A lot of things were going right for the Boston Red Sox on Thursday night.
Boston was getting a brilliant outing from Martín Pérez, Jackie Bradley Jr. homered for his second-straight game and the Red Sox looked destined to snap their three-game skid.
And then the eighth inning happened.
Ryan Brasier balked with two men on and Boston grasping onto a 2-1 lead. A wild pitch then tied things up at 2-2 as the game continued into extra innings.
Phillips Valdez, who had been strong all season, gave up four runs and the Red Sox ultimately lost 6-2.
Just like that, one of the best outings from a Red Sox pitcher this season was spoiled.
What’s more, Pérez carried a no-hitter into the seventh inning, but that’s not what the southpaw was focused on.
“I didn’t even know I was throwing a no-hitter,” Pérez told reporters during his Zoom postgame press conference. “I told those guys, ‘Hey throw to home plate. He’s running.’ We went out from that inning and I looked at the score and I’m like ‘Oh my God. I don’t have any base hits yet.’ But I don’t think too much … I was focussing, you know, attack the hitters and do my job to give my team the win tonight.”
Pérez finished the night after 6 2/3 innings. He scattered three hits, allowed one earned run with three walks and five strikeouts.
Here are some other notes from Thursday’s game:
— Valdez elected to throw to Teoscar Hernandez with the game tied at 2-2 and first base open in the 10th inning. It was an interesting move, to say the least.
Vlad Guerrero Jr. was on deck and already was 0-for-3 on the night. And with first base open, it made sense to intentionally walk Hernandez for a better chance at a double play.
But that didn’t happen, and the Red Sox paid the ultimate price when they watched Hernandez launch a three-run home run to make it 5-2.
“I still down deep, I still probably would have rather we walked him,” manager Ron Roenicke told reporters on Zoom. “… The decision didn’t work out.
“There’s a couple things tonight I wish we would’ve done differently.”
— Bobby Dalbec continued his struggles at the plate, going 0-for-3 with a walk Thursday night. He also struck out twice, which put him on the wrong side of Major League Baseball history.
— Jackie Bradley Jr. had a big night on offense.
The center fielder homered for the second straight night and went 1-for-4 with one run and two RBIs.
— J.D. Martinez had a strong night at the plate as he went 3-for-5.
It’s been a tough year for the designated hitter, who hasn’t been able to get to the video room as much as in years past to check out his batting practice or recent at-bats. But it appears he’s finding a bit of a groove in the final month of the season.
Thumbnail photo via David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports Images