall he was horrible. (However, there are people out there who will say that I hate every announcer!)

Bartman said...

"...the Red Sox pulled Dustin Pedroia from the original lineup because of soreness in his left knee."

and to take more batting practice.