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The Red Sox passed a pretty good test in this one

Rob Bradford
August 22, 2018 - 10:34 pm


This might have just seemed like another win. When you've claimed 89 of them by the last week of August they all kind of blend together.

But we can be hypocrites.

The Red Sox' 10-4 victory over the Indians should separate itself at least a little bit. Coming into the matchup between Brian Johnson and Carlos Carrasco it was deemed one of the biggest tests this club had seen, having lost three in a row going up against an Indians team more than a few wanted to rank ahead of Alex Cora's club in the American League power rankings. (For a complete recap, click here.)

So when the Sox walked off the field, heading into the series finale Thursday afternoon, they should have a sense of accomplishment not found very often during this runaway train of a season. 

Johnson did just enough, allowing three runs over 4 1/3 innings. Other than the home run allowed to Edwin Encarnacion by Heath Hembree, the relievers (Hembree, Brandon Workman, Matt Barnes, Joe Kelly) got perception back on their side. And the Red Sox' offense sent a fairly strong message against one of the hottest pitchers in the A.L.

Coming into the start, Carrasco's ERA over his last eight games stood at 1.35, having allowed one run over his last two starts (14 innings). This is guy who represents a true top-of-the-rotation pitcher for a Cleveland team that can claim three of them (joining Corey Kluber and Trevor Bauer).

Thanks in large part to Xander Bogaerts -- who launched a pair of home runs -- Carrasco and the vaunted Indians bullpen left Wednesday with some significant bumps and bruises. The Indians starter lasted just 3 2/3 innings, giving up six runs on eight hits. It was a fourth inning which saw the Red Sox plate five that reclaimed Boston's offensive optimism.

Every member of the Red Sox lineup claimed at least one hit. Mitch Moreland went deep for the 15th time this season. And they scored more runs than they had since Aug. 10, having managed just a total of seven in their last three games.

Pencils down. Test passed.

The Red Sox remain the only team in the majors without a four-game losing streak.