June 2, 2018

G59: Red Sox 5, Astros 4

Red Sox - 100 001 300 - 5  5  0
Astros  - 012 000 010 - 4  6  0
The Red Sox had only five hits on Saturday night, but two of them left the park. Somebody Named Christian Vazquez and Andrew Benintendi both blasted majestic shots with two outs in the seventh inning, carrying Boston to its 40th win of the season.

The Astros had taken a 3-1 lead against David Price (6-5-3-1-7, 109), but the Red Sox inched closer in the sixth when Xander Bogaerts walked with one out, stole second, and scored on J.D. Martinez's single to right-center. (Martinez also drove in Boston's first run, after Benintendi walked to start the game and took second on a wild pitch. He leads MLB with 50 RBI.)

After Boston took that 1-0 lead, Justin Verlander (6-3-2-2-6, 101) retired 15 of the next 16 batters, before the Red Sox cut the score to 3-2. Will Harris was the Astros' pitcher in the seventh and he struck out Rafael Devers and got Blake Swihart on a grounder to short. He fell behind Vazquez 3-1 and the Boston catcher cranked the next pitch to deep left, tying the game at 3-3. The ball struck about halfway up the back wall of the bleachers.

Before that swing, Vazquez's slugging percentage this season was .221, which is so bad, it really should not be called "slugging". Of his 26 hits, 21 had been singles. From April 28 to May 30, Vazquez had only one extra-base hit in 71 at-bats. ... But you can't predict baseball, Suzyn.

Harris then went to a full count to Jackie Bradley before walking him. Benintendi fell behind 1-2 before launching his 8th home run of the year into the second deck in right.

Joe Kelly walked Jose Altuve with one out in the bottom of the eighth. Altuve stole second and third and scored on Yuli Gurriel's two-out single to right. Kelly then got Evan Gattis to pop to second. Craig Kimbrel retired each of the bottom three hitters in Houston's lineup in the ninth, striking out two of them.

During the first three innings, it definitely felt like a frustrating night was brewing. Gurriel grounded a single to center in the second. When Max Stassi struck out for the second out, Gurriel swiped second base. Marwin Gonzalez's fly to deep left-center took a crazy carom off the wall and went over into left field, which Benintendi had just vacated. Gurriel scored from first on a triple.

George Springer singled to start the third and Alex Bregman homered to left. Houston led 3-1 and it seemed as though Verlander had found his footing. After throwing 44 pitches in the first two innings, Verlander threw 12, 14, and 9 in the next three innings.

The Red Sox also stole three bases (Bogaerts, Martinez, and Vazquez).

The Yankees beat the Orioles 8-5, so Boston remains 0.5 GA.
David Price / Justin Verlander
Benintendi, LF
Bogaerts, SS
Martinez, DH
Moreland, 1B
Nunez, 2B
Devers, 3B
Swihart, RF
Vazquez, C
Bradley, CF
Mookie Betts went on the disabled list yesterday evening. This morning, Dustin Pedroia joined him. The Red Sox's diagnosis on Pedroia, who had a cartilage restoration procedure on his left knee in the offseason and had been added to the active roster only eight days ago, is "left knee inflammation".

Verlander is having an incredible season. He leads both leagues in ERA (1.11), WHIP (0.71), and H/9 (4.76). He is also third in the American League in strikeouts and innings pitched, second in K/BB ratio, and sixth in K/9 and HR/9. In 12 starts, Verlander has allowed more than two runs only once.

Earned runs allowed, by start: 0, 3, 0, 1, 0, 2, 0, 1, 1, 0, 1, 1.

Vermander made six starts in May and had a 0.86 ERA. However, Houston won only half of those games, scoring a total of one run in the three losses.

After 12 starts in 1999 and 2000, Pedro Martinez had a 1.91 and 0.99 ERA, respectively.

AL East:
            W    L    PCT     GB
Yankees    36   17   .679    0.5
Red Sox    39   19   .672   ----
Rays       28   28   .500   10.0
Blue Jays  25   32   .439   13.5
Orioles    17   40   .298   21.5

1 comment:

allan said...

NY Post:

Red Barber famously used a 3-minute egg-timer. John Sterling, on the other hand, remains in the 29-season habit of allowing one enough time to cure a ham — or at least solicit medical advice for it — before he gives the score of Yankees' games.

Where prefacing an inning with, "We go to the sixth..." would logically conclude with giving the score, Sterling keeps radio audiences in the dark as he busies himself with condescending, self-serving and continuously wrong declarations and tired affectations.