for this game

Kawakami outpitches Matsuzaka in Braves 8-2 win

Jun 20, 2009 - 8:43 AM By HOWARD ULMAN AP Sports Writer

BOSTON(AP) -- For the first time, two Japanese-born starters faced each other at Fenway Park.

For Daisuke Matsuzaka, it was more of the same.

The Boston Red Sox' $103 million man couldn't shake his season-long struggles while the much less costly Kenshin Kawakami pitched the Atlanta Braves to their second straight easy win, 8-2 on Friday night.

"He's had his moments where he looks like a number one, number two," Atlanta manager Bobby Cox said of his rookie. "We're just trying to get him acclimated over here."

Kawakami, who turns 34 on Monday, signed a $23 million, three-year contract in January after 11 seasons with the Chunichi Dragons of Japan's Central League.

He allowed two runs and two hits in six innings, improved to 4-6 and gave up three earned runs or less for his ninth straight game.

"He was pounding the strike zone. We had a great game plan," catcher Brian McCann said. "He rises to the occasion."

Matsuzaka was 18-3 last year - the second of a six-year contract that pays him $52 million after the Red Sox paid $51 million just to negotiate with him.

This year, he missed most of spring training this year while winning the MVP award of the World Baseball Classic, spent time on the disabled list and is 1-5 with an 8.23 ERA. Opponents are batting .378.

With John Smoltz set to make his first start next Thursday after six rehab outings, Matsuzaka's time in the rotation may be up.

"If I keep going like this, I have no right to be a part of this rotation," he said through an interpreter.

A decision could come on Monday's off day.

"We'll certainly sit down" and discuss the rotation, Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. "We have the ability to be a little flexible in what we do."

Matsuzaka gave up a homer on the first pitch of the game to Nate McLouth and let the first five batters reach. He left after allowing doubles to the first two batters in the fifth and gave up six runs on eight hits as he failed to reach the sixth for the sixth time in eight outings.

Jason Bay got both of Boston's hits off Kawakami, a double and his 18th homer, a two-run shot, before three relievers held the Red Sox hitless.

Garret Anderson went 3 for 3 with four RBIs as the Braves finally gave Kawakami support after scoring 24 runs in his other 69 1-3 innings.

Atlanta won its second straight since breaking a four-game losing streak with a 7-0 win at Cincinnati in which McLouth had a homer and four RBIs.

After McLouth's 12th homer this season, Atlanta loaded the bases on a single by Yunel Escobar, a double by Chipper Jones and a walk to McCann. Anderson's walk made it 2-0, but Matsuzaka escaped with a strikeout and double play, extending his streak to 17 straight hitless at bats with the bases loaded.

The Braves added two runs in each the fourth and sixth for a 6-0 lead.

Cubs 8, Indians 7, 10 innings=

Ryan Theriot hit a bad-hop single with two outs in the 10th inning and the Chicago Cubs rallied from an early seven-run deficit.

Derrek Lee homered twice, including a tying solo shot in the ninth off former Cubs ace Kerry Wood in his return to Wrigley Field.

Alfonso Soriano drew a two-out walk in the 10th from Luis Vizcaino (1-3) and stole second. Theriot followed with a grounder that took a crazy bounce past first baseman Victor Martinez.

The Indians loaded the bases off Kevin Gregg (2-1) in the top half of the inning.

Mariners 4, Diamondbacks 3=

In Seattle, Ken Griffey Jr. hit a pinch-hit, two-run homer in the eighth inning before Rob Johnson tripled in Chris Woodward with the go-ahead run.

Russell Branyan homered to start the eighth, and Adrian Beltre singled before Griffey homered.

David Aardsma struck out the side for his 13th save in 14 chances.

Rangers 6, Giants 4=

In San Francisco, Fred Lewis hit a go-ahead, two-run homer for the Giants shortly after Randy Johnson lost the chance for his 302nd career victory.

The Giants used five relievers. Sergio Romo (1-0) escaped a bases-loaded jam in the seventh, while Jeremy Affeldt pitched a perfect eighth before Brian Wilson got his 18th save in 21 chances.

Orioles 7, Phillies 2=

In Philadelphia, Rich Hill pitched into the seventh and singled in the go-ahead run for Baltimore, sending the defending World Series champs to their fourth straight loss.

Hill (3-1) allowed two runs, five hits and walked four in 6 2-3 innings.

Rookie catcher Matt Wieters hit a two-run double and the Orioles won their third straight.

Reds 4, White Sox 3=

In Cincinnati, Brandon Phillips hit a two-run homer and a sacrifice fly to help the Reds end a nine-game losing streak against the White Sox.

Phillips' homer off Jose Contreras (2-6) put Cincinnati ahead to stay in the sixth.

Bronson Arroyo (8-5) got his first June victory by allowing only two hits in 6 2-3 innings, including a two-run homer by Chris Getz. Francisco Cordero earned his 17th save.

Mets 5, Rays 3=

In New York, Fernando Nieve turned in another impressive start, Brian Schneider hit a three-run homer and Francisco Rodriguez rebounded from a blown save with a perfect ninth.

David Wright added an RBI double and Daniel Murphy had three hits for the Mets. The Rays' B.J. Upton hit a two-run double.

Yankees 5, Marlins 1=

In Miami, Andy Pettitte and two relievers combined on a three-hitter.

With Alex Rodriguez sitting with what he and the team called "fatigue," the Yankees regrouped after two losses at home to the Nationals. Derek Jeter had two hits after being out of the starting lineup the last two games with a sore left ankle, and Melky Cabrera homered.

Cody Ross homered for Florida.

Cardinals 10, Royals 5=

In Kansas City, Mo., Albert Pujols hit a two-run single when the Royals pitched to him and Ryan Ludwick hit a grand slam when they didn't.

Khalil Greene and Rick Ankiel also hit consecutive homers off Kyle Davies (3-7) to give St. Louis an early seven-run lead. Colby Rasmus had two RBIs and four of the Cardinals' 14 hits.

Angels 5, Dodgers 4=

In Anaheim, Calif., Juan Rivera hit a tiebreaking homer off Guillermo Mota (3-2) in the eighth inning for the Angels, wiping out homers from the Dodgers' James Loney and Rafael Fucal.

Justin Speier (3-1) got the last out of the eighth and Brian Fuentes got his AL-leading 19th save by striking out Matt Kemp to end it.

Twins 5, Astros 2=

In Minneapolis, Kevin Slowey became the second 10-game winner in the majors, and the Twins went back to small ball to beat Roy Oswalt (3-4).

Slowey (10-2) scattered three singles and surrendered only Michael Bourn's sacrifice fly.

Nationals 2, Blue Jays 1, 11 innings=

In Washington, Adam Dunn hit a bases-loaded single in the 11th inning, giving the Nats their third straight win, matching a season high.

Athletics 7, Padres 5=

In San Diego, Orlando Cabrera doubled in two runs in the eighth inning to hand the Padres their 17th loss in 21 interleague games since the start of last season.

Cabrera capped a three-run eighth with a drive off Edward Mujica (2-2).

Michael Wuertz (3-1) pitched one inning. Drew Bailey got the final four outs for his seventh save.

Tigers 10, Brewers 4, 7 innings=

In Detroit, Marcus Thames hit a pair of two-run homers and the Tigers rallied to beat the Brewers in a game stopped in the seventh inning by rain.

Miguel Cabrera and Curtis Granderson homered for the Tigers in a game that was also halted by rain for 2 hours, 3 minutes in the fourth. Prince Fielder hit a three-run shot for Milwaukee.

National League=

Rockies 7, Pirates 3=

In Denver, Jason Marquis shut down the Pirates with a masterful mix of sinkers and sliders over 8 2-3 innings as Colorado won for the 14th time in 15 games.

Marquis (9-4) allowed three earned runs on eight hits, and is 5-1 in his last seven starts.

Troy Tulowitzki and Brad Hawpe each homered for the Rockies, who are 16-5 since manager Jim Tracy replaced Clint Hurdle on May 29. Tracy managed the Pirates from 2006-07.








  • ML
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    ATLANTA 2 0 0 2 2 0 1 0 1 8 11 1
    BOSTON 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 2 2 1 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: ATL - KENSHIN KAWAKAMI, PETER MOYLAN (7TH), RAFAEL SORIANO (8TH),
    MIKE GONZALEZ (9TH) AND BRIAN MCCANN
    BOS - DAISUKE MATSUZAKA, JUSTIN MASTERSON (5TH), DANIEL
    BARD

    Jun 19 10:07 PM


  • ML
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY GARRET ANDERSON SCORED CHIPPER JONES.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, B MCCANN ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 8
    BOSTON 2 TOP, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: M DIAZ (.279, 1-FOR-4)

    Braves 8, Red Sox 2  Top 9, 0 OutsJun 19 9:56 PM


  • ML
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY GARRET ANDERSON SCORED CHIPPER JONES.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, G ANDERSON ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 7
    BOSTON 2 TOP, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: M DIAZ (.273, 0-FOR-3)

    Braves 7, Red Sox 2  Top 7, 0 OutsJun 19 9:11 PM


  • ML
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY JASON BAY (18) TO LEFT WITH 2 OUT IN
    THE 6TH OFF KENSHIN KAWAKAMI SCORED KEVIN YOUKILIS.
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 6, BOSTON 2
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: D ORTIZ (.209, 0-FOR-2)

    Braves 6, Red Sox 2  Bot 6, 0 OutsJun 19 9:01 PM
  • 38
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 33 roots

    Braves 6, Red Sox 0  Bot 5, 0 OutsJun 19 8:39 PM


  • ML
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY CASEY KOTCHMAN SCORED GARRET ANDERSON.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, NONE ON, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 6
    BOSTON 0 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: J FRANCOEUR (.250, 0-FOR-1, BB)

    Braves 6, Red Sox 0  Top 5, 0 OutsJun 19 8:38 PM


  • ML
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY GARRET ANDERSON SCORED BRIAN MCCANN.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, G ANDERSON ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 5
    BOSTON 0 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: M DIAZ (.275, 0-FOR-2)

    Braves 5, Red Sox 0  Top 5, 0 OutsJun 19 8:33 PM


  • ML
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY YUNEL ESCOBAR SCORED NATE MCLOUTH.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, Y ESCOBAR ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 4
    BOSTON 0 TOP, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: C JONES (.304, 1-FOR-2)

    Braves 4, Red Sox 0  Top 4, 0 OutsJun 19 8:17 PM


  • ML
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY NATE MCLOUTH SCORED KELLY JOHNSON.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, N MCLOUTH ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ATLANTA 3
    BOSTON 0 TOP, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR ATLANTA: Y ESCOBAR (.286, 1-FOR-2)

    Braves 3, Red Sox 0  Top 4, 0 OutsJun 19 8:15 PM


  • ML
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    ATLANTA 2 2 3 0
    BOSTON 0 0 0 (BOT 1)

    CURRENT PITCHERS: ATL - KENSHIN KAWAKAMI
    BOS - DAISUKE MATSUZAKA

    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: D PEDROIA (.295, 2 HR, 27 RBI)
    J DREW (.261, 9 HR, 31 RBI)
    K YOUKILIS (.324, 12 HR,

    Braves 2, Red Sox 0  Bot 1, 0 OutsJun 19 7:22 PM
  • 5
    roots
    GREGnKY Added 5 roots

    Braves vs. Red SoxJun 19 9:47 AM