Colorado Rockies right-hander Chad Bettis was asked to step to the rubber and slow the Boston Red Sox offense at Fenway Park on Wednesday. For starting pitchers in recent weeks, that’s gone about as well as Leonardo DiCaprio fending off that bear attack in “The Revenant.”
That is to say, not well.
Bettis started off fine, but ran into trouble in the fourth and fifth innings. He ended up getting chased after just 4 2/3 innings. His final line in that time: seven runs on seven hits, four walks issued (one of which was intentional) and two strikeouts.
By the time he exited, the Red Sox had racked up a five-run lead, which they would only add to in an eventual 10-3 win over the Rockies.
Here are three observations from the game:
The Red Sox offense is ridiculous.
Boston is mashing everything this season. It has scored the most runs in all of baseball. Entering Wednesday’s game, consider the following.
- The Red Sox averaged 8.7 runs and batted .352 with 20 home runs in their last 14 games at Fenway Park.
- They’d registered 10-plus hits in 16 of their last 19 games.
- Center fielder Jackie Bradley, Jr. was riding a 28-game hitting streak.
- Shortstop Xander Bogaerts was on an 18-game hitting streak.
All of those trends continued Wednesday night. The Red Sox racked up 10 runs and 13 hits; Bradley Jr. slapped an opposite-field single; and Bogaerts hit a bomb over The Green Monster.
Bettis faced an extremely tough test, and he got shelled.
We got to see a knuckleballer have a weird outing.
If you haven’t heard by now, the Red Sox trotted out a knuckleballer Wednesday! That’d be Steven Wright, who was making his ninth start of the season. He’s a 31-year-old who learned how to throw the knuckler in 2010 while his career was stalled as a member of the Cleveland Indians minor league system.
Wright got off to somewhat of a rocky start against the Rockies. He surrendered two early runs, thanks in large part to the two wild pitches Wright threw and the five passed balls — ones that didn’t look easy to stop, mind you — that got by catcher Ryan Hanigan.
But Wright got some major run support soon thereafter and settled in to have a nice game. He gave up three runs over seven innings to get the win. A good day for the man who goes by the Twitter handle @Knucklepuck23.
The Rockies are sinking; their National League West rivals are not.
That promising start to the season is getting farther and farther away in the rear-view mirror. Wednesday’s 10-3 defeat marked Colorado’s third-straight loss and sixth in its last seven games.
The San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers, meanwhile, are streaking. San Francisco has won seven straight, its latest a 10-inning victory over San Diego. The Dodgers have won three straight. After their latest setback, the Rockies trail the Giants by seven games.