First impressions of the Boston Red Sox’ 5-3 win over the Los Angeles Angels:
Just when it seemed like the Red Sox had no magic left, they woke up.
And with two outs in the ninth no less.
That inning is proof that Boston pitching doesn’t need to be lights out to get a win. They just need to stay competitive so the offense is within striking distance.
Also, if John Farrell doesn’t stop Dustin Pedroia’s argument after his third strikeout, the second baseman doesn’t get his shot to give Boston the lead.
The first inning was about as weird as it gets.
It’s not everyday you see a team get three hits in an inning and not score a run -- especially when one of the hits was a double and the other two hits were out of the infield.
Or that you see two plays at the plate go in the defenses favor in the same inning.
The game would have had a much different if not for a little bit of luck.
Clay Buchholz was shockingly impressive.
It only took him 35 pitches to get him through three innings of work.
Only allowing one runner to reach base -- a seventh inning Mike Trout walk -- Buchholz took on 10 batters and retired nine.
More importantly, he held the Angels lead to three runs, giving Dustin Pedroia and the Red Sox their chance at late heroics.
And, if another organization was genuinely interested in the righty, that’s about as good of showcase he’s had all year.
Aaron Hill has really looked like a failed acquisition.
Another rough day at the plate for the Red Sox third baseman. It seems as if he’s trying to do too much at the plate in order to compensate for his sloth-like start. What the Red Sox really need is for him to find some holes.
A single every once in a while might make a difference -- like the one in the ninth, just a little more frequently.
As much as hitters have to protect with two strikes, Dustin Pedroia was right to take that strike in his third at-bat.
Because it wasn’t even close to being a strike. And you can debate strike zones all you want, but if you watched the next at-bat, the second called strike on Xander Bogaerts was a curveball at his knees.
You can’t call a breaking ball that lands at the top of the zone and one that finishes on the opposite end. He should call the one at the bottom -- but he has to pick one either way.
You can’t always expect umpires to have a good strike zone, but you can expect them to be consistent to their own.
That’s why Pedroia was frustrated by more than anything -- having seen multiple ones called at the knees, including one in his first at-bat.
Nick Friar can be followed on Twitter: @ngfriar