for this game

Matsuzaka, Red Sox hand Blue Jays eighth straight loss

May 10, 2007 - 5:06 AM TORONTO (Ticker) -- Daisuke Matsuzaka got the better of his countryman in just the fourth-ever matchup of Japanese hurlers in major league history.

Matsuzaka rebounded from his worst outing of the season with seven strong innings and the Boston Red Sox pounded the Toronto Blue Jays pitchers for the second night in a row en route to a 9-3 victory.

David Ortiz, Manny Ramirez, Julio Lugo and Mike Lowell each homered for the Red Sox, who have won three games in a row and six of their last seven.

"We're playing complete baseball now, which is nice," Lowell said.

Matsuzaka (4-2) yielded just one run and five hits while striking out eight to pick up his fourth win. The 26-year-old issued just three walks, his lowest total since April 22 against New York.

"My goal going in to the game today was to limit the amount of walks and get ahead in the count," Matsuzaka said. "I'm not quite satisfied with my command overall yet. I do think there was an improvement with my previous start."

Matsuzaka suffered through his worst major league start last Friday, yielding seven runs - six earned - and 10 hits in 7 1/3 innings to take a loss at Texas.

"He had a better feel, he was more in the zone with all his pitches than he was last time," catcher Jason Varitek said.

A midweek bullpen session with pitching coach John Farrell corrected a flaw in Matsuzaka's mechanics when pitching out of the stretch, and the righthander had little trouble controlling his arsenal of pitches against the Blue Jays.

"I made some adjustments heading into the game today," Matsuzaka said. "I think it's too early to tell if that made all of the difference. I do hope that with small incremental changes this will lead to gradual improvement."

Boston has grabbed the first two games of the three-game set in convincing fashion, outscoring the Blue Jays, 18-5, and pounding out eight homers in the two games combined. Struggling Toronto has now dropped eight straight games.

Blue Jays starter Tomo Ohka (2-4) could not match his countryman, lasting just 4 2/3 innings while surrendering three runs and six hits. The veteran righthander walked five.

"I think I would change something," Ohka said. "I did change during the game."

The Red Sox opened the scoring in the first when Coco Crisp - batting second while Kevin Youkilis nurses a leg contusion suffered in Tuesday's game - drew a one-out walk. Ortiz followed with a single to right, beating the shift and sending Crisp to second.

The two moved up on a wild pitch, and Crisp scampered home on Ramirez's RBI groundout to the shortstop.

Boston added a pair in the second when Ohka walked former Blue Jay Eric Hinske to open the frame. Dustin Pedroia reached on a bunt single, and both runners moved up when Ohka failed to field the ball cleanly.

Instead of fielding Pedroia's bunt with his glove and making the flip to first base, Ohka reached down with his bare hand and rolled the ball on the ground past first baseman Lyle Overbay.

Lugo plated Hinske with a groundout to second base, and Pedroia came home on Ortiz's double.

Ortiz clubbed four hits in the game for the first time since July 29, 2006, against the Angels.

The Red Sox bats stayed quiet until the sixth, when Pedroia greeted reliever Brian Tallet with a single and Lugo followed with his second homer of the season, a two-run blast into the left field seats.

Toronto's first two runs came courtesy of a pair of solo homers Overbay. Alex Rios capped a 4-for-4 night with an RBI single off Joel Pineiro in the bottom of the ninth.

"It's obviously frustrating," Overbay said. "We're going to get through it (the losing streak), a couple of months down the road no one is going to remember this, they're going to remember everything we're doing then."








  • AL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    BOSTON 1 2 0 0 0 3 0 2 1 9 12 0
    TORONTO 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 2 3 8 2 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: BOS - DAISUKE MATSUZAKA, BRENDAN DONNELLY (8TH), JOEL PINEIRO (9TH)
    AND JASON VARITEK
    TOR - TOMO OHKA, BRIAN TALLET (5TH), SCOTT DOWNS (6TH),
    JOSH TOWERS (7TH) AND

    May 9 9:59 PM


  • AL
    AT TORONTO - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY ALEX RIOS SCORED AARON HILL.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, A RIOS ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 9
    TORONTO 3 BOTTOM, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: A LIND (.233, 0-FOR-3, BB)

    Red Sox vs. Blue JaysMay 9 9:57 PM


  • AL
    AT TORONTO - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY LYLE OVERBAY (5) TO CENTER WITH 0 OUT IN
    THE 9TH OFF JOEL PINEIRO.
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 9, TORONTO 2
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: A HILL (.270, 0-FOR-3)

    Red Sox vs. Blue JaysMay 9 9:51 PM


  • AL
    AT TORONTO - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY MIKE LOWELL (6) TO LEFT CENTER WITH 1 OUT
    IN THE 9TH OFF JOSH TOWERS.
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 9, TORONTO 1
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: J VARITEK (.275, 0-FOR-3, BB)

    Red Sox vs. Blue JaysMay 9 9:46 PM


  • AL
    AT TORONTO - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY DAVID ORTIZ (9) TO RIGHT WITH 2 OUT IN
    THE 8TH OFF JOSH TOWERS SCORED COCO CRISP.
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 8, TORONTO 1
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: M RAMIREZ (.244, 1-FOR-4, HR, 2 RBI)

    Red Sox vs. Blue JaysMay 9 9:33 PM


  • AL
    AT TORONTO - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY LYLE OVERBAY (4) TO RIGHT WITH 2 OUT IN
    THE 6TH OFF DAISUKE MATSUZAKA.
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 6, TORONTO 1
    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: A HILL (.272, 0-FOR-2)

    Red Sox vs. Blue JaysMay 9 9:09 PM


  • AL
    AT TORONTO - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY MANNY RAMIREZ (6) TO CENTER WITH 2 OUT IN
    THE 6TH OFF SCOTT DOWNS.
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 6, TORONTO 0
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: J DREW (.253, 0-FOR-1, 2 BB)

    Red Sox vs. Blue JaysMay 9 9:01 PM


  • AL
    AT TORONTO - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY JULIO LUGO (2) TO LEFT WITH 0 OUT IN
    THE 6TH OFF SCOTT DOWNS SCORED DUSTIN PEDROIA.
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 5, TORONTO 0
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: C CRISP (.221, 0-FOR-2, BB)

    Red Sox vs. Blue JaysMay 9 8:57 PM


  • AL
    AT TORONTO - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY DAVID ORTIZ SCORED DUSTIN PEDROIA.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, D ORTIZ ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 3
    TORONTO 0 TOP, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: M RAMIREZ (.241, 0-FOR-1, RBI)

    Red Sox vs. Blue JaysMay 9 7:47 PM


  • AL
    AT TORONTO - SCORING UPDATE
    GROUND OUT BY JULIO LUGO SCORED ERIC HINSKE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, D PEDROIA ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 2
    TORONTO 0 TOP, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: C CRISP (.226, 0-FOR-0, BB)

    Red Sox vs. Blue JaysMay 9 7:41 PM


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

    CURRENT PITCHERS: BOS - DAISUKE MATSUZAKA
    TOR - TOMO OHKA

    DUE UP FOR TORONTO: A RIOS (.269, 6 HR, 19 RBI)
    A LIND (.241, 3 HR, 11 RBI)
    V WELLS (.281, 4 HR, 17 RBI)

    Red Sox vs. Blue JaysMay 9 7:23 PM