May 10, 2011: Blue Jays 7, Red Sox 6


May 10, 2011: Blue Jays 7, Red Sox 6

By SeanMcAdam

TORONTO -- The .500 mark remains elusive for the Red Sox.

For the third time this season, they had a chance to even their won-loss record. And for the third time they failed, dropping a 7-6 extra-inning decision to the Toronto Blue Jays Tuesday night in the opener of a five-game road trip.

Twice, the Blue Jays had the lead and three the Red Sox roared back to tie the game.

But in the bottom of the 10th, Rajai Davis singled, stole second and third, and rode home on David Cooper's long sacrifice fly to center off Matt Albers.

The Sox looked headed to defeat earlier when Cooper homered off Daniel Bard in the eighth, giving Toronto a 6-5 lead. But Adrian Gonzalez answered with a solo homer of his own in the top of the ninth. It was Gonzalez's second homer of the night and fifth in his last 10 games.

Jon Lester turned in his worst start since Opening Day, allowing three runs in the first thanks to three walks -- one with the bases loaded.

The Sox used run-scoring singles by Carl Crawford and a solo homer by David Ortiz to get back into the game.

They took the lead for the first time on a two-run, opposite-field homer by Adrian Gonzalez -- his fourth homer in the last eight games -- to go up 4-3, in the fifth.

After the Jays took the lead once more with single runs in the sixth and seventh, the Sox responded with an RBI single from Jarrod Saltalamacchia in the eighth to forge a 5-5 tie.

Jacoby Ellsbury (three hits) extended his hitting streak to 19 games and David Ortiz had a single, double and homer.

Player of the Game: David Cooper

The Blue Jays' rookie hit a solo homer off Daniel Bard in the eighth to put the Jays ahead. Then, after the Red Sox rallied in the ninth, Cooper came to the plate in the bottom of the 10th and played the hero again.

This time, with Rajai Davis on third and one out, he didn't have to do much. But he did enough, lofting a fly ball to deep center on which David could have crawled home with winning run.

Honorable Mention: Adrian Gonzalez

Gonzalez is on a tear, with two homers Tuesday night and five in his last eight games.

Gonzalez drilled a two-run shot to left in the fifth to put the Red Sox ahead for the first time. Then, down to their last three outs, he hit another -- this one, solo -- to tie the game 6-6 and force extra innings.

Had the Sox figured out a way to pull this one out, Gonzalez's heroics would have been the reason. As it is, it was still an amazing night.

The Goat: Jon Lester

Lester had a string of six straight quality starts going, but that ended with a thud Tuesday. He gave up three runs in the first inning -- thanks in large part to three walks -- and after the Red Sox rallied to take the lead on the first of Gonzalez's two homers, Lester promptly gave it back, allowing the Jays to tie the game in the bottom of the inning.

Lester walked five, hit another and allowed two homers in what was surely his worst start this season.

Turning Point: Sox stranded

The Red Sox, as has been their habit of late, stranded baserunners left and right -- 12 in all.

The worst came in the seventh when the Sox had runners at first and second and no out. Kevin Youkilis hit into a fielder's choice, David Ortiz was forced into an inning-ending double play, and the Sox seemed doomed from that point on.

By the Numbers: 5

After going homerless for a stretch of 23 games, Adrian Gonzalez has now hit five homers in his last eight games.

Quote of Note

"Basically, I ruined a good night by the offense.''

-- Jon Lester

Sean McAdam can be reached at Sean on Twitter at http:twitter.comsean_mcadam