The Boston Red Sox restored the baseball universe to rights on Wednesday. A day after being on the wrong side of a blowout result, the Red Sox played up to their capabilities during Wednesday's contest against the Colorado Rockies, blowing out their opponent in a 15-5 victory. It was the expected outcome for a game that pitted one of the best major league teams against one of the worst.
From the very outset, the Red Sox offense served notice as to what kind of game it would be. Namely, a high scoring one, at least from their side. In the first inning, the Red Sox used four hits to score three runs, taking advantage of two of the plate appearances they had with runners in scoring position. David Ortiz drove in two runs with a double to right field in one of the plate appearances while Jarrod Saltalamacchia's single to center knocked in David Ortiz.
Hits and runs continued to mount up for the Red Sox throughout the rest of the contest as well. The offense added another one in the third inning, three runs apiece in the fourth and fifth innings, and then tacked on an additional five runs in the eighth inning until they were sitting atop the majestic height of fifteen runs and looking down in disdain at their opponent's pitching.
Although the Red Sox did end up with fifteen runs in the contest, they really could have stopped scoring after Will Middlebrooks's three-run home run in the fifth inning that gave the club a 10-4 lead. Middlebrooks's hit gave the Red Sox a win expectancy over 90.0 percent for the first time in the game. The Rockies did cut into that win expectancy a bit in the bottom of the fifth inning, but could not match the Red Sox's offensive prowess.
Despite Middlebrooks hitting two home runs, the aforementioned three-run home run and also a grand slam in the eighth inning, he was not the most valuable offensive player for the team. That honor goes to Shane Victorino, who hit a three-run home run of his own to break a 4-4 tie with the Rockies and give the Red Sox a lead they would never relinquish; that hit alone earned Victorino a win probability added of 0.215, and he finished the game with a win probability added of 0.254.
Scoring a multitude of runs can serve to mask a lot of flaws in a game, and one of the flaws that the 15 runs covered up was the starting pitching of Jake Peavy. During Peavy's tenure with the Red Sox, he has been a serviceable pitcher, but a slightly below-average one. He has mixed in some good starts with a few stinkers, and his performance on Wednesday definitely qualified as a stinker.
In 6.0 innings, Peavy faced 29 batters and allowed five runs. He also walked almost as many batters (4) as he struck out (5) in addition to serving up one home run out of nine fly balls conceded. Where he had the most control over his pitching statistics, he failed to pitch well.
Since the season will end before Peavy gets another start and redeems himself, it will be interesting to see how much use the Red Sox have for their fourth-best starting pitcher in the playoffs.
With their 32nd blowout victory of the season, a third of their victories, there can be no doubt left as to how dominating the Red Sox have been for the majority of the season. The only disappointment a Red Sox fan can feel now is that there are still three meaningless regular season games to play before we learn if the postseason Red Sox can match the regular season version.