It’s amazing what some home cookin’ can do for a baseball team. The Red Sox went into their home opener with a lowly 1-5 record, sitting in the cellar of the AL East. Granted six games can hardly be taken as a reflection of how the season will play out, but it’s safe to say that the Sox and their fans were pressing. All that has changed for the time being as the Red Sox have now won three in a row, giving them a 4-5 record after their defeat of the Rays on Sunday.
Cody Ross got the scoring started for the Red Sox with a mammoth 3-run homerun in the bottom half of the second off Tampa Bay starter Matt Moore. The homer was Ross’ second in as many games. In his first three games at home Ross has displayed the “tailored for Fenway” swing that brought him to Boston.
The Sox would get another run in the fourth on a Kelly Shoppach double that drove in David Ortiz. Cody Ross tried to come around and score when the throw to third got away but Evan Longoria recovered quickly enough to gun him down at the plate with ease.
The Red Sox sent their fourth starter Felix Doubront to the mound Sunday in the third game of a four game set with the Tampa Bay Rays. Doubront pitched well through the first four innings but the Rays got to him in the fifth on doubles from Carlos Pena and Evan Longoria to bring the Rays back within a run and Luke Scott would lead off the sixth with a solo homer to tie the game at 4, ending Felix Doubront’s day in favor Scott Atchison.
Remember all that talk less than a week ago about the Red Sox bullpen? Well I didn’t hear any of that today.
Vicente Padilla pitched 1 2/3 scoreless innings, giving David Ortiz and Mike Aviles the opportunity to shift the momentum back in the Sox’ favor. Big Papi hit a long double in the bottom of the sixth to drive in the go-ahead run and Mike Aviles added his second homer in as many days in the bottom of the seventh–giving the Red Sox a 6-4 lead that they wouldn’t let go of.
Aceves was perfect in the ninth, picking up his second save of the season. There’s no doubt that the Red Sox are starting to gel. Roles are being defined and this team look’s capable of winning–as crazy as that sounded just a few days ago.