BOSTON – Boston Red Sox Manager Bobby Valentine has been around long enough to understand how second baseman Dustin Pedroia takes each at-bat.

“Dustin is the most determined, talented player I’ve ever seen,” Valentine said after Pedroia’s two-run homer broke a tie and helped Boston to a 7-3 win over the Detroit Tigers on Monday night.

“He was upset after he left the runner on second (in his previous at-bat),” Valentine said. “I knew he was going to do something.”

Pedroia, the 2008 AL MVP, finished with three RBI to support Clay Buchholz’s eight solid innings and carry Boston to its third straight win.

With the game tied 2-2 in the sixth, Pedroia homered into the first row of seats above the Green Monster after Carl Crawford drew a leadoff walk.

Buchholz (9-3) allowed two earned runs and five hits. He improved to 5-1 with a 2.43 ERA in his last eight starts.


“Everything feels in synch right now,” he said.

Buchholz not only feels like he’s on a roll, but believes the team may be getting on a run, too.

“It’s pitching and hitting at the same time,” he said. “You’ve got to pitch and hit well to go on a streak like we need to go on.”

The Red Sox opened a 10-game homestand — their longest of the season — after taking the final two of a three-game set at Yankee Stadium over the weekend.

Will Middlebrooks also had a two-run homer and Crawford added an RBI triple.

Austin Jackson began the game with a home run and Miguel Cabrera had an RBI single for the Tigers, who lost for the fourth time in five games.


Max Scherzer (10-6) gave up five runs in 61/3 innings, striking out nine.

“Obviously the pitch to Pedroia, I completely missed my spot,” Scherzer said. “That’s what’s frustrating — when you don’t execute pitches the way you want to and you get burned by it. It leaves a bad taste in your mouth.”

Tigers Manager Jim Leyland thought Scherzer may have been too concerned with the speedy Crawford on first.

“I think in that particular situation, to be honest with you — I don’t know this for a fact — I think he was a little conscious of Crawford and maybe rushed it just a little bit and probably didn’t get it exactly where he wanted to,” said Leyland.

In the bottom of the first, Jacoby Ellsbury drew a leadoff walk and scored on Crawford triple’s off the left-field wall. Crawford scored on Pedroia’s groundout.

The Tigers tied it in the third. Omar Infante tripled off the left-field wall and scored on Cabrera’s single. But with the bases loaded, Delmon Young bounced into an inning-ending double play.


Buchholz then retired the next nine batters before Detroit scored an unearned run in the seventh on Alex Avila’s RBI double. But Ellsbury ended Scherzer’s night with an RBI single in the bottom half after Kelly Shoppach’s second career triple.


NOTES: Boston outfielder Ryan Sweeney left for a defensive replacement in the ninth inning. Valentine said he did something with his hand and couldn’t throw, but Sweeney said he punched a door and will have x-rays Tuesday.


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