Game over: Indians 8, Red Sox 7
Still think Daniel Bard is ready to replace Jonathan Papelbon?
He walked leadoff hitter Trevor Crowe on four pitches then missed on his first pitch to Choo. The next pitch was smacked to left field. Hall had no chance to get Crowe but threw to third anyway and Choo took second.
Bard then walked Kearns on five pitches to load the bases.
Hafner struck out looking on three pitches, bringing up Jhonny Peralta for the first time in the game. He fouled out to Martinez. Up came Russell Branyan and he dropped a single into right field, just over the head of Pedroia. Two runs scored to end the game.
The Sox are 10-10 against the Orioles, Indians and Royals. Pretty weak.
Back later with more.
Middle of the 9th: Red Sox 7, Indians 6
The Sox were down to their last strike when Wood hit Drew in the leg with a 1-2 curveball. Beltre then connected on a 95-mpg fastball and drove it into the stands in left center for his eighth home run.
The Sox lead ad Daniel Bard is on to try and close it out. What a stunning turn of events.
Top of the 9th: Indians 6, Red Sox 5
Ramon Ramirez retired the side in order despite two knuckleheads in LeBron James jerseys running on the field Now the Sox will deal with Kerry Wood. Cleveland bullpen has thrown four shutout innings so far.
Middle of the 8th: Indians 6, Red Sox 5
Hall singled to start the inning. Scutaro bunted him to second and that’s where he stayed as Pedroia flied to center and Ortiz grounded into the shift.
Second-worst part of this night for the Sox? The Yankees and Rays have already lost. They’re booting a chance to make up ground.
Update on Kevin Youkilis
He left the game with the Red Sox are saying was a “mild back spasm.”
Top of the the 8th: Indians 6, Red Sox 5
Delcarmen loaded the bases with one out as Choo singled before Kearns and Hafner. Duncan was called out swinging on a ball that hit him in the hand. Pinch hitter Russell Branyan then struck out on a 3-2 pitch to end the inning.
Middle of the 7th: Indians 6, Red Sox 5
Drew doubled with two outs before Betre drew a walk. Chris Perez came in to face Cameron and fell behind 3-1. Cameron drove the ball to the gap in right but Crowe caught it at the wall.
Delcarmen has replaced Lester and Youkilis is out of the game at first, replaced by Lowell. Youk must have hurt himself when he grounded out to third to start the inning.
This would be a rather hideous loss for the Sox. Up 5-0 against a rag-tag Cleveland team with Lester on the mound? You need to put that game in the bank.
Top of the 7th: Indians 6, Red Sox 5
What started out as a rout has turned into a disaster here at Progressive Field as Lester allowed three runs in the bottom of the sixth.
He walked Kearns before Duncan singled, a little bleeder into center. Marte followed with an RBI single before Hernandez grounded out. Then Marson, a .182 hitter, looped a two-run single into right field. Lester struck out Donald to end the inning and flung his glove on the bench in disgust when he reached the dugout.
He should be disgusted, having kicked away a 5-0 lead in the last four innings by allowing six runs on nine hits.
Lester in four career starts at Progressive Field: 22.1 innings, 26 hits, 17 earned runs.
Frank Herrmann now pitching for Cleveland
Middle of the 6th: Red Sox 5, Indians 2
After taking a 5-0 lead in the top of the second, the Sox have gone quiet. Scutaro grounded to third, Pedroia struck out and Ortiz hit a rocket to the gap in right that Choo tracked down with a nice running catch.
Top of the sixth Red Sox 5, Indians 3
Donald doubled to center with one out but Lester got Crowe to pop to third and Choo on a grounder to second. Lester has thrown 81 pitches through five innings. Top of the order coming up for the Sox now.
Middle of the 5th: Red Sox 5, Indians 3
Beltre had a bit of a Three Stooges “double” with one out. After driving a ball to left, he took a wide turn, saw the throw coming in and went back to first. But the throw went over the head of the second baseman and Beltre took second. It was ruled a single and an error.
But Cameron and Hall flied to right. Hall hit the ball hard but Choo went and got it.
Top of the 5th: Red Sox 5, Indians 3
Marte singled with one out but Lester got Hernandez to ground into a 5-4-3 double play. Jensen Lewis now pitching for Cleveland.
Middle of the 4th: Red Sox 5, Indians 3
The bats have gone quiet against Talbot. Youkilis walked with two outs but Martinez flied to right field.
Top of the 4th: Red Sox 5, Indians 3
So much for the perfect game, no hitter and shutout. Hernandez and Donald had singles before Crowe had an RBI double and Choo a sacrifice fly. Kearns followed with an RBI single to left. Hall made a strong throw to the plate but Crow eluded the tag. He may have eluded the plate as well but he was called safe
Lester needed to throw 25 pitches in that inning.
Middle of the 3rd: Red Sox 5, Indians 0
Cameron drove a ball to the wall in left center and was thrown out at second as Crowe bare-handed the carom and was accurate. Replays showed he was safe, however. Then Hall grounded out and Scutaro struck out.
Lester to face Hernandez, Marson and Donald. Wonder if he will need more than 10 pitches?
Top of the 3rd: Red Sox 5, Indians 0
Lester retired the side in order again and again he whiffed two as Duncan and Marte went down looking on fastballs.
Middle of the 2nd: Red Sox 5 Indians 0
Scutaro and Pedroia started the inning with singles. Ortiz popped up and Youkilis grounded into a force, erasing Pedroia at second. But Martinez (3 for 9 in the series) doubled to right. Scutaro scored and Youkilis went to third. Drew walked to load the bases before Beltre grounded out.
It’s 5-0 but the Sox also have left five runners on base, four in scoring position.
Meanwhile, those three errors by Marte in the first inning were the most in an inning by a big leaguer since Andy Gonzalez made three for the White Sox against the Rangers on Aug. 3, 2007. He played third as well.
Top of the 2nd: Red Sox 4, Indians 0
Lester needed 16 pitches to dispatch of the Indians. Crowe struck out looking, Choo grounded to first and Kearns struck out swinging.
Middle of the 1st: Red Sox 4, Indians 0
Nice start for the Sox and Jon Lester. Scutaro doubled to the gap in left and scored on a hit-and-run single by Pedroia that snapped his 0-for-14 skid. Ortiz walked before Youkilis reached on an error by Marte at third to load the bases.
Martinez’s fly ball to left scored Pedroia. Drew then walked to reload the bases. Beltre popped to second. Cameron grounded to third and Marte bobbled the ball before throwing it away. That led to two runs scoring. Hall struck out looking to end the inning.
Meanwhile, NESN play-by-play man Don Orsillo is not feeling well, so John Rish of WEEI has taken over. Hope you’re feeling better, Don.
Top of the 1st: Red Sox 0, Indians 0
Good evening from Progressive Field where it’ll be Mitch Talbott facing the Red Sox to get the game started. It’s a beautiful night for a game. Hope you enjoy it and please join the discussion in the comments section.