Red Sox
4 - 3 Final
  for this game

Red Sox send Twins to sixth straight loss

Aug 10, 2011 - 5:17 AM Minneapolis, MN (Sports Network) - David Ortiz hit a go-ahead RBI infield single in the seventh inning as Boston slipped past Minnesota, 4-3, in the middle contest of a three-game series at Target Field.

Darnell McDonald hit a two-run homer for the Red Sox, who have taken four straight games and increased their lead in the AL East to 2 1/2 games over the Yankees. New York lost to the Angels earlier Tuesday.

Matt Albers (4-3) allowed a game-tying RBI double from Tsuyoshi Nishioka in the bottom of the sixth but still picked up the win. Jonathan Papelbon posted a scoreless ninth for his 26th save.

Michael Cuddyer and Delmon Young drove in a run each for the Twins, who have dropped six straight contests. Matt Capps (3-6) took the loss, charged with the deciding run.

"It's a riddle over here. We're battling along in a lot of close games, but we just weren't able to do what we're supposed to do and finish it off," said Twins first baseman Joe Mauer about his club's sudden skid.

Capps subbed for starter Francisco Liriano, but proved to be no relief, issuing a one-out walk to Dustin Pedroia, then serving up a double to the AL's top hitter -- Adrian Gonzalez -- then walking Kevin Youkilis to load the bases.

Phil Dumatrait came on but allowed a slow-roller to Ortiz which barely made it past the mound. It was enough to plate Pedroia with Boston's lead run, however.

Franklin Morales and Daniel Bard combined to take care of the seventh and eighth frames, then Papelbon set down the side in order to preserve the narrow victory.

"They've been throwing the ball well all year," Varitek said of Bard and Papelbon. "These guys can come in with different types of leads and survive no matter what happens."

The Sox wasted a chance to open up a lead in their first at-bat, stranding the bases loaded after Jed Lowrie grounded into a fielder's choice.

Minnesota capitalized in the home half. Ben Revere walked and moved to third on a Mauer single before scoring on a Cuddyer sacrifice fly. Jason Kubel and Jim Thome both drew walks to load the bases, and two batters later a Young walk forced in another run.

Boston finally countered in the fifth as Jason Varitek worked a leadoff walk and McDonald followed with a blast to left.

Lowrie walked with one down in the sixth, then Carl Crawford also worked a free pass ahead of Varitek's RBI single for a 3-2 Red Sox edge. Nishioka equalized for the Twins in the home half on an RBI double off the scoreboard in right-center.

Game Notes

McDonald's blast was the MLB-leading 74th for the Red Sox on the road this season...Gonzalez finished 2-for-4 and upped his average to .351...Sox starter Erik Bedard allowed two runs on three hits with six strikeouts and four walks over five innings, and his Twins counterpart Liriano lasted six frames, yielding four hits and three runs but walked seven batters...The Twins sent pitcher Scott Baker back to the 15-day disabled list Tuesday with a right flexor strain, the second time in less than a month. The 29-year-old right-hander's roster spot is expected to be taken by righty Kevin Slowey from Triple-A Rochester.