The Red Sox silenced a lot of doubters last night. Coming into this one losing the previous two, people were wondering if the Yankees could catch up in the division race. Well, with this win, the Red Sox magic number is down to two with four games left so I’d say that’s off the table. For the third night in a row, the starting pitching was far from what was expected. Maybe not with Rick Porcello, but I was definitely expecting more out of Drew Pomeranz and Chris Sale this week. Porcello looked like he has for most of this season, getting hit hard and serving up some home runs. With the two he gave up last night, Porcello tied Tim Wakefield for most home runs given up in a season with 38. In the five and two-thirds innings he pitched, the Blue Jays got him for five runs on seven hits and two walks while also striking out eight times. Similar to Sale, the K’s were there for Porcello, but the results were not. Before the Red Sox had even taken their first at bats they were already trailing by three runs. Jose Bautista took the righty deep in the first, while Darwin Barney did so in the fourth inning. That may have been the last time Jose Bautista plays at Fenway Park, and if it is, what a way to go out at a place he loved over his career.
After that home run to Barney, Porcello was solid, retiring five of the next seven batters he faced until being lifted for David Price with two outs in the sixth. Making his third appearance out of the bullpen, Price was dominant, striking out three of the four batters he faced. I hate to say it, but I really like this version of David Price. I think that he just doesn’t give a dang about what fans think about him anymore. Like they said on the latest episode of the Section 10 Podcast, he’s gone full heel and I kind of love him.
Addison Reed bounced back with a scoreless eighth, and Brandon Workman ended the game, but not before allowing a two-run home run to Teoscar Hernandez. Not having to face Hernandez along with Josh Donaldson is a relief, as the two combined to hit SIX home runs over the past three games. Also, that’s the third straight game the Red Sox bullpen has allowed runs to score. Like I’ve been saying, I’m not too concerned but it’s something to pay attention to.
Offensively, the bats did something they usually do not do, and that’s doing damage against Marco Estrada. Hanley Ramirez got the scoring started in the first, driving in Andrew Benintendi from first on an RBI double. Three more runs crossed the plate in the second thanks to Jackie Bradley Jr., Xander Bogaerts, and Dustin Pedroia. The third inning is where the game got away from the Blue Jays. Hanley led off the inning with a 451 foot bomb onto Lansdowne Street, and that was followed by three of the next four reached, including a Rajai Davis RBI single.
Xander Bogaerts decided to try and one-up Hanley by mashing his tenth home run of the season, another one that landed in the Monster seats.
Speaking of Bogaerts, the shortstop has now reached base in six straight games, and eight of the past nine games. This season has definitely been a disappointment, I’m sure Xander will tell you that himself, but he has the chance to end it on a positive note if he can play the way he has recently and bring that into the postseason.
Last not but least, we had Mitchy Four Bags blasting his 21st home run of the season in the seventh inning. Can’t find any video, but it was a good one.
Eduardo Rodriguez welcomes the Houston Astros into town later on tonight, and I am PUMPED. The Red Sox have the third seed all but locked up, that’s fine. What’s not fine is how the Astros and Indians are only separated by one game in the overall standings, that’s not fine. The last thing I want is to face the Indians in the ALDS, I want nothing to do with that team until a potential ALCS, let them stomp on the Yankees or Twins, please.
92nd win of the season, I’ll leave you all with this: