Henry Owens has been a bright spot for a struggling Boston Red Sox organization in 2015. The young prospect made himself a key figure in the starting rotation, helping the team resurrect their season to a more respectable status than basement dwellers in the American League East division. However, Owens hit a wall in the third inning of last night’s game, as the Cleveland Indians were the hosts at Progressive Field with aspirations for the playoffs or, at least, to ride recent success into next year.
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Even though the Indians wake up this morning officially eliminated from any chance of a wild card spot this season, they battled hard. In the bottom of the third inning, a walk sandwiched by two singles with one out set the stage for Carlos Santana who doubled to center field, scoring Mike Aviles, Jose Ramirez, and Ryan Raburn to clear the bases for a 3-0 lead. Two batters later, Chris Johnson singled to right field to score Santana to cap off the four-run frame.
Owens fell victim early in the count with every batter earning a hit. Out of the eight Indians whom he faced, Owens threw a total of 30 pitches, which computes to just under four pitches for each plate appearance. The most that he used was against Ramirez, whom he walked on eight pitches. They jumped all over Owens’ four-seam fastball which never reached faster than 89 mph.
The Red Sox immediately responded in the top of the fourth inning. Designated hitter David Ortiz showed, once again, why he is one of the most dominant hitters in MLB history by smashing his 37th home run of the season, sending it sharply over the right field fence. Xander Bogaerts also scored on the play, cutting the lead to 4-2.
Oct 2, 2015; Cleveland, OH, USA; Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz (34) celebrates with shortstop Xander Bogaerts (2) after hitting a home run during the fourth inning against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports
That’s as good as it was going to get from the Red Sox bats on this night.
In the bottom of the fifth inning, with Owens still pitching, Yan Gomes doubled to right field, scoring Santana. After a single by Johnson, Jerry Sands doubled to left field to cash in Gomes. The next batter, Abraham Almonte hit a pop up that was missed by Bogaerts and scored Johnson to make the lead 7-2.
Owens night was finally done in the fifth, but it wasn’t the end to the Indians scoring. To cap off the night, Sands drilled his fourth home run of the year off of Jonathan Aro in the bottom of the seventh inning, making the lead 8-2.
The Red Sox never came back and took the loss. The Indians just looked more hungry, which will have to change if the Red Sox want to take the series win to finish the season.
- Both Mookie Betts and Dustin Pedroia went without a hit, making it difficult for the meat of the order to have many people to drive home. The team went 0-for-4 with runners in scoring position, leaving five men on base. The Indians went 7-for-13 and left nine on base.
- By going 1-for-3, with a run scored, Bogaerts remains the only Red Sox starter to have a batting average above .300. He currently stands at .322.
His body of work has been impressive, but it was not Owens’ best outing last night. He gave up seven earned runs on 10 hits, four walks, and four strikeouts in 4.1 innings. He threw 107 pitches, 61 for strikes, and imposed three groundballs to two flyouts. His 4.57 ERA is not outstanding, but his 4-4 record has been one filled with ups as well as downs which the Red Sox coaching staff now has a foundation to work on in next year’s spring training with Owens.
The Red Sox needed to quell the storm of runs that the Indians were driving home. Aro came into the game and allowed a home run and two walks, but he also struck out four batters to hold them to that one hit for his 2.2 innings of work.Roman Mendez
came in for one inning, during garbage time, and blanked the Indians for only a single walk. However, the damage had already been done. At least Aro took the heat off.
Showing no signs of stopping, Ortiz went 1-for-3 with a home run and two RBIs, putting his batting average to .272. He was responsible for all of the offense on the night. As a team, the Red Sox only had five hits. That’s never going to get it done against any team.
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