Final, Royals 4-2: The Red Sox couldn’t recover from failing to score with the bases loaded in the eighth inning. Greg Holland sat down the Sox in order in the ninth, and the Royals have snapped Boston’s seven-game winning streak.
Ervin Santana pitched seven solid innings for K.C. He gave up two runs in the first and got into some trouble in the second, but then cruised from there. Santana allowed two runs on six hits while striking out seven to pick up the win.
Ryan Dempster also pitched seven innings. He gave up four runs on six hits while striking out eight and walking three. The Royals’ three-run fourth inning, which was capped off with a two-run, two-out single from Salvador Perez, was ultimately the difference.
David Ortiz collected three hits in just his second game back. He’s now 5-for-8 throughout his first two contests.
The Red Sox tried to stage a rally in eighth inning, but Jarrod Saltalamacchia grounded back to the mound with the bases loaded, and that proved to be very deflating.
The Sox don’t have much time to sit on the loss, though. The two teams will do it again on Sunday night as part of a day-night doubleheader. Allen Webster will make his major league debut for Boston in the second game.
Sunday night’s first pitch is scheduled for 7 p.m. ET. Be sure to keep it with NESN.com for coverage of that game.
Mid 9th, Royals 4-2: The Red Sox were a split second away from turning a triple play in the eighth inning.
Alex Wilson came on to pitch, and he gave up back-to-back singles to Mike Moustakas and Jeff Francoeur to lead off the inning.
Salvador Perez then hit a sharp ground ball down to Will Middlebrooks at third. Middlebrooks stepped on the bag and fired to second base, where Dustin Pedroia made an amazing relay throw to first. Pedroia transferred the ball to his throwing hand and got good velocity on his throw while leaping in the air to avoid the runner. Perez just beat it out.
Wilson ended the inning by getting Chris Getz to fly out to right field.
The Red Sox are scheduled to send up Will Middlebrooks, Stephen Drew and Jonny Gomes against Greg Holland in the ninth.
End 8th, Royals 4-2: A huge opportunity for the Red Sox went by the board in the eighth.
The Sox loaded the bases, but they couldn’t take advantage of the situation, and the Royals will enter the ninth inning with a 4-2 lead.
Daniel Nava got the eighth-inning rally going by working a walk. Dustin Pedroia then flew out for the second out, although he should have reached via a walk earlier in the at-bat. Replays show that Bruce Chen’s 3-1 offering was a bit high, but it was ruled a strike and Pedroia was eventually retired after that.
Boston kept pressing, though. David Ortiz singled into center field, which prompted a pitching change. Aaron Crow came in, while Pedro Ciriaco pinch ran for Ortiz.
Crow had trouble finding the strike zone. He walked Mike Napoli on four pitches and then fell behind Jarrod Saltalamacchia 2-0. Crow recorded an out on the only strike he threw, though.
Salty hit a dribbler back to the mound, and the bases-loaded threat was over.
Mid 8th, Royals 4-2: Clayton Mortensen was very effective in the eighth inning. He sat the Royals down 1-2-3, striking out two in the process.
Billy Butler led off with a ground out, and Mortensen then struck out Eric Hosmer and Lorenzo Cain. That’s no easy feat, as Hosmer has two hits in this game and Cain has been blazing of late.
Mortensen got Hosmer to chase a slider in the dirt, and he got Cain with a changeup.
Bruce Chen is coming on to pitch for Kansas City, but Ervin Santana was very solid after giving up two runs in the first inning.
Santana gave up two runs on six hits in his seven innings. He struck out seven and didn’t walk a batter while throwing 104 pitches.
End 7th, Royals 4-2: Ervin Santana saw Ryan Dempster cruise through the top of the seventh, so he decided to do the same in the bottom of the inning.
Will Middlebrooks flew out to right field, and Santana then struck out both Stephen Drew and Jonny Gomes swinging.
Santana has fanned seven in the contest, and he’s pitched very well since surrendering two first-inning runs and getting into some trouble in the second. Santana is up to 104 pitches thus far.
Clayton Mortensen is coming in to pitch for Boston.
Mid 7th, Royals 4-2: Manager John Farrell opted to send Ryan Dempster out for one more inning, and the right-hander made sure he didn’t regret the decision.
Dempster breezed through the seventh, retiring Chris Getz, Alex Gordon and Alcides Escobar in order.
Now that will probably do it for Dempster in this one. If so, it was a mixed bag of results over his seven innings of work. The righty allowed four earned runs on six hits while striking out eight and walking three. He threw 107 pitches (71 strikes).
The big inning for Kansas City remains the fourth, and Dempster was one out away from getting out of trouble in that frame.
End 6th, Royals 4-2: The Red Sox didn’t score in the sixth inning, but we got to see David Ortiz run the bases.
Ortiz ripped a 1-1 fastball down into the right-field corner, and the big fella hustled out of the box to secure a double, even sliding in to beat Jeff Francoeur’s throw.
Ortiz then moved up to third base when Mike Napoli skied a high fly ball to right field for the second out.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia couldn’t cash in with Ortiz 90 feet away, though. He struck out swinging in an at-bat that featured a questionable check-swing call.
Mid 6th, Royals 4-2: The Royals had Ryan Dempster up against the ropes in the sixth inning, but the right-hander fought his way back.
Eric Hosmer flew out to begin the inning, but Dempster then issued back-to-back walks to Lorenzo Cain and Mike Moustakas. The walk to Moustakas came on four pitches, and it prompted a mound visit, during which Clayton Mortensen started warming up in the Boston bullpen.
Dempster settled down from there, striking out Jeff Francoeur swinging and getting Salvador Perez to fly out to center.
Francoeur’s strikeout gives him the hat trick. He’s now gone down by way of the K three times in this game.
Dempster has seven strikeouts total, and he’s up to 96 pitches, meaning his day could be done.
End 5th, Royals 4-2: Ervin Santana has now retired 10 in a row.
Santana, who got off to a rocky start, has settled down over the last three innings. In the fifth, he retired Jonny Gomes, Jacoby Ellsbury and Daniel Nava in order.
Gomes and Nava each grounded out, while Ellsbury flew out to right field.
Mid 5th, Royals 4-2: Good bounce-back inning for Ryan Dempster.
After a fourth inning in which the wheels really started to come off, Dempster enjoyed a 1-2-3 fifth.
Alex Gordon struck out, Alcides Escobar grounded out and Billy Butler flew out.
End 4th, Royals 4-2: The Red Sox hit the ball hard in the fourth, but they still went down in order.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia led off by sending one to the warning track in center, but Lorenzo Cain hauled it in for the inning’s first out.
After Will Middlebrooks struck out swinging on a slider out of the zone, Stephen Drew also sent one to the center-field dirt. Cain made an excellent running grab, though.
Cain is just doing it all at this point. In fact, Red Sox manager John Farrell sounded very impressed by the 27-year-old while talking with the media about Saturday’s game.
Mid 4th, Royals 4-2: Ryan Dempster appeared to be settling in a bit, but the fourth inning brought some trouble, including the buzz saw that is Lorenzo Cain.
Billy Butler led off the inning by planting a ball off that big, old green wall in left. Jonny Gomes got it back in very quickly to hold Butler to a single, but the hit put the wheels in motion for the Kansas City offense.
Eric Hosmer followed up with a single of his own, and Cain doubled to tie the game at two apiece. Cain has been on a tear of late. He went 4-for-4 and scored three runs in the Royals’ losing effort on Saturday, and he is now 12 for his last 18 after ripping a hot shot past a diving Will Middlebrooks.
Dempster bounced back to strike out both Mike Moustakas and Jeff Francoeur, but he couldn’t finish off the escape. Salvador Perez, who also had a nice game on Saturday, singled to left to plate two runs.
End 3rd, Red Sox 2-1: Ervin Santana enjoyed his easiest inning of the game in the third.
Dustin Pedroia slapped one to left field to begin the inning, but it hung up long enough for Alex Gordon to make a play.
Santana then got David Ortiz, who’s responsible for driving in one of Boston’s runs, to ground out to first.
The right-hander finished the frame by striking out Mike Napoli.
Mid 3rd, Red Sox 2-1: Ryan Dempster issued a one-out walk to Alex Gordon, but a 2-2 splitter to Alcides Escobar did exactly what it was designed to do.
Dempster kept the ball down to Escobar, who launched a home run over the Monster back in the first inning, and the Royals shortstop hit into a tailor made double play.
Stephen Drew fielded the bouncer and flipped it to Dustin Pedroia, who delivered a strike to Mike Napoli to execute the twin killing.
End 2nd, Red Sox 2-1: Jacoby Ellsbury extended his hitting streak to 10 games in the second inning, but the Red Sox were unable to cash in on a pretty decent scoring opportunity.
Will Middlebrooks has really been struggling at the plate since his three home run game in Toronto. He reached in his first at-bat in this game, though, singling to lead off the second.
After Ervin Santana picked up a couple of outs against Stephen Drew (strikeout) and Jonny Gomes (pop out), Ellsbury singled through the left side. Ellsbury is now 13-for-42 during the life of his 10-game hitting streak.
Daniel Nava couldn’t come through with a couple of ducks on the pond, though. He struck out swinging on a good-looking slide to end the inning.
Mid 2nd, Red Sox 2-1: Ryan Dempster settled down in the second inning.
Dempster got Mike Moustakas to roll one over to Mike Napoli, who took it to the bag himself for out No. 1.
Dempster then picked up back-to-back strikeouts against Jeff Francoeur and Salvador Perez.
Francoeur went down fanning on a slider, while Perez fell victim to Dempster’s splitter.
End 1st, Red Sox 2-1: David Ortiz is already making his presence felt in the Boston order.
Ortiz, who had two hits in Saturday’s game, got the Red Sox’ offense going with an RBI single in the first.
Daniel Nava and Dustin Pedroia helped set the stage for Ortiz’s base knock with back-to-back singles after Jacoby Ellsbury popped out. Ortiz lined a shot right up the middle, which scored Nava and sent Pedroia going from first to third.
Mike Napoli then shot one the other way, making a bid for four straight singles, but Royals second baseman Chris Getz made a great diving stop to help record the second out. It still got the job done, though, as Pedroia came across with Boston’s second run.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia lined out to right field to end the inning.
Mid 1st, Royals 1-0: The Red Sox are 10-0 this season when scoring first. They won’t have an opportunity to extend that streak in this one.
Alcides Escobar turned on a fastball from Ryan Dempster and sent it sailing over the Green Monster in left to give the Royals an early 1-0 lead.
Dempster, who retired Alex Gordon on a fly out to lead off the game, bounced back to strike out Billy Butler for the second out.
Eric Hosmer then hit a slow ground ball to Will Middlebrooks at third. Middlebrooks was playing well off the bag with the lefty at the dish, so he had to range a long way to make a barehanded play, and his throw wasn’t in time to retire Hosmer.
Hosmer swiped second base, but Dempster got Lorenzo Cain, who had a big game on Saturday, to ground out to third. Middlebrooks’ throw was a little off the mark, as he seemed to drop down to the side arm. Fortunately for the Red Sox, Mike Napoli came off the bag to haul it in, and he then tagged Cain for the out.
1:35 p.m.: Ryan Dempster’s first pitch is a strike, and we’re off and running.
1:30 p.m.: We’re just about ready for baseball, and the sun’s shining. The air is a little brisk, but hey, that’s why God created windbreakers.
Dempster gets ready to toe the rubber. He’s 2-0 in three career starts against the Royals. In fact, he’s fared pretty well against the AL Central in general. The right-hander is 5-1 with a 2.31 ERA in six starts against AL Central clubs since the start of 2012.
12: 50 p.m.: Will Middlebrooks tweeted out a photo of what is apparently Jonny Gomes’ bat for this game. It features the names of the victims of this week’s tragic events, and it also includes the message “Boston Strong.” Pretty cool gesture by Gomes.
12:42 p.m.: Want some fun doubleheader facts? Of course you do.
According to the Red Sox’ game notes, when playing two games in one day, the Sox all time have swept 495, split 831 and have been swept 444 times. Also, 23 times one of the games ended in a tie.
The Red Sox are also going for their eighth — and potentially ninth — win in a row on Sunday. Their current seven-game winning streak is Boston’s longest since a nine-game winning streak from June 3-June 12, 2011.
11:30 a.m.: Sunday marks another day in which both the Red Sox and Bruins are in action. If you’re looking to keep up on the B’s, you can do so with NESN.com’s Bruins live blog, which can be found at the link below.
If you have access to a television, the B’s are playing on NESNplus. You can find your NESNplus channel at the link below.
10:50 a.m.: The Red Sox’ lineup has been posted, and Shane Victorino is not in the starting nine.
Victorino left Saturday’s game in the eighth inning with back tightness. He was scheduled to be reevaluated on Sunday morning, and manager John Farrell ultimately decided to give him the matinee tilt off. We’ll see if Victorino finds himself in the Red Sox’ Game 2 lineup.
With Victorino out, Daniel Nava — who launched a big home run on Saturday — will move up to the two hole. He’ll play right field, while Jonny Gomes will get the start in left field.
Check out Sunday’s Game 1 lineups below.
Red Sox (12-4)
Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
Daniel Nava, RF
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
David Ortiz, DH
Mike Napoli, 1B
Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C
Will Middlebrooks, 3B
Stephen Drew, SS
Jonny Gomes, LF
Ryan Dempster, RHP
Alex Gordon, LF
Alcides Escobar, SS
Billy Butler, DH
Eric Hosmer, 1B
Lorenzo Cain, CF
Mike Moustakas, 3B
Jeff Francoeur, RF
Salvador Perez, C
Chris Getz, 2B
Ervin Santana, RHP
8 a.m. ET: Saturday was a very emotional day at Fenway Park. Sunday will be a very busy day.
The Red Sox have two games on their plate for Sunday. The first contest will start up at 1:35 p.m., while Game 2 is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. The second game, of course, is the make-up game for Friday’s postponement.
Ryan Dempster will take the hill for Game 1. He’s still looking for his first win in a Red Sox uniform, although he’s pitched well this season. Dempster enters the game with a 2.65 ERA in three starts. In his last start on Patriots’ Day, the right-hander went seven innings and allowed just one run on two hits while striking out 10.
Allen Webster, who the Red Sox acquired in last August’s megadeal with the Dodgers, will start the second game on Sunday, according to manager John Farrell. It’ll mark Webster’s big league debut.
Be sure to keep it right here throughout the afternoon for all sorts of baseball awesomeness.
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