The Red Sox defeated the Miami Marlins 7-5 on Tuesday night, no thanks to a less than stellar outing from Sox starter Clay Buchholz.
Buchholz wanted an extra days rest and he got it after declining to take the ball for Sunday’s start when Josh Beckett went on the DL. Rather than pitch on five days rest, Buchholz got one more day off with the off day on Monday, meaning his start on Tuesday would be on seven days of rest. A week off allowed rust to build on the righty and it showed against the Marlins as Buchholz was tagged for five runs on nine hits over 6.0 innings. He struck out three and walked only one in what was his shortest outing in his last five starts.
It was really just one Marlin who inflicted all of the damage on this night, one Logan Morrison who went 3-for-4 with all 5 RBI for the fish, which included a home run and two doubles. To say he has Buchholz’s number is an understatement.
But as the case has been all season when the Texas native takes the mound for the Red Sox, the offense bailed him out again, answering the Marlins on multiple occasions by scoring in the bottom half of the inning. Finally in the fifth, the Red Sox gave Buchholz the lead for good on an Adrian Gonzalez sacrifice fly, that was enough to secure his eighth win of the season, the most by any Sox starter.
The Red Sox reverted to the long ball on this night to help their starter. First it was David Ortiz belted his 17th home run of the season tying the game at two in the bottom of the first, then catcher Kelly Shoppach hit his 4th in the bottom of the 2nd, a two run shot.
Cody Ross was a welcomed sight back in the lineup and what a return he had by going deep for his 9th, a solo shot in the 4th to make it a 5-3 game.
After the pesky Logan Morrison tied it in the 5th with his second double of the game, it was Gonzalez who restored the lead, one the Olde Towne Team would not relenquish.
The bullpen was once again busy as manager Bobby Valentine used four different pitchers over the final three innings, that was eventually saved by Alfredo Aceves. Matt Albers, Andrew Miller and Vicente Padilla combined to work the 7th and 8th, only giving up one run before watching Aceves collect his 17th save of the season with a clean final inning.
But the victory could be marred by the fact that Dustin Pedroia left the game in the seventh with what appears to be a re-aggravated thumb injury, the same one he came back from so eagerly to avoid a stint on the DL. As more develops on this we will keep you posted.
It’s worth noting that the time of the game was 2 hours and 53 minutes, largely due to Marlins starter Mark Buehrle who works quicker than a thief in a closed jewelry store. Clay Buchholz reverted to his pain stakingly slow and methodical ways after he worked himself into a jam or two.