Lester, Sox fend off Cubs, 4-3

Lester, Sox fend off Cubs, 4-3
June 17, 2012, 2:24 am
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CHICAGO -- Jon Lester earned his first win in almost a month, tossing six shutout innings before allowing a three-run homer in the seventh, as the Red Sox held off the Chicago Cubs, 4-3, at Wrigley Field.

Lester hadn't allowed a baserunner to reach third base through six, but yielded a leadoff double to Jeff Baker, a one-out walk to Wellington Castillo and an opposite-field three-run homer to left by Luis Valbuena that shaved the Sox' lead to one.

But Scott Atchison got the final out of the seventh and Vicente Padilla and Alfredo Aceves closed out the final two innings as Lester got a win for the first time since May 19, also an interleague contest.

Lester fanned eight and walked just one while improving to 4-4 for the season.

Jarrod Saltalamacchia, hitting cleanup, belted a two-run homer in the fourth to give the Sox a 2-0 lead. Run-scoring singles from Will Middlebrooks in the sixth and Scott Podsednik in the seventh added to the Sox' advantage.

Podsednik had two more hits and has multi-hit games out of the leadoff spot in four of the five games on this road trip.

Alfredo Aceves allowed a leadoff single in the ninth but picked up a strikeout and a double play to end the game and lock down his 16th save.