Boston Red Sox first basemen Kevin Youkilis and Detroit Tigers pitcher Rick Porcello have both received five game suspensions for instigating a bench clearing brawl last night at Fenway. Porcello’s suspension came with throwing pitches intentionally at Victor Martinez in the first inning and at Youkilis later in the second. After Youkilis was hit, he immediately charged the mound and threw his helmet at the pitcher before pinning him to the ground. Even though both benches were cleared, there were no punches thrown and order was reached just minutes later. Youkilis and Porcello are both appealing their suspensions knowing it will delay the process.
The Red Sox and Tigers are set to square off again tonight at Fenway Park at 7:10 pm. The 13-4 Josh Beckett will be making his start for the series against Armando Galarraga.
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Red Sox veteran Mike Lowell blasted two home runs on what should have been a night off for him, propelling Boston to victory over the Detroit Tigers 7-5 last night at Fenway. The substitution took place when Kevin Youkilis was hit by a Rick Porcello fastball in the bottom of the second. Knowing this wasn’t the first time Detroit pitchers have thrown at Youkilis this series, he took action and charged the mound. After a bench clearing brawl that followed, Lowell took over the clean-up spot in place of the ejected Youkilis. “It feels great. I think I still do things even though I’m not playing that day to get myself ready in case I need to go in the game,” said Lowell. “I think the situation we have now is kind of unique and kind of weird. I just try to get myself ready.” Lowell has been on a tear lately hitting .368 since the All-Star break, despite him not seeing his name in the lineup every day.
Rookie Junichi Tazawa pitched solid in his starting debut, letting up just four hits with three runs in five innings. From there the Red Sox bullpen shut down the Tigers; the only minor scare coming in the 9th inning when Curtis Granderson hit a two run shot of Jonathan Papelbon to make it 7-5. “In the past few days, everything has happened all of a sudden,” said Tazawa. “I didn’t expect to be in the Major Leagues and I didn’t expect it to happen so quickly. Things have just been happening very fast for me. I didn’t think I would get the win today, and I’m very happy that I did.”
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The Boston Red Sox ended their six-game skid after barely holding the Detroit Tigers late game rally efforts to win 6-5 last night at Fenway Park. Brad Penny did what he needed to from the mound, allowing three earned runs off six hits in six innings pitched. The Tigers made their run in the 7th off reliever Manny Delcarmen, but Boston answered soon after with a Nick Green sacrifice fly to knock J.D. Drew in for the winning run.
Dustin Pedroia wasted no time getting Boston’s offense going, hitting a two-run blast over the monster in the bottom of the first. The Red Sox scored four of their six runs in the first and second innings. Before last night they had only scored twice in their previous three games. “No one cares that we didn’t score for, I don’t even know how long it was, 34 innings or whatever the heck it was,” Pedroia said after the win. “There’s a lot of numbers to this game and that can mess you up, so we’re just out playing and trying to have fun.”
The Red Sox have moved to 5 1/2 games behind the Yankees heading into tonight’s game. Junichi Tazawa will make his debut as a starter, and hopefully can redeem himself after surrendering a walk-off two-run homer to Alex Rodriguez in the 15th inning last week. Game time is scheduled for tonight at 7:10 pm at Fenway Park.
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After losing six straight against their division rivals Tampa Bay Rays and New York Yankees, The Boston Red Sox will return to Fenway Park in desperate need of a win. Since being swept by New York last weekend the Sox find themselves 6.5 games behind in the AL East standings. Tampa Bay has just recently become a threat, now just 1.5 games apart from Boston. Captain Jason Varitek is certain that his club will make a comeback, saying “we do have a long part of our season left. This team, we have too many good characters on this team. This team won’t quit.”
Hoping to turn things around, the Red Sox will host the Detroit Tigers for a 4-game series this week. Brad Penny will be getting the first start for Boston against the 8-5 Edwin Jackson. Penny is 7-6 for the Red Sox with a 5.20 ERA. The first game is scheduled to start tonight at 7:10 pm. “We’re going to keep on fighting,” said Red Sox DH David Ortiz. “There’s nothing else you can do but play. We’ll try to change things around. Everything’s going really bad right now, but the next day, we’ll come to the field and turn the page, come back and play.”
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Tim Wakefield continued his stellar season, going 6 2/3 innings and giving up just three runs. Wakefield leads Sox starters with a 7-3 record and 4.50 ERA, being the rotation’s stopper before the resurgence of Josh Beckett. “He’s been a blessing for us,” Terry Francona said in a post game press conference. “He’s a good pitcher. He’s unconventional, but that’s OK.”After a rough 2nd inning, Wakefield and the rest of the Sox pitchers held the Tigers scoreless. Jonathan Papelbon had another dramatic save, giving up a walk and a hit before retiring the side for his 14th save on the year.
The Sox got all of the offense they would need in the third inning. JD Drew got things started with the first of two consecutive RBI walks. After Youkilis walked in a run, Jason Bay looped a three-run double into left field. Mike Lowell drove in another run on a groundout, and Rocco Baldelli drove in the last run on a single to left field. David Ortiz was out of the lineup, and could see an eye doctor to find out if vision problems are the source of his season-long slump.
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For the past three games, all of the Sox RBI’s came from the top four spots in the order. On Wednesday night, the entire offense contributed behind a stellar effort from the ace of the rotation. Josh Beckett went 7 2/3 innings strong with nine strikeouts and no earned runs. “I thought he was tremendous,” Terry Francona said in a post-game press conference. “He had great stuff, and the ball had great movement. It was fun to watch.” In his last 6 starts Beckett has gone at least 6 innings, hasn’t given up more than three runs. and is undefeated.
While Sox pitching was effective, the defense was costly. The Detroit Tigers got 5 runs on errors in a wild 8th inning. The usually solid Dustin Pedrioa and Mike Lowell each contributed baserunners that would score on Curtis Granderson’s long triple. With the sweep, the Sox gain a share of first place with the New York Yankees.
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On Tuesday night Sox manager Terry Francona became just the 3rd Sox skipper to win 500 games with the team. With the Pedrioa, Drew, Youkilis, Bay lineup in effect again, the top of the Sox batting order continued to click. For the third consecutive game, the 1-4 spots contributed all of the RBI’s. Jason Bay drove in two with his 3rd inning bomb, and Pedrioa, Youkilis, and Drew each contributed one as well. Although he hit a single into left in the second inning, David Ortiz struggled at the plate. The struggling Sox DH raised his season average to .186, but struck out three times.
In his second start since coming off the DL, Daisuke Matsuzaka got his first win of the season. Matsuzaka only pitched 5 innings, but he racked up 6 k’s. Daisuke had some control issues, but scattered 6 hits and 3 walks for just one run. Jonathan Papelbon made things interesting in a non-save sitation in the 9th. Papelbon loaded the bases, and promptly struck out the side.
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The New York Yankees survived a near-collapse of their bullpen to notch a 8-6 victory over the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday night. Joba Chamberlain showed why New York wants him to be a starter; allowing only one run on three hits and three walks through 7 innings, while racking up 6 k’s. Nick Swisher was the offensive catalyst for the Yanks, racking up 4 RBI on two homers and helping to chase Detroit starter Rick Porcello.
The Yanks didn’t have it easy after Chamberlain was done, though. The Tigers mounted an impressive comeback, scoring four runs off of reliever Jonathan Albaladejo, as well as getting a huge two run homer off of Mariano Rivera by Curtis Granderson. Detroit fell short in the end, and the Yankees won their second consecutive game.
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Kevin Youkilis blasted his 4th homerun in as many days to help the Boston Red Sox capture a 5-1 victory over the Detroit Tigers last night at Comerica Park. Youkilis came into the Detroit series with 3 homers on the season and leaves Motown with 7 round trippers, and the Tigers pitching and coaching staff couldn’t be happier to see him leave town.
“Our entire staff did a poor, poor job the entire series against Youkilis,” Detroit manager Jim Leyland said. “Not with the thought process but executing pitches. We just gave him cookie after cookie and he just beat our brains out.”
Justin Verlander was the most recent culprit to surrender a Youkilis blast, giving up the two-run bomb in the 5th inning, putting the Sox ahead 5-1, a lead that Josh Beckett would make hold up for his 4th win of the season. Verlander falls to 1-6 on the year and his ERA rises up to 6.43.
For the second consecutive start Beckett looked very comfortable on the mound and the outcome relayed this feeling as he was able to mix in all of his pitches throughout the night with ease.
“I made pitches when I needed them, and that’s what it boils down to,” Beckett said. “If I hadn’t been able to make a couple key pitches, I would have given up a lot more runs. I had all four pitches working when I needed them, and that’s big.”
Over 7 innings of work, Beckett allowed 1 run on 6 hits while striking out 8 Tigers. Along the way he recorded his 1,000th career strike out en route to the victory. Craig Hansen relieved Beckett and pitched a perfect 8th while Manny Delcarmen recorded all three outs in the 9th.
The Sox recorded 13 hits on the night led by a 3 hit performance by Coco Crisp while Jacoby Ellsbury, David Ortiz and Mike Lowell all chipped in with 2 hits respectively. Ortiz now has an 8 game hitting streak and has raised his average 55 percentage points over that time.
Boston took three of the four games in Detroit and squandered the possible sweep with an unusual blown save on Wednesday night by Jonathan Papelbon. The team now travels to Minnesota for a four game set against the Twins who are currently in first place on the AL Central Division with a record of 17-16. Over the past ten games both clubs are playing extremely good baseball. The Sox are 8-2 over that period while the Twins are 7-3.
Tonight’s pitching match up features Jon Lester of the Sox going against Boof Bonser of the Twins. Over his last two starts, Lester has looked very impressive hurling 14 innings while only allowed 1 earned run and striking out 11 opponents. Lester is 2-2 on the season with a 3.94 ERA and has never started in Minnesota.
Bonser is coming off a no decision against the Tigers on May 4th where he allowed 6 runs on 8 hits over 6 innings. He is 2-4 on the season with a 4.29 ERA. He has never faced many of the Red Sox starters, including Youkilis who has never homered at the Metrodome but still looks to stay hot in Minnesota.
The scheduled first pitch tonight is at 8:10pm EST.
- Curt Schilling threw long toss before Thursdays game, completing 25 tosses of about 60 feet in length. There is still no estimated return for Schilling who began the season on the 60-Day DL.
- On Tuesday night, Tim Wakefield and Mike Timlin became the first pair of 40 + year old pitchers to combine for a shutout since 1990 in the Sox 5-0 win over Detroit.
- Jacoby Ellsbury, Jed Lowrie, Craig Hanson and Clay Buchholtz are all currently on the Red Sox official 40-man roster. This is the first time in the 43-year history of the amateur draft that an organization has moved its top 4 picks from the same draft (2005) onto the roster at the same time within 3 years of having been drafted.
The Boston Red Sox did everything they could to win last night’s game against the Detroit Tigers, but sometimes everything just isn’t enough. Placido Polanco’s broken bat single in the 9th inning off of Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon would knock in the game winner as the Tigers pulled off the 10-9 come from behind victory, snapping their five game losing streak and ending Boston’s five game winning streak.
“We had a great comeback and we couldn’t finish it,” Boston manager Terry Francona said.
The Red Sox had trailed most of game and overcame a 4 run deficit that they faced after 5 innings when the Tigers led 8-4. Kevin Youkilis’ second homerun of the game in the 6th pulled the Sox within 3 runs, making the score 8-5 Detroit, and with two outs in the 7th inning Mike Lowell would belt a 3-run shot to knot the game at 8-8. The homerun came off of relief pitcher Francisco Cruceta, who had just entered the game.
Javier Lopez came out of the pen and pitched a scoreless 7th for the Sox retiring Ivan Rodriguez, Curtis Granderson, and Placido Polanco in order. This was the only time Boston pitchers were able to retire the three in a row all evening. Detroit collected a season high 18 hits off of Red Sox pitching.
J.D. Drew led off the 8th inning with a walk and stolen base. After a Jason Varitek line out, Julio Lugo also walked putting runners on first and second with one out for Jacoby Ellsbury. Ellsbury would strike out swinging in a very good at bat leaving the stage set for pinch hitter Dustin Pedroia. Pedroia who had been given the night off delivered in the clutch, ripping the go ahead RBI single to left, plating Drew to put the Sox ahead for the first time all night 9-8.
Hideki Okajima preserved the lead pitching the 8th inning allowing a few hits but retiring the side without allowing a run. The inning ended on a strike him out; throw him out double play where Varitek caught Magglio Ordonez trying to steal third after Gary Sheffield struck out swinging.
The Sox threatened to add some insurance to their lead in the 9th inning off of Tigers closer Todd Jones, but Jones was able to get out of the jam stranding runners on first and second base.
With a lead in the 9th inning, Terry Francona did what he’s done a hundred times before, calling for the services of All-Star closer Jonathan Papelbon to finish off the Tigers. Unfortunately for Papelbon and the Sox, the save just wasn’t in the cards last night.
Matt Joyce led off the inning with an infield single and was replaced at first base with pinch runner Ryan Raburn. Edgar Renteria then grounded to short in what looked to be a taylor-made double play ball only Julio Lugo rushed fielding the play, worrying too much about Raburn’s speed and made a very costly error. Ivan Rodriguez’s sacrifice bunt moved both runners into scoring position and the tying run was knocked in by a Curtis Granderson ground out to second base.
With the winning run at third, Polanco stepped up to the plate already having collected 4 hits on the night. He was able to foul off a few Papelbon fastballs before shooting a broken bat single over the head of Lugo into left field for the game winning RBI.
“It tells you a lot about our team,” Polanco said. “We had some really tough at-bats against Papelbon to make something happen.”
The blown save was Papelbon’s first of the year, he had previously been 10 for 10 in save conversion opportunities.
“We didn’t get many breaks,” Papelbon said. “When they get little breaks like that, they’re going to make you pay for it.”
In tonight’s final game of the four game series, the Red Sox will send Josh Beckett to the mound to duel against Tiger’s ace Justin Verlander. Both are off to slow starts, Verlander especially who is currently 1-5 with a 6.28 ERA on the season. Beckett is coming off a strong 8 inning performance in which he picked up the win vs. Tampa Bay last week at Fenway. He is currently 3-2 on the year with a 4.19 ERA.
Boston will then travel to Minnesota for a four game series against the Twins, and wrap up the road trip with a quick two game stop in Baltimore to face off against the Orioles.
- Jacoby Ellsbury has successfully converted every stolen base attempt in his major league career. Last night he stole 2 bases to put him up to 13 on the season, and dating back to his debut last year he is a perfect 22-22 on stolen bases.
- After his two blasts in last nights game, Kevin Youkilis has now hit 7 career homeruns at Comerica Park, this is 5 more homeruns than he has hit at any other visiting stadium. The only other time Youkilis has had a multi-homerun game also came in Detroit back in Aug. of 2004.
- Alex Cora went 2-4 and scored a run in 7 innings of a rehab stint in Triple-A Pawtucket Wednesday night.