|Bruins Sign Jimmy Hayes, Brett Connolly||Connelly’s Top Ten: USA Women, Red Sox Bore Astros into Submission||Preparing for Another Year of Rebuilding for the Celtics||Red Sox Bullpen Sleeper: Matt Barnes|
In a rare morning start on Patriots Day, Daisuke Matsuzaka came out firing and looked like a new man after his implosion against the Tampa Bay Rays last week. Over seven innings, Matsuzaka was stingy, giving up 1 hit and needing just 89 pitches to send Jays hitters back to the dugout empty-handed time after time. The righty was on top of his game all afternoon and retired the final 16 batters he faced in a 9-1 Sox win.
As well as Daisuke pitched, he did not have to win the game by himself: against Ricky Romero, the Red Sox bats exploded. Jed Lowrie went 4-5 with a home run, and four RBI. Jacoby Ellsbury hit his fourth home run of the year and Carl Crawford, after going 0-4, hit a double off the Monster. Jason Varitek was the only regular not to record a hit in the game, but he did reach base with a walk.
Blue Jays manager John Farrell knew what the Red Sox were capable of before arriving in Boston with his new team. With any luck he surely hoped the Boston bats would remain quiet and his Jays could get in a few victories against a slumping lineup. By early Monday afternoon, the Red Sox had taken three out of four against their Canadian opponents. More importantly, they won three in a row for the first time this season.
Daisuke Matsuzaka showed rare form Monday by getting through seven innings with fewer than 90 pitches, but the man without a position, Jed Lowrie, continued to hit at a torrid pace. In his limited playing time this season, Lowrie is batting an absurd .516/.545/.774 with 8 runs scored and 9 RBI.
The speedy left fielder is still lost at the plate. As a player who is not likely to draw many walks, Crawford needs to swing the bat to get on base. So far, he’s still in a rough patch, but to prevent going 0 for the series against the Blue Jays, Crawford managed to slug a wall ball double while hitting in the seven hole.
W: Matsuzaka (1-2)
L: Romero (1-2)