(10:55, Sox win 6-5) The Jonathans - Papelbon and Van Every - are sending the Red Sox to St. Petersburg for their showdown with the Tampa Bay Rays with their first road series win of the season. After a 6-5 win in 10 innings, game-winning homer by Van Every off Jensen Lewis and sixth save by Papelbon, the Sox took two out of three from the Indians and improved to 4-5 on the road. Papelbon walked Ben Francisco and faced Grady Sizemore with two outs. Sizemore called timeout before the second strike was called, but umpire Gerry Davis didn't see it. Sizemore and manager Eric Wedge argued, but to no avail. Sizemore eventually struck out on a 3-2 pitch to end the night.
(10:39, bottom 10th, 6-5 Red Sox)
Jonathan Van Every has had quite a night at the plate and in the field, but he put Boston ahead 6-5 with a home run in the top of the 10th and may be credited with the game-winner if Jonathan Papelbon can hold on for the victory.
(10:11, top 9th, 5-5) Manny Delcarmen walked DeRosa and Francisco with two outs, hit DH Kelley Shoppach with a pitch to create a bases-loaded showdown with Grady Sizemore in the bottom of the 8th. Delcarmen went 2-2 on the career .400 hitter with the bases full before he lined out to Jonathan Van Every for the final out. Van Every gave up his body to make a great diving grab on the dirt in foul territory in right field of a Ryan Garko pop. That was a key play.
(9:51, bottom 8th, 5-5)
The Red Sox really do torture opposing bullpens, though DeRosa's error on a routine grounder by Jeff Bailey didn't help in Boston's three-run 8th. The Sox loaded the bases on hits by Lowell and Varitek while Bailey's grounder was booted to load them up. Jonathan Van Every found a hole through the right side of the infield scoring Lowell. That was the end of Betancourt and on came righty Jensen Lewis with pinch-hitter J.D. Drew due up. Interesting here that Francona did not pinch hit for Bailey or Van Every, but put up Drew for Green. Drew reached on a fielder's choice on a ground ball to second base scoring Varitek with the fourth run. Ellsbury then tied it with two strikes sending a single up the middle. Dustin Pedroia couldn't get the go-ahead run across. Julio Lugo pinch-ran for Drew and stayed in the game to replace Green at shortstop.
(9:28, top eighth, 5-2 Indians)
Javy Lopez stranded Asdrubal Cabrera at second in the bottom of the 7th, Rafael Betancourt is in to pitch the 8th.
(9:27, bottom seventh, 5-2 Indians)
There's 19,137 here tonight. Doesn't look like that many.
(9:22 bottom seven, 5-2 Cleveland) Rafael Perez just had a huge strikeout of David Ortiz in the top of the seventh with two on and two out. Eric Wedge hooked Carmona after two outs and after Ellsbury reached on an infield single to shortstop and Pedroia walked. Ortiz took a mighty swing but couldn't connect at all. Lester's out after six. He got stronger but allowed five runs, seven hits, three walks. He struck out seven. Carmona walked four and allowed five hits and two runs in his 6-2/3 innings.
(8:58, top sixth, 5-2 Cleveland)
The Sox are coming back! Mike Lowell had really looked frustrated in his first two at-bats, but finally he had a breakthrough against Carmona and doubled into the left field corner to score Jason Bay (walk) with the first Sox run. The hit extended his hitting streak to 13 games. Jason Varitek followed with a double to rightcenter scoring Lowell.
(8:50, top sixth, 5-0 Cleveland)
There's a small contingent of Red Sox fans here, but not as many as I thought. Progressive Field looks pretty empty. The crowds have been between 18-19,000, a far cry from the golden days here when they sold out every game. This press box reminds me of O.J. Simpson. This is where we watched the OJ-White Bronco chase and it's also where we heard the OJ verdict.
(8:39, bottom fifth, 5-0 Cleveland)
Fausto Carmona's got it going pretty good right now, retiring the last 10 Sox batters. This guy has great stuff, but just can't do it consistently.
(8:33, top fifth, 5-0 Cleveland) Terry Francona was talking before the game about how difficult some of the travel is nowadays. The Sox leave here after the game and head to Tampa Bay. They're probably looking at getting to the hotel by about 3-4 a.m. and then playing a game later on. They got to Cleveland at 3 a.m. after their Sunday night game against the Yankees, so it's been a tough trip so far. They do catch a break with an afternoon game at Tampa next Sunday which will get them into New York for a two-game series against the Yankees with a little more rest. The days of day getaway games seems to be rare.
(8:25 p.m., bottom fourth, 5-0 Indians)
Twenty-three years ago on this date I remember sitting in the Sox dugout at Fenway with Bill Buckner before the game and him telling me he thought Roger Clemens would strike out "around 18 batters" that night against Seattle. Yeah, right. He was two off. This night doesn't quite compare. Lester managed to strand two runners in the bottom of the third. He's pitching in the fourth and he's got his pitch count up to 75 after walking Ben Francisco and allowing a two-run homer to Kelly Shoppach, who drove a Lester fastball over the rightcenterfield fence, 383 feet away.
ng>(7:54, bottom second, 3-0 Indians)
While Lester is down 3-0 he has helped himself with two pickoffs in this game. In the bottom of the second he allowed Ben Francisco a single, then erased him by with a pickoff move that faked Francisco out of his shoes. Lester, shaky in his first two starts (0-2, 9.00 ERA) had pitched well his last two starts (1-0, 1.38 ERA).
((7:47, bottom second, 3-0 Indians)
Mark DeRosa, who is one of the real gamers in baseball and guy you'd love to have on your team, blasted a 2-1 pitch into the left field seats to lead off the bottom of the second, his fifth home run. Ben Francisco followed with a single as Lester continues to struggle early. Meanwhile, the Sox had Indians' starter Fausto Carmona on the ropes, loading the bases with two out, but with no results. Carmona has always had great stuff, but if you wait him out he can get frustrated and he'll have trouble finding the plate. After two outs in the top of the second, Carmona walked Jeff Bailey and Jonathan Van Every and hit Nick Green in the middle of the "22" on his back to load the bases. But Ellsbury couldn't quite help himself and swung when he should have taken and eventually struck out on a splitter low and out of the strike zone, leaving the bases full.
(7:25, bottom first, 2-0 Cleveland)
Red Sox have the yips in the field. Jon Lester couldn't handle a nubber by Grady Sizemore and by the time he did, the speedy centerfielder had beaten the throw. Lester picked Sizemore off first, however, but Asdrubal Cabrera singled to left field and scored on Victor Martinez' long triple off the centerfield wall beyond a leaping Jacoby Ellsbury. The switch-hitting Martinez, batting righthanded, is now 5-for-7 with three RBIs against Lester. Shin Shoo Choo, batting cleanup, hit a long flyball to center easily scoring Martinez with the second Indians' run. In the top of the first, the Sox had a pair of hits in the first off Fausto Carmona - a leadoff single by Ellsbury who was doubled up by Dustin Pedoia - and a single to left by David Ortiz who beat the shift by poking it passed third baseman Mark DeRosa, who was positioned near shortstop.