Red Sox sweep two games over Marlins, win fourth straight


The Red Sox had won seven of their last nine games and three in a row coming into Wednesday night’s game against the Miami Marlins at Fenway. Enter Rick Porcello who had lost seven of his last eight starts, including a horrible performance in his last outing on July 1 in Toronto in which he gave up seven hits, seven runs and three homeruns in just two innings. Some fans and local media claimed this was “make it or break it” time for Porcello in what could be viewed as the most important start of his career in Boston. Somehow, some way, he was able to get it done.

Porcello was able to get a one-two-three inning in the first, and despite giving up two singles in the second to 1B Justin Bour and 3B Derek Dietrich, he was able to force catcher J.T. Realmuto to hit into a double play. He was able to remain unscathed in the third after allowing a single and a walk, but the fourth inning would finally be where the Marlins would do some damage. DH Michael Morse, Dietrich, Realmuto, RF Cole Gillespie and Ichiro Suzuki would all single (in a row) in the inning to get two runs on the board.

While it was a bumpy road up through the fourth, Porcello did settle down in the fifth and sixth not allowing a single base-runner. The play-by-play for those two innings tells it all – strike out, ground out, ground out … ground out, strike out, strike out. After that huge turnaround, Porcello’s night would come to an end with a final line of 6 IP, 8 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 4 K and 0 HR.

The Red Sox offense didn’t get much going in the first couple innings except for a Brock Holt single (what else is new), but the biggest inning of the game for Boston was the third. After Alejandro De Aza grounded out, Ryan Hanigan worked a walk. A throwing error from pitcher Tom Koehler would allow Mookie Betts to get to second (Hanigan at third). Brock Holt would get an RBI on a fielder’s choice followed by an RBI infield single from All-Star hopeful Xander Bogaerts. Finally, David Ortiz crushed his fifteenth homerun of the season to left field to give the Sox a 4-0 lead at the time.

Jul 8, 2015; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz (34) celebrates a home run against the Miami Marlins with shortstop Xander Bogaerts (left) during the third inning at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

Boston didn’t do much at the plate after that point but didn’t really need to. Ortiz led off the sixth with a ground rule double. Hanley Ramirez came up next and nailed a laser single to center. Pablo Sandoval, who was 0-3 on night and seems to be in a bit of a rut, grounded into a double play that did allow Big Papi to score. Boston’s sixth and final run would come on another throwing error (Miami had 3 in the game) with De Aza stealing third on a Betts strikeout and eventually making his way home.

Robbie Ross pitched a flawless seventh inning getting a strikeout in the process, but the struggling Matt Barnes did give up a solo homerun in the eighth to Michael Morse. Koji Uehara only needed eleven pitches to pick up his 21st save of the season to give the Red Sox the 6-3 victory in a two game sweep over the Marlins.

The Sox have now won four straight and are five games behind the first place Yankees with an upcoming three game set against the Bronx Bombers in Boston. The hot streaking Clay Buchholz (7-6, 3.27) will take the mound to face right-hander Michael Pineda (8-5, 3.79) with the first pitch scheduled for 7:10 on Yawkey Way.


*Hanley Ramirez was the DH while David Ortiz played at first base for the second time in three games. Despite the fact that it seems to be working out for the Red Sox, David Ortiz voiced his displeasure about it with WEEI’s Rob Bradford earlier today.

*Marlins starter Tom Koehler picked up the loss to drop to 7-5 on the season with 6 IP, 5 R (only 1 earned), 2 BB, 2 K and 1 HR on the night.

*This was the first night that Ryan Hanigan has been behind the plate for Rick Porcello since Hanigan has returned from the DL, and coincidentally Porcello was able to get the W. Porcello and Hanigan seem to have a “thing” together.

*Brock Holt went 1-4 to extend his hit streak to eight games.

*Xander Bogaerts continued his All-Star campaign going 1-4 with an RBI and a run scored. He is now hitting .304 with 41 RBI on the season.

*Dustin Pedroia is scheduled to come off of the DL on Friday, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he’ll be in the lineup against New York according to ESPN.

*Even though Mike Napoli has been riding the pine while trying to get his stroke back, John Farrell claims they still have confidence that he can turn his awful 2015 around according to WEEI’s Justin Pallenik.


. STARTING PITCHING . B-. . Rick Porcello

Porcello wasn’t perfect, but then again, he may have been closer to what he truly is tonight than what he’s been for the last couple months. He was able to locate his fastball and curveball with a little more consistency and was able to get out of jams with groundball outs, which are his bread and butter. The man himself indicated that he needed to stop letting up runs in the innings immediately after the Boston offense put up runs, however he faltered in the fourth after the Sox had a big four run third. However, he did go on to redeem himself in the fifth and sixth innings. The Marlins are not a good hitting team so this win needs to be put in context, but it’s still a huge step forward for Porcello who had a ton of pressure on him coming into this start for a game in the beginning of July.

A. . David Ortiz. . OFFENSE

Ortiz may not enjoy playing first base, but it didn’t seem to impact his hitting tonight. After a minor slump (0-9 coming in), David was able to go 2-4 with two RBI and two runs scored with a big homerun for added flavor.

A. . Koji Uehara. . RELIEF PITCHING

Koji Uehara came in for the ninth and mowed down the side to remove any hope the Marlins had for a comeback in second save in as many nights. His value to this team can be taken for granted especially since they have certainly lost more than they’ve won, but Koji is still a very important piece for Boston.

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