Frustrating Stretch Continues: Sox Give Tigers Win

August 3

And so off they head to Detroit, looking to knock that losing streak out of the park. Peralta pitches for the Tigers opposite Richards. I’m a bit surprised the Sox gave Richards any more leash instead of trading him at last week’s deadline. He’s been extremely disappointing of late. He’s unreliable. Plus, Chris Sale is now in Worcester rehab. Triple-A is the last step of rehab, and I’m sure Richards would be out when Sale gets promoted again. A runner is at second with two out in the top of the first after a throwing error. Bogaerts comes home almost immediately courtesy of a single to right by Martinez, making it 1-0 Sox. Renfroe leads off the top of the second with a home run to left to double the lead to 2-0. This is his seventeenth of the year.

Veteran Miguel Cabrera cuts that lead in half in the bottom of the inning with a leadoff homer to right. It’s 2-1 on his eleventh of the year. He now has 2943 career hits, which ties him with Frank Robinson for 36th on the all-time hit list. The Tigers load the bases with nobody out in the bottom of the fourth. With one out, Grossman scores on a sacrifice fly, tying the game at 2-2 as the Sox get the bullpen moving. With as dire a situation as this, I would have thought that they would have had a reliever going as soon as Detroit loaded the bases. That way, by now Richards could have been pulled. There haven’t been too many head-scratching moments this year, this week notwithstanding, but this is one of them. That said, Richards induces a groundout to end the frame and limit the damage. Given that that could have been way worse, I’ll trade for the one run and loss of the lead over the alternative. For some bewildering reason, Richards is sent back out for the fifth. Maybe it’s because Detroit didn’t inflict that much damage, comparatively speaking. Now that will happen. After a leadoff walk, Richards allows a double to center by Baddoo to score Hill and give Detroit its first lead of the night at 3-2. Cora finally gets a clue and pulls Richards right after. I (and a lot of Sox fans, I’m sure) am playing Eddie Harris on the plane in "Major League" in my head: "Oh, sure, NOW he comes around!" A walk puts two on with one out, but Sawamura induces a double play to keep from the hole getting deeper. With two out in the bottom of the seventh, Schoop doubles to left, followed promptly by Grossman’s single to center to bring him home and give the Tigers insurance at 4-2. Duran is at second with two out in the ninth after moving up on defensive indifference, but the tying run strikes out looking, so the Tigers win, 4-2. And so the slump continues, extending to five in a row, a concerning stat. I don’t know if this is a consolation or not, but the Rays suffered a home loss to Seattle in the meantime, so Boston does not drop further back.