Brewers - 202 000 000 - 4 8 1 Red Sox - 220 012 30x - 10 14 0Adrian Gonzalez singled, doubled, and homered in his first three at-bats, David Ortiz chipped in with three hits, and John Lackey (8-8-4-0-5, 111) found his bearings after two rough innings, setting down 15 straight Brewers as the Red Sox pulled away for an easy victory.
Lackey threw 25 pitches in the top of the first and allowed three hits and two runs, but that didn't seem so awful after Marcum threw 44 pitches in the home half and gave those runs right back -- Ellsbury HR, Pedroia F8, Gonzalez 1B, Youkilis K, Ortiz 2B (2 RBI), Crawford 1B, Scutaro BB, Drew 4-3. Marcum (1-4-2-1-1, 44) may have hurt himself; that inning was the extent of his night.
Crawford left the game with a left hamstring strain after beating out his infield single. Youkilis had a two-run single in the second; he also was pulled from the game, in the fifth, with an upset stomach (from watching Lackey's early innings, perhaps).
After allowing four straight singles to start the third, the Blamethrower was aided by a double play started by Dustin Pedroia, who had a phenomenal night in the field. That DP brought in the game-tying run (4-4), but Lackey was suddenly in a groove, finishing the inning with a strikeout. Milwaukee's only base runner for the rest of the night was a one-out single in the eighth (and he was doubled off when Ellsbury ran in towards shallow right-center for a pop-up and, still in a sprint, threw quickly to first).
Evil Bert broke the tie with a dong (#15) in the fifth. Jason Varitek and Pedroia had RBIs in the sixth and J.D. Drew drove in two runs in the seventh.
The Cubs beat the Yankees 3-1 this afternoon, so Boston's lead is back to 2.5.
Shaun Marcum / John Lackey
The scourge of inter-league play is upon us again. The Red Sox's slate (through July 3) is Brewers (3) and Padres (3) at home, then on the road for the Pirates (3), Phillies (3), and Astros (3). Then it's back to Fenway, where the Blue Jays (3) and Orioles (4) will take us to the All-Star break.
The Brewers lead the NL Central with a 39-31 record, 1 GA of the Cardinals, 2 GA of the Reds, and 3 GA of the Pirates. Milwaukee is 5th in the NL is R/G (4.39), 6th in OBP (.322) and 2nd in SLG (.421). They are 7th in team ERA (3.70) and 3rd in WHIP (1.252).
Boston and Milwaukee have played only six games against each other since 1997:
June 6-8, 2003 (Boston won 2 of 3: 3-9, 11-10, 9-1)AL East: Yankees/Cubs at 2:15 PM and Marlins/Rays, Blue Jays/Reds, and Orioles/Nationals at 7 PM.
May 17-18, 2008 (Boston won 3 of 3: 5-3, 7-6, 11-7)