Boston bats come up short for Peavy again; Sox fall 3-2 to Astros


Red Sox pitcher Jake Peavy walks to the dugout after being removed from the game during the eighth inning against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park (Andrew Richardson-USA TODAY Sports).

His Red Sox teammates may not want Jake Peavy to be traded to another team, but they gave the pitcher little reason to hold on to the same sentiment.  Peavy (1-8, 4.59) was the victim of another hard luck loss as Boston fell 3-2 to the Houston Astros in Minute Maid Park.

The loss snapped the Red Sox’ modest three-game winning streak leaving the team at 42-52 and 9.5 games behind in the American League East division with one game to play before the All Star break.

In Peavy’s eight losses this season, his teammates have scored a total of just 12 runs in support.

He battled again today holding the Astros to two runs through seven innings. He allowed six hits and one walk while striking out nine. He threw 103 pitches, 67 for strikes.

The Astros got on the board in the bottom of the third inning when Jose Altuve doubled to left and Jason Castro hit the ninth pitch he saw in the at bat off the glove of the leaping Mookie Betts and over the right field wall for a two-run homer.

David Ortiz answered for Boston on the first pitch of the fourth inning with a solo shot off Astros starter Brett Oberholtzer deep into the right field stands to cut the lead in half.

The Sox pulled even in the seventh when Jackie Bradley Jr. and Betts lead off with back-to-back singles off Olberholtzer. With runners at the corners, Brock Holt popped out to Altuve at second base, then right-handed Josh Fields replaced the southpaw Olberholtzer.

Dustin Pedroia hit a sacrifice fly to center to score Bradley from third and tie the score, and Ortiz was intentionally walked, but the rally died when Mike Napoli struck out.

The wheels fell off for Peavy when he allowed another double to Altuve to lead off the bottom of the eighth. Peavy was lifted for Andrew Miller who got Castro to ground out to Pedroia at second, advancing Altuve to third.

Miller then intentionally walked George Springer and stuck out Jon Singleton before giving way to Junichi Tazawa.

Chris Carter then hit a bounding ball up the middle that Holt snared at short stop but his momentum toward center field caused him to flip the toss wide to Pedroia who was pulled off the base allowing Springer to slide in safely and Altuve to score for a 3-2 lead.

With Tony Sipp on the mound for the Astros in the top of the ninth, Bradley flew out to center, followed by singles from Betts and Holt.

The Red Sox rookies were not the most culpable in the loss. Holt had three of the teams 13 hits. Betts, Bradley and Xander Bogaerts had two apiece.

Chad Qualls replaced Sipp and induced Pedroia to ground into a double play to seal the Houston victory.

Fields (2-4) earned the win and Qualls notched his 10th save.

Clay Buchholz (2-4) takes the mound for the Red Sox tomorrow in the series finale at 2:10 p.m.