Jonathan Arauz went from a last-minute call-up to delivering the key hit in the nick of time for the Boston Red Sox.
The Red Sox look to ride the momentum of their emotional victory over the host Cleveland Indians into the second contest of a three-game set on Saturday.
Arauz was summoned prior to Friday’s game after Enrique Hernandez and Christian Arroyo were placed on the COVID-19 injured list. The 23-year-old left his Triple-A Worcester teammates in Buffalo, N.Y., and joined the Red Sox approximately 90 minutes before the start of the contest.
“Everything happened really quick,” Arauz said through a translator.
Quick also describes the manner in which the series opener changed as Arauz belted a three-run homer in the eighth inning of Boston’s 4-3 win.
“We’ve seen it around the league, right? If you want to look back at when the Yankees started getting hot, it was guys who came up from Triple-A and played good baseball for a while, and they (the Yankees) got healthy and they are where they are now,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said.
“These are the circumstances, right? We have to live with it. We’re not going to make excuses and I think every team has to go through it.”
Bobby Dalbec is 5-for-8 with two homers and seven RBIs in his last three games for Boston.
Friday’s comeback win was appreciated by the Red Sox, who had lost four consecutive road games and 11 of their last 13 away from home overall.
Boston right-hander Nathan Eovaldi (10-8, 3.72 ERA) will look to continue his strong pitching when he takes the mound on Saturday.
Eovaldi, 31, has allowed three earned runs on 14 hits with 23 strikeouts over his last three outings (19 innings). He surrendered an unearned run on four hits in seven innings of a no-decision against the Texas Rangers on Monday.
Eovaldi owns a 3-2 record with a 3.28 ERA in six career appearances (three starts) versus Cleveland.
Jose Ramirez, who is 1-for-8 in his career against Eovaldi, launched his 30th homer of the season with a two-run shot on Friday. He is batting .360 (18-for-50) with 11 extra-base hits and 14 RBIs in his last dozen games.
Yu Chang has homered in a career-best three straight games. He is batting .400 (6-for-15) with four RBIs and five runs scored in his last four contests.
“I try to be stable every single day and do my routine work every day,” Chang said through a translator. “I’m not worried about if I play tonight or not. My mood is stable and everything is consistent.”
The Indians will turn to right-hander Cal Quantrill (4-2, 3.04) on Saturday.
Quantrill, 26, improved to 4-0 in his last nine outings on Sunday after scattering two hits and striking out nine batters in seven innings of a 3-0 win over the Los Angeles Angels.
Quantrill has yet to face the Red Sox in his career.
–Field Level Media