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Jon Lester and the Red Sox were on the better end of a true pitcher’s duel last night earning the 1-0 victory over the Kansas City Royals at home.
Lester pitched a gem giving up only four hits and striking out eight batters in eight innings. He improved his record to 3-1 against Kansas City, his only loss coming at Kansas City.
The Sox should have seen an earlier lead in the fifth, when Ellsbury was called out and ejected on a controversial call that seemed to show that Jacoby was safe. Ironically, Rocco Baldelli replaced Ellsbury and made a fantastic defensive play in the seventh, which resulted in a double play that saved a possible run.
Finally, in the eighth inning, Bates ended up pitch running for Kotsay who singled to center. Which led to Bates moving to second on a sacrifice from Nick Green and then to third on a wild pitch. Pedroia then doubled to deep left to score the only run in the game.
After eight strong innings from Lester, Papelbon came in and did his work as he retired the side in the ninth, clinching a 1-0 victory.
Lester continued his success against the Royals. He has not allowed any ER in his last 17 innings pitched against the Royals and has a 1.20 ERA against Kansas City.
Although Bannister pitched a terrific game, the Sox were only able to get three hits, struck out seven times and left five runners in scoring position.
“I really didn’t think about it,” said Baldelli. “As soon as I caught it, I just threw it in as fast as I could.”
– Rocco Baldelli, on the his catch and throw to double up Mark Teahen at second.
W: J. Lester (8-6)
L: B. Bannister (6-7)
SV. J. Papelbon (23)
Red Sox Centerfielder, Jacoby Ellsbury, was ejected in the bottom of the fifth inning. It was his first ejection.