Saturday, March 8, 2014
The Red Sox get today off, to recover from a 1-3 series in Baltimore. The Orioles are closing in, the Yankees and Rays are hanging around, and even the Blue Jays have won five straight.
Red Sox 42-29
Orioles 40-30 (1.5 games back)
Yankees 38-31 (3)
Rays 36-33 (5)
Jays 32-36 (8.5)
Jon Lester (6-4) took the loss, allowing five runs in five innings. His 4.37 ERA is now fourth-best in the rotation, ahead of only Felix Doubront (4.91).
Lester's first nine starts: 18 ER in 59 2/3 innings: 2.71
Lester's last six starts: 28 ER in 35 innings: 7.20
In the minors, knuckleball pitcher Steven Wright (the only right-hander we will talk about) showed rare control, going eight innings: 5 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 7 K (97 pitches, 69 strikes). Wright is 3-4, 4.60.
Portland lefty Drake Britton(6-5, 3.08) put in another fine performance: 7 IP, 5 H, 2 R (1 ER), 3 BB, 1 K. The question remains: why is Britton still in Double-A? See the game story.
Salem lefty Henry Owens continues to compile the strikeouts, with seven more Sunday, in 4 1/3 innings. He also gave up 5 H, 2 R and 3 BB. Owens (5-2, 3.03) has 80 K's and 28 walks in 65 1/3 innings.
Greenville lefty Cody Kukuk (3-7, 4.66) gave up only one hit in 3 2/3 innings on Sunday, but he matched a season high with six walks. He allowed one run and struck out three. Kukuk, who is in his first full pro season, has 48 strikeouts and 43 walks in 46 1/3 innings.
Kevin Thomas covers baseball and basketball for the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram. He wisely moved to Maine in 1994 after working for the St. Petersburg Times. He is married to Nancy and they have nine children.
Follow his thoughts on the Boston Red Sox and Portland Sea Dogs on Clearing the Bases
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