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Lester Strong, Red Sox edge Cubs 4-3

Saltalamacchia is congratulated by Ortiz after his homerun in the fourth (photo by David Banks/Getty Images)

The Red Sox defeated the Cubs 4-3 in the second game of a three-game weekend series at Wrigley Field. Jon Lester had an impressive outing and the Red Sox offense did just enough to secure the victory.

The day started out slow, as both teams were held scoreless through three innings of play. In the top of the fourth inning, David Ortiz led off with a double. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, batting fourth in the order, followed that up with a two-run home run, putting the Red Sox up 2-0. Jeff Samardzija of the Cubs rebounded strong by striking out the next three batters in the inning.

The scoring continued in the top of the sixth inning. Ortiz and Saltalamacchia both drew walks. Will Middlebrooks then stepped into the box and lined a single to center field scoring Ortiz, but Saltalamacchia was thrown out at third base. The Red Sox would add one more run in the top of the seventh inning. Mike Aviles led-off the inning with a double. Jon Lester followed with a strike out, but Scott Podsednik lined one to center field, scoring Aviles from second base and pushing the score to 4-0.

Jon Lester was solid throughout the entire game and had only one notable mistake. That mistake came in the bottom of the seventh inning with one out and two men on base. Jeff Baker doubled to lead off the inning and Welington Castillo drew a walk, putting runners at the corners. Luis Valbuena then launched a three-run home run to left field, which suddenly made it a 4-3 game.

The bullpens of both teams were able to stifle the offense of both teams the remainder of the game. Alfredo Aceves came on in the ninth inning. He struck out Bryan LaHair, and made Welington Castillo ground into a game-ending double play. Aceves locked up his 16th save of the season.

Lester Impresses

After having an earned run average over six in his past five starts, Lester settled down nicely in Chicago. Lester went 6.2 innings, allowing three earned runs on seven hits, struck out eight, and walked only one. He only had one fault in this game and that was the three-run home run in the seventh inning to Luis Valbuena. Lester showed great command of his pitches, especially his fastball, and was able to dictate the pace of the game.

About Steve Bastek - @sbastek12

Graduate of Bridgewater State University with a BA in Communication studies. I've been a Boston sports fan all my life and enjoy having the opportunity to write about it.

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