Game over: Red Sox 6, Astros 1: The Red Sox completed a four-game sweep of the Houston Astros with another easy victory.
The Red Sox are now 18-7. The Sox got an encouraging effort from John Lackey who went the first six innings and retired 13 straight batters during one stretch. Big offensive days for David Ortiz (two hits, two RBI), Stephen Drew (two-run triple), two hits from Daniel Nava and Mike Carp. Andrew Bailey got an inning of work in the 9th.
The game ended on a great diving catch by Daniel Nava in right. The game was played before a sellout crowd of 36,527 in 2:56.
Bottom 8th: Red Sox 6, Astros 1 - Red Sox go down 1-2-3.
Top 8th: Red Sox 6, Astros 1 - Carlos Pena beat the Red Sox shift with a single to right center and advanced to second on a wild pitch by Koji Uehara, but that's as far as he got.
Bottom 7th: Red Sox 6, Astros 1 - Sox took advantage of a Daniel Nava single, a balk and and an error, as David Ortiz doubled in the sixth Red Sox run. Ortiz is 2-for-4 with two ribbies.
Top 7th: Red Sox 5, Astros 1 - Red Sox pitchers did fielding practice before the game, but Marwin Gonzalez's tapper to the mound got through Clayton Mortensen's legs for an error. No matter, as Mortensen got out of the inning unscathed.
Bottom 6th: Red Sox 5, Astros 1 - Nothing doing for Sox in this inning.
Top 6th: Red Sox 5, Astros 1 - Lackey loads the bases with three straight singles with one out, but gets the next two batters to end his outing. He went six innings, five hits, one run, two walks and four strikeouts. Not bad. Clayton Mortensen has taken over.
Bottom 5th: Red Sox 5, Astros 1 - Dustin Pedroia drove in Daniel Nava, who had reached on two errors by shortstop Marwin Gonzalez on the same play. Gonzalez muffed the grounder, picked it up and threw it into the first base stands. Nava went to second base. Carp doubled off the wall scoring Pedroia.
Top 5th: Red Sox 3, Astros 1 - John Farrell hoped to get five out of Lackey today. He's got that. Lackey has retired 12 straight Astros.
Bottom 4th: Red Sox 3, Astros 1 - The Red Sox got nothing to show for three straight hits to begin the inning. Mike Napoli blooped a single to right, but was nailed easily trying to go to second. After Carp and Saltalamacchia singled, Middlebrooks struck out, but Stephen Drew, who was 5-for-9 vs. Norris entering the game, tripled scoring two runs with a drive down the rightfield line and railing.
Top 4th: Astros 1, Red Sox 1 - Lackey has mowed down nine straight Astros.
Bottom 3rd: Astros 1, Red Sox 1 - Nava, Pedroia and Ortiz are retired by Bud Norris.
Top 3rd: Astros 1, Red Sox 1 - Lackey throws a pair of ground ball outs and a strikeout to the midlde of the Astros order.
Bottom 2nd: Astros 1, Red Sox 1 - Will Middlebrooks continued his good stretch with a single. He as erased at second on Jacoby Ellsbury's fielder's choice. Ellsbury was then caught stealing, his first in 12 attempts.
Top 2nd: Astros 1, Red Sox 1 - Lackey allowed a lead off single to Matt Dominguez, but then retired the next three batters.
Bottom 1st: Astros 1, Red Sox 1 - This series has seen a lot of busy first innings. The Red Sox answered the Astros' first run when David Ortiz singled in Daniel Nava, who doubled with one out. The Red Sox drew two walks in the inning but Jarrod Saltalamacchia grounded out to first base to leave the bases loaded..
Top 1st: Astros 1, Red Sox 0 - John Lackey is making his first start since April 6 at Toronto when he hurt his right biceps and went on the DL. He retired the first two Astros, starting with a strike out of lead off hitter Robbie Grossman. He got Jose Altuve to ground out to short.
But then walked the next two batters - Jason Castro and Carlos Pena - before veteran SS Ronny Cedeno singled up the middle driving in Castro and sending Pena to third. Lackey got out of it when Fernando Martinez flied to right. Game time temperature was 60 degrees.