Red Sox Rewind: Vaz beats the Tribe


Red Sox Rewind

During these tough times without the game we love, Syndicate Sox writer Evan Bolliger will be throwing it back to absolute classic Red Sox games of the 21st century- both those we all remember and some forgotten moments. Today’s game:

August 1, 2017, 7:10 PM EST

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Cleveland Indians Starting Lineup

SS Francisco Lindor
RF Brandon Guyer
LF Michael Brantley
2B Jose Ramirez
DH Edwin Encarnacion
1B Carlos Santana
CF Austin Jackson
C Yan Gomes
3B Gio Urshela
Starting Pitcher: Carlos Carrasco

Boston Red Sox Starting Lineup
RF Mookie Betts
LF Brock Holt
2B Eduardo Nunez
DH Hanley Ramirez
CF Jackie Bradley Jr
3B Rafael Devers
SS Xander Bogaerts
1B Mitch Moreland
C Christian Vazquez
Starting Pitcher: Chris Sale

The Game

Game 2 of a much anticipated series between two winning ball clubs, this matchup left every baseball fan satisfied.  Despite the two aces on the mound, there was no shortage of offense at all.  The Tribe got to Chris Sale early, with five runs in the first two innings, including a two-run shot over the monster by Brandon Guyer.  

Boston quickly answered with five runs in the bottom of the second.  Mitch Moreland cranked a home run over right field and was eventually followed by an RBI single by the Brockstar and an RBI double by Eduardo Nunez.  Both pitchers settled down for the next couple of innings until Edwin Encarnacion hit a bomb off of Sale in the fifth, driving in himself and Jose Ramirez. 

The Sox weren’t down for long, as Mookie Betts and Nunez combined to drive in four in the bottom of the sixth, giving Boston a 9-7 lead.  Cleveland struck again with a Carlos Santana homer off of Addison Reed in the seventh, and the Red Sox held a 9-8 lead until Craig Kimbrel came in for the save in the ninth. 
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Unfortunately for the Fenway Faithful, it was a bad night for Kimbrel. Superstar Francisco Lindor hit a home run off the elite closer and a wild pitch brought in Jose Ramirez. Three outs remained for Boston as they entered the bottom of the ninth down 10-9.

Do or die time.  Cleveland sent in closer Cody Allen, who was in the midst of a fourth elite season as the saves man (finished ‘17 with a 2.94 ERA and 30 saves).  Due up for Boston: JBJ, the young Raffy Devers, and Xander Bogaerts.  Bradley unsurprisingly struck out, and Devers injected hope right back into our veins with a clutch single.  Bogey hit a deep fly ball to center that was caught. Two outs. 

Up came first baseman Mitch Moreland.  Fenway was as energetic as ever.  Moreland struck out swinging. Three outs.  Game over.  Or so we thought, as the pitch got past catcher Yan Gomes and Moreland hustled his way onto first!  

Boston had another chance to score with Christian Vazquez coming up.  I can still remember watching with my parents and thinking out loud.  “Just get on base for Mookie.  PLEASE just get on base for Mookie.”  Vazquez was a fine hitter in 2017, as he finished with a .290 average, but had few clutch moments and only had three home runs in the majors at this point.

It’s safe to say Vazquez did more than get on base.  He hit a three-run shot to clinch a walk-off win, 12-10 Boston.   He hit an absolute moonshot into deep center field.  My living room erupted into cheers and high fives all around, as I’m sure many living rooms in New England did that night. 

Memories with friends and family like that are a huge part of why I love sports so much.  It’s important to remember joy like that, especially at times like this.  So stay at home, relax, and reminisce with me in this new series as we wait anxiously for sports to return.

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Boston Sports Syndicate: Red Sox Rewind: Vaz beats the Tribe
Red Sox Rewind: Vaz beats the Tribe
Boston Sports Syndicate
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