Boston Red Sox

By Matt McCarthy,

The Red Sox salvaged their weekend series with the Houston Astros, picking up a 4-3 win Sunday and snapping Houston’s 10-game winning streak in the process.

Xander Bogaerts’ RBI double in the seventh inning proved to be the difference. Bogaerts drove in two runs on the afternoon.

W: Marcus Walden (6-0)

L: Framber Valdez (1-2)

S: Brandon Workman (1)

Here are three takeaways from the win:

1. Chris Sale labored through his outing:

Following his 17-strikeout performance on Tuesday, Sale wasn’t nearly as sharp Sunday. The lefty gave up three runs over 5 1/3 innings, walked five batters, allowed four hits, and struck out 10.

2. Bullpen comes up big:

Marcus Walden turned in one of the most critical relief outings of the year so far, bailing Sale out of a bases loaded, one-out jam in a 3-3 game in the fifth inning.

Walden induced an inning-ending double play, before pitching a scoreless seventh inning to bridge the gap to Alex Cora’s late innings options. Walden saw his ERA drop to 1.37 on the season and should continue to get high leverage situations moving forward.

Matt Barnes pitched a scoreless eighth inning and Brandon Workman handled the ninth, earning the first save of his career.

3. Michael Chavis leads off, still mashes:

Looking for a spark after a quiet start to the series, Alex Cora moved Chavis to the top of his order Sunday. The rookie delivered again:

Chavis went 2-for-4 and is now hitting .290 with a .959 OPS.

Up next:

The Red Sox travel north of the border to start a four-game series with the Toronto Blue Jays Monday afternoon. David Price (1-2, 3.75 ERA) will return from the injured list to oppose right-hander Edwin Jackson (0-0, 3.60 ERA).

You can hear Matt McCarthy on 98.5 The Sports Hub’s own Hardcore Baseball podcast and on various 98.5 The Sports Hub programs. Follow him on Twitter @MattMcCarthy985.