By Jessica Camerato
CSNNE.com Follow @JCameratoNBA
BOSTON --It's no secret the Boston Red Sox can hit. They entered Sunday's game against the Milwaukee Brewers with the top batting average in baseball, and boasted a roster with some of the league's hottest offensive players.
And even with Carl Crawford on the 15-day disabled list (hamstring), the Red Sox didnt miss a beat in their 12-3 victory over the Brewers.
They set the tone early with a six-run first inning in which the first six batters reached and scored. After Jacoby Ellsbury scored early, Kevin Youkilis hit a three-run home run and Ellsbury added a two-run double in the inning.
A very good inning, said Terry Francona. That doesnt happen very often. But Youk got the big hit and then we kept going, which was good.
All nine starters recorded hits and eight were for extra bases (including home runs by Youkilis, Dustin Pedroia, and Marco Scutaro).
We can swing the bat, said Jarrod Saltalamacchia. We're feeling good at the plate, one through nine is feeling good, and we were able to put some runs on the board early and just keep going with it.
The Red Sox took the series, 2-1, against the Brewers for their fifth consecutive series victory since June 3 . (They began the stretch against the Oakland Athletics.) They have outscored their opponents 114-53 and are 13-2 in that span.
Prior to the game Francona said he would like to see J.D. Drew, who entered the game batting .225, get into an offensive groove.
J.D. hasnt caught fire yet, thats just being honest. But he always seems to have that ability to have that one big spurt, Francona said. I know its there, so rather than run away from him -- and I know weve sat him against a lot of lefties -- but I would love for him to get hot because I know its in there and I really want to give him a chance to do that.
Drew made a step in the right direction on Sunday, going 2-for-5 and scoring a run. It was his third multihit game of the month.
He swung the bat very well today, said Francona. Hit some balls at people but he hit some balls right on the nose. That was really good to see.
David Ortiz (1-for-3) extended his home hitting streak to 13 games. He is batting .490 (25-for-51) during the stretch, which began on May 19.
Pedroias fourth inning home run marked his 60th of his career and 30th at Fenway Park.
Jessica Camerato is on Twitter at http:twitter.com!JCamerato