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Upton homers, helps Devil Rays avoid sweep

Aug 23, 2007 - 3:42 AM ST. PETERSBURG, Florida (Ticker) -- The Boston Red Sox not only were upset by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays Wednesday. They also were beat up.

B.J. Upton hit a two-run homer to lead the Devil Rays to a 2-1 victory over the Red Sox, who had two starters leave the game with injuries.

Despite allowing twice as many hits, Edwin Jackson outdueled Daisuke Matsuzaka to give Tampa Bay just its third win in 12 meetings with Boston this season.

"Overall, Jackson's been steady," Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon said. "His composure was good."

Jackson (4-12) went six innings, allowing one run and five hits while striking out three and walking five. It was the fifth consecutive start in which he allowed two earned runs or less after beginning the season 1-9 with a 7.26 ERA through his first 16 starts.

"The defense stepped it up and had a lot of nice plays behind me," Jackson said. "I got myself into trouble."

Matsuzaka (13-10) yielded just two hits - including Upton's homer - in six innings with eight strikeouts and four walks. The Japanese righthander has presided over all three of Boston's losses to Tampa Bay this season.

"I feel frustrated about my own pitching," Matsuzaka said. "Tonight, I wasted a lot of pitches and I feel I got myself into trouble. The problem is I haven't been able to go as deep into games as I would like."

He has not won consecutive games since June 16-21 despite allowing two runs or less in seven starts since.

"He pitched great," Boston manager Terry Francona said. "He does a good job of pitching to the scoreboard."

In the third, Boston loaded the bases against Jackson with none out but only managed one run on Mike Lowell's sacrifice fly.

"It definitely felt good," Jackson said. "After that, I told myself you get out of that against this team, you have to battle to keep the team in the game."

Upton helped the Devil Rays avert further damage when he threw out David Ortiz at the plate to snuff a threat in the fifth.

"I knew I had a chance," Upton said. "Turned out we got him out."

In the sixth, Upton belted a two-run homer - his 18th of the season - to give Tampa Bay a 2-1 lead.

"He left a fastball up and I took a good swing on it," Upton said. "I just wanted to make solid contact."

Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia was hit by pitch in the third and left the game with a bruised left elbow. X-rays were negative and Pedroia joined his teammates on the bench during the last few innings.

In the fourth frame, left fielder Eric Hinske suffered a muscle cramp in his right calf and was replaced by Bobby Kielty after stealing second base.

"Pedroia is OK," Francona said. "He got an X-ray and he says will be OK (Thursday)."

Ortiz, who went 2-for-2, was the only player on either team with multiple hits.








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

    BATTERIES: BOS - DAISUKE MATSUZAKA, MIKE TIMLIN (7TH), ERIC GAGNE (8TH) AND
    JASON VARITEK
    TAM - EDWIN JACKSON, DAN WHEELER (7TH), GARY GLOVER
    (8TH), AL REYES (9TH) AND JOSH P

    Aug 22 10:17 PM
  • 35
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 35 roots (Close Finish)

    Red Sox vs. RaysAug 22 10:05 PM


  • AL
    AT TAMPA BAY - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY B.J. UPTON (18) TO RIGHT WITH 1 OUT IN
    THE 6TH OFF DAISUKE MATSUZAKA SCORED CARLOS PENA.
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 1, TAMPA BAY 2
    DUE UP FOR TAMPA BAY: B HARRIS (.289, 0-FOR-1, BB)

    Red Sox vs. RaysAug 22 9:12 PM


  • AL
    AT TAMPA BAY - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY MIKE LOWELL SCORED DUSTIN PEDROIA.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, D ORTIZ ON FIRST, K YOUKILIS ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: BOSTON 1
    TAMPA BAY 0 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: J DREW (.261, 0-FOR-1)

    Red Sox vs. RaysAug 22 7:55 PM