Boston drops Sox series opener 1-0. Sale picks up double-digit strikeouts.
Featured Image by Zimbio.com: (June 7, 2018 – Source: Adam Glanzman/Getty Images North America)
During Boston’s last road trip Chris Sale relived the nightmare that was the 2017 ALDS against the Houston Astros. In two starts against the Astros last postseason, Sale averaged a 16.78 ERA. In his first meeting with Houston this year, he went 6 innings, with a 3.00 ERA. He gave up four earned runs while giving up a home run in a losing effort. On Friday night, however, Sale came back with a vengeance against his former team, the Chicago White Sox. He brought the heat with his fastball-reaching 100 mph multiple times. He went eight scoreless innings, only giving up three hits and one walk while sitting down 8 hitters via strikeout.
It was all about the pitching on Friday’s Sox series opener. Sale was not the only pitcher dealing; White Sox starter Dylan Covey was also throwing heat against the Red Sox. Covey went six strong innings only giving up three hits, one walk while picking up seven strikeouts. The Chicago starter brought the heat as he sat at around 95 mph with his fastball.
The Red Sox had their chance in the first inning after Andrew Benintendi led off the inning with a double off the Green Monster. Brock Holt walked to put runners at first and second base. After Xander Bogaerts struck out swinging, Mitch Moreland grounded into a double play to end the inning.
Both pitchers held their opposition at bay for six scoreless innings.
The top of the seventh inning is what made the difference in the game. Chicago’s Kevan Smith hit a leadoff ground-rule double into the right-field bleachers to begin the inning. Trayce Thompson singled into left field to drive in Smith to push the White Sox ahead 1-0.
The Red Sox would make some noise in the bottom half of the inning. Bogey would get on base with a single into right field. The White Sox brought in Jace Fry to relieve Covey. Moreland would reach base on a single after the Sox won the challenge on the initial out call. Eduardo Nunez would reach base on a fielding error by Jose Rondon. Boston would strand the runners on base after Rafael Devers and Jackie Bradley Jr. struck out.
Reliever Heath Hembree would come into the game in the ninth inning hoping to get Boston into extra innings, he threw a clean inning with no hits and two strikeouts.
White Sox closer Joakim Soria would get Holt, Bogaerts, and Moreland out in order to beat Boston 1-0.
J.D. Martinez was not in the lineup tonight after experiencing back tightness, and Mookie Betts is still on the DL with left abdominal strain. The Red Sox missed their contribution on Friday as they could not find that clutch hit throughout their line up.