Sox Have Huge Tenth, First Series Win in Seattle in Cora Era

September 15

Gonzales pitches for the Mariners against Houck in the rubber game of the series. Today is Roberto Clemente Day in baseball. One out into the ballgame, Hunter Renfroe gets his team on the board with a homer to left-center. It’s 1-0 Sox on his twenty-eighth of the year. With a runner at first and one out in the top of the second, Dalbec continues his extra-base run with a ground-rule double to left-center that puts two runners in scoring position. Schwarber scores on a groundout to make it 2-0. Iglesias hits a double to the gap in left-center, so Dalbec scores with ease to make it 3-0. A fly out ends the inning. A runner is at first with one out in the bottom of the third when Tom Murphy hits a single to right that sends Kelenic to third. Since the throw to third goes into the dugout, Kelnic is awarded home plate to make it 3-1. Meanwhile, Murphy is awarded second base on the throwing error. A walk puts two on, and those runners move into scoring position on a wild pitch. With two out, a double down the left-field line by Seager ties the game at 3-3 as both men score. That is a milestone. Kyle Seager now has 558 extra-base hits, which is third-most in Mariners history. Now Boston’s bullpen is active. Houck strikes out the next man to end the inning, though Ty France nearly goes deep to right, with the ball just drifting foul at the last moment. After Bauers is barely hit in the pantleg with two out in the bottom of the ninth, he steals second. When I say barely, I mean clipping the fabric on his lower leg near his cleat. Two umpires have to go review it to make sure. Just prior to that, Kelenic had just hit a ball just barely foul down the right-field line that would have been a walk-off double had it fallen fair. He ends up striking out and sending the game to extras.

Dave O’Brien, the Red Sox’s primary sportscaster, reminds us that the Sox have done extremely well in extra-inning games in which they are the visitor. Remember the runner at second to start every half-inning. Jack Lopez plays that role in the top of the tenth, quickly moving to third on a single to left by Verdugo. Lopez scores on a passed ball to make it 4-3 while Verdugo moves up to second. A walk puts two on, and a Verdugo single to center loads up the bases. There’s still nobody out. Swanson is pulled in favor of another reliever. With one out, Martinez singles to shallow left to score Renfroe and make it 5-3. Bogaerts and Devers score on a Schwarber single to right, effectively putting the game out of reach at 7-3. The catcher blocks the plate, which he’s not supposed to do before getting the ball. There’s another pitching change, after which the Sox load up the bases with a walk. Vázquez doubles down the right-field line to score two of those men and make it 9-3. It’s just barely fair, hitting the right-field chalk. A fly out finally ends the inning. Kelenic serves as the runner at second for the bottom of the tenth. He moves to third with one out when Pérez drops the ball on the mound (a kind of balk). Kelenic scores on a groundout to make it 9-4. A strikeout ends the game as the Red Sox win it in 10. With that, they pick up their first series win in Seattle since 2013, a year in which they won the World Series at home for the first time in 95 years.