|Francona Wins Big in Return to Fenway||Connelly’s Top Ten: Rask Falls on Face||Bruins Lose 4-3 in OT as Rangers Fight to Stay Alive||For the Bulletin Board: Lundqvist’s “Lucky Bounces,” Savard’s “#ByeByeTorts”|
Entering Friday’s game, Jon Lester was on quite a roll. He was coming off two straight wins, with 22 strikeouts over 16 innings. It seems that Jon Lester has finally found his form of 2008, except the 2009 version may be even better. Lester was magnificent Friday night against the Phillies, becoming the first Red Sox starter with 10+ strikeouts in three straight starts since Pedro Martinez in 2004. He tossed seven strong innings and allowed just one run on two hits and two walks with 11 K’s and left with the 2-1 lead.
Jonathan Papelbon saved the final two games of the Yankees series and was unavailable to pitch Friday. In his place was Ramon Ramirez, who was coming off a rough appearance against the Yankees in his previous outing (allowed HRs to Johnny Damon and Mark Teixeira). Facing Ryan Howard in the ninth, Ramirez allowed a mammoth blast to tie the game 2-2 and send it to extras.
The Red Sox broke the scoreless tie with three runs on a Jacoby Ellsbury RBI single, a Nick Green sacrifice fly, and a Mike Lowell RBI single in the 13th inning to earn the 5-2 win.
Jacoby Ellsbury, CF: Ellsbury finished 2-6, including the go-ahead RBI single with the bases loaded in the 13th inning. He had a 2-0 count and color commentator Dave Roberts begged him to continue taking pitches, but Ellsbury saw something he liked and ripped it to right field for the clutch base hit.
Dustin Pedroia, 2B: This is more a personal thing between me and Pedroia. He’s on my primary fantasy team, and he rewarded me by going 0-7 in the game. Who does he think he is, Big Papi (from May)?
“Lester was so good,” Terry Francona said. Well said, Terry…well said.
W: Takashi Saito (2-0)
L: Kyle Kendrick (0-1)
S: Daniel Bard (1)