So, this bullpen is becoming a bit of a problem.
David Price battled through a rain delay to pitch a scoreless gem, but a colossal meltdown by Ryan Brasier and Travis Lakins resulted in the Red Sox blowing a three-run lead in the ninth. They ultimately fell to the Cleveland Indians 7-5 in the middle contest of a three-game set at Fenway Park.
Brasier gave up a solo shot and two-run blast in the ninth to blow the lead, then Lakins came in and had no command, which allowed The Tribe to hang a pair more on the board, putting them up by the deciding margin.
The Red Sox fall to 28-26 with the loss, while the Indians climb to 27-28 with the win.
Here’s how it went down:
GAME IN A WORD
The Red Sox looked like they were in good shape, then the bullpen collapsed.
ON THE BUMP
— Rain delay be damned, Price looked tremendous Tuesday night. The southpaw tossed six scoreless innings, giving up three hits with one walk and six strikeouts.
Price pitched 1-2-3 innings in the first and third, and didn’t allow a runner past first base all night.
Overall, it was a nice display from Price, who lasted just three batters in his last start before getting pulled due to his illness. His stuff looked good at times Tuesday, with his fastball even hitting 94 on occasion. The cold temperatures and hour-plus rain delay didn’t seem to deter Price, either, another promising sign.
— Brandon Workman entered in the seventh and allowed a walk in a hitless, scoreless stanza.
— Marcus Walden took over in the eight and put himself in a tough spot.
The righty allowed a leadoff walk to Allen then a single to Mike Freeman. Francisco Lindor hit a double to the wall in right to plate both runs, cutting Boston’s lead to 3-2. Walden then got Oscar Mercado to pop out to short for the first out, and that’s when Sox manager Alex Cora elected to lift the reliever.
— Matt Barnes replaced Walden with one out and a runner on second, and after issuing a walk to the first batter he faced, the reliever got the next two hitters out to end the inning and keep the lead intact.
— Ryan Brasier entered in the ninth and was unable to protect the three-run lead.
Brasier immediately gave up a solo shot to dead center to Roberto Perez, then walked Jake Bauers. The righty then proceeded to let Allen, who was hitting .087, hit a homer to right field, tying the game.
Cora couldn’t get to the mound fast enough to pull Brasier after Allen’s dinger.
— Lakins entered and hit a batter, walked a batter, got a groundout, then walked another hitter, which loaded the bases. Jordan Luplow brought a pair home with a double to deep right that Mookie Betts got a glove on but couldn’t corral, putting the Indians up 7-5.
The Red Sox intentionally walked Jose Ramirez, then got the next two hitters out to end the inning.
IN THE BATTER’S BOX
— It took a while for the Red Sox to get any offense going, but they benefitted from the Indians struggling equally as much at the dish early on.
The Red Sox eventually struck first, plating three runs in the sixth. Rafael Devers smacked a one-out triple (the first of his career) to right, then came home the next at-bat on a Xander Bogaerts single up the middle. J.D. Martinez followed that up with a double to put runners on second and third, and both runners came home when Brock Holt reached on a throwing error by Freeman at second base.
— With their lead cut to one run, Boston added some insurance in the ninth that still proved to not be enough.
Bogaerts hit a leadoff double, and though he was out by a mile on the throw, a nice slide into second helped him avoid the tag. Cleveland unsuccessfully challenged the play, and Michael Chavis proceeded to single to right to plate Bogaerts, making it 4-2. And with two down, Steve Pearce roped a double to right, scoring Chavis from first.
— After their three-run advantage in the ninth was wiped away, the Red Sox put two runners on in the bottom half, but were unable to score them.
— Bogaerts, Martinez and Devers led the Red Sox with two hits apiece.
— Chavis, Holt, Pearce and Christian Vazquez had one hit apiece.
— Betts and Jackie Bradley Jr. went hitless.
TWEET OF THE DAY
Great work by the grounds crew.
The Red Sox and Indians will play the finale of the three-game set Wednesday evening. Ryan Weber will get the ball for Boston and will be countered by Shane Bieber. First pitch from Fenway Park is set for 6:10 p.m. ET.
Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images