Devers records third 100 RBI season, Red Sox beat Orioles 6-1 in season finale

It was initially dominated no RBI, however everybody in Camden Yards knew it wouldn’t be lengthy earlier than the decision was modified.

With one out within the prime of the third and a person at third base, Rafael Devers grounded a delicate chopper to shortstop Gunnar Henderson, who booted the ball and allowed each the runner to attain and Devers to succeed in safely. Though the play was accurately dominated an error, it’s laborious to think about Henderson might have thrown the runner out on the plate.

Needless to say it wasn’t shocking when Devers was awarded his one centesimal RBI, a small comfort as what has in any other case been an extremely disappointing season drew to an in depth.

The Red Sox wrapped up their second consecutive fifth place season with a 6-1 win over the postseason-bound Baltimore Orioles, who handled Sunday’s finale as a low-stakes tune-up for his or her coming playoff run. The Orioles used eight pitchers and dedicated three errors, and after the Red Sox took an early lead they broke the sport open with a four-run prime of the seventh to successfully put a bow on the 2023 season.

Coming hours after information broke of former Red Sox pitcher Tim Wakefield’s loss of life, Red Sox supervisor Alex Cora mentioned he was happy with the best way his group composed themselves and performed laborious till the tip.

“It’s a sad day for us, a sad day for the organization and I’m glad that we went out there and played a clean game, we pitched well, we kind of represented Wake today,” Cora mentioned. “In that aspect it was a fun day, and I was very proud of this group and to play all the way to the end, that’s something Wake did as a man, as a husband, as a father and as a player.”

Both of Boston’s early runs got here off Baltimore errors. Enmanuel Valdez scored the primary after stealing third and advancing house after third baseman Jordan Westburg couldn’t deal with the throw, after which Devers drove in Alex Verdugo the subsequent at bat.

Though it’s typically felt like a slog, Devers’ remaining offensive numbers nonetheless ranked among the many greatest within the league. The third baseman batted .271 with 33 house runs, 100 RBI and a .851 OPS, marking the third time in his profession he’s posted a 30-100 season.

Devers is one among solely three Red Sox hitters to perform that feat at age 26 or below, the others being Hall of Famers Ted Williams and Jim Rice.

While the Orioles cycled between pitchers, pulling ace Kyle Bradish after two scoreless innings, Red Sox starter Tanner Houck delivered a formidable bounce again outing after final week’s calamitous begin at Fenway Park. The right-hander carried a no-hitter into the underside of the sixth and finally allowed one hit and three walks over six shutout innings.

Houck’s outing almost resulted in catastrophe when he allowed runners on the corners and a fly ball to proper discipline that Verdugo initially misplaced within the solar, however the outfielder was capable of choose up the ball simply in time and made a low basket catch to finish the inning.

Had the ball fallen in not less than one run would have scored and issues might have simply snowballed, as has occurred so typically this season. Instead the Red Sox put up a fast 4 runs, getting two on a Reese McGuire grounder misplayed by Henderson and the final two on RBI singles by Trevor Story and Wilyer Abreu to make it 6-0.

Baltimore scored as soon as within the eighth on an Adley Rutschman RBI single however in any other case by no means critically threatened. Yet with a bye to the American League Divisional Series already in hand, the 101-win Orioles have larger fish to fry.

The Red Sox, however, wrap up the season 78-84, the identical document they completed with final 12 months. Now after back-to-back final place finishes, a doubtlessly transformative offseason awaits.

Cora not candidate for GM job

Since Chaim Bloom was fired, rumors have swirled that Red Sox supervisor Alex Cora may be a candidate to maneuver up and grow to be the brand new head of baseball operations. Even after Cora introduced this week that he’ll be again in 2024, there was nonetheless hypothesis {that a} transfer to the entrance workplace may be attainable.

Speaking to reporters Sunday, Cora put the notion to relaxation.

“I’m not ready to do that,” Cora mentioned, noting that he’s mentioned as a lot to homeowners John Henry, Tom Werner and Fenway Sports Group president Mike Gordon. “If I felt like, yeah, I think I can do that job, I’d probably tell them, ‘Hey, I would like to be part of the candidates.’ But I’m not ready for that.”

Cora has expressed a need to in the future shift to a entrance workplace position, however for now he’ll return as Red Sox supervisor in 2024 and within the meantime will play a task within the membership’s ongoing seek for a brand new basic supervisor.

Emotional begin to NESN broadcast

The information of former Red Sox pitcher Tim Wakefield’s loss of life broke roughly half-hour earlier than first pitch, proper in the midst of NESN’s pregame present. Coming out of a industrial break NESN’s Tom Caron introduced the tragic information and the rest of the present was devoted to the franchise legend.

Then, proper earlier than the sport started, play-by-play man Dave O’Brien and coloration commentator Kevin Youkilis reacted to the information as nicely, with Youkilis delivering an emotional tribute to his former teammate and colleague.

“He was a great competitor when he took that mound, he was a great teammate and a great friend,” Youkilis mentioned. “I had the luxury to play with him on the field, in the booth, and just glad I had the opportunity over the years to be alongside him. Just an amazing husband, father and community leader. He really enjoyed people, he really enjoyed being around people, and today we lost one of the good ones.”

A second of silence in Wakefield’s honor was noticed at Camden Yards throughout the pregame ceremonies, and following the sport Cora supplied his condolences, calling Wakefield top-of-the-line teammates he ever had.

“He was there for us all the time, he was accountable, he was what a Boston Red Sox should look like,” Cora mentioned. “Of all the guys I played with, no one wore his jersey with more pride than Tim Wakefield.”