The Wright stuff wasn’t enough Friday as the Red Sox dropped their first game of the homestand on a rainy night at Fenway.
Boston had won five in a row and their last seven home games. Friday’s loss ended the Sox’ improbable bid for a club-record 5th game of 11+ runs at home. On Thursday the Red Sox tied the club’s record for four such consecutive games set June 2-5, 1950.
The Red Sox looked in control after scoring five runs in the 2nd inning, the team’s fifth inning this season with five or more runs. But Wright coughed them back up, allowing a season-high five runs, all earned, on a season-high nine hits over 4.1 IP. Wright had not allowed more than 2 earned runs in any of his last ten starts since July 25, 2015, the longest such streak for a Red Sox pitcher since a 13-game run for Rolando Arrojo in 2001-02.
For the Astros, overcoming the four run deficit represented their biggest comeback win of the season. Houston got three-hit performances Friday from both Jose Altuve and from New Britain, Connecticut native George Springer, who admits he grew up a die-hard Sox fan, telling the Boston Herald that visiting Fenway as a kid was a regular ritual of summer for the Springer family.
Sox offense not enough
Red Sox offense remained solid, with six runs on 11 hits Friday. The Sox now have 20 games with 11 or more hit this season, the most in the majors. Friday’s game was their seventh straight home game with at least six runs since July 27 to August 12, 2009 (also 7 games).
But Sox run production was all but stymied after the second inning outburst, save for Travis Shaw‘ monster solo shot in the sixth. With it, the Red Sox have now homered at least once in each of their last 14 games, the longest active streak in baseball and the club’s longest since a 15-game streak in 2001-02. Six of Shaw’s previous home runs have come with men on base, 12 of his 18 career HR have come at Fenway.
Despite the rainy conditions, Jackie Bradley remained hot Friday, going 3-for-4 for his fourth 3-hit game of the season. Bradley has now hit in 19 consecutive games, the longest streak in baseball this season. The 19 games ties Bradley with Jacoby Ellsbury‘s for longest streak by a Red Sox batter since David Ortiz hit in 27 straight games from July 2, 2012 to May 7, 2013.
Bradley is the only player in baseball this season with multiple hits and at least one RBI in five straight games.
With the Sox loss and the Orioles sixth straight win Friday, Boston falls a full game out of first in the American League East.