With the Boston Red Sox playing three straight four-hour games and back-to-back extra-inning affairs, the team needed help from its bullpen toward the end of the current homestand.
And the bullpen delivered.
The Sox’s relievers combined to pitch 11 scoreless innings in Boston’s two wins over the Philadelphia Phillies on Monday and Tuesday, including six frames in Tuesday’s 4-3 12-inning victory at Fenway Park.
Boston left-handed starter David Price went the first six innings and allowed three earned runs before turning it over to the bullpen. Robby Scott, Blaine Boyer, Craig Kimbrel, Heath Hembree and Fernando Abad (2-0) then took it from there.
There certainly were some close calls for the bullpen, including a deep drive from Maikel Franco that just barely missed leaving the park in the eighth inning, which resulted in Andrew Benintendi throwing out Howie Kendrick at home. But even when the relievers did get in a jam, they always pitched out of it Tuesday and gave their offense a chance to win.
And Benintendi took that opportunity and ran with it thanks to his walk-off hit in the bottom of the 12th inning.
Let’s take a look at a few more notes from Red Sox-Phillies.
— The latest update on Tyler Thornburg isn’t good news for the Red Sox.
Boston manager John Farrell told reporters before Tuesday’s game against the Phillies that the right-handed reliever, who’s been on the disabled list all season, still is having issues with his right shoulder impingement.
“He’s not picked up a ball in the last couple of days,” Farrell said, via MassLive.com’s Christopher Smith. “The symptoms have not completely subsided so we are continuing to gather as much information as possible on what’s going on. And I know that’s been a recurring answer to the question about Tyler. But based on information we’ve gotten, adjustments made to his rehab schedule and plan, it will rear it’s head again. So we’re continuing to find all this out, find out as much information as possible.”
But surgery hasn’t been suggested.
“It hasn’t been recommended,” Farrell added. “So until further notice, this is where we are.”
— Pablo Sandoval once again wasn’t in Boston’s starting lineup Tuesday, although he did pinch hit, and Farrell explained the decision to reporters before the game.
“He’ll be on the field. We’ll mix and match,” Farrell said, via the Providence Journal’s Tim Britton. “He needs to be more consistent defensively. So with Pablo, we’ve got work to do.”
“… Pablo is our guy, and it’s up to us to get the most out of him. And that’s ongoing.”
— Carson Smith, meanwhile, had his simulation game pushed back a day, although there appears to be some potentially good news on the horizon for him.
— The Sox will be in a National League ballpark for the next two days, and their lineup plans currently don’t involve Hanley Ramirez at first base.
— Henry Owens’ struggles continued with a not-so-good career high for Triple-A Pawtucket on Tuesday.
— The Sox were busy on Day 2 of the MLB draft. Here’s a look at their draft picks.
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images