Red Sox blow two late leads, lose, 13-12

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Red Sox blow two late leads, lose, 13-12

DETROIT -- Twice on the verge of their first win of 2012, the Red Sox bullpen blew multi-run leads in the late innings, ultimately succumbing in the bottom of the 11th, 13-12, to the Detroit Tigers, extending their winless record to 0-3.

Mark Melancon allowed a two-out, two-run homer to Alex Avila in the bottom of the 11th, two innings after Alfredo Aceves yielded a three-run homer to Miguel Cabrera when the Sox seemed poised to win it in the ninth.

Nick Punto, getting his first start of the season and inserted into the leadoff spot to deliver a "spark'' according to his manager, singled home Cody Ross in the top of the 11th inning, giving the Sox a 12-11 lead.

A run-scoring single by Dustin Pedroia gave the Sox another insurance run, but it wasn't enough.

The Sox had seemed poised to wrap things up in the ninth but with three outs to go, Aceves surrendered two singles and a game-tying three-run homer to Miguel Cabrera -- all in the span of seven pitches.

In two appearances as closer, Aceves has faced five hitters and allowed all five to reach -- a hit batsman, three singles and Cabrera's homer.

Adrian Gonzalez had snapped a 7-7 tie in the sixth when he belted Daniel Schlereth's first pitch deep into the seats in right for a two-run homer. The homer was the first for the Red Sox this season after being limited to just two runs in their first two games.

Vicente Padilla contributed four scoreless innings, allowing just two singles while striking out four to pick up the win.

Clay Buchholz, making his first regular season start since the middle of last June, was rocked for four runs in the first inning and was done after four, having allowed seven runs. It snapped a 42-game streak in which Buchholz hadn't allowed more than five earned runs.

Smart says Hayward is 'awesome' and plays up Stevens connection

Smart says Hayward is 'awesome' and plays up Stevens connection

Marcus Smart, meeting the media at his basketball camp for kids at Brandeis, sang the praises of potential future Celtics teammate Gordon Hayward.

"He's an awesome player," Smart told MassLive.com's Jay King and others on Tuesday. 

“He’s a dude who understands the game really well. I think it’s because he had [Celtics coach] Brad ]Stevens] as a coach. Nah, I’m kidding. He’s incredible. He’s a great player, he’s a great guy, and I think I speak for a lot of guys in this league when I say that.” 

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports' The Vertical is the latest to report that this summer the Celtics are working on acquiring both Hayward, the Jazz forward who played for Stevens at Butler, and trading for Pacers' All-Star forward Paul George.

How would Smart sell them on playing in Boston? 

“First off, this fanbase is incredible,” Smart said. “The energy that they give off every night, night in and night out, is remarkable. And then playing under Brad...who’s understanding the game more and more. He’s learning, and he’s becoming one of the greatest coaches in this league. 

"You’ve just got to love the things that he’s doing, and I think that everybody in the league understands that. They appreciate the work he puts in, and they see everything he’s been doing and accomplishing.”

NBA free agency opens this Saturday. 


 

Report: Celtics plan is 'sequencing' acquisitions of Hayward, George

Report: Celtics plan is 'sequencing' acquisitions of Hayward, George

The Celtics are working to acquire BOTH Paul George and Gordon Hayward this summer, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports' The Vertical reports.

More from Woj's report:

The Boston Celtics are pursuing an aggressive summer plan of sequencing the signing of free agent Gordon Hayward and relinquishing the assets needed to complete a trade for Paul George, league sources told The Vertical.

For salary-cap purposes, Boston wants a Hayward commitment before it can finalize a trade for George and secure the most dynamic free-agent coup in franchise history, league sources said.

For Boston, here’s the hitch: While Indiana believes Boston can offer the best possible package, the Pacers may be unwilling to wait until the start of July free agency on Boston’s timetable and could turn toward making a deal elsewhere for George, league sources told The Vertical. 

This report confirms an earlier one from the weekend that said the C's were looking to acquire both superstars.