Rick Porcello had himself a night.
The Boston Red Sox right-hander tossed a one-hit (!) complete game (!!) on just 86 pitches (!!!) against the New York Yankees on Friday night. Porcello struck out nine batters and retired 21 consecutive Yankees to end the game in the Red Sox’s 4-1 win at Fenway Park.
“I think the story has to be Rick,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said after the game, as seen on NESN’s postgame coverage. “…I think the story is Rick Porcello. He was outstanding today.”
There’s certainly no denying Cora’s statement. Between the low pitch count and a two-hour, 15-minute game against the American League East rivals, Porcello helped the Sox cruise to victory.
Porcello joined some elite company Friday night as he became just the second Red Sox pitcher to toss a no-walk, one-hit complete game against the Bronx Bombers. The last pitcher to do that? None other than Pedro Martinez during the 1999 season. The last pitcher to one-hit New York in a complete-game effort came in 2009, when the late Roy Halladay accomplished the feat.
So what had the 2016 American League Cy Young Award winner so locked in?
“Sandy (Leon) did a really good job of calling the game and I just tried to put it where his glove was,” Porcello said after the game.
He now is 14-4 on the season with a 3.84 ERA.
Here are some other notes from Friday’s Red Sox-Yankees game:
— Cora was ejected in the first inning after Luis Severino went up and in on Mookie Betts, sending him to the ground and nearly hitting him. Cora jumped out of the dugout after a warning was issued to both teams, but the home plate umpire immediately tossed the skipper.
“I didn’t appreciate them throwing at my leadoff guy and didn’t like the fact that (the umpire) gave a warning. If they felt that way, that that pitch had intent, just throw (Severino) out of the game.”
Cora understandably was mad about the pitch and had a simple explanation as to why he was tossed so quickly.
“I wasn’t very polite,” Cora said.
— The Red Sox seemed to build momentum after their manager’s ejection, but Cora took no responsibility in the 74th season win.
“They don’t need quotes. They don’t need a manager to be ejected … we don’t need to have team meetings to fire them up,” he said. “On a nightly basis, I can sleep well because I know my team is going to show up and play the game the right way.”
— J.D. Martinez’s fifth-inning double marked the 47th consecutive time the designated hitter has reached base at Fenway Park. It’s the longest active streak in Major League Baseball since Ichiro Suzuki reached base at his home park 63 consecutive times in 2009.
— After Ian Kinsler exited the game with a tight hamstring, Betts took over at second base until the eighth inning.
Although Cora said he had “nothing to do” with the defensive replacement, he said the 25-year-old did an “outstanding” job. He also noted Kinsler “probably” would head to the disabled list.