Just one day after a great win where the Red Sox edged the Blue Jays 6-4, things took a complete 180 in the game today. It was a matchup of the fifth starters with John Lackey squaring off against J.A. Happ, and early on it looked like quite a good one. Through the first three innings, Lackey had struck out 6 while allowing 3 hits and Happ had allowed a hit and struck out 3. It was the fourth inning, however, when the game started to go wrong for the Red Sox. After a one-out single by Adam Lind, J.P. Arencibia took a hanging breaking ball and smashed it over the wall for a two-run homer, his third of the year to give the Jays a 2-0 lead.
Lackey shook that off and recorded the next two outs of that inning and struck out the first batter of the fifth with aplomb. However, that’s exactly when things took a sharp turn south. Lackey appeared to feel a bit of pain on a 2-1 strike to Jose Reyes; however, it was the next pitch that did the real damage. Immediately after throwing the ball, which missed way low and inside, Lackey was clearly in pain as he clutched his bicep. He came out of the game quickly, and the injury was later reported as a strained bicep, not nearly so bad as it looked at first.
The Lackey injury was far from the only bad part of this game, though. The Blue Jays put up three more runs in the sixth inning when Colby Rasmus really got into a pitch from Alfredo Aceves, relieving Lackey. That would be the end of the scoring for Toronto, but the Red Sox bats were finished from the time they walked onto the field.
Jacoby Ellsbury‘s double to lead off the game was the only hit for the Red Sox until Dustin Pedroia‘s infield single with two outs in the ninth. That should illustrate just how badly the Red Sox hit today. The team did draw three walks and actually put together rallies in both the first and third innings. However, once Happ struck out the side in the fourth inning, the bats were essentially silent. The only saving grace from this game was that Alfredo Aceves’s 3.2 innings of relief saved the bullpen from wearing themselves down.