|Notes and Observations Week 16: Patriots Escape from New York with 17-16 Win; Clinch First Round Bye.||Connelly’s Top Ten: Patriots Win By Less Than a FOOT||Panic Mode in Full Effect, Minutemen are Struggling||Patriots Survive Gritty Challenge From Jets|
It was a strange, strange evening at the Oakland Collesium on Friday night. Coco Crisp and Jeremy Hermida started…in the A’s outfield. Red Sox starter Clay Buchholz and the bullpen both had very opposite outings (in terms of quality)…with Buch drawing the short end of that stick. Entering Friday, Buchholz had not allowed more than three earned runs in a start since July 24…against the A’s. To the action we go.
Buchholz had a forgettable outing, allowing three in the first inning on a Kurt Suzuki RBI double and Jeremy Hermida’s bases loaded double play that scored Suzuki. He faced four more batters in the second inning and was pulled after he couldn’t get anyone else out. The final damage? Five runs allowed on five hits and four walks in 1+ innings of work. Hey Clay, say goodbye to the 2010 Cy.
One pitcher who won’t be saying goodbye to his Cy Young Award candidacy is Oakland starter Trevor Cahill (not to be confused with Mass. gubernatorial candidate Tim Cahill), who toed the rubber for the bad guys on Friday. Cahill had a strong outing, allowing no runs on just three hits over seven innings pitched. He earned his 16th win of the season and lowered his ERA to 2.61 as the A’s beat the Red Sox 5-0.
With Buchholz departing so soon in the game, that left Francona to run through his depleted, rookie-filled bullpen. So, the final score must have been 60-0, right?
Wrong! The bullpen tossed SEVEN shutout innings to quiet the A’s bats. Lefty Dustin Richardson worked out of Clay’s jam in the second inning and tossed two scoreless innings. Michael Bowden then tossed two innings of his own, allowing two hits. Robert Coello tossed two more scoreless frames, though he allowed a hit and two walks. Robert Manuel finished off the A’s in the eighth with a scoreless inning of his own, giving the bullpen a line of 7 IP, 0 R, 3 H, 4 BB, 5 Ks.
For probably the first time ever, Tito earns the nod. He orchestrated the strong outing for the entire bullpen, running through four young pitchers in seven scoreless innings. Hey, the hitters don’t deserve this nod after only mustering three hits!
Buchholz was coming off an outing where he struggled through five innings against the White Sox, as he was forced to toss 95 pitches. Friday in Oakland, nothing was working for him, and he struggled to regain his form. Here’s hoping he’s able to end his season on a good note.
W: Trevor Cahill (16-6)
L: Clay Buchholz (15-7)