BOSTON Although he gave a up a first-inning run, continuing a disconcerting trend by Red Sox pitchers, Felix Doubront held the White Sox scoreless over the rest of six-inning outing Wednesday night, as the Red Sox beat Chicago, 10-1 at Fenway Park. Doubront improves his record to 10-4 with a 4.24 ERA.Doubront, who spent spring training vying for both a roster spot and spot in the rotation, is the first Sox pitcher to reach the 10-win plateau this season. On a staff that included presumptive elite pitchers, that fact does not go unnoticed. It has surprised even Doubront.A lot, he said. But since I came to spring training I was working so hard to be here and to be in this spot. Just working to get more wins and whatever happens Im going to keep fighting to get more wins.Felix Doubronts been our most consistent pitcher all year. Obviously he has 10 wins, manager Bobby Valentine said. I guess coming out of spring training, Vegas would have given you pretty good odds that he would not have been the first one on our staff with 10 wins. But hes been consistent.Doubront opened the game with consecutive singles to Alejandro De Aza and Kevin Youkilis before getting Adam Dunn to ground into a double play. But Paul Konerko, playing in his 2,000th career game with the White Sox, singled to drive in De Aza.Doubront held the White Sox at bay the rest of the way. In six innings, he gave up just one run on four hits and a walk with two strikeouts.He got the double play ball in the first inning and got upset that he let the two-out hit fall in there and then he shut the door, Valentine said. His changeup was really good. He wasnt afraid to throw inside when he had to. Had his two-seamer working. Hes a good pitcher.In a season when those presumptive elite pitchers have been inconsistent, Doubront has provided a measure of consistency. In 18 outings he posted his 10th quality start of the season, tied for most on the staff, while becoming the staff stopper. In eight starts following a Sox loss, including Wednesday, he has posted a record of 5-0 with a 2.76 ERA. The Sox are 7-1 in those games.He caught my eye in his first bullpen that I ever saw because he was kind of off the radar, Valentine said. He had pitched some winter ball so he was a little ahead of the other guys. So it was easy for him to stand out. But he maintained really good bullpens, as I remember, really good outings. His two-inning outings, his four-inning outings. He was a slam dunk to make the team as far as I was concerned.Doubront has been the beneficiary of tremendous run support. He leads all major league qualifiers with an average of 8.38 runs of support per start. Knowing he is likely to get that kind of support can only help his approach on the mound, even when working with a quick deficit.Sox pitchers have given up a total of 76 first-inning runs this season, their highest total of any inning. They have allowed at least one run in the first inning in 15 of the last 17 games at Fenway, including the last 10 in a row.I know the team is going to score runs, Doubront said. We got a good team, great hitters. I wasnt worried about that. Just good pitching. I figured out a couple things. In the first inning I was a little bit off.Its amazing... to see a lot of scoring, that helped me to keep throwing the ball and get confidence to stay for six or seven inningsIn trouncing the White Sox, Doubront was backed by Cody Ross two three-run home runs, and four RBI from Adrian Gonzalez.Felix was outstanding tonight, said Ross. He got himself in a little trouble, in a bind early in that first inning and managed to get out of it and then was just dominant after that. Flipping his curve ball over, getting some swing and misses on that and getting a lot of ground ball outs. He pitched outstanding and the bullpen came in and did an outstanding job.Doubront is now 5-0 with a 2.97 ERA against American League Central teams this season.When a team gets a lead like that, and a pitcher gets a lead like that, hes taught to go out there and really pound the strike zone, said Konerko. He got better after he got that big lead and thats what youre supposed to do.
Jared Carrabis and Lou Merloni reflect on the passing of Miami Marlins ace Jose Fernandez
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Dustin Pedroia used nifty baserunning to score from first base on David Ortiz's double in the 10th inning and the AL East-leading Red Sox beat the Tampa Bay Rays 3-2 on Sunday for their 11th consecutive win.
Pedroia singled off Eddie Gamboa (0-1) to start the inning. The relay throw on Ortiz's hit to right center beat Pedroia to plate but he avoided Luke Maile's first tag. Pedroia's momentum carried him past the plate and when he went back to touch it, Maile was charged with an error when the ball dropped out his glove on another tag try.
Pedroia hit a solo homer and Mookie Betts extended his hitting streak to 11 games with an RBI single for the Red Sox, who secured at least an AL wild-card spot Saturday night. Boston's magic number to clinch the division title dropped to two.
Joe Kelly (4-0) went 2 2/3 scoreless innings for the win.
Red Sox starter Eduardo Rodriguez struck out a career-high 13 in 5 1/3 innings. The left-hander and Heath Hembree combined to strikeout 11 consecutive batters to establish a major league-record. The New York Mets held the previous mark when Tom Seaver struck out 10 in a row against San Diego on Apr. 22, 1970.
Boston also set a club record by striking out 21 through nine. Kelly added two more in the 10th.
There was a moment of silence before the game for Miami pitcher Jose Fernandez, who was killed in a boating accident early Sunday. Fernandez played high school baseball in nearby Tampa, Florida after defecting from Cuba.
The Rays planned to honor Ortiz before his final game at Tropicana Field but canceled the ceremony at Ortiz's request after Fernandez's death. He had three hits in five at-bats and moved past Frank Thomas for 107th place on the career list with 2,469 hits.
Ortiz has 35 homers and 90 RBIs at Tropicana Field, which is the most of any visiting player. Alex Rodriguez is next with 30 homers and 73 RBIs.
HONORING BIG PAPI
Rays 3B Evan Longoria and RHP Chris Archer informally presented Ortiz with an oil painting of his 500th home run, which he hit at Tropicana Field last season. Ortiz was also given 34 special handmade Diamond Crown Maximus cigars and $5,000 donations in his name to the Miracle League of St. Petersburg, Florida and the University of South Florida Latino scholarship program.
Red Sox: Ortiz will play at Yankee Stadium for the final time during a three-game series against New York that starts Tuesday night. "Playing baseball in New York is something that is very special," Ortiz said. LHP David Price (17-8) will start for the Red Sox Tuesday night.
Rays: LHP Drew Smyly (7-11) will face White Sox RHP James Shields (3-11) Monday night in the first of four games in Chicago.
© 2016 by STATS LLC and Associated Press.