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Cruising With Sale

Monday, June 26, 2017

Red Sox 4, Twins 1

After going to two games over the weekend, Monday found me headed back in to Fenway again. And this time it was Sale Day, only the third time this season I’ve been able to watch the ace at work.

The red lights on the scoreboard figured to get a lot of work tonight.

The red lights on the scoreboard, brighter after having been replaced earlier in the homestand, figured to get a lot of work tonight.

This was also the third of four games in my Sox Pax that had included Opening Day.  Unfortunately my view from that seat is less than ideal.

View from the

View from the (almost) back row of Section 32. Who needs to see home plate anyway?

At least I could see Sale!  (I flashed back to Opening Day of 2002, when I was so excited that the Red Sox opened at home because it meant I’d get to see Pedro Martinez, and then the only part of the field I couldn’t see from my seat was the mound.)  No one ever came and sat in the seat next to me, so I was able to move over and see everything.

It turns out you do need to see the plate when Sale is pitching, because not too many guys advance beyond it. Here's Miguel Sano walking back to the dugout after fanning to end the first.

It turns out you do need to see the plate when Sale is pitching, because not too many guys advance beyond it. Here's Miguel Sano walking back to the dugout dejectedly after fanning to end the first.

Unlike at the beginning of the year, when there was never any run support for Sale, the offense got to work early tonight.  Mookie Betts and Dustin Pedroia singled to lead off the first, and a run came in the back door on a double play.  Well, better then nothing!  Mitch Moreland followed with a home run into straightaway center, his third straight day with a homer in his first at-bat.  That put the Sox up 2-0, and Sale went on cruise control.

Moreland homerd for the third straight day.

Moreland homered for the third straight day.

Sale’s first baserunner came on a single in the second inning, but the runner, Jorge Polanco, was quickly erased when he tried to steal.  Chris Gimenez hit a solo homer in the third (which was promptly thrown back onto the field from the Monster seats), but there were only a handful of baserunners the rest of the way.

Pedey applies the tag as Sandy Leon cut down yet another baserunner.

Pedey applies the tag as Sandy Leon cuts down yet another baserunner.

Sale was his usual dominant self.

Sale was his usual dominant self.

Tzu-Wei Lin made his first start at third base, and picked up his first Major Lague hit with a single in the second inning.

Tzu-Wei Lin made his first career start at third base, and picked up his first Major League hit with a single in the second inning.

The only time the Twins had two runners on base at the same time was the seventh, when a single and a walk brought Gimenez to the plate with one out.  John Farrell opted to go to the ‘pen and bring in Heath Hembree.  Naturally I was nervous, even knowing that Gimenez had homered off Sale earlier, having seen the bullpen blow a couple of Sale gems in the past.  But Hembree induced an inning-ending double play, started by the sure-handed Tzu-Wei Lin at third.

Sale finished the day with 6.1 IP, 1 ER, 4 H, 2 BB, and 9 K.

Sale finished the day with 6.1 IP, 1 ER, 4 H, 2 BB, 9 K, and 1 standing ovation.

Pedey had 2 hits and an RBI.

Pedey had 2 hits and an RBI.

Pedroia’s second hit of the day drove in an insurance run in the bottom of the seventh, and Moreland’s sac fly added another.  Matt Barnes struck out the side in order in the eighth, and Craig Kimbrel came on to close it out in the ninth.  All that was left to do now was dance, and since Mookie had had two hits and scored two runs, he did the honors.

June 26, 2017 • Posted in: 2017 Games • Share on Facebook

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