Tuesday, June 4, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Red Sox 17, Rangers 5
By Todd Wills
BOSTON -- Justin Grimm matched the shortest outing of the season for a Texas Rangers starter as the Boston Red Sox clobbered him for eight runs in a 17-5 loss on Tuesday night at Fenway Park.
Grimm's brief night: Nick Tepesch went only 1⅔ innings earlier this season because he was grazed on the wrist by a line drive. Grimm's night ended with the Red Sox ripping another extra-base hit against him. Grimm faced 15 batters and allowed eight hits, five of them for extra bases. David Ortiz had an RBI double and a three-run triple in a six-run second inning that chased Grimm. He also had three walks, matching the total in his previous four starts combined. With the Rangers facing 20 games in 20 days, this was not the way they wanted things to begin with Grimm.
Home run fest for Ortiz: Left-handed reliever Joseph Ortiz, who last pitched on May 27, wishes Grimm had gone more than 1⅔ innings. Ortiz entered the game in the fourth inning and allowed a home run in three consecutive innings -- Stephen Drew in the fourth, Mike Carp in the fifth and Jarrod Saltalamacchia, all solo shots. With Alexi Ogando coming off the disabled list to start on Wednesday, Ortiz is likely to be optioned back to the minor leagues.
Cruz's bizarre night: Right fielder Nelson Cruz slugged his 14th home run in the sixth inning. It's the only positive memory he'll take from a nightmarish Tuesday. Cruz crashed over the short right-field fence in an attempt to steal a home run away from Carp in the fifth inning. Cruz came out of it fine, but he later made a three-base error on a fly ball in the bottom of the sixth, which added to his strange night. But that's nothing compared to him possibly being one of 20 players under scrutiny and facing a possible suspension from Major League Baseball for his alleged involvement with the Miami-area clinic, as reported by ESPN's "Outside The Lines" on Tuesday night.
Berkman beats shift: Designated hitter Lance Berkman provided one of the few highlights on Tuesday when he beat the Red Sox's shift in the first inning with a push bunt to third base. The Rangers had two runners on with one out and had a chance for an early advantage for Grimm, but Cruz grounded into a fielder's choice and Mitch Moreland bounced out to second.
Iglesias beats Profar: Rangers phenom Jurickson Profar lost the in-game battle with Red Sox top shortstop prospect Jose Iglesias. Profar was 0-for-3 against Ryan Dempster. Iglesias was 2-for-5 with a double, two RBIs and two runs.
Dempster gets ex-teammates: Dempster, who won seven games last season for the Rangers after a trade but didn't help much as the American League West slipped away, survived his old team on Tuesday. Dempster wasn't great, allowing two home runs. He did have six strikeouts.
Murphy pitches: David Murphy became the sixth Rangers position player to pitch in a regular-season game when he entered as a reliever in the bottom of the eighth. Jeff Kunkel holds the position-player record with two appearances in relief. The most-famous case was, of course, Jose Canseco in 1993. Murphy allowed a double but worked a scoreless inning with Carp getting called out on strikes and getting ejected.
Up next: The Rangers will try to even the series when right-hander Alexi Ogando (4-2, 3.08 ERA) faces Red Sox right-hander John Lackey (3-5, 2.96 ERA) on Wednesday night at 6:10 p.m. on ESPN2, Fox Sports Southwest and ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM and 1540-AM.