Red Sox - 013 020 005 - 11 13 0Boston's first three-game sweep in Tampa Bay since 2001* moves the Red Sox from 8.5 GB to 5.5 GB in three days. They are now in third place, two games behind the Yankees.
Rays - 010 100 001 - 3 10 0
* Boston swept two consecutive three-game series at the Trop in 2001: April 17-19 and June 19-21. The following season, Boston swept two four-game series (May 3-6 and September 9-12, 2002), so the "first three-game sweep" tidbit is a bit of a trick.
Adrian Beltre went 4-for-5, with a single, triple, two long home runs to left, and tied a career high with 6 RBI. It was the 19th four-hit game of Beltre's career, but his first with a triple and two dongs. His other game with 6 RBI was July 27, 2000 in Colorado. (Alex Cora followed Beltre in the Dodgers order that day and had 5 RBI! And Eric Gagne started for LA!)
David Ortiz hit a two-run bomb in the fifth and Darnell McDonald had a two-run double in the ninth.
Lackey (6.1-8-2-4-1, 115) was the very definition of "winning ugly", allowing at least two base runners in each of his first five innings, thanks to seven hits and four walks up to that point. ... Garza (5-5-6-5-3, 103) also struggled -- 75 pitches in the first three innings -- and the Red Sox were able to hit three dongs to make his mistakes translate into runs.
Back in April, when Tampa swept a four-game series in Boston for the first time ever, I checked how many four-game series the Rays had played at Fenway by going through Tampa's schedules at B-Ref year by year. Soon after I did that, though, I realized there was a far easier way. I should have looked at this page, which lists every game the two teams have played. Boston is now 131-80 (.618) against the (Devil) Rays.
The Yankees resumed their suspended game and beat the Twins 1-0, then won the regularly scheduled game 3-2. The Jays lost to the Angels 6-5.
New York is 3.5 GB, Boston is 5.5 GB and Toronto is 6 GB.
John Lackey / Matt Garza
Short-staffed tonight, as Martinez, Ellsbury, and Drew will not be in the starting lineup.Scutaro, SS
The Red Sox finally have a chance to move into third place with a win and a Blue Jays loss. (Blue Jays/Angels and Yankees/Twins at 7 PM. The Yankees and Twins will resume their suspended game at 5 PM.)
Lackey's last three starts: 18 innings, 23 hits, 12 walks, 13 strikeouts, 7.50 ERA, .922 opponents OPS. ... Walk totals in last four starts: 2, 3, 4, 5.
Looking at Lackey's 2010 splits, we see that he is at his worst the second time through the lineup, innings 2-4, and pitches 26-75. Part of that can be chalked up to a very high BABIP. ... Also, with 2 outs in an inning, batters against Lackey are hitting .323/.429/.523 (which is much better than they do with 0 or 1 out).
This Date in Baseball History:
1959: Pittsburgh's Harvey Haddix pitches 12 perfect innings against Milwaukee before losing the game in the 13th. Joe Adcock hits a three-run home run off Haddix, but he "passes" Hank Aaron on the bases (actually, Aaron left the field), so he gets credit for a double and the final score is 1-0.
1976: Ken Brett of the White Sox has a no-hitter against the Angels with two outs in the ninth inning when Jerry Remy hits a slow roller down the third base line. Jorge Orta lets the ball roll and it is ruled a hit. Brett allowed another hit in the 10th and finally won the game 1-0 in 11 innings.
1993: Cleveland's Carlos Martinez hits a fly ball that bounces off the head of Rangers outfielder Jose Canseco and over the fence for a home run.