This was the type of start the Sox needed and Lester needed. Jon Lester scattered 8 hits, didn't walk anyone, only allowed 1 run, and went the distance.
He was efficient. He finished the game with 119 pitches, but 22 of those came in the 9th. He only needed 97 pitches to go 8 innings. He retired the first 11 Mariners he faced, and by the time Seattle started to make him work, the Sox were already up 5-0.
Daniel Nava was a big reason for that lead. He hit a 2 run homer in the 4th. Kelly Shoppach hit a solo shot later in the inning.
Nava has been hot since joining the team. He's 7 for 12 (.583), with 4 doubles, a homerun, and 6 walks. He's gotten on base in three fourths of his plate appearances. Pawtucket has given the Boston Red Sox some nice boosts this season.
I know that some have speculated that when Youkilis comes back, the Sox might keep Middlebrooks at third and put Youk in left. But which outfielder do you sit? Ross, Sweeney, even Byrd have all been solid. And now Nava.
The Sox are a better team than the Mariners, despite having similar records. They should beat Seattle. They did it once. It'd be great if they could do it again and end this homestand on a positive note.
But guess who's starting for the Sox today...
Josh Beckett. He'll face Blake Beavan, who is 1-3 with a 4.32 ERA and dealing with elbow problems that shortened his last start. So it's Beavan and Butthead (Beckett). Lame joke, I know.
It's a weird start time today. 4:00pm.
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