The Red Sox saw Oakland off with more of the same Wednesday night, crushing the baseball over and over again and completing the sweep with another 13-run attack.
The Red Sox have made a habit of scoring in the first inning this year. Tonight, they did not, and so decided to make up for it by scoring for the next five straight. The Athletics nearly got out of the second without surrendering a run, but just when you expect the lineup to putter out, Jackie Bradley Jr. lay in ambush in the ninth spot. With two on, a 1-1 fastball drifted back across the plate, and Bradley killed it, driving the ball over the bullpens and into the stands for a three-run shot, his fourth homer in the past week.
At the time, it put the Red Sox ahead by two, but that wouldn't last for long, because Porcello just wasn't all that great to start this game. He struggled with his command, and while he got away with some hittable pitches early on, the A's didn't miss all of them. A two-out Yonder Alonso double down the right field line scored the first run of the game for Oakland in the second, briefly putting them ahead, and Khris David provided more two-out damage in the third when his base hit brought home two more to tie the game.
But Rick Porcello gathered himself, escaped a bases-loaded situation in the fifth, and worked through 6.2 innings without allowing another run. It was not his best night, but he pulled it together, as good pitchers do even when they're not quite right.
The Athletics staff...the Athletics staff did not.
Chris Young would get the Red Sox right back on top in the bottom of the third, making good on a leadoff walk for Dustin Pedroia by doubling to left. In the next inning, Pedroia was getting it all done by himself, just reaching the Monster seats for his sixth homer of the season, making it 6-3 for Boston. The biggest inning would be the fifth, though, when the Sox blew it open for good by sending all nine men to the plate and scoring four more.
Remarkably, even after Christian Vazquez and Mookie Betts combined for an eleventh run in the sixth, the Red Sox were in danger of setting a new low mark offensively for this ridiculous series after a scoreless seventh. But Jackie Bradley Jr.--who else--would make sure that didn't happen, once again finding the distance to right field, producing another two-run shot to right and earning himself a post-game Gatorade shower as he made it another 13-run night for the Red Sox.
What is there left to say about this series? The Red Sox entered this week as the class of the American League offensively. Then they produced 40 runs in three games. If the season were to end today, depending on how you define it, the Red Sox would be the most dominant offense since the American and National Leagues merged. Even separately, the only teams to face real competition and so greatly outpace their competition were the 1876 White Sox, and 1875 Red Sox.
Except they were called "Stockings" then, because it was the 19th century!
What on Earth is this team?