Saturday’s game was described by many as the best Red Sox victory of the season. Brian Johnson threw a complete game shutout and the Red Sox got their sixth straight win. Well, that high didn’t last that long, as Sunday’s loss was filled with plenty of frustrating moments. Rick Porcello was matched up against M’s righty Christian Bergman, and the best pitcher was not who you’d expect. Porcello found himself in jams throughout the game, surrendering 11 hits in only 6.1 IP. The only inning in which Porcello did not allow a hit was the sixth. After allowing two of the first three batters to reach base in the seventh, Porcello was relieved for Robby Scott. Scott got Robinson Cano to fly out to Mookie Betts, and that was the only hitter he faced. Heath Hembree would be used next, and he allowed an inherited runner to score before getting out of the inning. Hembree also pitched the entire eighth inning, and he gave up a solo home run to Guillermo Heredia. Fernando Abad, whose had a quietly good season up to this point, started the eighth, and he only recorded one out while giving up a two-run home run to Robinson Cano. The last pitcher who saw action for the Red Sox was Blaine Boyer, a 35-year-old journeyman reliever who just got called up Sunday morning. Boyer had a fine debut, getting Nelson Cruz and Kyle Seager out on a foul out and a line out. Yeah, so, Rick Porcello’s recent performances haven’t been awful, but they haven’t been 2016 Cy Young Award winner performances either. And for as good as the numbers are, this bullpen is far from perfect, I’m just waiting for Carson Smith to come back.
Not much to report on the Red Sox offense. They made Bergman look like an ace Friday afternoon, which is something they have done before this season. Dustin Pedroia was the only batter who reached base more than once. Plenty of opportunities were given to this lineup, but they failed to capitalize on them. Red Sox hitters grounded into four double plays, and Andrew Benintendi grounded into two of them. What I have been paying attention to recently is how Mookie Betts’ average has dipped over the past few weeks. On May 14th, Betts began that day with a BA of .305 and a OBP of .381. After today’s 0-4 performance, Betts’ BA and OPS stand at .269 and .352. You obviously hope this slump is just a blip in Mookie’s season, since for a good part of the season, he has looked like a legit MVP candidate.
David Price pitches in Chicago against the White Sox tomorrow, 2:10 EST is first pitch. Should be interesting to watch, I’m expecting the worst but hoping for the best.
27 down, ? to go.