Red Sox Notes: Boston Left 12 Men In Scoring Position Vs. White Sox

Boston left runners in scoring position in six of nine innings

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The Boston Red Sox were coming off their best offensive outing of the season, but were unable to capitalize on numerous scoring opportunities against the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday night.

Boston’s six-game winning streak was snapped as the offense was unable to take advantage of a promising lead. Alex Verdugo scored the opening run of the contest with an RBI single in the first inning and starting pitcher Rich Hill held strong for four innings, until Jake Burger hit a three-run home run in the fifth inning to put the White Sox up 3-1.

Verdugo had a golden opportunity to put the Red Sox back on the board in the seventh inning. The left fielder faced two outs with bases loaded, but he grounded out to end the inning. Despite the offense falling short, manager Alex Cora went with the “process over results” approach coming out of Wednesday.

“Not really, it’s one of those — yeah, we’ve been hitting the ball hard in situations like that,” Cora said, as seen on NESN’s postgame coverage. “Yesterday was unreal. We only scored one, but the line was moving. We did a good job, and we’re going to get more opportunities with the big boys. He (White Sox pitcher Lucas Giolito) had to grind to get six innings to hit. He’s a good pitcher.

“We’re very pleased with what we had offensively. We’re controlling the zone, even some pitches, with two strikes, there’s no chance to do damage. The calls were the calls. We struck out looking, but I’ll take that. I’d rather control the strike zone than expand it. We’re in a good spot right now.”

The Red Sox were held to one run Wednesday night after scoring 61 runs in the last six games.

Here are more notes from Wednesday’s Red Sox-White Sox:

— The Red Sox batted 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position. They left 12 runners on base, and it was the first time since Sep. 6, 2020 the Red Sox lost a nine-inning game after being walked at least seven times, per The Boston Globe’s Alex Speier.

— Tanner Houck pitched three innings in relief for Hill. The right-hander did not give up a run in his bullpen outing, and he struck out three batters. Cora was pleased with how Houck has adapted to his new role.

“Excellent, three runs, eight innings,” Cora said. “The way it was set up, he was going to go in the ninth. If they kept the righties, he was going to keep going. He’s been doing a good job on the bullpen. He went three in Texas, then the four innings and now here. I know he ended up pitching in a losing game, but we had our chances offensively. We felt like it was a good moment for him to keep going and give us a chance to win.”

— Former Red Sox pitcher Joe Kelly entered the game in the eighth inning. He struck out two batters in 2/3 inning, before leaving the game after suffering a hamstring injury.

— The Red Sox lead the league with 96 doubles. However, on Wednesday, Boston’s seven hits all went for singles.

— J.D. Martinez was the most efficient batter of the night. The designated hitter went 2-for-3, with two walks and one run scored.

— The Red Sox and White Sox will compete for the series victory Thursday at 8:10 p.m. ET at Guaranteed Rate Field. Full coverage of the game will be on NESN following an hour of pregame coverage.

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