The last time the Red Sox won 100 games in a single season, there were 16 teams team in Major League Baseball, the Braves played in Boston, the Giants played in New York, and the Dodgers played in Brooklyn.
Obviously, a lot has happened since then, but seeing the baseball team you grew up watching and still watch on a daily basis do something they have not done in over 70 years, that is something else.
How did the Red Sox reach this historic milestone? Well, David Price can take most of the responsibility for that.
Making his 28th start of the season on Wednesday, the left-hander picked up on where he left off in what has been a great second half of the 2018 season with another dominant performance.
Pitching seven scoreless innings in this one, Price scattered just three hits and no walks to go along with seven punch outs on the night.
After sitting down the first 13 batters he faced, the Tennessee native did give up those three hits, all of which were singles, over those final three frames of work, but the furthest base a Blue Jays hitter reached was second following a passed ball.
With his pitch count inching closer and closer to 100 in that seventh inning, Price dramatically ended his night on a positive note by fanning Teoscar Hernandez for the third and final out.
Finishing with a final pitch count of 92 (63 strikes), the 33-year-old hurler turned to his two-seam fastball a total of 33 times on Wednesday. He topped out at 94.5 MPH with that same pitch in the seventh inning.
More notable, out of the 31 changeups he threw, Price induced a swing and a miss 32% of the time.
Improving to 15-6 with a 3.42 ERA on the season now, the 2012 Cy Young Award winner will look to build on what’s been a superb start to September in his next time out, which should come against the New York Yankees at dreaded Yankee Stadium sometime next week.
In relief of Price, Steven Wright got the call for the top half of the eighth inning with a slim one-run lead to protect.
Despite allowing the first two hitters he faced to reach base, the knuckleballer danced his way around the jam on his way to a scoreless frame.
Craig Kimbrel was next up for the ninth looking to lock down the save, and did just that, although he did walk one and only throw 10 strikes out of 20 total pitches.
Regardless, 39th save of the season for Kimbrel secured, but more importantly, win number 100 of the season for the Red Sox secured as well.
On the other side of things, the Red Sox lineup was matched up against Blue Jays right-hander Aaron Sanchez, who entered Wednesday with a lifetime 4.35 ERA in eight appearances (five starts) at Fenway Park.
Similar to Price, a former teammate of his, Sanchez also had himself a quality night on the mound.
In fact, the only run that crossed the plate for the Red Sox came in the bottom of the fifth inning, when with two outs, runners at the corners, and Jackie Bradley Jr. at the plate, a 2-2 wild pitch from Sanchez rolled to the backstop.
That allowed Rafael Devers to easily come in from third to score what would end up being the lone run of the entire contest for either side.
The Red Sox were held to just four hits, but they did draw five walks.
Some notes from this 1-0 win:
In his last nine starts since the All-Star break, David Price is 5-0 with a 1.56 ERA, which is tops among qualified American League starting pitchers. His .188 batting average against over that span is also second best in the AL.
The Red Sox are 8-1 in Price’s last nine starts.
From @SoxNotes: The Red Sox have won 100 games for the 1st time in 72 years, and for the 4th time in franchise history (105 in 1912, 104 in 1946, 101 in 1915).
Alex Cora is the 1st person to lead a team to 100+ wins in his 1st season as an MLB manager since Dusty Baker in 1993 (Giants, 103-59).
Going for win number 101 and the sweep later tonight, it will be Eduardo Rodriguez getting the start for Boston.
Since returning from the 10-day disabled list on September 1st, the young left-hander has surrendered six earned runs over nine total innings pitched, with five of those runs coming in his last time out against the Houston Astros.
In three outings against the Blue Jays this season, Rodriguez has posted a 2.41 ERA over 18.2 innings pitched.
Opposite Rodriguez will be RHP Sam Gaviglio for Toronto, who was only charged with one earned run over 3.1 innings in his last start at Fenway Park on July 14th, a game that Rodriguez also started in and the Red Sox won by a final score of 6-2.
First pitch of the final game against the Blue Jays this season is scheduled for 7:10 PM ET Thursday.