The Boston Red Sox are trying to fill some holes in their pitching rotation, with David Price still scheduled for a rehab start in the minors before taking the hill for the first time with the big club this season. Drew Pomeranz had to leave his last start with a triceps injury, and Steven Wright's year is done following knee surgery.
That meant the debut of Hector Velazquez last night. The rookie right hander had been very impressive in the minors, with an ERA under 2, but the big leagues are a different story, and last night in Oakland Velazquez got roughed up by the A's for nine hits and six runs in an 8-3 Red Sox loss. The Sox gave Velazquez an early 2-0 lead with two first inning runs off Sonny Gray, but the A's ace settled down after that and the Oakland bats went to work on the Red Sox rookie, with home runs by Jed Lowrie, Khris Davis, and Chad Pinder. The Red Sox get a chance to turn the tables in game two with their own ace Chris Sale taking the hill. Sale has recorded at least ten strikeouts in all seven of his starts this season.
The Kansas City Royals avoided a sweep at the hands of the NY Yankees, salvaging a game with a 5-1 win at Kauffman Stadium last night behind a great start by Danny Duffy. Duffy allowed just three hits over seven innings to a Yankees team that's been wearing out baseballs all over the place lately. Jordan Montgomery took the loss for New York, the biggest hit a three run blast by Mike Moustakas in the 5th. The Yanks move on to face the Tampa Bay Rays in St. Petersburg tonight with Luis Severino getting the start.
Did the NY Mets suffer their 8th loss in a row last night? No. But that's because they didn't have a game scheduled. The Mets will try to stop their slide tonight at Citi Field in Queens when they host the L.A. Dodgers.
One night after the Toronto Blue Jays had to make excuses for Jose Bautista when he hit a meaningless home run late in the game and showboated with a bat flip in an 8-4 loss to the Atlanta Braves, the Jays came back and won 9-0 last night, with Bautista paying an expected price for his antics. Bautista got drilled in the thigh in the first inning by Atlanta's Julio Teheran and took his base as both teams were warned by the umpire to not follow up with anything else. Bautista did end up having a good night at the plate with two hits, but Jays pitcher Marcus Stroman was the hero for Toronto, pitching shut out ball over five and two thirds and helping out his own cause with a home run, just the second by a Blue Jays pitcher in franchise history. The Jays had lost three straight to Atlanta before the win last night, and the Braves will have to move on without one of their best hitters, Freddie Freeman, who fractured his wrist getting hit by a pitch two nights ago, and is out indefinitely.
The Castleton Spartans baseball team faces an elimination game today after falling to Southern Maine 5-3 in the opening round of the NCAA Division Three Regional tournament yesterday. The Spartans took a 2-1 lead into the 5th inning before the Huskies tied the game in the bottom of the frame and grabbed the lead for good with two more runs in the 6th. Jonathan Lindau had a strong day at the plate for Castleton, going 3 for 4 with a double and a run scored. The Spartans hope to stay alive in the tournament when they face Ithaca in the elimination game this morning at 11.
The NHL playoffs are exciting, nerve wracking, and oftentimes cruel. P.K. Subban would agree after a puck deflected off his stick and into his own net, a goal credited to Anaheim's Corey Perry, giving the Ducks a 3-2 win over the Nashville Predators in overtime last night. That bit of good fortune for the Ducks evens the western conference finals at two games apiece, with game five back in Anaheim Saturday night.