Red Sox walk-off 3-2 over O’s
Jon Lester went eight strong innings and little used Jonathan Herrera banged out a walk-off game winning single as the Red Sox broke a three game losing streak with a 3-2 win over the O’s.
Lester, now in contract extension limbo, faced off against the Birds Miguel Gonzalez in the afternoon part of a day/night twin bill. Both were on top of their game.
The Red Sox opened up the scoring in the second inning. With one out Stephen Drew deposited a Gonzalez pitch into the Orioles bullpen and the Sox had a run and a 1-0 lead. The Red Sox were not done.
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A beautiful defensive play by O’s shortstop J.J. Hardy nailed David Ross at first for the second out. There was no defense to stop a Jackie Bradley (2 hits) double and the Sox had something going.
Up stepped Roy Hobbs, disguised as Brock Holt.
Holt hit a slow roller to second that he beat out thanks to a sloppy toss to first by Jonathan Schoop, but first baseman Steve Pearce picked up an error for dropping the ball and allowing Bradley, on a great hustle play, to score. Sox up 2-0 after two innings.
With the arrival of the third came the disappearance of the lead.
With runners on first and second Mike Napoli cut down a Nick Markakis ground ball that had base hit to right field stamped on it. With two outs and runners at second and third Pearce hit a slow roller to Xander Bogaerts (0-4), whose boot act would be excellent for John Henry’s soccer club. Error to Bogaerts and game tied at 2-2. Three innings and three errors for Boston.
Both pitchers and teams settled down with a few minor brush fires being extinguished.
Lester was finished with an outstanding performance after eight innings. Lester tossed 118 pitches allowing zero earned runs, five hits, no walks and fanned seven. Great effort, but no win.
Gonzalez also went eight with one earned run, seven hits allowed, two walks and six strikeouts, but no win.
Koji Uehara (4-2) replaced Lester and dispatched Baltimore with a swift 1-2-3 in the ninth.
Jonny Gomes opened the Boston ninth with a pinch hit single against T.J. McFarland (1-2). Gomes moved to second on a Ross sacrifice and up stepped Herrera to pitch hit a broken bat flare game winner to right field.
Game two will see John Lackey (9-5, 3.62) face off against the Birds Ubaldo Jimenez (3-8, 4.31)