BOSTON — By now you've probably checked your smartphone and know the Red Sox neither won nor lost last night. For the first time in a decade, their game was suspended.
When an August monsoon hit Fenway Park around 10:30 last night, the Sox and Royals had played nine innings to a draw. They'll continue it on a mutual off day, August 22.
Fret not though! There was plenty of action before the rains came. Here are five takes from the first nine innings:
1. J.D. pulls a B.B.
In a pregame conversation with the Eagle-Tribune, J.D. Martinez deflected a few big picture questions by replying, "I'm just thinking about Sparkman." He was referring to Royals starter Glenn Sparkman, hardly a household name.
At the time it seemed a diversionary tactic — think Bill Belichick's "we're on to Cincinnati" — but maybe Martinez wasn't kidding.
Two hours later he took Sparkman over the Green Monster, blasting a two-run shot to get the Red Sox on the board.
Focused on Sparkman, indeed.
2. (Another) blown save
Handed a 4-3 lead in the seventh, Nathan Eovaldi couldn't keep the Royals off the board.
He allowed an RBI double to tie the game, and it went in the book as the 21st blown save of the season for Boston's bullpen, tying Oakland for the most in the American League. (Blown saves aren't just a ninth inning stat).
Eovaldi was the ninth Red Sox reliever to blow a save this season. For a bit of perspective, the St. Louis Cardinals have a comparable record, and have only blown nine saves as a team.
3. X marks the spot
Xander Bogaerts gave the Red Sox a fifth-inning lead with yet another timely hit, an RBI double that scored Mookie Betts and Rafael Devers.
Standing on second base, the shortstop fired a first down symbol towards the home dugout to fire the Sox up.
Somewhat remarkably, Betts, Devers, and Bogaerts sweep the top three in the American League for runs scored, and yet the team still came into last night at 60-56.
Eduardo Rodriguez's line wasn't terrible — he gave up two runs in five innings — but last night felt like a step back.
The lefty got too cute with his pitches instead of just attacking hitters, wound up at 76 after three innings, and wasn't able to go deep in the ballgame. It was the kind of start Cora had hoped Rodriguez had outgrown.
5. JBJ: Still has a cannon
Royals outfielder Billy Hamilton may be the fastest player in baseball, but he's still no match for Jackie Bradley Jr.'s arm.
On a fourth inning fly ball hit to center, Hamilton tried to tag from second to third. Bad idea. Bradley fired an absolute missile that one-hopped into the glove of Rafael Devers and had Hamilton beat by at least a second.
Hamilton slid to the bag, popped up to dust himself off, and jogged right back to his dugout. There would be no disputing that call.
Chris Mason is a Red Sox beat writer for the Eagle-Tribune and CNHI Sports Boston. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org, and follow him on Twitter at @ByChrisMason