|Patriots’ Defense to Face one of Season’s Toughest Tests in Bears||And Then There Were 16: Celtics to Waive Four Players, Bynum Next?||Chandler Jones Out 1 Month With Hip Injury; Patriots Sign Alan Branch||2014 MLB Playoffs Expert Picks: World Series|
It would appear that the Red Sox are finally starting to figure out these National League rules. After losing 2 of 3 to the Pirates and Phillies, the Red Sox have won the first two against the Astros in Houston, their last interleague series of the season. Boston took it to Astros starter J.A. Happ and later the Houston bullpen, piling up double digits in runs and hits in a 10-4 win.
The Red Sox scored three runs in the first on two RBI singles and a bases loaded walk, and that was more than enough for lefty Andrew Miller, who was quite impressive in his third Boston start. Miller allowed a run in a shaky first inning, but settled down in finished allowing just two runs on seven hits in 6.0 innings to nab his second win.
Darnell McDonald, who at this point is probably fighting to keep his job while the Red Sox look for a competent right-handed hitting outfielder, smacked a three-run HR in the eighth to blow a 6-3 game wide open, giving the Sox a comfortable 9-3 lead. He finished 1-4 but is still hitting just .125 on the season.
Terry Francona started David Ortiz at first base for the second time this road trip, and he went 0-2 with a bases loaded walk. Big Papi is now 0-for-his-last-18, and hasn’t had a hit since going 2-4 back on June 20 against the Padres at Fenway.
Adrian Gonzalez started the game in right field and eventually moved back over to first base when Ortiz was pulled. He finished 3-5 with an RBI and three runs scored.
Miller has pitched really well, and given Terry Francona a “good problem” in the process. When Clay Buchholz returns from the disabled list, who gets knocked out of the rotation? It should be John Lackey, but it won’t because of his contract. It will be interesting to see if Miller turns in a couple more strong outings.
Scutaro went 0-4, and is 0-for-his-last-8 since his first-inning HR Friday night.
W: Andrew Miller (2-0)
L: J.A. Happ (3-10)