Blue Jays - 000 001 000 - 1 4 1Matsuzaka: 7-3-1-0-9, 106!
Red Sox - 210 120 00x - 6 7 0
Matsuzaka went seven innings, allowed just three hits and a run. He didn’t walk anyone while throwing 71 strikes in 106 pitches.
He worked quickly, had a great four-seam fastball, and went to a three-ball count on only five of his 24 batters. And only four of the 21 outs left the infield (three of them in the second inning).
Since arriving here, I think this game is the one where I felt the most comfortable using my fastball.It was only the 3rd time in his major league career that Matsuzaka pitched at least 7 innings and did not walk a batter. The other two came in consecutive starts way back in 2007: May 14 (9-6-1-0-5 against the Tigers; his only CG no-walker!) and May 19 (8-9-3-0-6 against Atlanta).
And it was only the 7th time in 76 career starts (of any length) that he did not issue a walk. The others: May 30, 2007 (5.2 innings), April 1, 2008 (6.2), May 27, 2008 (4), and June 7, 2009 (5.2).
Jason Varitek belted yet another home run (#6), a second inning bomb that cleared everything in left. The Cactus also singled and scored in the fourth. J.D. Drew singled twice, walked, and stole a base; Dustin Pedroia doubled, singled, and walked; and both Kevin Youkilis and Marco Scutaro walked twice. Yook was also HBP. Toronto pitchers, after walking seven batters last night, walked eight tonight.
The Yankees were rained out in Detroit (they will play a day-nighter on Wednesday) and Tampa Bay beat the Angels 7-2.
Dana Eveland / Daisuke Matsuzaka
Third start of the season for Dice. Maybe he can avoid having one ghastly inning this time. So far this year: 10 innings, 12 hits, 6 walks, 7 strikeouts, 9.90 ERA.Scutaro, SS
Eveland had a rough go of it against the Sox back on April 26 (3-8-7-3-3). but then, he always does. In four career starts, he has a 18.24 ERA (30 hits and 11 walks in 12.2 innings = 3.324 WHIP!). Current Boston players are hitting him at a .446/.512/.568 clip.
Regressing to the mean: Darnell McDonald is 3 for his last 24, with 9 K. ... Jacoby Ellsbury did some baserunning drills this afternoon. ... The White Sox signed Alan Embree.
After the Red Sox lost to the Yankees last Saturday, Cool Standings had the team (then 7.5 GB) at a 4.4% chance to make the playoffs. In two days, Boston has gained two games in the standings and is now 5.5 GB. CS is not overly impressed, however -- or rather, Tampa Bay and New York don't look appreciably weaker -- and has Boston at only 6.9%. BP's PECOTA projections currently has the Sox at 18.8%.