Remember back in April, when the Red Sox made their first trip to Toronto and Chris Sale threw eight shutout innings? Well, it looks like Toronto has a Chris Sale problem, because Sale has yet to give up a single run north of the border this season. On Saturday, Sale pitched seven innings, allowed seven Blue Jays to reach base, and struck out eleven, yet another double-digit strikeout game. If you look at his numbers when he has pitched in Toronto this season, then you’ll see that he has struck out 24 over 15 IP, a resounding 14.4 K/9. There is no doubt that he is the ace, the guy who would get the ball for an important playoff game, not the guy who is getting paid $31 million dollars per year and can’t handle the media here. When Sale left after the seventh, there was really no pressure on the bullpen since they had a comfortable lead to work with. Blaine Boyer pitched a scoreless eighth, and Robby Scott gave up a solo home run while finishing things up in the ninth.
Offensively, scoring seven runs in back-to-back games looks pretty good. Hanley Ramirez, Chris Young, Sandy Leon, and Deven Marrero all had multi-hit games. Jackie Bradley Jr. drove in the first runs of the game, scoring Mookie Betts and Hanley on an RBI double in the first. Dustin Pedroia drove in another pair of runs in the second on another double, scoring Deven Marrero and Mookie Betts this time around. In the fifth, Mookie Betts scored again on a Xander Bogaerts sac fly. Bogaerts would also drive in the last runs of the game in the ninth, scoring Sandy Leon and Deven Marrero on an RBI single. Looking at the box score, it’s funny to see how Mookie Betts scored three runs without recording a single hit, which does not happen often. It looks like Hanley Ramirez has awoken from his first half slumber. On June 21st, Hanley was batting .239, after today’s game, it’s all the way up to .252. He hit 22 home runs after the All-Star break last season, and it looks like something similar to that could happen this season.
Three wins in a row, season-best eleven games over .500, could end the first half of the season on a hot streak. Drew Pomeranz makes the start for the finale tomorrow, then it’s on to Arlington to face the Rangers.
46 down, ? to go.