Three things we learned from the Red Sox’ 5-3 win over the Angels
Three things we learned from the Boston Red Sox’ 5-3 win over the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim . . .
1) Dustin Pedroia still has some pop in his bat
The diminutive second baseman tied last season’s homerun total with three-run game-winner in the ninth. Many of Pedroia’s teammates have said the biggest difference this season has been that he’s healthy, which is why he’s been consistent while batting over .300 most of the year.
That homerun wasn’t a small poke either -- it easily cleared the 396 mark in center -- too far for Mike Trout to give a legitimate bid at robbing him
And the funny thing is, his homerun easily couldn’t have happened, had it not been for John Farrell getting tossed instead of Pedroia falling his third strikeout.
And Pedroia was pretty to the point following that strikeout, too.
“I’m only 5-foot-7. I’m going to need a trampoline to hit that damn ball. This is the Major Leagues,” Pedroia said, recalling his conversation with home plate Gabe Morales when Farrell was tossed.
Had Farrell not fallen on the sword for the firey second baseman wouldn’t have been the man at the plate in the ninth -- and things could’ve ended a lot differently.
2) Clay Buchholz can help the Red Sox win on occasion
That’s just as surprising as Dustin Pedroia hitting a 400-foot long ball to win the game.
Probably more surprising actually.
Buchholz has been on his game out for the bullpen lately, retiring 17 of the last 18 batters he’s faced.
The righty seemed to be in a good place after the game, and isn’t over-thinking his approach, which is probably why none of those 18 batters he’s faced have a hit.
“All I’m thinking there is try to throw to the end of the game and not eat up the bullpen for this next series,” Buchholz said following Sunday’s win. “And everybody knows we have a really good offensive baseball team. If you stay in the game for long enough I think everybody feels good about our chances to comeback.”
If Buchholz isn’t lights out, the game had the chance to drag more than it already was. Instead, he had good tempo and alleviated some pressure off Boston’s lineup to set up late-game heroics.
3) The Red Sox are still in a good spot going into August
Before the Minnesota series, Boston was 11-3 in July. After facing the Twins, the Tigers and the Angels, they finished the month 15-10. So against two on the worst teams in the league -- along with Detroit at home -- Boston dropped seven of 11 games.
But they’re still only 1.5 games out of first place in the AL East.
Now that’s in big part thanks to the Blue Jays and Orioles having a wild weekend, but now Boston has momentum with the big win. Not to mention, the Red Sox still have a few series against the Yankees, who shipped out their two biggest pieces in the bullpen for youth. Other than the age-old rivalry, the Bronx bombers should serve as a doormat in their upcoming meetings.
The Red Sox still have some work to do on the road, but now they start it 2-2 with a wild win, as opposed to being shutout to start 1-3.