MLB Game Preview - Red Sox v Indians

 
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5
Final 1 2 3   4 5 6   7 8 9   R H E
Boston0 0 2 0 0 0 3 0 0 5121
Cleveland0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 150
1
  W: N. Eovaldi (1-0)   L: S. Bieber (12-5)
10:10 AM PT11:10 AM MT12:10 PM CT1:10 PM ET13:10 ET17:10 GMT1:10 10:10 AM MST12:10 PM EST12:40 PM VEN21:10 UAE12:10 PM CT, August 14, 2019
Progressive Field, Cleveland, Ohio  Attendance: 29,535

Desperate Red Sox look to win series in Cleveland

According to STATS
According to STATS

Boston Red Sox at Cleveland Indians

  1. Cleveland took two of three in Boston in late May, losing the first game, 12-5, but outscoring the Red Sox, 21-14, over the next two. The Indians have won three of their last four at home against the Red Sox after dropping four of the previous six.
  2. The Red Sox have gone 3-11 since July 28, worst in the American League in that span and better than only the Pirates (2-11) league-wide. Their starter ERA prior to July 28 was 4.70, compared to 8.15 since that date.
  3. J.D. Martinez has picked up a hit in 10 straight games, slashing .447/.523/.842 (1.365 OPS) with four home runs, eight RBI and nine runs in that span. Prior to the All-Star break, Martinez posted a .541 slugging percentage, but he has slugged .615 post-break.
  4. The Indians have gone 26-9 (.743) since July 1, best in MLB. Only three teams in the live-ball era (since 1920) have posted a .740+ win percentage from July 1 to the end of a season: the 2001 Oakland A's (64-19, .771), the 1954 Cleveland Indians (63-21, .750) and the 1942 St. Louis Cardinals (68-21, .764).
  5. Jose Ramirez posted a .652 OPS prior to the All-Star break, ranking 141st out of the 146 hitters qualifying for the batting title. Post-break, Ramirez has a 1.035 OPS, ranking 11th in the same population of hitters.
  6. Eduardo Rodriguez has a BB/9 of 5.58 and a K/9 of 7.04 over his last five starts, compared to season-long marks of 3.40 and 8.98, respectively. Zach Plesac posted a 3.80 ERA in eight starts in his first stint in the majors this season but has a 2.00 mark in five starts since his recall on July 16.
Notes Applicable For Series Dates: 8/12/2019 thru 8/14/2019

For an idea of how desperate the Boston Red Sox are to find something that works with their pitching, look no further than Tuesday night's game against the Cleveland Indians.

Nathan Eovaldi, whose return to the rotation was set to take place Wednesday, was instead used in relief for two outs in the eighth inning. Then, after Brandon Workman blew the save in the ninth, the man Eovaldi was expected to replace on the starting staff, Andrew Cashner, took the mound with a one-run lead in the 10th and converted his first career save.

It wasn't what manager Alex Cora drew up, but in the end it worked. Now, Boston will look to steal a three-game series win in Cleveland in the finale Wednesday afternoon.

With Eovaldi needed in relief, left-hander Brian Johnson (1-1, 7.32 ERA) will serve as the Red Sox's opener in the pivotal contest. The Indians will counter with right-hander Shane Bieber (12-4, 3.28).

Needing to string together a serious run of wins to get back in the wild-card hunt, Boston overcame blowing a 6-1 lead to escape with a 7-6 victory Tuesday. The win snapped a three-game skid and was the team's fourth in the past 16 games.

"It was a grind," Cora said. "Give the guys credit -- they made some plays, had some good at-bats. They didn't stop playing, and we ended up winning the game."

Key to the result was a historic night from third baseman Rafael Devers, who became the first player in the live-ball era to go 6-for-6 with four doubles in a game. Devers also had three RBIs.

"I had no idea, I just try to go out there and have a good at-bat," Devers said, through a translator, of making history. "That's really all that I was thinking about."

For the Indians, the defeat was just their third in the past 12 games. Coming back to tie it in the ninth was a positive, but Francisco Lindor, who knotted the score on an RBI double, lamented being thrown out at third right after on an attempted steal.

"I messed up," Lindor said. "It's a rookie mistake."

"If he makes it, we probably win," Cleveland manager Terry Francona said. "I don't want to take our aggressiveness away because every once in a while you are going to be out."

Carlos Santana homered in the loss to extend his streak to three straight games, while Franmil Reyes hit his second blast in two days.

Johnson will make his fourth straight start for Boston, having been tagged for three runs in 2 2/3 innings against the Los Angeles Angels his last time out. He's pitched more than three innings once in nine appearances this season.

Johnson has faced the Indians twice in his career, giving up three runs in 7 1/3 innings total.

Unlike his counterpart, Bieber has been a consistent source of length for Cleveland, with two complete games in his past four starts. He went seven innings against the Minnesota Twins on Friday, allowing two runs and striking out 11 to get within seven punchouts of 200.

Bieber beat the Red Sox on May 29 despite getting rocked for six runs on eight hits, three of which were home runs, in five innings. He's 2-1 with an 8.44 ERA in three games (two starts) lifetime versus Boston.

--Field Level Media

Updated August 14, 2019

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