Monday, April 1, 2013

Sox Smite Evil Empire; Prevail In Opener, 8-2

AP Photo/Matt Slocum
The Red Sox traveled to the Belly Of The Beast (The Concrete Bunker On 161st Street), and came away with a convincing 8-2 victory on Opening Day. Led by a surprisingly robust offense (13 hits) and strong pitching (5 solid innings from Jon Lester), Boston generally made it look easy in the Bronx. The Red Sox bullpen contributed four innings of relief—giving up just one hit. The hitting spree was put on by Jacoby Ellsbury (3 for 6, 2 RBIs), Jose Iglesias (3 for 5, 1 RBI) and Shane Victorino (2 for 6, 3 RBIs). Jackie Bradley, Jr. was hitless in his debut, but he walked three times, scored twice and had an RBI groundout. As Hall of Fame writer Peter Gammons pointed out in a TWEET, Bradley got as many walks today as Carl Crawford got all last year.  Bradley also made a fabulous twisting catch in left field off the bat of Robinson Cano (see pic)—saving a run. On top of everything, he hustled into second base to avoid a force out to keep the four-run second inning moving. All in all, a terrific debut. The Red Sox are now tied with the Houston Astros juggernaut for the best record in baseball.