Sunday, May 8, 2011

Red Sox Win Second Straight After 9-4 Victory

                                                                                            Sports Illustrated

Red Sox 9 Twins 5
Winning Pitcher: Daisuke Matsuzaka (3-3)
Losing Pitcher: Carl Pavano: (2-4)

The game got off to a rough start, but Daisuke Matsuzaka and the Red Sox were able to escape Fenway with a two game win streak after Sunday's 9-4 win. It looked bleak in the top of the first, when Dice-K gave up three runs on three hits an a walk. He looked like the typical Dice-K where he is nubbling around the edges and leaving pitches up to hit. However, he settled down in a big way after that first inning, finishing his stint with 6 respectable innings, allowing four runs on five hits and two walks. It was far from an All Star caliber start, but he settled down after a rough start and pitched well enough for the team to win. After scoring a run in the second, the Red Sox came up to bat in the bottom of the third trailing 3-1. The inning started with a deep triple to center from Carl Crawford, and he was immediately knocked in by a ground out from Varitek. Jacoby Ellsbury then came up with a single, stole a base, and Pedroia drew a walk to put men on first and second. Adrian Gonzalez then came up with a big single to tie the game at 3. The Sox were able to tack on two more runs in the inning, and walked away from the third with a 5-3 advantage. After allowing two more runs in the fifth, Carl Pavano was taken out. Pavano pitched five innings, allowing 7 runs on 10 hits. The Red Sox put two more runs up in the game, and got solid bullpen work from Matt Albers and Daniel Bard en route to their 9-5 win.

News and Notes
  •  The Red Sox lineup continues to produce exactly how they are drawing it up. It starts out with their lead off man, Jacoby Ellsbury, getting on base. After his 3-5 performance, Ellsbury now has a 17 game hitting streak, his longest since May of 2009. On top of the three hits, the center fielder scored a run and stole a base. In the three hole, the Red Sox brought in Adrian Gonzalez to knock in the men on base. Gonzo came through in a big way on Sunday, going 3-5 with 2 runs and 2 RBIs, as well as a home run, his fourth of 2011. This is a tough lineup to beat when the lead off man is getting on, and the middle of the lineup is knocking the ball around the yard.

  • It is necessary to give credit where credit is due. Daisuke Matsuzaka pitched well today, if you take away his first inning. Other than that three run inning, Dice-K went five innings, giving up just one run on two hits and a walk. He was far from dominant, pitching in his normal unappealing-to-the-eyes style, but he did everything he needed to do to win. We have all seen him implode after having that rough first inning, but on Sunday he was able to buckle down and he kept this team in its winning way.

  • Before the game, the Red Sox placed Marco Scutaro (strained oblique) on the 15-day DL. To take his place on the roster, the Red Sox called up shortstop prospect Jose Iglesias. The prospect is known to have an elite glove, but his hitting has been called into question. There have been many different opinions on when Iglesias should be slated to play in the bigs, but no one could have imagined seeing him this early. It will be interesting to finally see that glove in action.

The Red Sox will be back at it against the Twins tomorrow night at 7:10 PM ET. They send Josh Beckett (2-1 2.35) to the mound against Nick Blackburn (2-4 4.41). 

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