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ARLINGTON, Texas — With every blink-of-an-eye at-bat, Red Sox ace Jon Lester was saving pitches.
Elvis Andrus only saw four pitches from Lester in his first at-bat, which was better than Ian Kinsler, Texas’s hottest hitter, who saw four in his first two combined. Adrian Beltre and Nelson Cruz got a look at all of six Lester offerings their first time through.
But the game changed as soon as the Rangers’ plate approach did. Lester went six solid innings in a 4-3 loss to the Rangers that completed the first series sweep of the Sox this season, cruising through the early innings but laboring by the end of it. Through four innings, Lester threw 55 pitches. But he needed 60 in the fifth and sixth combined.