Miley-stone: Lefty logs 1st complete game
Southpaw racks up 8 K's as Red Sox thump Phillies
BOSTON -- As Wade Miley made his way back to the Red Sox dugout after tossing a 1-2-3 eighth inning in Saturday's game against the Phillies at Fenway Park, he darted into the team tunnel. The left-hander was determined to go back out for the ninth and toss his first career complete game, even if it meant having to hide.
Red Sox interim manager Torey Lovullo never came calling and Miley reached the milestone in a 9-2 win.
"I was going to go back out. I was going to go in the tunnel before they could tell me that I wasn't going back out," Miley smiled. "It was a fun thing to do."
Working quickly and efficiently the entire day, Miley allowed two runs on five hits for his 11th win of the season. Perfect through four innings, Miley struck out six of the first 12 batters faced. He fanned eight overall in the 110-pitch effort.
"I was aware of it. I was made aware of it in the seventh inning, but it wouldn't have changed my mind one way or another, because he was so pitch efficient," Lovullo said of keeping Miley in for his first complete game. "He hadn't really worked hard in any inning. We had a hard cap on him, and he wouldn't have exceeded that.
"We were very well-aware of where he was today, and then you just sprinkle on the fact that he hadn't thrown a complete game, it gave us a little bit more excitement to see it happen."
Red Sox catcher Blake Swihart knew it would be a special day for Miley as they warmed up in the bullpen.
"It is easy to call a game like that when he is spotting all of his pitches," Swihart said. "He went out there and stuck to the game plan."
Lovullo was impressed with how well Miley was able to locate his fastball and get ahead of hitters.
"I heard him making comments about how he was feeling. I was within earshot of a few things he was saying, and it led me to believe he had that special feeling going on today," Lovullo said. "He was just pounding the zone. He could command the fastball. He really never had to get to some secondary stuff, because he was ahead in counts and getting some early-count outs."
The Red Sox scored eight runs in the fourth inning, highlighted by a three-run double from Xander Bogaerts and a solo home run from David Ortiz, his 496th career long ball.
Sitting on the bench for nearly 30 minutes during that stretch, Miley did his best to stay loose, throwing in the tunnel. It was after that extended break that Miley surrendered the two runs. The Phillies led off the fifth with two hits, before Carlos Ruiz belted a two-run single up the middle, getting the team on the board.
"I've seen Miley before. That's the best I've seen him," Phillies interim manager Pete Mackanin. "He pitches extremely well. Nine innings, worked fast, changed speeds, used both sides of the plate, kept the ball down. He did a great job. You got to tip your cap to him."
Miley is the first Red Sox pitcher to throw a complete game with no walks, five or fewer hits and at least eight strikeouts at Fenway since Curt Schilling on May 8, 2004.
"Every time I go out, I try to do this. I've just never been successful before," Miley said. "That's my goal every time out."