If you were one of the fans not watching Saturday night’s game because you didn’t want to stay up until midnight, don’t feel bad. It’s gotten to the point where every time the Red Sox play the A’s, it’s just not worth watching. After Friday night’s 16-2 embarrassment, it was more of the same on Saturday as the Red Sox offense steamrolled Oakland’s sad excuse for a pitching staff for 11 runs. Most notably Yoan Moncada collected his first career hit with an RBI double down the left field line in the bottom of the 3rd. It’s always nice to watch young kids get all the firsts out of the way so they can settle in and not have to worry about it. On what was a special night for Moncada, teammate Rick Porcello came pretty close to a milestone of his own.
Rick Porcello took a perfect game into the the bottom of the 6th inning. Did anyone watching actually think that he was going to go the entire game without giving up a hit? No, he’s a contact pitcher and therefore he’s going to give up hits. Nevertheless, it was nice to see Ricky P go out there and dominate, moving closer to a much more important milestone. This milestone being the 20 win plateau. With 19 wins, Porcello is now just 1 win away from being the Red Sox first 20 game winner since Josh Beckett. I realize that a pitcher's Win-Loss record doesn’t tell the whole story, but when you have a record like 19-3, it at least tells you that he is giving his team every opportunity to win nearly every time he takes the hill. Do I think Rick Porcello wins the Cy Young award? No. However, you can’t discredit how well he’s pitched this season while assuming the role as the ace of the Red Sox pitching staff.
Hanley Ramirez is officially scorching hot. When he is fully invested in the game and seeing the ball well, Hanley is just as scary as any hitter in baseball. (With the exception of David Ortiz. Nobody is that scary.) Over his last 7 games, Ramirez is batting .407 with 4 home runs, 11 RBI’s, and 1.393 OPS. Hanley is famous for his announcements that “things are about to get dangerous or ugly. Doubles, triples, home runs, and more home runs.” Well right now, he is the most dangerous hitter in this lineup. Hopefully he can keep it going to help the Red Sox finally pull away from Toronto in the division.
The Red Sox have one more game against the A’s before heading to San Diego for a series with the Padres. If the Blue Jays continue to skid after dropping two straight to the Rays, the Red Sox have a chance to take sole possession of first place. If they’re lucky they may even be able to give themselves a little bit of breathing room before they have to fly to Toronto to take on the Blue Jays themselves. With Eduardo Rodriguez taking the ball on Sunday, the Red Sox don’t really know what they’re going to get. He was rolling before missing a start due to hamstring tightness. But in his first start back, it was pretty ugly. Hopefully he was just shaking off some rust and now he’s good to go for this last month of the regular season. If he’s back to back to being the Eduardo Rodriguez we saw following the All-Star break, the Red Sox should be able to fly to San Diego with another sweep under their belt.