Ryan L. Fox
It was a special evening down at McCoy Stadium this past Monday night. Recovering from offseason cartilage restoration surgery in his left knee, Red Sox All-Star 2B Dustin Pedroia has been on the disabled list since March 29 of this year. Now after weeks of working out and extended spring, Pedroia began his road back to Boston by taking a quick pit stop for a MLB injury rehab assignment with the team. Against the visiting Buffalo Bisons, Pedroia played at his natural position of second base and batted 3rd in the lineup.
In the top of the 1st inning, Pedroia was able to get under a pop up by Bisons 2B Devon Travis to record the 2nd out of the inning. Then during the following inning, Pedroia saw only 3 pitches before then flying out to right field. In his second at-bat, Pedroia saw 5 pitches before hitting a single into right. He was able to hustle into second following a single by teammate RF Rusney Castillo before scoring two batters later on an RBI by LF Ramon Flores that same inning. Then in
Overall for the game, Pedroia had a very strong showing. In the field, He was able to show his defensive prowess snagging that pop out in the first inning. At the plate, Pedroia showed no signs of rust. During the 4th inning after his second at-bat, Pedroia showed no signs able discomfort as he ran the base paths, including hustling to score from third on an RBI fielder’s choice by Ramon Flores. He then followed up with a ground out to the second baseman in the bottom of the 5th inning, which ended up being his last appearance for the game.
Pedroia’s stat line for the game was as followed: 1-for-3, 1 R, 1 put-out in 5 innings of play,
As for the rest of the PawSox, Jalen Beeks (2-2, 1.72) took the ball going up against Bisons LHP Josh DeGraaf (1-5, 4.01). In the beginning of the game, the Bisons were able to take Beeks for a run in the first couple of innings. An RBI single by DH Jason Leblebijian in the top of the 1st and then a solo home run by CF Dalton Pompey gave the Bisons an early 2-0 lead.
The PawSox were able to get onto the board in the bottom the 3rd inning thanks in part to a solo home run by SS Tzu-Wei Lin to make it 2-1 after 3 innings. They were able to tie things in the bottom of the 3rd as LF Ramon Flores hit into a fielder’s choice. 1B Sam Travis was out at second but Pedroia was able to score from 3rd to make it 2-2. Then 3B Ivan De Jesus Jr. hit a sac fly deep to right to score Castillo from third to give his team a 3-2 lead.
The score stayed that way all the way to the top of the 8th inning. There, Pompey hit his second home run of the game off of PawSox RHP Tyler Thornburg (back with the team to continue his rehab assignment) to tie things at 3-3. Three batters later, C Danny Jansen added another run via RBI single as the Bisons regained the lead 4-3.
But then in the bottom of the 8th, the Bisons committed perhaps the biggest blunder of the game. With two outs and PawSox 3B Jordan Betts on first base, Castillo hit what would be a routine pop out. However Bisons SS Gift Ngoepe was unware that teammate LF Dwight Smith Jr. was also coming in for the catch. The ball ended up landed in between them as Betts scored from first to tie it up 4-4.
In the top of the 10th inning, the Bisons broke the 4-4 tie as 2B Devon Travis hit a single over the head of Lin to score teammate RF Ian Parmley from third to make it 5-4.
However the PawSox did not go away quietly. In the bottom of the 10th inning with CF Cole Sturgeon on 2nd, C Dan Butler blasted a double to left that scored Sturgeon to tie things up 5-5. Butler was then lifted as INF Mike Miller came in to pinch run. With Lin at the plate, Miller advanced to third on a wild pitch. Then on a 3-2 count, Lin lifted the ball deep to center field to score Miller and give the PawSox a 6-5 late-inning victory.
Beeks was given the no decision, going 6 strong innings pitched while allow 4 hits, 2 runs (both earned), a home run, 2 walks, while striking out 7 Bisons batters. The win was given to LHP Williams Jerez, who came into relief in the 10th inning. He went 1 inning, giving up 1 hit, 1 walk, 1 run, and no strikeouts.
After the game, PawSox skipper Kevin Boles spoke with the media. During the Q & A, Boles talked about his team’s performance during the game, how Pedroia fared in his rehab start, Beeks on the mound, the late inning magic of his team, and much more.
Also during the 6th and 7th innings, Pedroia was available to speak with the media about how he felt playing in his first live game for the first, how his knee felt, and more.
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