Wednesday, July 6, 2011
Red Sox Beat Blue Jays On Walk-Off Play At The Plate That Goes Their Way
One of the great things about baseball (and why people will put up with such long seasons) is that no matter how many games you watch it at any level, you always have the chance to see something for the first time.
Last night was one of those special moments as the Boston Red Sox beat the Toronto Blue Jays 3-2 at Fenway Park.
After Blue Jays (42-45) infielder John McDonald (2 hits) hit a two-out single to left field off Red Sox (50-35) closer Jonathan Papelbon, Edwin Encarnacion rounded third with the possible tying run.
However, Boston left fielder Darnell McDonald threw a strike to catcher Jason Varitek, who blocked the plate, and the captain was able to put a tag on Encarnacion before he scored. It was an extremely close play (replays showed that he might have swiped the plate) but he was called out and that's all that matters. A walk-off outfield assist. Crazy.
The bigger news of the contest was that Red Sox starter Jon Lester left after four no-hit innings with a left lat injury. He was placed on the DL today and won't be able to return until at least July 22.
Alfredo Aceves will get Lester's scheduled start on Sunday vs. the Orioles, the last game before the All-Star break.
Called to duty earlier than usual, Matt Albers (3-3) threw two scoreless innings with two strikeouts for the win. Franklin Morales (seventh) and Daniel Bard (eighth) added scoreless frames before Papelbon did his best to blow it when he was handed a 3-0 lead in the ninth.
He allowed four hits, including a two-run bomb (a rainbow over the Monster) by Blue Jays uber slugger Jose Bautista (his 28th of the season) but was bailed out by McDonald and Varitek to get his 18th save of the season.
Brett Cecil (1-4) went the whole way (eight innings) for Toronto. He allowed three earned runs on seven hits with two walks and six strikeouts.
Boston pushed across two in the second on Varitek's RBI double which plated David Ortiz and J.D. Drew's RBI single which scored Varitek.
Batting in the cleanup spot-with Kevin Youkilis sitting-Dustin Pedroia hit his eighth homer of the season, a solo laser show in the third. You know that awesome phrase has jumped the shark when not only does NESN use it for his home run calls but also Sportscenter.
Adrian Gonzalez is out of the lineup tonight for the first time this season as Tim Wakefield takes on Ricky Romero who is a very good lefty that seems to always get knocked around by the Red Sox.