Two division contenders got their money’s worth Sunday afternoon, with the Oakland Athletics scoring a run in the bottom of the 11th inning to score a walk-off 3-2 win over the Boston Red Sox. The win gave Oakland a series victory over Boston and sent both teams into the All-Star break atop their respective divisions. Boston finished the weekend at 6-4 on an arduous 10-game West Coast road trip.
The game began as Old School vs Young Pups, with ageless veteran Bartolo Colon dueling Red Sox rookie starter Brandon Workman through six innings. Colon retired 13 straight Boston batters between one stretch of the second to sixth innings, while 24-year-old Workman, making his first Major League start, had a no-hitter going into the 7th inning. Neither starter figured in the decision.
Boston took a 1-0 lead in the 6th when Dustin Pedroia singled home Jacoby Ellsbury who went 3 for 4 on the day. The Red Sox added a run in the 7th when Brock Holt chased home Mike Carp with a single to make it 2-0 Boston. Carp started Boston’s inning with a lead off double.
Oakland answered in the bottom of the 7th when former Red Sox center fielder Coco Crisp led off with a single up the middle to break up Workman’s no hitter. Workman lost the no-hit bid, the shut out and a chance to win his first start when he gave up a 2-run homer to Josh Donaldson.
Then the game turned into a battle of closers and bullpens. Grant Ballfour for the Athletics and Koji Uehera for the Red Sox did their respective jobs in the 9th inning and the game remained tied until the bottom of the 11th. Boston squandered a chance to pull ahead in its half of the 11ths when Brock Holt took a called third strike with the bases loaded. The Athletics cashed in and won the game against recent Boston bullpen acquisition Matt Thorton who walked two and gave up a bloop single to right that chased home the winning run, making Oakland a 3-2 winner.
For Boston, Workman turned in a promising performance in his first start in the Big’s, going 6-and-a-third, giving up two earned runs on 2 hits while walking 1 and striking out 5.
Boston heads into the All-Star break with a 2-and-a-half game lead over Tampa Bay with baseball’s best record at 58-39. Oakland goes into the break leading Texas by 2 games in the A.L. West.
Following the All-Star break the Red Sox get right back to business in the American League East when the Yankees visit Fenway for a three game series July 19-20-21. Boston then plays host to another A.L. East foe when Tampa Bay visits for a four game set. The Red Sox then face Baltimore for three at Camden Yards before finishing out the month of July by hosting Seattle for three at Fenway.
- Flyin’ Hawaiin lifts Bosox to 50th win (baseballtrashtalkin.org)
- Donaldson hits RBI single in 11th, A’s beat Bosox (utsandiego.com)