Barnes, Bogaerts lead Sox quintet at ASG

July 14th, 2021

With five All-Stars in tow, perhaps it shouldn’t be a surprise that the Red Sox had their fingerprints all over Tuesday night’s 5-2 victory for the American League in the Midsummer Classic.

Most dramatically, got himself into a big jam only to work out of it with an assist from Angels left fielder Jared Walsh.

In the bottom of the eighth, Barnes loaded the bases with two outs and made the situation even tougher when he went to 3-0 on Kris Bryant, who was the potential go-ahead run.

But Bryant hacked away on 3-0 and hit a laser to left that looked like it was going to be trouble.

Walsh swooped in and made a sweet sliding catch to stymie the threat by the National League.

“It was crazy,” Barnes said. “The fans really showed up here. It was incredible. This is a fun place to play. Colorado, it’s a beautiful ballpark with great fans. Obviously, two really good teams going after it in a pretty competitive game. It was a great experience, it really was.”

It was quite an eventful All-Star debut for Barnes.

The same could be said for , who got the first hit for the AL, a double that hit the ground just over the head of first baseman Freddie Freeman and rolled down the line in right. That two-bagger against Corbin Burnes helped set up the first run for the AL.

Devers demonstrated his joy for the game by embracing and laughing with Padres superstar Fernando Tatis Jr. as he pulled into second.

Did Tatis say something funny?

“He didn’t say anything; we were just laughing at that little roller I hit,” Devers said. “I was a little nervous. Thankfully, it was a hit even though it was a rollover. I was just going out there to be aggressive and not be afraid in that moment. Just wanted to make a good swing at anything that was coming my way.”

One of the best parts for Devers about his first All-Star experience is that he got to share it with , his best friend on the Red Sox.

Bogaerts also made his presence felt with a single to left against Burnes in the third and an RBI single to right off of Taylor Rogers in the fifth.

It was Bogaerts' third trip to the All-Star Game, but there will likely be several more in his future.

“Hopefully, I can get a couple more, and then say I’m a veteran [of All-Star Games],” Bogaerts said.

In typical Bogaerts fashion, he spent the early part of the game trying to ease Devers' nerves.

“I told Devers that you only get one of these per year, so to just try to relax,” Bogaerts said. “It was fun seeing Devers get his first [hit]. I was so happy for him. He was a little nervous in the beginning, but he definitely settled down after that. Once we talked about that, I kind of settled down also and enjoyed it.”

The All-Star Game is becoming old hat for slugger , who made it for the fourth time -- three of them with Boston.

Martinez finished 0-for-2 with two strikeouts.

Rounding out the quintet for the Red Sox was another first-timer -- flame-throwing righty , who worked a scoreless fourth inning, allowing one hit and throwing just 10 pitches.

“I threw all five of my pitches. I went out there and attacked the zone, tried to get strike one and stay ahead in the count,” Eovaldi said. “There’s a lot on the line, yet there’s not a lot on the line. You want to get out there and compete against the best, and face the best hitters out there and the best lineup.”

For the Red Sox All-Stars, who have enjoyed being part of one of the most surprising teams in baseball this season, the past couple of days were a good chance to have fun.

“This is just a chance to have fun, especially with the guys you’re not teammates with,” Devers said. “Especially a guy like Nelson Cruz, who is a superstar and you don’t know how much longer he has in the game, but it’s really just an occasion to go there and have fun.”

Things will get heated again for the AL East-leading Red Sox on Thursday, when they open the second half with a four-game series at Yankee Stadium.