Sixth inning does Beckett in for another loss

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Sixth inning does Beckett in for another loss

BALTIMORE Its Groundhog Day all the time for Josh Beckett.

Hes trapped in one of his worst big league seasons and, more specifically, is in one of the worst ruts of that blah season.

Beckett was good early in Bostons 7-1 loss to the Baltimore Orioles at Camden Yards, but started to show signs of trouble in the fifth before totally falling apart in the sixth frame that shifted the balance of the game. A Mark Reynolds home run in the fifth had given the Os a slim 2-1 lead, and a single and walk started problems for a tiring Beckett on a muggy night in Baltimore.

Then Matt Wieters chopped a groundball up the middle that somehow eluded Beckett, Mike Aviles and Dustin Pedroia and scored another run. A Chris Davis single scored another run to make it a 4-1 ballgame and Beckett was mercifully lifted from the game.

Unfortunately Mark Melancon came on in relief and a Reynolds bomb to left field made it a 7-1 ballgame that the downtrodden Sox had zero chance of coming back from.

In the sixth inning all kinds of expletive happened, said Beckett. I felt like I was down in the zone for the most part. It would be nice to win a game, but Ive got to pitch better. I cant put these guys in a hole like that.

Rookie backstop Ryan Lavarnway caught Becketts six innings of futility, but felt he was better than the box score will indicate.

I thought he threw better than his line is going to show, said Lavarnway. He left that one ball up to Omar Quintanilla, but he got a couple of ground balls in the sixth and we couldnt get the double play for him.

Bobby Valentine felt much the same way.

I thought Josh was as good as weve seen him in a while, said Valentine. Maybe a couple of mistakes to leadoff hitters for home runs, but in the sixth we get that check swing on a curveball. He didnt get it and then a high hopper over the mound and a seeing-eye single up the middle. Then after that it was Katie, bar the door.

Beckett finished with six hits and six runs allowed in 5 13 innings pitched in defeat, and heard a shower of boos from the Boston-heavy crowd at Camden Yards as he stalked off the field.

Yes, Beckett heard every last one of them and it appears the message was received as his ERA went up to 5.19 for the season.

Youve got to pitch better, said Beckett. If you pitch better then you dont need to worry about any of that stuff.

Theyre well-deserved in another horrendous loss with Beckett now having allowed 14 hits and 14 runs along with five home runs in each of his last two games after returning from his back spasm-shortened start on Aug. 1.

Sunday's Red Sox - Yankees lineups

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Sunday's Red Sox - Yankees lineups

If the rain doesn't prevent it, the Red Sox and Yankees will play the third and final game of their weekend series Sunday night at Fenway Park.

The Red Sox go into this one having won the first two games and are fresh off an 8-0 win Saturday night with Rick Porcello on the mound. Porcello improved to 5-0 on the season after another strong outing. His fellow Sox pitchers are starting to come around as of late, too.

Red Sox starters have thrown at least 6.0 innings in each of the club’s last 6 games, lowering the starting staff’s ERA nearly a full run from 5.48 to 4.49 in that span.

David Price takes the mound for the Sox. Price leads all major league starters with 13.96 SO/9.0 IP this year, the highest mark for any AL pitcher through April 30 in the Live Ball Era (min. 4 starts).

Here is the full Red Sox lineup:

Mookie Betts RF
Dustin Pedroia 2B
Xander Bogaerts SS
David Ortiz DH
Hanley Ramirez 1B
Travis Shaw 3B
Brock Holt LF
Christian Vazquez C
Jackie Bradley Jr. CF

David Price LHP

Here is the full Yankees lineup:

Jacoby Ellsbury CF
Brett Gardner LF
Alex Rodriguez DH
Mark Teixeira 1B
Starlin Castro 2B
Chase Headley 3B
Aaron Hicks RF
Austin Romine C
Ronald Torreyes SS

Nathan Eovaldi RHP

Quotes, notes and stars: Porcello has ability to adjust

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Quotes, notes and stars: Porcello has ability to adjust

Quotes, notes and stars from the Red Sox' 8-0 win over the Yankees:

QUOTES:

"He threw all four pitches tonight for strikes, but most importantly, (he's shown) the ability to make adjustments from pitch-to-pitch. If he gets out of whack or misses with a pitch, he's right back in the strike zone.'' - John Farrell on Rick Porcello.

"You look back at the first month and I think we've gained a lot of trust in each other up and down the lineup. That to me is the strongest attribute right now on this team.'' - Farrell on the Red Sox after one month of play.

"Pretty similar. I'm getting a lot of timely hits, and it's helping the team.'' - Jackie Bradley Jr., asked if this last week is similar to the hot streak he enjoyed last August.

"I'm comfortable. I'm in a good place, mentally and physically. I worked really hard to get where I am now and I'm going to continue to work.'' – Bradley on his hot streak.

"Much better fastball command. I've been able to execute my sinker better and that's allowed me to get ahead of hitters and if I do fall behind, I've been able to come back.'' - Porcello on cutting his walk rate by more than half compared to this point a year ago.

NOTES:

* The shutout at Fenway was the first for the Red Sox against the Yankees since May 14, 2011.

* The eight-run margin was the biggest margin in a Red Sox shutout over the Yankees since Sept. 6, 2003 when they won 11-0 in New York.

* The four triples in April for Jackie Bradley Jr. are the most for a Red Sox hitter in that month since Jose Offerman in 1999.

* In his last nine games against the Yankees, Bradley is 14-for-31 (.452) with nine extra-base hits.

* Rick Porcello's 5-0 start to the season is the best run for a Red Sox starter since Josh Beckett was 7-0 in 2007.

* The Yankees have failed to homer in seven games this season; they're 0-7 in those games.

STARS:

1) Jackie Bradley Jr.

Bradley had three extra-base hits (two triples and a double) for eight total bases, and knocked in three runs.

2) Rick Porcello

The Red Sox starter tossed seven shutout innings and allowed only two baserunners into scoring position while issuing just one walk.

3) Mookie Betts

Betts had a double in the second and a single in the sixth, good for three RBI, a season high for him.