Sox Get Out Slugged By Royals in Ugly 9-6 Loss


In one of those classic woulda, shoulda, coulda games, the Red Sox kept jumping ahead in the first five innings only to be caught and sunk during a six run Kansas City Royals sixth inning, eventually going down to an ugly 9-6 loss at Kauffman Stadium Friday night.

Aug 9, 2013; Kansas City, MO, USA; Boston Red Sox manager John Farrell (53) makes a trip to the mound to relieve starting pitcher Jake Peavy (44) in the sixth inning of the game against the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Neither Sox starting pitcher Jake Peavy nor the Royals’ Ervin Santana were mysteries early on as both teams hammered the starters and see-sawed between lead changes through three innings. Peavey threw 105 pitches in 5 innings during his outing. Santana threw 97 pitches in just 3 2/3 innings work. The Red Sox and Royals pounded out 27 hits between them, the difference being Kansas City’s hits were more timely and damaging.

The Sox jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first against Santana when Daniel Nava singled to drive in Shane Victorino.

Proving once again that nothing comes easy for the Red Sox in August on a road trip, Justin Maxwell hit a solo homer off Sox starter Jake Peavy in the second to knot the score at 1-1. The Royals took a 2-1 lead in the same frame when David Lough singled to score Alcides Escobar.

After an extended home run drought, David Ortiz stroked a no-doubt solo shot in the top of the third to tie the game again 2-2. Before the inning was done, Boston strung together a hit batsman (Mike Napoli), a single by Stephen Drew and a double by Jarrod Saltalamacchia to go up 3-2.

As Peavy’s control problems and pitch count mounted – 73 over three innings – he gave up his second homer of the night to Alex Gordon in the bottom of the third to tie the game again at 3-3. If not for a superb catch by Jacoby Ellsbury to end the inning, picking a ball from the wall off the bat of Mike Moustakas, Peavy wold have been in more trouble.

In a game that devolved at times into tedium, the Sox pressed Santana hard in the fourth with two outs on back-to-back singles by Dustin Pedroia and Ortiz and then Santana hit Daniel Nava. Boston made him pay. Napoli stroked a bases-clearing double over the head of center fielder Maxwell and it was shower time for Santana as the Sox surged to a 6-3 lead.

Peavey, who was battling all night – mostly with himself – was lifted in the sixth after giving up three singles in a row and a run, leaving reliever Drake Britton in a big first and third no out jam. Britton walked George Kottaras to load the bases. After getting Miguel Tajada to pop out to Napoli, Britton induced Lough to fly out to Victorino but the long fly scored another run. Eric Hosmer hit a two-out single to score Escobar and Kottaras and just like that Boston gave up the lead as was down 7-6.

John Farrell lifted Britton and brought in Pedro Beato who promptly gave up a double to Billy Butler that scored Hosmer. Beato walked Gordon and then gave up a single to Maxwell, scoring Butler. 9-6 Royals.

It was a lousy outing for Peavey and Boston’s relievers as Boston dropped the first two games in Kansas City. Felix Doubront (8-5, 3.56 ERA) will attempt to get Boston back on track as he goes up against Jeremy Guthrie (12-7, 3.96 ERA) Saturday night.