Indians closer Chris Perez left today’s game against the Red Sox due to shoulder pain. The right-hander recorded only two outs but was on the hook for the four runs the Red Sox scored in the bottom half of the ninth inning for the walk-off 6-5 victory. Perez allowed two hits (a David Ortiz double and a Stephen Drew single) and walked three.
Joe Smith came on in relief of Perez but promptly allowed a walk-off two-run double to Jacoby Ellsbury. Despite the poor result, Smith is likely the club’s answer for an interim closer. In another time, it would have been Vinnie Pestano, but he has not had a good 2013 season thanks in part to a stark decline in velocity.
Good news in Boston: An MRI on Red Sox outfielder Andrew Benintendi‘s left knee revealed no structural damage.
Benintendi slipped while trying to avoid a tag at second base, injuring his leg, but it appears he’s avoided a serious injury. A timetable for his return isn’t known at this point, but the Red Sox expect to get him back before the end of the season.
Benintendi is hitting .324/.365/.485 with a homer and ten RBI in 21 games.
And then there was one. One player from the 2008 World Series champs, that is. Ryan Howard likely isn’t going anywhere so he’ll be the last one to turn the lights off, but today Carlo Ruiz bid adieu to the Phillies following his trade to Los Angeles.
Lost in all of the emotions the Dodgers are reported to be feeling about A.J. Ellis leaving is the fact that Ruiz was one of the most beloved Phillies players ever, by both his teammates and their fans. Yesterday Roy Halladay penned a heartfelt goodbye to Ruiz, suggesting that he was every bit as essential to his and the Phillies’ success as Ellis has been to Clayton Kershaw (and in pure baseball production, obviously, quite more).
Today Chooch left a message for his now former teammates: