The one day delay to opening day of the 2016 season didn’t hurt the David Price debut as the ace of the Boston Red Sox pitched 6 solid innings to earn his 1st win in a Red Sox uniform…an impressive Sox 6-2 victory over the Cleveland Indians.
Solid defense (led by a great catch in RF by Mookie Betts), power hitting (HRs by Betts & Big Papi) and 3 innings of shutout relief pitching by Junichi Tazawa, Koji Uehara and new closer Craig Kimbell ended the day with smiles on the faces of Red Sox Nation.
Drawing Board Victory
This start went exactly as planned:
- Price striking out 10 in his 6 inning stint,
- Mookie Betts continuing to impress at bat and in the field
- David “Big Papi” Ortiz cracking a HR to put the game away
- Closer Craig Kimbrell throwing smoke as he ended the game with a strike out
Add in the bottom four in the batting order (Travis Shaw, Brock Holt, Blake Swihart & Jackie Bradley Jr.) going 5-15 with 3 walks, 2 runs 1 RBI and not much went wrong. Shaw had 2 hits and was flawless in the field (OK, so he only had a few chances) while Pablo “Panda” Sandoval stayed bundled up in the dugout.
Not everything was perfect (especially the temperature) as the Sox stranded 10 men and were just 1-7 with runners in scoring position, but that’s nitpicking after just one game.
Boston scored first when Betts launched one to left field with Bradley (single) on base in the 3rd, but Cleveland came right back in the 4th with two of their own as Price had his only rocky inning of the game, throwing 34 pitches.
In the 6th the Sox put the game away with 2 more runs and knocked out former Cy Young winner Corey Kluber after just 5 1/3 innings. Boston hit him hard from the 2nd inning on, with 9 hits and 4 earned runs before he left the game.
David Ortiz wrapped up the scoring with a long 2 run blast to RF in the 9th, taking away a save opportunity from closer Craig Kimbell.
Final: Boston 6 Cleveland 2
David Price (1-0): 6IP – 5H – 2ER – 2 BB – 10 K – 103 Pitches
Corey Kluber (0-1): 5 1/3IP – 9H – 4ER – 2BB – 5K – 96 Pitches
- Hanley Ramirez went 2 for 4, but left himself open to criticism for not running out what should have been a double when he thought he had a HR. He did however give it his all when he went from 1st to 3rd on a single to left earlier
- Despite the solid outing by Price, Betts was the star of the game, going 2-5 with a HR, 2 RBI and the catch of the day
- Boston pitching accumulated 15 Ks, helped by a large strike zone from Home Plate Umpire John Hirschbeck
- Prior to the game the Indians surprised Manager John Farrell with a special tribute as he was introduced
- Old friend Mike Napoli had a tough game at the plate, striking out 3 times in 3 ABs
Quote: After the game Big Papi said: “When the lights go on Big Papi goes on”
RHP Clay Buchholz (7-7, 3.26) vs. RHP Carlos Carrasco (14-12, 3.63) Wednesday at 6:10 p.m.
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