TORONTO — The Red Sox have 16 games left. They are 10 games out of a wild-card spot. Let’s just say something unprecedented would have to happen for them to play beyond Sept. 29.
The Red Sox ran into a buzzsaw Wednesday night against the Toronto Blue Jays.
For the second night in a row, the Sox were outplayed, falling, 8-0, and extending their losing streak to five games.
“Obviously we didn’t expect to be in this situation,” manager Alex Cora said. “The effort is there, but the results are not. Obviously, everybody’s disappointed at what’s going on. It hasn’t been good the last 10 days, offensively.”
In the last five games, the club has scored just nine runs. Four Blue Jays pitchers limited the Sox to two hits Wednesday, both singles, which snapped a 159-game streak with at least one extra-base hit.
“We can’t string along a couple of hits,” Xander Bogaerts said afterward. “We get a lot of guys on base to create opportunities and we haven’t been at our best doing that.”
The Blue Jays, meanwhile, blitzed the Sox’ pitching for 12 runs in the last two games. They jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the fourth inning.
With reliever Trevor Kelley on the mound in a bullpen game for the Sox, the Blue Jays’ Cavan Biggio doubled on a ball that third baseman Rafael Devers botched in left field. Devers was camped under the ball and should have made the play, but had to run back on it. It’s much easier to run in than back, and Andrew Benintendi, the left fielder, had a better angle at it.
“[Rafael] has made that play a lot of times,” Cora explained. “But he was in the shift. It was a long way and I think [Benintendi] should have taken over.”
Biggio then stole third and scored on Vladimir Guerrero Jr.’s sacrifice fly.
Rowdy Tellez then hit his 19th homer of the year — seven coming against the Red Sox.
Ryan Weber yielded four straight one-out singles, which put Toronto up, 4-0. That’s when Cora went to Brian Johnson, who induced Tellez to pop out. Cora then summoned Travis Lakins, who immediately surrendered a double that scored two. Next, Teoscar Hernandez’s two-run shot off Lakins extended the Blue Jays’ lead to 8-0.
“It was just a matter of location,” Lakins said. “I left a couple of pitches up in the zone and they did damage on them.”
The damage to the Sox’ season might have been done after they got swept by the Yankees last month in New York. Or after the injuries to David Price and Chris Sale. At each turn this season, this Red Sox team has been subjected to one disappointment after another.
The recent firing of president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowksi felt like the white flag.
This is uncharted territory. Unusual circumstances nobody predicted.
“It’s never fun when you’re not winning,” Mitch Moreland said. “We’ve put ourseleves in a tough spot.”