Twins - 002 001 002 - 5 9 0 Red Sox - 000 000 000 - 0 2 0Every time the Red Sox have gotten even a modest head of steam this season, they have quickly stumbled and fallen on their faces. A four-game winning streak was snapped by the Tigers on Wednesday; on Thursday, Boston was shut out by the lowly Twins.
Lester (8-7-3-0-7, 105) pitched well enough to win on most nights.
I threw the hell out of the ball tonight. I don't feel like I've thrown the ball that well all year.Adrian Gonzalez had both of Boston's hits: a double in the fourth and a single in the sixth. He also had one of the four walks issued by Sam Deduno (6-2-0-4-1, 101) in his fifth major league start.
Any decent scoring chance the Red Sox had came with two outs in the inning. Dustin Pedroia and Gonzalez walked with two outs in the first, but Cody Ross popped to shortstop. With two outs and runners at first and second in the third, Will Middlebrooks flied to center. In the sixth, with two on and two outs, Ryan Lavarnway lined out to left.
Brian Dozier singled to start the third and, two outs later, Denard Span doubled him home. Span then scored on a hit by Ben Revere. The Twins added a run in the sixth on back-to-back doubles by Justin Morneau and Ryan Doumit. Dozier hit a two-run homer in the ninth.
Ellsbury, CFIn five July starts, Lester posted a 9.36 ERA, and opponents battered him around without mercy (.327/.405/.653/1.059). He showed some signs of improvement in his last start, however, so August ought to be better.
On June 23, Adrian Gonzalez was hitting .256. Since then, he has hit .389 in 33 games to raise his average to an even .300. Gonzalez drew only one walk in 96 plate appearances in July (and the walk came on July 31).
Will Middlebrooks - also at .300 - has a nine-game hitting streak (13-for-33, .394).
Daniel Nava (.123/.253/.222 since June 25) was placed on the disabled list yesterday with a left wrist sprain, and Ryan Lavarnway was called up. When that splendid brainbox Craig Breslow was added to the roster, Clayton Mortensen was optioned back to Pawtucket.
David Ortiz is feeling good. "[Wednesday] is the first time I've felt good. No limping and if I hit the ball the way I am [in the cage] I won't have to worry about running."
Peter Abraham of the Globe wondered whether Red Sox fans should have booed an apparently injured Josh Beckett as he left Tuesday's game in the third inning. WEEI's Kirk Minihane says booing was the right thing to do.
Who were the top performers in the minor leagues in July? Mike Andrews has the answers.