Red Sox rally in eighth inning to clip Cleveland
BOSTON - Mike Carp's first-pitch pinch double off Vinnie Pestano scored Pedro Ciriaco to tie the game and Dustin Pedroia's double scored Carp with the go-ahead run as the Boston Red Sox scored four runs in the eighth to beat Cleveland, 7-4, on Saturday at Fenway Park.
Later in the inning, Daniel Nava's fly to left fell in for a two-run single.
"Just trying to get a pitch I can put a good swing on," said Carp, who was in a 0-for-21 slide before hitting a three-run home run on Friday. "Left one out over the plate and got it off the wall.
"It's big. Especially, I was in a little bit of a slump, to be able to come out of that and win the ballgame, it means a lot."
Added Pedroia: "Their bullpen's really tough. I got in a hole there and was just trying to have a good at-bat and square a ball up, and got a pitch closer to me and it was up. So put a good swing on it."
Junichi Tazawa, who relieved starter Jon Lester in the eighth, pitched a scoreless inning to earn the victory. Andrew Bailey earned his first save since being activated from the disabled list on Monday.
Pestano took the loss and suffered his second blown save, allowing all four runs on four hits and two walks in the eighth.
"As a team today we just gave them extra opportunities and they took advantage," Indians manager Terry Francona said.
Neither starter was involved in the decision, as the Red Sox trailed the Indians for most of the game.
Lester went seven innings, throwing a season-high 124 pitches, including 81 strikes. He allowed four runs on a season-high 10 hits and eight strikeouts with one walk and a wild pitch.
"I thought he was powerful," Red Sox manager John Farrell said. "Wasn't that sharp in the first three innings. From the fourth inning on, he really started to settle in.
"I thought he had better command of his curveball and his changeup. He was efficient. Really no hesitation of him going out in the seventh inning. Felt like that was his game."
Said Cleveland left fielder Michael Brantley: "I thought we did a great job of just putting up quality at-bats all day. We batted our tails off of against (Lester) and unfortunately we didn't come out with the W today."
Cleveland left-hander Scott Kazmir started, going five innings, giving up two runs on five hits and four walks, with six strikeouts and a balk.
"I thought he had to dodge traffic all day and make some really big pitches," Francona said. "They made him work from the first inning on but he continued to make pitches."
The Indians got on the board first, with a run in the first inning. With two out, Asdrubal Cabrera singled and scored on Nick Swisher's double.
The Red Sox tied the game in the second. With two out, Jose Iglesias singled, took second on Kazmir's balk and scored on Ciriaco's single.
Cleveland got two more in the third when Drew Stubbs led off with a walk and scored on Cabrera's double. On Swisher's single, Cabrera was thrown out trying to score.
But after Lester hit Mark Reynolds with a pitch, Carlos Santana singled to score Swisher.
The Red Sox continued to chip away.
In the fourth, Iglesias' one-out double scored Daniel Nava, who walked to open the inning. They tied the score in the fifth, with Bryan Shaw in to relieve Kazmir. With the bases loaded, Jonny Gomes' sacrifice fly scored Iglesias.
The Indians scored a go-ahead run in the seventh. With runners on second and third and two out, Lester unleashed a wild pitch to score Mike Aviles, putting the Indians ahead, 4-3.
But Boston's four-run eighth inning was the difference.
NOTES: SS Stephen Drew was given a day off by Red Sox manager John Farrell. Drew is in a 0-for-17 slide with two walks and five strikeouts, dropping his average from .238 to .205. ... One game after making his first career start at third base, Jose Iglesias, who was called up from Class AAA Pawtucket on Friday with 3B Will Middlebrooks going on the disabled list, shifted back to his customary shortstop spot on Saturday, with Pedro Ciriaco starting at third base. ... Dustin Pedroia is the only member of the Red Sox who has played every game so far this season. ... Nick Swisher got his first hit, an RBI double in the first, since returning to the Indians on Friday after the birth of his first child on Tuesday. ... Asdrubal Cabrera recorded his fourth three-hit game of the season, going 3-for-5 with a double, an RBI and a run scored, extending his hitting streak to five games. ... Yan Gomes had his career-high seven-game hitting streak snapped, going 0-for-4.