JD Martinez, Clutch Hitting Overcome Bullpen Struggles
Featured image courtesy of Zimbio.com (Aug. 3, 2018 – Source: Adam Glanzman/Getty Images North America)
Well that certainly was a roller coaster. It didn’t look like the Sox would win after falling behind 3-1 in the seventh. It didn’t look like they could possibly lose when they took a 5-3 lead in the top of the eighth. Nonetheless, the game went to extra innings, but the Red Sox were able to hold on for the win. Clutch homers by JD Martinez and Mitch Moreland led the Red Sox to a 10-7 victory over the AL East rival Toronto Blue Jays.
JD Martinez, Mitch Moreland, and Clutch Hitting Save the Day
Smart money said that the opening game of this series would be a high scoring affair. Boston Red Sox starter Drew Pomeranz entered the game with a 6.56 ERA, while Toronto Blue Jays starter Marcus Stroman entered the game with a 5.63 ERA. So naturally, this game started off as a low scoring affair.
While Drew Pomeranz only allowed two runs, he still didn’t have a good game. The lefty went just 4.2 innings, allowing five walks and striking out just one. He allowed a mammoth home run in the third inning, and gave up a lot of “loud outs.” The Blue Jays didn’t have any trouble seeing the ball, they just happened to hit them right at Red Sox fielders. This should be Pomeranz’ last start of the season.
Sloppy baseball led to the Blue Jays third run of the game. The inning started with Joe Kelly allowing a leadoff single to left field. However, Andrew Benintendi overthrew second base, allowing Devon Travis to advance to second. One batter later, Kelly sailed a pickoff attempt into center field, moving Travis to third base. Teoscar Hernandez then hit a sac fly to center field to make it a 3-1 game.
The Red Sox did not quit, as the Sox offense immediately came to life with Stroman off the mound. The Sox immediately loaded the bases with one out. After a Mitch Moreland fielders choice brought home Sandy Leon, JD Martinez did what he does best. Serving as the true heir to David Ortiz, Martinez has inserted himself into the MVP conversation despite primarily serving as a designated hitter.
The Red Sox then promptly blew that lead after Matt Barnes and Craig Kimbrel each allowed one run in their respective innings of work. Toronto forced extra innings, but the Sox offense made sure this game wouldn’t go on forever. Mookie Betts led off the top of the tenth with a triple, and Mitch Moreland drove him and Andrew Benintendi home with a three-run homer. For good measure, Jackie Bradley Jr. added a two-run shot to give the Sox a 10-5 lead.
Tyler Thornburg came on the hill for the 10th to finish off the game. While he made it interesting by allowing two runs, he managed to get the job done. With the win, the Red Sox became the first team to reach 80 wins in the majors, and are currently 9.5 games up in the AL East.
The Red Sox look to add another to the win column tomorrow. Brian Johnson will take the mound for the Red Sox, sporting a 3.74 ERA and a 1.42 WHIP. The Blue Jays will counter with Mike Hauschild, who has started just fourteen innings of major league experience.