Final, Red Sox 5-0: Pedro Beato cruised through a 1-2-3 ninth inning, and the Red Sox wrapped up a 5-0 victory.
The Red Sox took two straight after dropping Friday’s series opener in Baltimore. On Sunday, Jon Lester was fantastic and David Ortiz harnessed his emotions to power Boston’s offensive attack.
Lester tossed seven shutout innings while earning the victory. He got into a few jams, but he was never in any danger of losing control. Lester allowed just four hits, struck out eight and walked two in his seven innings of work.
David Ortiz went deep for Boston in Sunday’s win. He went 4-for-4 just one night removed from being ejected and going crazy on a dugout phone. Jacoby Ellsbury, Mike Napoli and Jarrod Saltalamacchia had two hits apiece.
The Red Sox will now head back home with a half game lead in the AL East, as the Rays lost to the Yankees on Sunday. Boston’s first opponent will be Tampa Bay, as the two teams will make up Thursday’s postponed game on Monday at Fenway Park.
Mid 9th, Red Sox 5-0: Jacoby Ellsbury singled to lead off the ninth inning, but Tommy Hunter kept the Red Sox off the scoreboard.
Shane Victorino flied harmlessly to left field, and Dustin Pedroia grounded into a 4-6-3, inning-ending double play.
Pedro Beato will pitch the ninth inning for Boston.
End 8th, Red Sox 5-0: A nice-looking double play highlighted the bottom of the eighth.
Matt Thornton took over on the mound for Boston, and he gave up an infield single to Nick Markakis. Dustin Pedroia made a great, backhanded pick, but his throw was off the mark.
Things immediately settled down for Thornton. Manny Machado grounded the second pitch he saw down to third base. Jose Iglesias fielded it and effortlessly flipped a throw to second base, where Pedroia turned the double play.
Chris Davis struck out for the third time to end the inning.
Mid 8th, Red Sox 5-0: The Red Sox padded their lead in the eighth inning, and they’re one step closer to a big win.
David Ortiz ripped a single into right field with one out in the eighth. Ortiz is now 4-for-4 just one night removed from a major temper tantrum.
Mike Napoli, who drove in Boston’s first run with an RBI double back in the first inning, connected on another double. This time, he peppered the left field line, setting up runners at second and third with one down.
John Farrell called upon Jonny Gomes to pinch hit against the left-hander, T.J. McFarland. Buck Showalter countered by calling for an intentional walk to load the bases.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia followed Gomes’ intentional walk with a single into right field. The ball briefly got away from Nick Markakis, and two runs scored to extend Boston’s lead to 5-0.
End 7th, Red Sox 3-0: Jon Lester has turned in a very good effort.
Lester needed just six pitches to take care of business in the seventh inning. His pitch count is now at 99 through seven shutout frames, but it looks like the southpaw just received some congratulatory handshakes, meaning his day is likely done.
Lester got one out on one pitch in the seventh, as Brian Roberts hit a little popup that Mike Napoli took care of in foul territory.
L.J. Hoes threatened to ground a single into center field, but Dustin Pedroia ranged over and made the play behind the second base bag.
Lester ended the inning with an impressive three-pitch strikeout of Taylor Teagarden.
Mid 7th, Red Sox 3-0: T.J. McFarland came back out for Baltimore, and he tossed a perfect seventh inning.
Jose Iglesias flied out, and Jacoby Ellsbury and Shane Victorino each grounded out.
Jon Lester will now head back out with his pitch count sitting at 93 through six innings of work.
End 6th, Red Sox 3-0: The Orioles had a great opportunity to get on the scoreboard and generate some momentum. But as they’ve done all afternoon, they let it slip away.
The inning started with an uncommon occurrence: an error by Dustin Pedroia. Chris Davis grounded into the shift on the right side, and Pedroia fielded it relatively easily. His throw brought Mike Napoli off the bag, though, and Davis reached safely.
Adam Jones increased Baltimore’s threat by dropping a bloop single down the right field line. Shane Victorino gave chase, but it dropped in just fair.
Jon Lester took the first step toward getting out of the jam by striking out Matt Wieters. Wieters chased a high fastball, and Lester now has seven strikeouts.
The inning ended with Pedroia totally making up for his earlier miscue. J.J. Hardy grounded to third base, and Jose Iglesias fired to second to start up a double play. Adam Jones took out Pedroia at second in an effort to break up the double play, but Pedroia somehow managed to get off a strong throw to first.
Lester was visibly fired up after the inning-ending twin killing, which helped keep Boston’s lead at 3-0.
Mid 6th, Red Sox 3-0: Buck Showalter made a move in the sixth inning.
Jason Hammel retired Mike Carp to begin the inning, but Jarrod Saltalamacchia then doubled down the right field line to knock Hammel from the game.
The Orioles turned to T.J. McFarland, and he faced just one batter while recording two outs. Stephen Drew hit a line drive right at Brian Roberts, who quickly tossed to second base to double-up Saltalamacchia.
Hammel allowed three earned runs on six hits in his 5 1/3 innings of work. He struck out three and walked five while throwing 97 pitches (52 strikes).
End 5th, Red Sox 3-0: The Orioles made a little noise for the second straight inning. But again, they failed to score.
Jon Lester got two quick outs in the fifth inning, but, as was the case in the fourth inning, he ran into some trouble.
Taylor Teagarden singled into center field, and Lester issued a four-pitch walk to Nick Markakis to put two runners on for Manny Machado.
Machado got himself into a hitter-friendly 3-0 count, but he ended the inning by lining out to Stephen Drew at short.
Mid 5th, Red Sox 3-0: Jason Hammel is having some control issues. He’s fortunate that the score is only 3-0.
Hammel walked two more in the fifth inning, giving him five walks total. The right-hander then benefited from a caught stealing and a double play.
Hammel walked Shane Victorino to begin the inning. Victorino tried to move up into scoring position via a stolen base, but Taylor Teagarden threw him out despite Victorino getting a good jump.
Dustin Pedroia ended up walking — with the fourth ball coming up around his chin — and David Ortiz followed with his third hit of the afternoon. Ortiz singled into left field to put runners at first and second for Mike Napoli.
Napoli, who struck out in his last at-bat, grounded into a 5-4-3 double play to end the threat.
End 4th, Red Sox 3-0: Jon Lester just smelled trouble for the first time.
Lester had retired 11 in a row, but the Orioles put two runners on with two outs in the fourth inning.
Manny Machado grounded out and Chris Davis struck out for the second time to give Lester two quick outs, but Adam Jones singled into left field. The Red Sox’ outfield was playing deep, and Jones dropped a base hit in front of Mike Carp.
Lester then walked Matt Wieters despite battling back. Lester fell behind the Orioles backstop, 3-0, but he evened the count before eventually missing with a 3-2 offering.
Lester avoided any damage by getting J.J. Hardy to pop out. Mike Napoli was forced to battle the sun, but he made the grab in foul territory along the first base line.
Mid 4th, Red Sox 3-0: Jason Hammel pitched himself into trouble in the fourth inning, but he also made sure that Baltimore’s deficit didn’t grow.
Mike Carp and Stephen Drew sandwiched a Jarrod Saltalamacchia flyout with a pair of walks. Salty almost caused some trouble himself, but Adam Jones made a nice grab on a sinking line drive in left-center field.
Hammel escaped the inning unharmed by getting both Jose Iglesias and Jacoby Ellsbury to fly out.
End 3rd, Red Sox 3-0: Jon Lester kept rolling along in the third inning.
Lester picked up his second straight 1-2-3 frame, retiring L.J. Hoes, Taylor Teagarden and Nick Markakis in order.
Hoes struck out swinging to begin the inning, giving Lester four strikeouts thus far. Teagarden then flied out to right, and Markakis bounced out to first.
Mid 3rd, Red Sox 3-0: Of course David Ortiz was going to come out and have a big game.
Ortiz, who has been booed repeatedly by Orioles fans because of Saturday’s outburst, picked up his second hit in the third inning. It was a big fly.
Jacoby Ellsbury singled to left field to lead off the inning. He remained at first base as Jason Hammel retired both Shane Victorino and Dustin Pedroia, but he scored when Ortiz went deep to left field.
Ortiz’s opposite-field home run, which landed in the first few rows of seats, was the slugger’s 20th blast of the season. It marks his 12th career 20 home run-season — his 11th with the Red Sox.
Ortiz’s 11 seasons of 20 or more dingers with Boston ties Dwight Evans and Jim Rice for the second-most in club history. They all trail Ted Williams, who had 16 seasons of 20 or more homers with the Red Sox.
End 2nd, Red Sox 1-0: Jon Lester looked sharp in the second inning.
Lester retired the side in order on a strikeout and a pair of groundouts.
Lester struck out J.J. Hardy on three pitches for the second out of the inning. He went upstairs with a 93 mph fastball to pick up the K, giving him three in the game.
Mid 2nd, Red Sox 1-0: One slick-fielding infielder retired another in the second inning.
The third out came when Jose Iglesias hit a ball between short and third. Third baseman Manny Machado made a nice play while ranging to his left before firing a strong throw to first base to nail Jose Iglesias.
Prior to Iglesias’ inning-ending groundout, Jason Hammel took care of Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Stephen Drew.
The Red Sox didn’t seem too pleased with the umpiring in Saturday’s game, and Drew wasn’t happy with a third strike call made by home plate umpire Mike Estabrook in the second inning. Hammel dropped in a 1-2 curveball to pick up the strikeout.
End 1st, Red Sox 1-0: Jon Lester, who has enjoyed plenty of success against the Orioles throughout his career, is off to a nice start.
Nick Markakis, who is batting in the leadoff spot with Nate McLouth out of the lineup, singled to lead off the inning. Lester then rebounded to retire the next three hitters, starting with Manny Machado, who grounded out softly to Stephen Drew at short.
Following Machado’s groundout, Lester struck out both Chris Davis and Adam Jones. Davis fanned on a pitch located high and outside, while Jones whiffed on a fastball located low and away.
Mid 1st, Red Sox 1-0: The Red Sox rode an early lead to victory Saturday. They’ll hope to repeat the feat in Sunday’s series finale.
The Red Sox wasted no time in getting their offense going, as Boston jumped out to a 1-0 lead in its first set of at-bats.
Shane Victorino got things going in the right direction with a one-out walk. Dustin Pedroia nearly did some damage by sending a fly ball to deep center field, but Adam Jones tracked it down on the edge of the warning track, and Victorino was forced to hustle back to first base.
Things kicked up a notch when David Ortiz singled into right-center field. Victorino, who was off with the pitch, managed to avoid Ortiz’s grounder, and he scampered up to third base.
Mike Napoli drove in Boston’s first run with a double down the right field line. Ortiz was held at third base, and the hot-hitting Mike Carp struck out to end the inning, but the Red Sox are off to a good start.
The Red Sox are 43-9 when scoring first this season. That’s good for a major league-best .827 win percentage.
1:40 p.m.: Jacoby Ellsbury digs in, takes a first-pitch ball and we’re underway.
1:20 p.m.: Before we get underway, here’s a quick update on the injury front.
Franklin Morales and Alex Wilson are expected to begin rehab assignments at Triple-A Pawtucket on Monday and Tuesday, respectively.
1:08 p.m.: The Red Sox are 9-6 in rubber games this season. Why is that relevant? You guessed it.
12:56 p.m.: One thing working in the Red Sox’ favor Sunday is their success in day games. The Red Sox are 19-11 in day games this season, which is an AL-best .581 winning percentage.
Dustin Pedroia is fourth in the league in day-game average at .355, while David Ortiz is seventh at .337.
Coincidence? Maybe. Just thought I’d let you know, though.
12:32 p.m.: For those of you concerned about the dugout phone that David Ortiz smashed up Saturday, you’ll be happy to know that Ryan Dempster and Jonny Gomes were on the case.
While they didn’t exactly repair the phone, per se, they did use their street smarts to develop an alternative. See what I mean at the link below.
For those of you who still haven’t seen David Ortiz’s all-out assault on the phone upon being ejected from Saturday’s game, you’re also in luck. You can see the video of that by clicking the link below.
11:58 a.m.: Mike Carp once again stepped up when given an opportunity Saturday, so, as a result, he’ll also be in Sunday’s starting lineup.
Carp will bat sixth and play left field — which is the same scenario as Saturday’s. In fact, John Farrell might as well have recycled Saturday’s lineup card, as he’s going with the exact same starting nine. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, I guess.
Sunday’s lineups are below.
Red Sox (62-43)
Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
Shane Victorino, RF
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
David Ortiz, DH
Mike Napoli, 1B
Mike Carp, LF
Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C
Stephen Drew, SS
Jose Iglesias, 3B
Jon Lester, LHP (9-6, 4.50 ERA)
Nick Markakis, RF
Manny Machado, 3B
Chris Davis, 1B
Adam Jones, CF
Matt Wieters, DH
J.J. Hardy, SS
Brian Roberts, 2B
L.J. Hoes, LF
Taylor Teagarden, C
Jason Hammel, RHP (7-7, 5.20 ERA)
8 a.m. ET: The Red Sox sure needed Saturday’s win.
The Sox entered Saturday’s contest on the heels of another shutout after Chris Tillman dominated in the series opener Friday, and it was the first game that Boston played while not in first place since May 27. Toss in Baltimore’s dominance over Boston this season, and it was hardly an ideal situation for the Red Sox.
Stephen Drew and the offense came alive Saturday, though. Drew smacked two home runs, Mike Carp added three hits and the Red Sox rolled to a 7-3 victory in what was a rather strange game. David Ortiz even got ejected and completely annihilated a dugout telephone (video here).
Sunday’s game may or may not end up being as weird, but it’s still a big one for the Sox. Chris Archer pitched a two-hit shutout against the Yankees on Saturday, so Boston trails Tampa Bay by a half game in the AL East. The Red Sox can only control what they can control, but reclaiming the division’s top spot starts with taking down the Orioles at Camden Yards.
Sunday’s first pitch is scheduled for 1:35 p.m, and Jon Lester is set to face Jason Hammel. Toss the TV on NESN, and keep it right here with NESN.com’s live blog.