Orioles righty Dylan Bundy either missed badly, or did a better job of placing a retaliation pitch than Matt Barnes.
Mookie Betts was hit in the front hip by a Bundy fastball in the bottom of the sixth inning Monday night at Fenway Park, opening the door to further drama between the Red Sox and O's. Monday was the first of a four-game set.
In a four-pitch at-bat, Bundy missed badly inside on the second pitch before hitting Betts on the fourth pitch, a 94.5 mph fastball.
The score was only 2-0 Orioles, a close game where retaliation in the heart of the Sox order isn’t ideal for the Orioles’ chances of winning. There was one out and no one on and the Sox, cold at the plate on a cold night behind Rick Porcello, had just two hits.
Bundy had walked four batters to that point, adding to the possibility he just lost his handle on the pitch. But either way, intent might not matter for the Sox. The bottom line is the Orioles hit the Sox’ best player, and the question is whether the Sox see that as something that now demands another tit-for-tat episode.
Bundy has not hit anyone else this season in 38 innings pitched up until that at-bat. He hit six batters in 109 2/3 innings last year.
Players for both teams before the game said Manny Machado's spiking of Dustin Pedroia and Barnes' subsequently terrible attempt at retaliation was in the past. (LINK:http://www.csnne.com/boston-red-sox/orioles-britton-red-sox-dustup-i-think-we-turned-page-and-we-moved)