Silencing his doubters with a torrid May, Dustin Pedroia wasted no time last night, depositing a Barry Zito fastball into the second row of the Green Monster, scoring J.D. Drew, to tie the game at 2-2. That would be the story the rest of the night as Drew and Pedroia, hitting in the top two slots of the Red Sox lineup, led the Red Sox to a 10-2 victory over the San Francisco Giants. The pair accounted for 8 of the Red Sox 9 hits, scored 5 runs, and had 8 RBI.
The game was a spectacle from the get-go. Dave Roberts, the Dave Roberts, led off the first for the Giants, and he received perhaps one of the longest and loudest ovations the Fenway Faithful has ever given. He will always be remembered for that one moment in history: The Steal. Then the cheers and turned into boo’s and jeers when Barry Bonds stepped up to the plate in his first ever appearance at Fenway Park. Bonds seemed to enjoy it however, and more importantly, did no damage at the plate.
With the Red Sox up 3-2 in the 4th, J.D. Drew broke the game with a 2-out, line drive, over the head of Roberts in center field, plating Julio Lugo and Mike Lowell. Just before that, Mike Lowell kept the inning going with one of the most heads up baseball plays we’ve seen this season. With runners on 1st and 3rd, Lugo was caught in between 1st and 2nd on a pickoff by Barry Zito. Lowell astutely broke for home and got caught in his own run-down, and forced a throw to third. Lowell was able to evade the tag of Pedro Feliz, getting back safely, and by doing so, allowed Lugo to steal 2nd. This is just another example of how smart Lowell is as a baseball player, and how important he is to this Red Sox team.
By the end of the night, Dustin Pedroia collected a career high 5 hits, and saw his RBI total jump from 16 to 21. Not to be outdone, J.D. Drew broke out of his 0 for 12 slump with 3 solid base hits. This was their night, and if tonight was any indication, the Red Sox have a very special player on their hands in Dustin Pedroia.
Not to be overlooked however is that Julian Tavarez turned in another solid outing, going 7 strong innings, allowing just 2 runs and striking out 3. He has finally lowered his season ERA to below the 5 mark, and has pitched exceptionally well of late. As can be expected in any start, Tavarez provided some amusement in the 5th when Randy Winn grounded a ball softly up the first base line, Tavarez fielding it cleanly, and while losing his balance, he rolled the ball to Youkillis at 1st to get the out. When watching Tavarez, the thing that comes out the most is his passion and love for baseball, and that’s a refreshing thing in today’s day and age.
Daisuke Matsusaka takes the hill tomorrow against San Francisco “ace” Matt Cain, and the Red Sox look to continue their hot hitting into tomorrow.