Red Sox Wrap: Clay Buchholz Shuts Down Blue Jays As Boston Takes Opener

by

June 29, 2015

The Boston Red Sox earned their third win in four games against American League East opponents Monday, riding a masterful performance by Clay Buchholz to a 3-1 win over the the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre.

GAME IN A WORD
Momentum-building.

After taking two out of three against the first-place Tampa Bay Rays, the Red Sox shut down a Blue Jays offense that has scored nearly 60 more runs than any other in baseball this season. Buchholz was at his very best, allowing one run on five hits, striking out five and walking zero.

IT WAS OVER WHEN…
Buchholz, who owns a 2.21 ERA in the month of June, retired the side in order in the eighth to conclude his third stellar outing in as many starts. Over those three starts, he has allowed just two earned runs in 22 innings.

Closer Koji Uehara retired Jose Reyes, Josh Donaldson and Jose Bautista — Toronto’s Nos. 1, 2 and 3 hitters — in the ninth to seal the win for Boston.

ON THE BUMP
— After retiring the first five batters of the game, Buchholz found himself in his first jam after hitting Russell Martin in the hand with a pitch. Kevin Pillar followed with a two-out double, but some miscommunication between Martin and Toronto’s third base coach caused the Blue Jays catcher to wipe out rounding third.

Red Sox third baseman Pablo Sandoval received the relay from left field and chased down Martin for the final out of the inning.

[tweet https://twitter.com/RedSox/status/615674773369147393 align=’center’]

Three painless innings followed before the Blue Jays finally got to Buchholz. Devon Travis led off the sixth with a single to break a streak of eight consecutive outs for the right-hander, took second on a groundout to the mound and came around to score on a two-out double by Josh Donaldson to cut Toronto’s deficit to 3-1.

Buchholz surrendered a one-out double to Chris Colabello in the seventh but rebounded to induce an inning-ending double play. He threw just 87 pitches through those seven frames, then set the Jays down in order in the eight before giving way to Uehara.

IN THE BATTER’S BOX
— Blue Jays starter R.A. Dickey struggled with his command early, and the Red Sox took advantage.

Two walks and a Mookie Betts single loaded the bases with no outs in the third, and Xander Bogaerts stroked an opposite-field double to score Betts and Jackie Bradley Jr. with the first two runs of the ballgame. The double was Bogaerts’ seventh in his last eight games.

Dickey recovered after Bogaerts’ two-bagger, however, inducing three consecutive popups to retire the side.

— Betts led off the fifth inning with a triple. The Jays then pulled the infield in with nobody out, and Brock Holt was able to loft a bloop single into shallow left field, scoring Betts from third to make it 3-0 Sox.

— Alejandro De Aza finished the game 3-for-4 with a triple, continuing his strong play in place of the injured Hanley Ramirez. In five starts in left field since Ramirez went down with a hand injury, De Aza has gone 9-for-19 (.474) with a double, a triple, three home runs, six RBIs and four runs scored.

TWEET OF THE GAME
Sandoval would make a solid defensive lineman in another life.

[tweet https://twitter.com/brianmacp/status/615666893681242112 align=’center’]

UP NEXT
The Sox and Jays will continue their four-game series Tuesday, with Eduardo Rodriguez opposing Marco Estrada.

Thumbnail photo via Dan Hamilton/USA TODAY Sports Images

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