Featured image courtesy of Zimbio.com: (Oct. 27, 2018 – Source: Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images North America)
The Boston Red Sox defeated the Tampa Bay Rays 4-3 in extra innings on Sunday afternoon. It represents the first sweep of the 2019 season for the team. This could not have come at a better time against a better team. They started the series down eight games in the AL East, but have closed that gap to five with the clean sweep. Boston is now 9-13 on the season.
This game was an extra-inning affair, lasting until the 11th inning. Boston’s bats were stifled the previous three innings but scrappily made their way to the final run. Rafael Devers blooped a weak single to center field, which was immediately followed by a five-pitch walk to Michael Chavis. Then, JBJ placed a perfect bunt down the third base line to move the runners into scoring position. Christian Vazquez was the hero, nailing a deep line drive to center field. It resulted in a sacrifice fly to secure the victory for the Sox.
Boston’s pitching also deserves praise for this one. They were led by five robust innings from ace David Price, who allowed just two earned runs. Moreover, he punched out ten batters and walked just two. The bullpen, sans Matt Barnes, did their job. They combined for six innings of one earned run baseball. Additionally, they struck out seven and walked just one. Marcus Walden‘s two innings of one-hit baseball probably represented the most high-leverage. He pitched beautifully in the 9th and 10th innings.
Circling back, the offense was treated by another Mitch Moreland homerun. The 4th-inning blast is the first baseman’s seventh long ball of the season. Xander Bogaerts‘ two-RBI single in the top 6th off Tyler Glasnow is also notable.