God Bless Tanking
In a rare case, Eduardo Rodriguez was facing someone who was having a worse 2019 than him. Orioles starter, Luis Ortiz, was making his first Major League start of 2019, and the second Major League start of his career. In the minors this year, he had a 7.01 ERA and allowed 10.8 hits per nine, so the Orioles figured he would be the ace of the Major League staff.
Ortiz started the game with a scoreless inning, which was something his pitching counterpart could not do. Rodriguez gave up a solo home run to Trey Mancini on a cutter that caught too much of the zone. But, the Red Sox answered back with a home run of their own, as Brock Holt hit a two-run blast to take the lead in the second inning. Ortiz got through that inning without allowing another run, then had a scoreless third despite loading the bases. But when the bases were empty with no one out in the fourth, he gave up a 443-foot missile to Christian Vazquez to make it 3-1, Red Sox. After a Jackie Bradley Jr. double and a hard-hit Eduardo Nunez lineout, Ortiz was pulled. He ended up allowing five walks and throwing 80 pitches through 3.1 innings pitched.
Dan Straily’s Terrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
Dan Straily was the one to relieve Luis Ortiz of his duties, and it started and ended very badly for him. He started off by allowing his inherited runner, Jackie Bradley Jr., to score on a Michael Chavis single. After inducing a groundout, he allowed a two-run home run to J.D. Martinez to make it 6-1. It stayed that score for the rest of the inning, but it did not get better for Straily in the 5th.
He started the inning by hitting Brock Holt with a breaking ball. He was able to strike out Christian Vazquez, but he gave up another home run to his next batter, Jackie Bradley Jr. Eduardo Nunez next hit a single, and he would be driven in by the following batter, Michael Chavis, on a home run to dead center field. And to put the cherry on top, J.D. Martinez hit a second home run off of Straily to make the score 11-1. Orioles manager, Brandon Hyde, threw the towel in immediately after this home run, leaving Straily’s line at 1.1 IP, 7 H, 7 R, 7 ER, and 4 HR.
The Red Sox added to the damage in the 6th inning when Andrew Benintendi hit a two-run single. Then in the bottom half of the inning, regular designated hitter, J.D. Martinez, committed a double play by throwing out a runner at home who tried to score by tagging on a sacrifice fly. From then on, it was a rather uneventful game, partially due to Eduardo Rodriguez. The southpaw had a very good start, allowing six hits, no walks, and just one run through seven innings.
Josh Smith allowed a run in the ninth, as having two consecutive scoreless appearances from him would put the Earth off its axis, and then the game concluded as a 13-2 Red Sox victory. God bless tanking.