May 11, 2011: Blue Jays 9, Red Sox 3

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May 11, 2011: Blue Jays 9, Red Sox 3

By Sean McAdam
CSNNE.com

TORONTO -- When John Lackey strung together three quality starts in a row, it was apparently more of a mirage than anything else.

Lackey was shelled for the second straight start Wednesday, pounded for nine runs on 10 hits as the Red Sox were beaten by the Toronto Blue Jays, 9-3, completing a two-game sweep for the home team.

The Sox trailed 4-3 heading into the seventh when the Jays exploded for five runs, putting the game out of reach. All five of the runs came after two were out. Lackey walked three batters in the seventh and all three scored.

In four of his seven starts this year, Lackey has given up six or more runs. The nine runs against him tied a season-high.

The Sox did little offensively against four different Toronto pitchers. Two of their runs came on solo homers for Adrian Gonzalez and David Ortiz in the sixth.

Carl Crawford (two hits) extended his hitting streak to 11 games, but Jacoby Ellsbury (0-for-4) saw his streak snapped at 19 games.

Player of the Game: John McDonald

The Connecticut native and former Providence College standout had a solo homer in the fourth, then put the game away with a two-run double in the seventh when the Jays pounced on John Lackey for five runs.

Curiously, Lackey took a shot at McDonald in his postgame commnents. Told that Terry Francona had noted Lackey had had success against McDonald in the past, Lackey said: "I mean, everybody's had success with him in the past, to be honest. You can't give up hits to him when you have other guys in that lineup who can hurt you.''

Honorable Mention: Rajai Davis

Davis ran the Blue Jays to an extra-inning win Tuesday in the series opener, then followed that up with a four-hit effort Wednesday.

Davis scored twice and and in the fourth, offered an encore of his Tuesday night heroics, stealing both second and third before scoring on a sacrifice fly by Yunel Escobar.

The Goat: John Lackey

Lackey was shelled for nine runs -- five in the seventh inning, when the Sox trailed only by a run.

Six of the nine runs off him were produced by the lower third of the Toronto lineup: rookie David Cooper, McDonald and Davis.

In five starts against Toronto as a member of the Red Sox, Lackey has a 9.40 ERA.

Turning Point: Free passes open floodgates

It was still a game -- Blue Jays leading, 4-3, with two outs in the seventh -- when, with two outs and the bases loaded, John Lackey walked J.P. Arencibia to force in the fifth Toronto run. Then he walked David Cooper, forcing in the sixth run. The back-to-back, two-out, bases-loaded walks opened the door for a five-run Toronto inning that put the game out of reach.

By the Numbers: 4

The Red Sox have played 12 series this year and have been swept in a third of them (four times).

Quote of Note:

"Everything in my life sucks right now, to be honest with you.''

-- John Lackey

Sean McAdam can be reached at smcadam@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Sean on Twitter at http:twitter.comsean_mcadam

Ortiz's winning HR fulfills his promise to young fan

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Ortiz's winning HR fulfills his promise to young fan

David Ortiz's exploits with the Red Sox over the years can easily be described as "Ruthian."

That description became more fitting and Big Papi's legend grew Friday night when Ortiz made like the Babe by promising and delivering a home run to young fan named Maverick. 

Ortiz connected with a two-run shot over the Green Monster in the eighth inning to break a 2-2 tie and give the Red Sox a 4-2 victory over the rival Yankees. 

Here's the video Ortiz and former Red Sox teammate Kevin Millar, now with the MLB Network, made for Maverick before the game.

And here's Maverick's response, via Millar:

 

Quotes, notes, and stars: "No sign" of Ortiz slowing down

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Quotes, notes, and stars: "No sign" of Ortiz slowing down

Quotes, notes, and stars from the Red Sox' 4-2 win over the Yankees.

QUOTES:

* "He gathered himself and got a little rhythm as the night went along.'' - John Farrell on Henry Owens.

* "That's a rarity for Betances to leave his breaking ball up like he did. Once David saw it up, he attacked.'' - Farrell on David Ortiz's game-winning homer.

* "There's no sign of him slowing down. Tonight is a prime example of it. Key moment, big hit when we need it. There's a long resume there and it's continuing to build.'' - Farrell on Ortiz's ability to deliver in the clutch.

* "There were some mechanical adjustments that I made. I came out a little erratic, trying to do too much, maybe focusing too much. But as game went on, I kind of got into a rhythm.'' - Owens on his start.

* "I saw him throw a lot of breaking pitches to Mookie. The one they hit stayed up a little longer than usual. He's the kind of pitcher that, if you go up there looking for everything he's got, you're done.'' - Ortiz on his game-winning homer off Dellin Betances.

NOTES:

* Over his career, David Ortiz has hit 29 go-ahead homers from the eighth inning on.

* Ortiz has eight homers in his last 24 games against the Yankees.

* The win was the first this season for the Red Sox in a game in which they were tied or trailing after seven innings.

* The Red Sox have won five of their last six and seven of their last 10.

* The Yankees have been limited to three runs or fewer in their last six games.

* In 21 games, the Yankees have faced 10 lefty starters; in 22 games, the Red Sox have faced two.

* Masahiro Tanaka has issued just one walk in his last three starts.

STARS:

1) David Ortiz

With one swing of the bat, Ortiz untied a 2-2 game in the bottom of the eighth with a game-winning two-run homer.

2) Jackie Bradley Jr.

Bradley's penchant for delivering a big hit continued as he rapped a two-run double to left in the seventh to erase a 2-0 Yankee lead.

3) Masahiro Tanaka

He shut the Red Sox for six innings before allowing three hits and two runs in the seventh.