Blue Jays - 000 000 001 - 1 2 0 Red Sox - 201 023 10x - 9 13 0Matsuzaka (7-1-0-1-3, 89) followed perhaps the worst outing of his career with one of his very best. He allowed only two base runners, a single with two outs in the first and a walk with two outs in the second. In each case, the next batter ended the inning.
And Jed Lowrie continued his recent assault on American League pitchers, going 4-for-5, with three singles, a home run, two runs scored, and four RBI. It was the second four-hit game of his career. Over his last seven games (10 days), Lowrie is batting .625 (15-for-24) and slugging .958.
Going down the box score:
J.D. Drew: triple, single, walk, runMatsuzaka had thrown only 89 pitches through seven innings and had mowed down the last 16 Jays (on only 54 pitches), but Francona went to the pen anyway. Alfredo Aceves kept the ball in the infield in a perfect eighth and Tim Wakefield gave up a one-out home run to Yunel Escobar that barely cleared the Wall (it actually hit a fan's glove, but looked like it would have landed over the line).
Dustin Pedroia: single, two walks, run
Adrian Gonzalez: double, run
Kevin Youkilis: double, home run, two RBI, two runs
David Ortiz: single, two walks, run
Carl Crawford: double, RBI
Jacoby Ellsbury: home run (#4)
The Red Sox head to Oakland tonight with a 5-10 record, 4.5 GB the idle Yankees -- and only 1.5 games out of second place in the East.
Ricky Romero / Daisuke Matsuzaka
Dice was cringingly bad in his last start, allowing eight hits, two walks and seven runs in 2+ innings (47 pitches). It was his shortest outing and fewest pitches thrown since April 14, 2009.
[W]hen we got into the second, everything went to the middle of the plate. ... seven balls hit right on the barrel. We love when guys throw strikes, but there were some balls that were middle-middle for the first seven hitters.As Matsuzaka made the lonely walk back to the Fenway dugout after being yanked in the third, he was loudly booed.
Nobody really wants to be booed by the fans. The only way I can change this is to show good results in front of them. ... I watched a video after the game and I noticed a clear difference between when I pitch well and bad. There's something to fix.Dice gets a chance to redeem himself (somewhat) in the annual Patriots Day game, as the Red Sox hope to take three of four from Toronto before heading west to Oakland.
Romero (1.66 ERA) threw a complete game last Tuesday in a 3-2 loss to Seattle. Romero has not allowed more than two earned runs in any of his three starts this year.
AL East: White Sox/Rays (6:30 PM); Twins/Orioles (7 PM); Yankees off (at Blue Jays Tuesday/Wednesday)