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We should start calling them the walk off Sox. For the second night in a row, the Boston Red Sox walked off with a win. Now they have brought the total of last bat wins up to 8. That is an amazing number considering the season is only a month old.
Last night was another pitchers duel at Fenway Park. It saw Daisuke Matsuzaka pitching against Toronto Blue Jays young gun Dustin McGowan. Dice-K went seven innings for the Sox, and got a no decision in the 2-1 win. He only allowed two hits and two walks while striking out four. He may have been able to pitch longer, but his pitch count was up and over 100. On the other side, McGowan pitched seven and a third innings allowing just four hits and one run while walking one and striking out five. The one run that McGowan allowed was a solo home run off the bat of David Ortiz, who appears to be swinging the bat better than he was a few weeks ago.
After the Ortiz shot to left that barley cleared the wall, the Sox put Manny Delcarmen out try and protect the lead. Well, that did not last long for them. As he gave up a hit to his the first batter he faced. Francona then decided to bring in Hideki Okajima, who allowed the inherited runner to score when he gave up a hit to Gregg Zaun. The inning would end tied. And the Blue Jays held it tied till the ninth inning. Jonathan Papelbon came on in the ninth for the Red Sox and pitched a scoreless inning.
Later on in the ninth, the Red Sox had some heroics again. David Ortiz then singled off of the glove of the second baseman, who was playing shallow right field. Manny Ramirez then walked and moved Ortiz to second. Jed Lowrie then pinch ran for Ortiz. Mike Lowell was then retired. On the next pitch, Brandon Moss singled and Jed Lowrie got waved around. Vernon Wells came up firing from center and nailed Lowrie at the plate. The Sox would only have to wait for one more at-bat to end the game with a celebration, as Jason Varitek took the next pitch up the middle and Manny was being waved around. Wells again came up firing but the quick footed Ramriez beat the throw.
For the second straight night, the Red Sox walked off with a win on a single up the middle. Also, for the second straight night, the Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon came in for the ninth inning of a tied game and picked up the win. With two outs in the ninth and a man on second, Dustin Pedroia ended the inning with an amazing stop behind Papelbon for a second consecutive game as well.
from my blog www.sammonroe.net