Aceves Sharp, Bard Gets Shelled as Red Sox Lose 9-6
By John Green
The competition the Red Sox have going for the fifth starter spot gets a little more intense with each game. Tuesday it was Felix Doubront who turned in a stellar performance, this afternoon it was Alfredo Aceves.
Aceves turned in his longest outing of the spring thus far going four innings allowing just three hits, one earned run and no walks while striking out three. The one run that Aceves did give up came after a controversial interference call on Nick Punto at second base in the second inning. The call came when Matt Carpenter took Punto out at second base and got up to continue rounding the bases and eventually scoring when he was awarded home.
The Sox came back in the bottom of the fourth though. David Ortiz got things started with a double and Ryan Lavarnway singled to drive him in. Darnell McDonald then continued his torrid pace this spring with a two run homer off over the Green Monster. With Carl Crawford expected to miss the start of the season there are now three outfielders fighting for two spots. D-Mac is the hottest of the three right now so dont be surprised if hes standing in the outfield come Opening Day.
Kyle Lohse was the victim of McDonalds blast, forcing him out of the game. His final line looks like this: 3 2/3 IP, 3 ER, 6H, 4K. Not a pretty line but Lohse actually was effective for most of this outing, holding the Sox scoreless until the fourth inning.
Dustin Pedroia was next to clear the monster, his shot coming in the fifth inning making it 4-1. The Sox’s three run lead was short lived though.
Daniel Bard came in to pitch the sixth after Justin Thomas pitched an inning in relief of Aceves. Bard got Carlos Beltran to ground out before allowing a homerun off the bat of Matt Adams. The Cardinals werent done yet as Daniel Descalso doubled, followed by an errid pickoff attempt by Bard allowing him to advance to third. Matt Carpenter then walked and Erik Komatsu struck out before Koyie Hill drove Descalso in on a single. It would get even worse for Bard. Alex Cora would walk next to load the bases before Rafael Furcal singled to drive in the tying run. Finally Jon Jay lined out to end the inning.
The Red Sox would take the lead again in the bottom of the sixth. Samuel Freeman walked three consecutive with two outs in the inning before Pedro Ciriaco stepped to the plate. The red hot young shortstop lined a double into left field scoring Nate Spears and Che-Hsuan Lin. That made it 6-4 going into the seventh inning.
As was the theme through most of this game, the Cardinals came back. After a clean seventh for Bard, the Cardinals roughed him up again in the eighth erupting for four runs. This was far and away the worse outing of the spring for him as he finished with this ugly line. 2 2/3 IP, 6H, 7ER, 4BB, and just 1K. We will have to pay attention closely in his next outing to see how he rebounds from this tough start.
The Red Sox would threaten in the ninth, putting runners at first and second but Kyle McClellan retired the next three Red Sox hitters to end the game.
Red Sox Notes From Todays Game
–With a double and a two run homerun, Darnell McDonald is now hitting .500 in 16 at bats this spring.
–Daniel Bards ERA after todays game is 8.22. Alfredo Aceves’ ERA sits at 1.00.
—Jacoby Ellsbury was 2 for 3 in the game, bringing his average up to .250
–Pedro Ciriaco also had 2 hits in the game, bringing his average to .643 for the spring.
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