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The Red Sox struggled to score seven runs in the first two games of the early-July series against the Minnesota Twins. They did win both games however. They won 1-0 on Monday thanks to an RBI single by Manny Ramirez. They gathered another win on a comeback also led by Manny Ramirez, who hit a clutch two-run shot to tie the game in the eighth inning. Brandon Moss singled home Kevin Youkilis for the go-ahead run and the 6-5 win. Remember: just seven runs in two games.
So…how exactly did the Red Sox score seven runs in the seventh inning of Thursday’s game to sweep the Twins with a colossal 18-run, 23-hit effort? Well, the umpires of course. The umpires initially called a triple play on a sinking liner to center field by Jason Varitek in the seventh inning. The CF appeared to catch the ball, and double up Sean Casey at second and triple up Mike Lowell at third. Replays showed the umps made the correct call, and Twins manager Ron Gardenhire was tossed for arguing.
Sox Stud of the Series:
When your team scores 18 runs in one game and 25 overall in the series (more than 8 per game), then I’d say the entire lineup is full of studs. Let’s take a close look at the third game in the series. Jacoby Ellsbury led the charge with a career-high four hits (4-6, 2 R, 1 RBI). Three other players (Manny Ramirez, Kevin Youkilis, Sean Casey had three hits). Dustin Pedroia finished with two hits to extend his hitting streak to 17 games. Even Jason Varitek went 2-4 and is now up to .220. On top of that, freaking Kevin Cash (one of the worst hitters in baseball) delivered a pinch-hit HR in the eighth. Wow.
Diamond Dud of the Series:
We can take a look at the starting pitching to find a couple Duds…Daisuke Matsuzaka was great in Game 1 (7.1 IP, 0 R) but did not earn the win. Jon Lester was lackluster in Game 2, going 7 1/3 innings and allowing five runs on nine hits. He also did not earn the win. Josh Beckett pitched poorly in the third game, going five innings and allowing five runs on eight hits and two walks. He only struck out two while allowing two home runs. He earned the win, but thanks to 18 runs of support (admittedly, it was a close game while Beckett was in there).
Manny is Money:
Manny Ramirez has had a tumultuous season. First, he hit his 500th career home run. Then, he scuffled with Kevin Youkilis in the dugout and infamously shoved over Sox travel secretary Jack McCormick. Finally, he has been voted yet again to the AL All-Star team. But, he can still be counted on in clutch situations. He delivered the game winning single in Game 1, a game-tying two-run shot in Game 2, and a 3-5 with two runs and three RBI in Game 3.