credit: Gregory Fisher – USA TODAY SPORTS
Ahead of Saturday’s game, Boston Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom offered his perspective on the team’s dismal start to 2022.
“Obviously, we’ve had some hard losses of late, you know, more than our share,” Bloom said. “But they happened. We don’t have a time machine. We can’t go back and change them.”
Ten innings later, against the Chicago White Sox, another hard loss. Boston lost a 1–0 lead in the ninth and fell 3–1, its sixth loss in as many extra-innings games.
The next challenge is to avoid a three-match series sweep at home on Sunday morning.
“We had a chance to finish the game in ninth,” said Red Sox manager Alex Cora, whose team had two runners in the scoring position with one out after Jackie Bradley Jr.’s single and Christian Vazquez’s double. Couldn’t score.
Starting pitching was not an issue as Nick Pivetta played six shutout innings and scored eight runs.
Now, Michael Couch (3-0, 1.38 ERA) would like to continue Boston’s recent trend of allowing two or fewer runs in 13 of the last 15 matches.
Coven played 5 2/3 shutout innings on Tuesday against the Los Angeles Angels. Only one baserunner reached the scoring position against Covenant, who faced 15 out of a total of 20 batsmen.
The right-handed batsman has not scored more than two runs in any of his five starts, of which he has won the last three. For the season, his .148 opponent’s batting average is the lowest in the American League.
“(Coven) was pounding the strike zone with the good stuff and got some early outs,” Cora said. “For a defender, he’s a dream come true. His pace, you have to be ready to throw strikes because the ball will hit. So far we’ve done an excellent job behind him defensively. He’s been great. “
Saturday’s resilient effort helped Chicago extend their winning streak to five straight.
The White Sox, who have scored two or fewer runs in four of those five matches, were first 0–10 trailing after eight innings.
“A game like this, we need to build up our confidence,” said center fielder Louis Robert. “We had a really tough April and we look forward to winning a game like this.”
Jose Abreu and Robert had back-to-back RBI hits to start 10th after Leri Garcia hit a sacrificial fly in the ninth.
“It proves I’m all about you all about them – heart, guts, talent,” said manager Tony La Russa.
Chicago’s pitching plans for the final two games were not determined prior to the series, as the team still awaits the return of Lance Lynn (right knee tendon tear), which is expected at some point in May.
Dallas Ketchell (1-3, 8.40) will get the ball, despite struggling strongly with Command in recent starts.
Against the Angels last Sunday, the big southpaw conceded four earned runs off six hits and five walks. It was his second consecutive start with five free passes and his third consecutive loss.
After his last outing, Keschel had allowed more hits (24) and earned runs (14) than any White Sox starter.
“I still feel good,” Keschel said. “That’s the main thing and I’m excited about how things are progressing. Obviously, I want to win every start, that’s not likely. But at the same time I have to give six, seven innings instead of five.
-Field level media