The day after one of the toughest losses of the season, the Red Sox put on their best offensive perfromance so far in 2017. Rick Porcello was on the bump Saturday, matched up against Nick Tepesch for the Twins. It doesn’t take an expert to know who won this battle. Porcello wasn’t great, wasn’t lights out, but he did his job, limiting the Twins to one run, which came on a Robbie Grossman solo shot in the third inning. Other than this mistake, Porcello managed to scatter six hits over seven innings, all while giving up no walks and striking out seven Twins. With Porcello’s day done after seven innings pitched, Ben Taylor and Fernando Abad would be called on for the eighth and ninth respectively. Combined, the two relievers pitched two shutout innings while just allowing one hit total. This really felt like a 2016 start from Rick Porcello, as he had his way with the Twins lineup most of the time he was pitching. He also got a ton of run support, which is what we’ll dive into next.
With all the scrutiny this offense has received from the fans and media, the Red Sox bats broke out on Saturday. Chris Young got the scoring started with a solo shot off Tepesch in the second, his first of the season. After loading the bases with two outs, Dustin Pedroia would drive in Sandy Leon, Josh Rutledge, and Mookie Betts on a bases-clearing double. Andrew Benintendi would then reach third on a 2 RBI double, which scored Pedroia and Xander Bogaerts. After Tepesch got taken out of the game, Hanley Ramirez would single to left, scoring Benintendi from third. The scoring in the second would conclude after Hanley scored on an RBI double off the bat of Mitchy Two Bags, Mitch Moreland. Chris Young would strike again in the fifth, blasting his second solo shot of the day. In the seventh, the Red Sox would tack on another run with Deven Marrero scoring from second on an RBI double from Josh Rutledge. Sandy Leon would put an exclamation point on the scoring outburst, mashing his second home run of the year to lead off the ninth.
This was honestly one of the most satisfying games of the season for the Red Sox, in my opinion. They pretty much did everything right, with all the runs scored and Porcello’s solid outing. This game should set the tone for the rest of the season. The Red Sox have the capability to be as good as we saw them on Saturday for the entire season. With the good news coming in about David Price, you’d like to see this team go on a run in the next few weeks. With tomorrow’s game deciding who the series goes to, we should be treated to a pitching delight. Chris Sale vs. Ervin Santana, 3rd in the AL in ERA vs. 1st in the AL in ERA, should be a good one.
16 down, 78 to go.