The slide continues for the Red Sox.
Cole Figueroa delivered a pinch-hit RBI double off Burke Badenhop in the bottom of the ninth inning last night to give the Rays a 1-0 win over the Red Sox at Tropicana Field. Boston has now dropped eight consecutive games and own the fourth-worst record in the majors at 20-27.
John Lackey was excellent, allowing just five hits and one walk over seven-plus scoreless innings, but the Red Sox offense just couldn’t get anything going, That’s becoming a familiar refrain. They went 0-for-5 with men in scoring position and left eight men on base. Chris Archer went six scoreless innings for the Rays while matching a career-high with 11 strikeouts.
After the game, David Ortiz provided his analysis of the situation:
Your Friday box scores:
Red Sox 0, Rays 1
Indians 4, Orioles 8
Dodgers 2, Phillies 0
Athletics 2, Blue Jays 3
Nationals 3, Pirates 4
Rangers 2, Tigers 7
Cardinals 3, Reds 5
Brewers 9, Marlins 5
Yankees 5, White Sox 6
Royals 1, Angels 6
Rockies 2, Braves 3
Astros 1, Mariners 6
Cubs 1, Padres 11
Twins 2, Giants 6
The Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on starting pitcher Sonny Gray, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. The Astros have added Charlie Morton this offseason, but the club has been trying to add a big-name starting pitcher to put at the top of the rotation behind Dallas Keuchel.
Gray, 27, was limited to 22 starts in the 2016 season due to a forearm issue. His stats left a lot to be desired, as he finished with a 5-11 record, a 5.69 ERA, and a 94/42 K/BB ratio over 117 innings. Considering how Gray pitched in the previous three years, he’s a good bet to bounce back.
Gray is under team control through 2019, which is a big draw for the Astros. Needless to say, the Athletics would want a haul in terms of prospects. Gray will earn $3.575 million in 2017, having avoided arbitration in his first year of eligibility.
As we noted last week, The Chicago Cubs took the unusual step of not waiting until the summer after winning the World Series to make their customary White House visit to meet the president. They did it today, seeing President Obama a few short days before he leaves office.
Despite the fact that Obama is a White Sox fan, he met the Cubs with diplomacy and grace. It’s almost as if he’s been in that business for the past eight years. In return, he was given some gifts by the Cubs: Theo Epstein presented Obama with a No. 44 Cubs jersey, a tile from the center field scoreboard at Wrigley Field, and a lifetime pass to Wrigley as well.
Obama is staying in D.C. after he leaves office this week, hanging around so his daughter can finish high school in the same place she started. Even so, he’s likely going to be back to Chicago a good bit over the rest of his life, so he’ll likely be able to put the free pass to work. Assuming it comes with, like, six companion passes for his Secret Service detail.