Vazquez hits 2nd Career walk off at Fenway
It’s beginning to “feel like last year.” Christian Vazquez echoes his managers words last night at Fenway after his second career walk off home run ( last on Aug 1, 2017 vs. Indians) and his 9th on the year. After completing a comeback like last night, it’s starting to feel a little like last year’s team is starting to comeback to life.
After giving up 7 hits and 4 runs through 5 innings Chris Sale had another deceiving outing, striking out 8 runners he kept his team in the game, enough to to be within 3 runs going into the 7th inning. Thats when the offense of last years World Series team came to life.
After walking Teoscar Hernandez, a wild pitch, and an RBI (31) to Randal Grichuk, ColtenBrewer was relieved by Josh Taylor who was immediately saved by the infield with a double play. Mookie Betts got things going in the bottom with his 3rd Triple of the year, Andrew Benintendi immediately drove him in next at bat for his 34th RBI of the year, Xander Bogaerts brought him in on his 25th double of the season. The Blue Jays eventually retired the side 5 pitches later when Brock Holt grounded into a double play, but not after J.D Martinez brought Bogaerts in on his (42) RBI of the season. Xander himself rounds out the top 10 of the AL in RBI’s with (50) and has been outstanding on defense this year, yet did not receive the All-Star love he deserved, hopefully he receives the Managers nod.
After a strong start to the inning Alex Cora pulled Josh Taylor for Ryan Brasier. Brasier immediately got himself into a pinch before Vladimir Guerrero Jr. flied out to Mookie Betts to send Boston’s offense back out. A hard fought inning the Sox did all they could to tie the game. Following a Jackie Bradley Triple (his first of the year), and the RBI (48) for Rafael Devers Boston did just that.
It took two more relievers, and Boston having to go 5 deep into the bullpen before the bottom of the 10th brought the Herald closure to a comeback. A comeback that felt all so routine last year but oh so foreign this year. Thats when, with a 3-2 count, Marco Hernandez on 1st, and Toronto’s Jordan Romano holding the Red Sox for a stingy two innings, Christian Vazquez came to the plate; the Boston faithful loud at his back through 10 compelling innings. Dave O’Brien and Jerry Remy suggesting the only must was they “gotta get Mookie to the plate”and “…a little gap ball would be nice.” Vazquez proceeded to knock out something a little more powerful than a gap ball, something powerful enough to clear the Red Sox bullpen and the Left Field wall for his 2nd career walk off home run.
The Sox continue to stay hot and are really beginning to PLAY like last year. With the All-Star break and trade deadline fast approaching only time will tell how strong and consistent this Boston team can play down the stretch. The talent still remains, but with Nathan Eovaldi still out and the Red Sox lacking a true closer (letting Craig Kimbrel walk last year in free agency I still find to be a questionable choice), one would wonder how active this Red Sox team be at the upcoming trade deadline, and what affect could either way have on them down the stretch.