We swept the Mariners. No big deal. No, seriously, it really wasn’t a big deal.
Wake delivered six and a third innings. He walked one and struck out four. He threw exactly one hundred pitches, seventy-two of which were strikes. But he gave up seven runs on ten hits, including two home runs. The first one was a two-run shot in the first. The second one was a grand slam in the seventh, caused by three consecutive singles before the home run. He made mistakes. His knuckleball was off in the first and the seventh; in between it was on. It’s a cantankerous pitch; it has a mind of its own.
Fortunately, we had scored so many runs by that point that, even with the grand slam, the Mariners were still losing.
We didn’t waste any time, either. The Mariners picked up two in the top of the first; if it weren’t for Reddick, it may have been more. With two out in the inning, Justin Smoak doubled and then Mike Carp singled. The ball was hit hard, and Reddick got to it and fired home to end the inning. The throw was timely and precise. He’s going to be big.
We buried them in the bottom of the frame. Ellsbury hit a double on his second pitch of the game and moved to third on a wild pitch. After Pedroia flied out, Gonzalez singled to score Ellsbury, and he and Youk both came home when Youk hit a two-run shot of his own. It was a letter-high inside fastball, and it landed in the very last row of the Monster seats. Then Papi singled and Crawford doubled. Reddick struck out swinging. And a single by Salty brought in two more. At the conclusion of the first inning of play, we were already up by two.
The Mariners scored a run in the top of the fifth; we buried them even more in the bottom of the fifth with another five-spot. Pedroia led off the inning by grounding out. Two singles and a walk later, the bases were loaded for Crawford, who singled in two. Reddick then doubled in one. And Salty singled in two more. At that point, we were up by seven.
Wake ended the top of the sixth with his two thousandth strikeout in a Boston uniform. It was excellent. Mike Carp struck out on three straight knuckleballs. Called strike, called strike, and foul tip.
Pedroia doubled to lead off the bottom of the frame and scored on a single by Gonzalez. Then the grand slam in the top of the seventh. Then two singles in the bottom of the inning, and Ellsbury brought in our twelfth and final run with another single.
Aceves took the ball from Wake for the rest of the game; he allowed a home run in the top of the ninth via a single followed by a double, but obviously that didn’t really do much. We won, 12-8.
Over the course of the sweep, we scored twenty-three runs. Wake’s next win will be his two hundredth. Our lead over the Yankees in the division is growing. We’ve scored at least ten runs in a game fourteen times this season. That’s more than any other team in the Majors has done it, and it already ties our total from last season. And the Royals are coming to town. We got this.