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Shhhhh. While the Celtics are busy in the Eastern Conference Finals, the Red Sox have quietly moved two games above .500 for the first time this season and are now just 2.5 games out of first place.
How, you ask? Well, the Sox stuck to a formula that has them rolling lately (they have now won 14 out of 19 overall). They got another solid outing from their starting pitcher and they put up a whole lot of power on offense, in beating the Tigers 6-4.
The Red Sox blasted three home runs in all, including two-run shots from David Ortiz and Will Middlebrooks and a solo HR from Kevin Youkilis.
Despite all that power, the Red Sox needed a big hit in the bottom of the seventh inning to retake the lead after Miguel Cabrera tied it in the top half with an RBI double.
In the bottom half of the seventh, Adrian Gonzalez clubbed a clutch ground rule double, scoring Daniel Nava to give the Red Sox a 5-4 lead. Their sixth run came on Youk’s HR in the eighth.
Jon Lester pitched OK. He allowed 10 hits and four runs over 6.2 innings. He struck out seven and walked none, finishing with 120 pitches in all.
The Tigers led 3-0 after scoring on a fielder’s choice in the first, and two runs on a sac fly and groundout in the third.
In the seventh, Lester was in line for the win. He got two outs and left a runner at second, but Matt Albers allowed that runner to score, tying the game and handing Lester a no-decision.
In the end, Albers picked up the win. Alfredo Aceves got the save pitching in his fourth straight game.
The Red Sox will go for the sweep against the Tigers Thursday night. Josh Beckett will be on the hill for the good guys.