Last night’s game was a long one: twelve innings and 5 hours. The Sox pulled out a win in the 12th with the bottom of the order getting the job done this time. Bradley drove in the go ahead run with the bases loaded and another run came across on a wild pitch. We got excellent pitching from Hembree, who pitched 3 scoreless innings (the 10th, 11th and 12th) and got the win. In the bottom of the 9th Kimbrel had his first blown save as he gave up a single and a home run with 2 outs that tied the score and sent it into extra innings. The sox then went on to win 7-5 in the final tally.
The bats had a good night with 16 hits, while it was the bottom of the order (5-9) that drove in all the runs. Bradley had 2 RBIs in what was a good night for him. The offense was helped out quite a bit by 3 Astros errors that led to runs in the early going. Then an insurance run came across in the 12th that made it 7-5 by a wild pitch. Without the miscue’s by the other team it may have been a different story last night.
The pitching wasn’t bad, with the bullpen doing most of the work. Henry Owens came up from Triple A to fill Kelly’s spot in the rotation and got the start. He didn’t pitch too badly, but all I can say is welcome to the big leagues, but you will have to pitch more effectively if you want to stay. He gave up 5 hits and walked 4, allowing 3 runs in just 3.1 innings and was pretty wild, but not effective. If he could learn to throw more strikes we will probably need him again before the season is out.
All in all, it was a good game last night. The team has hit in double digits for at least the last 3 games, so the offense is going well. It would be nice if they drove more runs in when they got the chance, though, as they stranded over 10 base runners again. They are not really getting the timely hits that result in runs as often as they should.
Still, I think everybody contributed and hit the ball last night. Hanigan had a good night at the plate, too, with 2 hits, 2 runs scored and an RBI. If he can get the bat going it will help things going forward, as he has not been hitting much so far this season. I thought Vazquez was supposed to be the everyday catcher now, but he seems to be splitting the duties with Hanigan so far.
Well, it’s on to Atlanta tonight with a 9-9 record. If we can win the 4 game series (win 3 of 4) with them we will be doing what we should against lesser teams. Still, we sure had to battle hard against the Astros to win the series. At least we pulled it off. Now, if we can overcome Atlanta, we will be doing fine when we take on the Yankees at the end of the month.
The Yankees are in last place in the division with a 7-10 record so far. Still, they may heat up in their next series, so we will see how they are doing by this weekend. We may be able to win the 3 game series with them as well if they are still scuffling when it comes time to play them. So we may come out of this weekend in pretty good shape, if we play well in the next several games. Or, we could still be struggling to hold .500 in win/ loss percentage.
So it’s Porcello vs. Atlanta tonight. That should be a recipe for success, if all goes well. Porcello has been pitching well for us so far, so it should be a good game. Let’s keep the old cheer going–Go Sox!