Red Sox - 000 060 003 - 9 12 0With one out in the fifth, and the Royals having just taken a 2-0 lead, J.D. Drew singled to left. He would be the first of eight consecutive Boston batters to reach base off Hochevar.
Royals - 000 200 000 - 2 12 0
Alex Gonzalez singled to right, Jacoby Ellsbury tripled to left-center, tying the game at 2-2. Dustin Pedroia singled, giving him a 15-game hitting streak and putting the Sox up 3-2. Victor Martinez extended his streak to 22 games with a single to center. Kevin Youkilis walked, loading the bases. Jason Bay hit a first-pitch single to left, scoring two runs. David Ortiz followed with a first-pitch single down the right field line for the sixth run of the inning.
Mike Lowell had grounded out to short to begin the fifth. Now, as the tenth man to bat, he grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to end the rally. A reader named Dan left a comment on my 3 Outs In An Inning post from April:
Mike Lowell came close to making all three outs in the same inning tonight ... he was responsible for all three outs (although he did not represent all three). Has this happened before?What Lowell did was not all that unique. Now if he had made only the second out, and then the same eight Sox reached safely and then Lowell ended the inning with a third out in his third AB -- that would have been a first in major league history.
Beckett (6-12-2-1-7, 103) allowed a season-high 12 hits, but he stranded two Royals in each of the first four innings. And he was helped by a caught stealing in the fourth. After Martinez threw out David DeJesus, the next two batters singled, but were both left on base. His only perfect inning was the fifth.
Ortiz clocked a three-run dong to right-center in the ninth.
Josh Beckett (3.80, 124 ERA+) / Luke Hochevar (5.79, 75 ERA+)
That is the magic number for both the Red Sox to eliminate the Rangers for the wild card and for the Yankees (who clinched a playoff spot last night) to win the AL East.
Pitchers for this weekend in New York:
Friday: Jon Lester / CC SabathiaOut West: Yankees/Angels at 3:30 and Rangers/A's at 10.
Saturday: Daisuke Matsuzaka / Joba Chamberlain
Sunday: Paul Byrd / Andy Pettitte