Mariners - 000 310 000 - 4 8 0Boston rallied to tie and take the lead the instant Morrow (6-6-3-2-7, 98) was pulled from the game. Three singles and three walks against Miguel Batista and Mark Lowe (who threw only four strikes among his 15 pitches) gave the Sox five runs and avoided a sweep.
Red Sox - 200 001 50x - 8 9 1
The first three Boston runs came on solo dongs: Dustin Pedroia (#3) and David Ortiz (#9) in the first and Jacoby Ellsbury (#5) in the sixth.
Nick Green began the seventh by flying out to center. J.D. Drew walked on five pitches and Pedroia (who also doubled in the fifth) singled to left. Youkilis flied out to the track in left for the second out. Batista fell behind Ortiz 3-0 and Flo got the green light, ripping an RBI single into right to tie the game.
Lowe relieved Batista and could not find the plate. He walked Jason Bay on four pitches to load the bases, then walked Ellsbury on five pitches to force in the go-ahead run. He fell behind Mark Kotsay 3-1 before Kotsay grounded a full-count pitch into right field for two more runs.
Sean White, Seattle's third pitcher of the inning, struck out Jason Varitek, but not before Kenji Johjima's passed ball brought home Ellsbury with the fifth run of the inning.
An infield error prolonged the Mariners fourth inning and Lester (6.2-8-4-3-9, 122) gave up a bases-loaded triple to #9 hitter Ronny Cedeno. Only one of the four runs allowed was earned. The 122 pitches was a season-high for Lester.
Justin Masterson faced four batters and collected three strikeouts. Hideki Okajima pitched a perfect ninth to nail down the win.
The Yankees beat the Blue Jays 10-8 to stay 1 GB.
Brandon Morrow (5.14, 83 ERA+) / Jon Lester (4.35, 107 ERA+)
It's bad enough the Red Sox are assured of losing a series to Seattle at Fenway for the first time August 14-16, 2001.
But the possibility of getting swept at home by the Mariners is:
It would also be unprecedented. Seattle has never swept a three-game series at Fenway Park. Ever.
Morrow had made 16 relief appearances this season before starting on June 13 at Colorado. In four starts, he has pitched only 16.2 innings, allowing 19 hits and 11 walks, while striking out 18.
His ERA as a starter is 3.79, but opponents are hitting .297/.395/.391. Poor control has led to high pitch counts and limited his innings to 3, 4, 5 and 4.2 in those four starts.
Complete list of Red Sox players who have stolen 35+ bases in consecutive season:
LBJ is also the first AL player to steal 35 or more bases before the All-Star break in back-to-back seasons since Rickey Henderson (1988-90).Harry Hooper 1910-11
Tris Speaker 1912-13-14
Jacoby Ellsbury 2008-09
The Yankees are 1 GB. They host the Blue Jays at 1 PM (Cecil/Chamberlain).