Boston Red Sox players Sandy Leon, Chris Sale, Steve Pearce, Xander Bogaerts, and Eduardo Nunez

USA Today Sports

Red Sox errors prove costly against Wade Miley, Astros

Nick Friar
May 24, 2019 - 11:08 pm

It looked like the Red Sox entered another dimension in Friday’s 4-3 loss to the Astros. (For a complete recap, click here.) Less than a week after giving up three runs (two earned) to the Red Sox at Fenway, Wade Miley looked more like Chris Sale than Chris Sale did. The former Red Sox starter surrendered one run on four hits and two walks. What’s more surprising is he struck out eight hitters, six of which came in his first turn through Boston’s order.

Sale wasn’t at his best, though two of the four runs he allowed were unearned, thanks to the three errors the Red Sox committed. But the Red Sox starter had his lowest strikeout total since April 9 (three), only punching out five Astros in the loss. That was partially a result of Houston attacking him early in the count. Of the 26 batters Sale face, eight put the first pitch they saw in play.

Sale was also missing up in the zone and didn’t get as many calls as he might’ve liked from home plate umpire Alfonso Marquez. His slider wasn’t as effective as it usually is either; it didn’t appear to have its usual depth.

But the issue, again, was the defense behind Sale.

There was a throwing error from Steve Pearce that led to a run. Sandy Leon almost bailed Pearce out, but made an awkward attempt at tagging Aledmys Diaz out at the plate. Though Diaz was initially ruled out, the replay showed Houston’s second baseman was, in fact, safe at the plate and the call was overturned after a review. Xander Bogaerts committed two errors, one directly resulting in a run scored by Robinson Chirinos.

Both Pearce and Jackie Bradley Jr. extended their respective hitting streaks to five games. Bradley’s hit was a solo shot, his third home run of the year. It was also the first run Astros reliever Ryan Pressly has allowed all season. He had tossed 21 consecutive scoreless innings (19 appearances) to start 2019.

Christian Vazquez hit a pinch-hit home run in the ninth inning off of Roberto Osuna. Vazquez now has seven home runs on the season, along with a .300 average and a .515 slugging percentage (third-best on the team).

Andrew Benintendi’s seven-game hitting streak snapped with his 0-for-4 performance.