Pedroia heating up at right time

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Pedroia heating up at right time

CLEVELAND Its no coincidence the Red Sox offensive machine has shown signs of life while its most important cog is firing on all cylinders. Dustin Pedroia collected another multi-hit game in Friday nights 3-2 win over the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field, and factored into all of Bostons runs in the victory.

Pedroia knocked in his teams first run in the fourth inning, and then hopped on base with a one-out single before Cody Ross sent him home with a two-run blast to centerfield in the sixth that proved to be the game-winning knock.

It was the fourth multi-hit game in his last five games, and continued an eight game stretch where hes hitting .417 with seven runs scored in his last eight games. Its the exact kind of white-hot hitting sprees that Pedroia has become known for over the years, and its even more impressive when considering that hes also played the last 15 games in a row for the Sox.

There was plenty of chatter about Ross home run and the trademark bat flip that immediately followed, but none of it would have been possible without Pedroia keeping the inning going.

Its that kind of steady offense and sometimes unheralded contributions in a quiet season for Pedroia that his teammates notice. But its only part of the package as the teams leader tries to will them back into the playoff race.

Pedroia was swinging the bat well tonight. He had a big knock up the middle and then set things up when I hit the home run. This was a big win, said Ross. Hes a catalyst. With Pedroia, Jacoby and Carl at the top of the lineup a lot of stuff can go on. It puts a lot of pressure on the pitcher and the defense.

With him swinging the bat, getting big knocks when we need and big RBIs, we feed off of that. Hes our leader. Hes done a really good job leading.

With the two hits, Dustin Pedroias batting average is all the way up to .275 for the season, and amazingly thats the highest his batting average has been in two months dating back to June 13.

Thats good news for a career .300 hitter thats still a long way away from his customary level of production in the big leagues. But that hasnt stopped Pedroia from trying to will his team to victories at a desperate time in the season.

What we learned in Red Sox' 4-0 loss to Rays

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What we learned in Red Sox' 4-0 loss to Rays

David Price is embarrassed and the offense is embarrassing, Those are some of the takeaways from Wednesday's loss.

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Quotes, notes and stars: Price's struggles 'crushing me right now'

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Quotes, notes and stars: Price's struggles 'crushing me right now'

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Quotes, notes and stars from the Red Sox' 4-0 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays:

QUOTES
"I'm so much better than this. I've just got to get better. It's crushing me right now, but I'll get there." -- David Price

"I've just got to pitch better. That's what it is right now. It's not something else. It's not bad luck. It's me, so I've got to get better." -- Price

"We had the big opportunity with David [Ortiz] and Hanley [Ramirez] in the middle of the order and bases loaded, one out. Figure that's the time we can cash in. But that wasn't the case.'' -- John Farrell on a blown opportunity in the sixth inning

"It got a little worse; the best choice was to come out of the game.'' -- Hanley Ramirez, who left in the eighth with a strained back

NOTES
-- Jackie Bradley Jr., thrown out trying to swipe third base in the fifth, was caught stealing for the first time in his career, having been successful in his first 20 atttempts.

-- David Ortiz has reached base safely in 20 straight games.

-- The shutout suffered by the Red Sox was the first since April 19 -- also against Tampa Bay.

-- The loss marked only the third time this season that the Red Sox didn't collect an extra-base hit.

-- Boston is 2-7 agains the Rays in the last nine meetings between the two.

-- The Sox are now 5-10 against lefty starters this season.

-- David Price dropped to 1-3, 6.52 in five career starts against the Rays.

-- Price has allowed 57 earned runs this season, or three fewer than all of last year.

-- Price has allowed at least one homer in nine straight starts, a career-high streak.

STARS
1) Brandon Guyer: Activated earlier Wednesday after a DL stint for a hamstring strain, Guyer made his presence felt with a solo homer to lead off the second, then added a run-scoring double as part of the three-run third.

2) Matt Moore: The lefty entered the game with a bloated 5.04 ERA, but tamed the Red Sox with seven shutout innings. He didn't allow a base hit until the sixth and yielded just three overall.

3) Logan Forsythe: Forsythe smoked a double off Price to lead off the Tampa Bay first inning, signaling that it might be a long afternoon for the Red Sox lefty. He later singled and scored in the third.