May 25, 2019

G52: Astros 4, Red Sox 3

Red Sox   - 000 000 102 - 3  9  0
Astros    - 000 002 101 - 4 13  0
When Matt Barnes gave up a leadoff double to Aledmys Diaz in the bottom of the ninth in a 3-3 game (which the Red Sox had tied mere minutes before on Christian Vazquez's two-run, bases-loaded single), with Houston's 2-3-4 hitters coming up, it was clear that the road to extra innings would not be properly paved.

When Barnes walked Alex Bregman on five pitches, it was clear that the Red Sox would need a big dollop of good luck to make it out of the inning unscathed.

When Barnes walked Michael Brantley (and having thrown only four strikes in 13 pitches), it was clear that it would not be long before the Astros won this game.

The Red Sox played a five-man infield against Carlos Correa, with Mookie Betts coming in from right field to play between first and second base.

When Barnes's 2-2 pitch to Correa was a bit outside and Correa went with it and lined a single to right, that was that. ... The Astros have won 17 of their last 21 games. (The Red Sox have not.)

Boston found itself at a disadvantage right away when David Price left the game after three batters and only 15 pitches (0.2-1-0-0-1, 15) with ye olde "flu-like symptoms". Colten Brewer and Tim Laskins kept the Astros at bay until the sixth when a walk and three straight singles off Laskins - all with one out - gave Houston a 2-0 lead.

Michael Chavis led off the seventh with a single. After two fly outs to center, J.D. Martinez, pinch-hitting for Sandy León, walked and Andrew Benintendi singled Chavis home. Ryan Pressly's first pitch to Betts was in the dirt and got away from catcher Robinson Chirinos. Martinez and Benintendi were both caught off second and first base, respectively, and Martinez was tagged out 2-3-5. Houston added a run in the bottom of the seventh off Hector Velázquez.

Roberto Osuna was on the mound in the ninth and he "quickly" loaded the bases with none out. It took exactly three pitches. Rafael Devers singled to center, Chavis beat out a slowish grounder to shortstop, and Jackie Bradley was hit on the right elbow with a pitch. After a mound visit, Christian Vázquez singled to left, tying the game at 3-3. (Three singles, an HBP, and two runs in only five pitches!) Steve Pearce struck out looking. Benintendi fouled to third. Betts walked, re-loading the bases. Mitch Moreland grounded weakly back to Osuna.

The MFY swept a day-night doubleheader from the Royals, so Boston is now 7.5 GB. The Red Sox have not been this far out of first place since April 29. They were a season-worst 8.5 GB on April 17.
David Price / Brad Peacock
Benintendi, LF
Betts, RF
Moreland, 1B
Bogaerts, SS
Devers, 3B
Chavis, 2B
Bradley, CF
Vázquez, DH
León, C
Peter Abraham, Globe:
Since the start of last season, counting the postseason, [the] Red Sox and Astros have split 16 games with Houston scoring one more run (72-71). Four games have been decided by one run, five by two runs.
Dustin Pedroia took himself out of a rehab game last night after four innings because of discomfort in his left knee. Even if FY returns to the Red Sox (and when also remains a wide-open question), there is no way he's pushing Michael Chavis to the bench. In 11 minor league games (AA and AAA) this year, Pedroia is 7-for-37 (.189). All seven hits are singles.

The lastest dispatch from the Dept. of You're Getting Fuckin' Old: Mike Yastrzemski, the 28-year-old grandson of #8, will make his major league debut today with the Giants, playing left field and batting seventh. M-Yaz has played seven seasons in the minors.

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