Another game, another W. Today’s 6-1 win over the hapless Houston Astros added another victory to the Sox’s already impressive 2013 resume, which includes the major’s best record at 18-7.
After being on the DL since April 6, John Lackey was given the opportunity to work his way back in what was essentially another minor league rehab start against one of the worst teams in the league. He didn’t disappoint. Lackey tallied four K’s over 6 innings, surrendering five hits and just one run. Even when Lackey got into a bases loaded jam in the sixth, he was able to strike out Fernando Martinez on a sharp curve and get the next batter to ground out, ending the threat.
Offensively, the Sox continued to post impressive at-bats against the’ Stros pitching, collecting 6 runs, 11 hits and 2 walks on the afternoon. Any concerns regarding David Ortiz continue to be quelled, as Big Papi had another two hit effort, including an RBI single in the first and RBI double in the seventh.
The two big run scoring innings were the fourth and fifth innings, in which the Sox scored twice each inning. In the fourth, Stephen Drew hit a timely two-run triple, which broke the 1-1 tie at the time. In the fifth, Dustin Pedroia and Mike Carp each had RBI doubles, further adding to their hot starts in 2013.
Following John Lackey’s exit, the bullpen suppressed any Astros opportunities with three scoreless innings of work.
I would be remiss not to mention Daniel Nava‘s absolutely spectacular catch to end the ballgame. While people see the full-out dive and “oooh and ahhh,” I’m just as impressed about the insane amount of ground Nava had to cover just to reach that point. Offensively, Nava didn’t disappoint either, reaching base three times, and scoring on each of those occasions.
Tomorrow is an off-day for the Sox before heading up to Toronto for a three-game set. With another victory on Tuesday, it will mark the first time a Sox team won 19 games in April, a welcome improvement from the early season sloppiness some Sox fans have grown accustomed to.