Closing Time: Red Sox beat White Sox, 7-6, to complete sweep
|09.01.13 at 5:33 pm ET|
The Red Sox beat the White Sox 7-6 on Sunday to complete their first series sweep in a month. The Boston offense exploded for seven runs for the second straight game, marking the second time in a week it has accomplished that feat in back-to-back games.
David Ortiz led the way with two hits, a walk and three RBIs. He has now reached base nine times and driven in six runs over the last three games after reaching just once over his previous six games. Dustin Pedroia also reached base three times on Sunday — one day after going 0-for-5 — while Jacoby Ellsbury drove in two and scored twice.
The Red Sox scored four times in the second and once more in the third to take a 5-0 lead, but the White Sox came storming back with four runs of their own in the top of the fourth, chasing Felix Doubront from the game in the process. Boston then scored twice in the bottom of inning to regain some insurance.
The White Sox scored once off Brandon Workman in the fifth and once off Craig Breslow in the eighth, but Koji Uehara shut them down with a perfect ninth to pick up his 16th save of the season. He has now tossed 24 straight scoreless innings, the longest single-season streak by a Red Sox pitcher since Daniel Bard had his 2011 streak snapped at 26 1/3 innings.
WHAT WENT RIGHT
-The Red Sox sent nine men to the plate and scored four times in the second. Mike Carp and Jarrod Saltalamacchia started the inning with a single and a walk, respectively. White Sox starter Andre Rienzo retired the next two batters (both runners did advance a base in the process, though), but then Ellsbury lined a two-run single to center. Shane Victorino and Pedroia each worked a walked, and then Ortiz stayed hot by ripping a two-run double to right.
-The Red Sox benefited from a pair of strange plays in the bottom of the fourth. The first came when Ellsbury stole second while Victorino pulled back a bunt attempt. White Sox catcher Tyler Flowers couldn’t hold onto the pitch, as it appeared the ball had tipped off Victorino’s bat. Home plate umpire Angel Hernandez said there was no tip, though, so Ellsbury’s stolen base stood.
The second came when Conor Gillaspie appeared to make a diving catch at third. The ball fell out of his glove as he scrambled to the base in an apparent attempt to double off Ellsbury, but third base umpire Paul Nauert ruled that Gillaspie didn’t make the catch. Gillaspie then fired an errant throw to first, allowing Ellsbury to score. White Sox manager Robin Ventura came out to argue the call and was eventually ejected.
-Stephen Drew belted a solo home run over the 379 marker in left-center in the third inning. Drew has now reached base in nine straight starts, posting a .368 on-base percentage in that span. Sunday’s homer was his 11th of the season.
-Doubront’s deceptive delivery tricked a pair of White Sox into taking off early on steal attempts. In the first inning, Leury Garcia took off early, but he managed to beat Carp’s throw to second. Avisail Garcia wasn’t as fortunate in the second. Doubront caught him taking off and this time Carp was able to get the throw to second in time.
WHAT WENT WRONG
-After cruising through the first three innings, Doubront fell apart in the fourth and failed to make it out of the inning. He struck out Leury Garcia to start the inning, but then he surrendered two singles and a walk to load the bases with one out. Doubront got Jeff Keppinger to fly out to center, and even though that plated a run, it looked like Doubront had a chance to escape the inning with only one run allowed. That didn’t happen, though. Dayan Viciedo doubled off the left-field wall to score another run, then Gillaspie singled home two more. Doubront finished with a line of 3 2/3 innings, seven hits, four runs (all earned), four strikeouts and one walk.
-That fourth inning ended the Red Sox’ 11-game streak of holding opponents to three runs or fewer. That was the franchise’s longest such streak since April 1988 — also 11 games. The last time they went 12 straight games of allowing three runs or fewer was August 1915. That staff included the likes of Babe Ruth and Smoky Joe Wood.
-Victorino left the game after grounding out to third to end the sixth inning. He made it less than halfway to first before slamming his helmet. He started walking out to right field, but manager John Farrell and a trainer caught up to him, and after a brief discussion, Victorino followed them back to the dugout. Victorino’s injury was classified as a left hip contusion, and he is listed as day-to-day.
-Xander Bogaerts committed his first major-league error on a throw to first in the fifth inning that allowed Alexei Ramirez to reach. Ramirez then stole second and scored on a Paul Konerko single. At the plate, Bogaerts was 0-for-3 with two strikeouts before picking up an eighth-inning single.
UPDATE: Bogaerts’ error was later changed to a base hit.
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