There’s a reason the Boston Red Sox went all out to sign David Price this offseason.
The Red Sox gave the left-handed ace a seven-year, $217 million contract ahead of the 2016 season, and Price paid the team back with a stellar Opening Day start Tuesday in a 6-2 win over the Cleveland Indians. Price pitched six innings, giving up two earned runs on five hits with two walks and a whopping 10 strikeouts. He had a rough fourth inning, allowing two runs on four singles, but otherwise, Price had control.
In fact, Price’s start was among the best in the Red Sox’s history of season openers. The last Boston pitcher to earn 10 K’s on Opening Day was Josh Beckett in 2009, and Price’s outing wasn’t too far off from Pedro Martinez’s in 1998, when he shut out the Oakland Athletics over seven innings with two walks and 11 strikeouts.
All in all, it definitely wasn’t a bad way for the Red Sox to start their season. Here are some more notes from Tuesday’s game.
— The Red Sox flexed their offensive muscles Tuesday, too. Mookie Betts and David Ortiz both blasted two-run home runs en route to an 11-hit day for Boston. Betts, Ortiz, Hanley Ramirez, Travis Shaw and Brock Holt each had two hits on the day.
— Ramirez probably proved some haters wrong after going 2-for-4 with a walk and a run. The run even came on a nice hustle play by the Red Sox first baseman, who booked it to third on his own on a single by Shaw, before being knocked in on a bloop single from Holt.
— Ortiz’s home run was the 504th of his career, tying Eddie Murray for 26th all-time. Ramirez was pretty darn impressed by Papi’s 2-for-4 day.
It’s a pretty intriguing performance from Ortiz considering he posts his lowest averages in April.
— The Red Sox’s bullpen deserves a shoutout, too. After Price’s dominant six innings, Junichi Tazawa, Koji Uehara and Craig Kimbrel came out and held things down. None of the trio allowed a hit, and Tazawa and Kimbrel both struck out two batters. The only small blemish was a walk from Kimbrel.
— Betts was stellar on the field as well, making an incredible catch to rob Rajai Davis of a hit in the fifth inning. Price, who clapped at his right fielder’s heroics, said it might be something in Betts’ cleats.
Thumbnail photo via Ken Blaze/USA TODAY Sports Images
Thumbnail photo via Boston Red Sox starting pitcher David Price throws a pitch during the first inning against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports