Closing Time: Jake Arrieta loses no-hitter, wins game against Red Sox
|06.30.14 at 10:10 pm ET|
The month of June has mercifully come to an end for the Red Sox.
It was a month which saw the team go 12-16 and average just three runs per game (84 runs in 28 games), by far the worst in the American League. The trend continued Monday night as it took until the eighth inning for the Red Sox to get their first hit against Cubs starter Jake Arrieta in a 2-0 loss to Chicago.
It was the eighth time the Red Sox were shut out this season and the 11th time in the last 16 games when the team failed to score more than two runs.
“There’s a combination of factors to that,” manager John Farrell said when talking about his team’s inability to put together a string of good offensive games. “Acknowledging [Jake] Arrieta tonight, but yeah, anytime we seemingly start to put together quality performances back to back it’s been difficult to extend. You can’t pinpoint any one reason, it is a little frustrating particularly where we are with our record and our status or place in the division trying to get some momentum going. Credit a solid performance tonight.”
Arrieta entered the game with a 0-3 record and a 5.90 ERA in six career appearances against the Red Sox, but he dominated them from the outset. No stranger to flirting with history, the Cubs right-hander also took a perfect game into the seventh inning of his last start against the Reds.
This time the no-hitter was spoiled by Stephen Drew, whose single to right with two outs in the eighth did the job. It came on Arietta’s 120th pitch. Arrieta tossed 7 2/3 innings, allowing just two baserunners (a hit and a walk) while striking out 10.
The loss spoiled what was a solid outing from Red Sox starter Jake Peavy, who allowed two runs over six innings (a two-run homer), which normally would put the Red Sox in a good position to win if not for Arrieta’s brilliance. Peavy is 1-7 on the year with a 4.82 ERA and has only left the game with a lead in two of his starts.
“It’s frustrating losing,” said Peavy. “You don’t want to lose, and when you made the mistake to cost your team to win, it hurts. Little things like we talked about, we talked about with a number of guys. Little things, you get that called third strike [on a 3-2 pitch in the fourth inning] and you’re in the dugout, the game could have played out differently. The way it’s been going on my day, obviously you don’t get the call, then on the next pitch you give up a two-run home run that decides the game. You just have to clean that up.”
Here is what went wrong (and right) in the Red Sox’ loss.
WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE RED SOX
– The Red Sox continued their month-long struggles at the plate as it took them until one out in the fifth inning to get their first baserunner, a one-out walk from Mike Napoli, and two outs in the eighth inning for their first hit when Drew lined a sharp single to right. They scored three runs or less in 19 games in the month of June.
– Xander Bogaerts‘ struggles continued, as the third baseman went 0-for-3 and is hitting .053 (2-for-38) since June 18 and .135 (13-for-96) overall in the month of June.
– In the second inning center fielder Mookie Betts got his first real test in center field at Fenway Park as he misread Nate Schierholtz‘s fly ball and allowed it to hit off the base of the wall in left center field. Replays showed it was a catchable ball, but it didn’t cause any damage as Peavy struck out the next two batters to get out of the inning unscathed.
WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE RED SOX
– Although Peavy suffered the loss, it was one of his better performances of late as he went six innings, allowing five hits while walking two and striking out seven. Peavy made one real mistake, coming in the fourth inning following a two-out walk to Welington Castillo when he allowed a two-run home run to Schierholtz. It was the 17th homer he’s allowed on the year, and he’s given up at least one home run in all but three of his 17 starts.
Peavy received no runs of support for the third time this season. He has had two runs or less of support in 13 of his 17 starts.
– Reliever Burke Badenhop pitched a 1-2-3 seventh inning and now has allowed just one earned run over his last 33 1/3 innings dating back to April 19, spanning 30 games.
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