The Red Sox dropped Game 1 of their two-game set against the Philadelphia Phillies 3-2 on Tuesday in what was a relatively quiet night for Boston’s bats.
But there was one bright spot for the Sox — the bullpen.
Boston used five relievers during the loss, and boy did they come in handy. The crew allowed just one hit and no runs through 5 2/3 innings pitched, retiring 15 batters in a row at one point.
With 24 blown saves in 47 opportunities, it’s clear 2019 hasn’t been the bullpen’s best year. So Tuesday’s one-hit performance was a refreshing change of pace for the Sox.
After the game, manager Alex Cora said the bullpen was “amazing.”
“I mean, they’ve been pitching great,” Cora said, as seen on NESN postgame coverage. “Had good rhythm, attacking guys — it’s been good for a while now.”
Here are some more notes from Tuesday’s Red Sox-Phillies game:
— Brian Johnson didn’t get off to the hottest start but found his groove during the latter half of his outing.
The southpaw gave up three runs in the first inning before settling down in the second, third and fourth. He ended his night after 2 2/3 innings, giving up three runs (all earned) off six hits.
— The Red Sox had a chance to tie things up in the ninth, but a poor base-running decision by Xander Bogaerts cost Boston dearly. The shortstop attempted to reach third on a J.D. Martinez grounder but was thrown out at third for the first out of the inning.
“That’s a no-no, and he knows it,” Cora said after the game. “That ball is right in front of him, and that’s a big mistake right there.”
That said, Cora knows Bogaerts knows better. “He just took off right away. … He saw the line drive, took a few steps and got doubled-up.”
— Rafael Devers’ eight-game hit streak has come to an end. The third baseman went 0-for-4, striking out once.
— Meanwhile, Jackie Bradley Jr.’s recent success continued.
The center field launched a two-run blast into the Boston bullpen in the third inning. He’s gone 7-for-21 with three home runs and five RBI in his last six games.
Bradley Jr. now has 15 home runs in 2019 and 85 in his career.
— Boston has been held to two or fewer runs 25 times this season, including Tuesday’s loss. They are now 3-22 in those games as well, per Red Sox Nation Stats.
Thumbnail photo via Paul Rutherford/USA TODAY Sports Images