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Rockies 5, Red Sox 4: Rockies overcome a whole bunch of strikeouts to win in extra innings

The Colorado Rockies made 11 innings worth of outs against the Boston Red Sox on Tuesday night. Eight innings worth of those outs came via strikeout. You read that correctly: they struck out a staggering 24 times, with each hitter who appeared striking out at least once.

And they still won! Clutch hitting and a lot of gritty pitching led the Rockies to a 5-4 win on the road in 11 innings.

Mark Reynolds comes through

With the game tied in the top of the 11th and with two guys on and two strikes against him, Reynolds got on a top of a high fastball to single in the winning run. It was a really impressive swing on a tough pitch.

Three true outcomes (ish)

Up until that point, the Rockies offense could be pretty well summed up as three true outcomes. But it was really two true outcomes, by which I mean everybody was striking out, but then Nolan Arenado and Charlie Blackmon came through with clutch two-run home runs.

Chris Sale was ridiculous

If you saw how this game started, you know that the Rockies stole a game on a night that one of the best pitchers in baseball was on his game. Over the course of seven innings, Sale struck out a career-high 17 batters. He issued zero walks and really just made the one mistake to Arenado.

Obviously Sale and the Red Sox would have enjoyed the performance more in a victory, but we still probably just saw one of the best starts any pitcher will have all year.

Kyle Freeland was very good

Overshadowed by Sale’s dominance, Freeland showed the toughness we came to love last season. Home runs continue to haunt him, as he allowed three solo shots. But he still went six innings and allowed just three runs. His ability to keep the game close shouldn’t be overlooked.

The bullpen was also very good

Save for a hiccup by Scott Oberg that tied the game at 4-4 in the eighth inning, the bullpen kept the Red Sox bats quiet and worked out of some jams. Wade Davis looked great getting the save, pumping in strikes in the process.

Looking ahead

The Rockies play the second game of this two-game set on Wednesday with German Márquez on the mound against Eduardo Rodriguez.