Mookie Betts had a scheduled day off Sunday against the Angels, but when Los Angeles tied the game in the eighth inning, it made sense for the Red Sox outfielder to come off the bench as a pinch-hitter, right?
Not so fast.
Mitch Moreland worked a leadoff walk and manager Alex Cora made the call to remove Moreland and put Betts on the basepath. Cora then pinch-hit Brock Holt for Michael Chavis.
Betts ultimately was thrown out trying to steal second and Boston ended up losing 5-4 to the Angels at Fenway Park to split the series.
Many had questions as to why Betts didn’t hit for Moreland, and Cora explained his decision after the game.
“The guys that were coming behind, Christian (Vazquez) and Brock, it was a good spot right there,” the skipper said. “Mitch got on base and we didn’t make contact on a 3-1 count. That’s why I went with him there.”
The 3-1 count Cora talks about is, of course, when Betts was caught stealing after Holt didn’t make contact on what we only can assume was supposed to be a hit-and-run.
Betts did get a chance to hit in the 10th, but popped out to the shortstop.