Red Sox

5 takeaways as Red Sox beat Mets, hold off Yankees and Blue Jays in wild card chase

"It's a good time to winning a lot of ball games."

Red Sox Mets takeaways
Boston Red Sox's Xander Bogaerts watches the flight of his two-run home run in the fifth inning of a baseball game against the New York Mets. AP Photo/Charles Krupa

Here are the takeaways as the Red Sox won their sixth consecutive game 6-3 over the Mets to hold off the Yankees and the Blue Jays in the American League wild card race.

The Big Picture

The Red Sox missed a golden opportunity to jump on top early with the bases loaded with nobody out in the third. But Xander Bogaerts grounded into a bizarre 5-2-3 double play, and Rafael Devers popped out to keep the team off the board.

The Mets loaded the bases themselves with nobody out in the top of the fourth, but they managed only two runs after Kiké Hernández threw Pete Alonso out at the plate (the decision to send Alonso home was so bad, the NESN broadcast noted that the third-base coach was visibly upset with himself after the inning).

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The Red Sox, meanwhile, scored their first run in the bottom of the fourth when Christian Vázquez doubled in Bobby Dalbec. In the fifth, they appeared to find a rhythm against Mets starter Marcus Stroman — Hernández homered, Kyle Schwarber doubled, and Bogaerts homered as well to give the Red Sox the lead.

Bogaerts wasn’t done — in the sixth, with the bases loaded, he singled to right center to drive in Hernández and Jose Iglesias.

The Mets added a run in the eighth when Alonso hit a rocket over the wall in left, but the Red Sox held them scoreless the rest of the way.

Star of the Game

Xander Bogaerts — 2-for-3, one run, four RBIs, homer, walk

If a player drives in four of his team’s six runs in a 6-3 victory, the “Star of the Game” category becomes pretty easy to assign.

What It Means

The Yankees beat the Rangers comfortably. The Blue Jays held off a late rally by the Rays. The Red Sox needed a win and got one to maintain a 1.5-game advantage over the Blue Jays and a two-game advantage over the Yankees.

In other words, the Red Sox are doing exactly what they need to do to make the postseason: Take care of business against the beatable teams remaining on their slate.

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“Our goal is to win every series from now on from a while ago, and if we do that, we should be okay,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said.

“It’s a good time to be winning a lot of ball games,” Xander Bogaerts added.

Takeaways

1. NESN’s Jahmai Webster asked Bogaerts the most important question postgame on the broadcast: Are the yellow City Connect jerseys — in which the Red Sox have won four in a row — here to stay?

“Yeah, we have to stay with these guys,” Bogaerts said, grinning. “I’m sorry. If we continue winning, we have to stick with them for a little bit. They called them a little boring after a couple of games, but hang with them. Hang with them.”

Bogaerts later noted in the locker room that while nobody requested the yellow jerseys specifically, “we have some smart people in this locker room.”

“We’ll wear them tomorrow,” Cora confirmed during his availability.

2. Before the game, Alex Cora discussed the conundrum the Red Sox face with Jose Iglesias and Christian Arroyo. Iglesias is playing well and has helped the team win in Arroyo’s absence, but since he was added after the Aug. 31 deadline, he can’t play in the postseason. That makes the timing of Arroyo’s return crucial.

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“I think we have time for him to get repetitions and get to where he wants to be and where we want him to be, but at the same time his input is very important,” Cora said.

Arroyo — who has batted .264/324/.453 — reportedly could return this series. The Red Sox have 10 games remaining.

3. Mets fans filled Fenway Park on Tuesday, particularly one section in centerfield.

The good news for Red Sox fans, particularly the boy in the video below? Some of the Mets fans were kind-hearted.

4. Rodriguez pitched well for three innings but struggled a bit in the fourth and fifth, finishing with 4.1 innings, five hits, two runs, and three walks.

After the game, Rodriguez was asked about his pending contract status.

“I’m not worried right now about that, you know what I mean?” he said. “Just worried about going out there and giving the best I can for winning the games. I can’t think about the future. I’m just thinking about what it is right now, and what it is is we’re just playing to go to the postseason. That’s my goal.”

Bogaerts, however, sounded nostalgic when asked about what Rodriguez has meant to the organization. He highlighted what it was like to play with Rodriguez over the years, and noted that the time the two players spent together flew by.

“He did tremendous things for this organization,” Bogaerts said. “Hopefully he can stay, that’s not up to me. Hopefully, they can figure it out. But he showed up any time he was healthy. He gave it his all. As I said he battled some injuries, but pretty much every fifth day you could count on him to go up there and put up a good battle.”

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