for this game

Colon strong as Red Sox top Royals

May 22, 2008 - 4:32 AM By Tony Lee PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

BOSTON (Ticker) -- A no-hitter, a first career win and now a quality comeback. It's been quite a week on the mound for the Boston Red Sox.

Former Cy Young Award winner Bartolo Colon tossed five solid innings in his debut with the Red Sox and rookie Jacoby Ellsbury had a leadoff home run and two singles in a 6-3 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Wednesday at Fenway Park.

Following Jon Lester's no-hitter Monday and rookie Justin Masterson's first career win Tuesday, Colon (1-0) yielded two runs and scattered six hits while striking out four in his first victory since last June, when he was with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

"I'm obviously very excited to get (the win)," Colon said through an interpreter. "It takes me back to 1997, when I was with Cleveland and I got my first career win here. I thought about that after the game and compared it to that moment."

Ellsbury scored three times and Jason Varitek added a solo homer for Boston, which won its sixth straight and improved to a major league-best 20-5 at home. The club's four-run rally in the fifth inning helped make a winner of Colon.

Joey Gathright had two hits and scored all three runs for the Royals, who have lost 11 of their last 15 games at Fenway. Starter Brett Tomko (2-5) gave up five runs and seven hits in 4 1/3 innings, actually lowering his career ERA here to 15.30.

Colon struggled through a host of injuries last season, when he went 6-8 with a 6.34 ERA in 19 games. Just three years removed from a 21-win campaign, he signed a minor league deal with the Red Sox in February.

"It's sure been a long road back for him," Boston manager Terry Francona said. "I'm sure he's excited."

Following three starts at Class AAA Pawtucket in which he went 2-0 with a 0.64 ERA, Colon was brought up to the Red Sox prior to Wednesday's game. His stay could be an extended one depending on what the Red Sox decide to do when struggling rookie Clay Buchholz comes off the disabled list later this month.

"He'll come back and pitch his turn," Francona said of Colon's immediate future. "It was a good beginning."

Wednesday's effort did not hurt Colon's cause.

After allowing two of the first three batters to reach, Colon struck out Jose Guillen and got Mark Teahen to ground out, lifting his once-potent fastball into the mid-90s.

"He did good, he did real good," Varitek said of Colon. "I saw some 94s (miles per hour) up there. You have to remember this is the first outing. He's still building strength, and that's a good little starting point for building strength. ... He's going to help us."

The Royals got to Colon in the third, when Guillen knocked in Gathright with a single to tie the game at 1-1. Gathright scored again in the fifth on Alex Gordon's one-out base hit that put Kansas City ahead.

But the burly Colon got Guillen to pop to second and blew his last pitch of the night past Teahen for his fourth strikeout, stranding two runners.

Colon's fastball was strong most of the night, and both runs scored against him came on rather soft hits.

"He threw his other pitches, but he located his fastball pretty good for his first start," Royals manager Trey Hillman said.

Varitek quickly tied it with a solo homer, his sixth of the season, with one out in the bottom of the fifth, and Julio Lugo put the Red Sox ahead to stay two batters later with an RBI single that scored Coco Crisp.

Ellsbury's single chased Tomko and Dustin Pedroia greeted Ron Mahay with another base hit before David Ortiz made it 4-2 with sacrifice fly. Ellsbury scored on Mahay's wild pitch moments later to cap the rally.

Varitek is 15-for-36 (.417) with three homers and seven RBI in his last 10 games, helping Boston compensate for the recent struggles of clean-up hitter Manny Ramirez, who went 0-for-3 and is just 1-for-15 without an RBI in his last four games.

"You look at the way in the past when we've put together a good team where you have to find a way to win when your big donkeys aren't doing their damage," Varitek said. "Manny put us on his back early, so he'll go through this and we'll see Manny return to being Manny."

Tomko, who had allowed 12 runs in 5 2/3 previous innings at Fenway, saw more of the same to start. Ellsbury smacked Tomko's fourth pitch of the game into the Royals' bullpen for his fourth homer - and second leadoff blast - of the season. Pedroia followed with a hard single.

But Tomko allowed just three baserunners over the next four-plus innings before falling apart in the fifth.

"He left a slider up for the home run," Hillman said of Varitek's shot. "And then he left a couple pitches out over the plate."

Pedroia added an RBI single in the seventh to finish the scoring for the Red Sox and complete his second three-hit effort in his last four games.

Boston pounded out 12 hits and worked four walks against five pitchers, support with which Colon was pleased.

"I'm happy that the team gave me the support to be able to have some success on the mound," he said. "I was very nervous in the first inning. It felt like my first professional outing actually, but after the first inning, I was able to settle down and really enjoy the moment."

Colon likely will make his first road start on Monday in Seattle.








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

    BATTERIES: KAN - BRETT TOMKO, RON MAHAY (5TH), JOEL PERALTA (6TH), JIMMY GOBBLE
    (7TH), JOAKIM SORIA (8TH) AND JOHN BUCK
    BOS - BARTOLO COLON, CRAIG HANSEN (6TH), JAVIER LOPEZ


    May 21 10:24 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY DAVID DEJESUS SCORED JOEY GATHRIGHT.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, D DEJESUS ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 3
    BOSTON 6 TOP, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR KANSAS CITY: M GRUDZIELANEK (.309, 0-FOR-3, SAC)

    Royals 3, Red Sox 6  Top 9, 0 OutsMay 21 10:24 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY DUSTIN PEDROIA SCORED JACOBY ELLSBURY.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, D PEDROIA ON FIRST, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 2
    BOSTON 6 BOTTOM, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: D ORTIZ (.250, 0-FOR-2, SF, RBI)

    Royals 2, Red Sox 6  Bot 7, 0 OutsMay 21 9:41 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    WILD PITCH BY RON MAHAY ALLOWED JACOBY ELLSBURY TO SCORE.
    SITUATION: 4 RUNS IN, D PEDROIA ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 2
    BOSTON 5 BOTTOM, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: M RAMIREZ (.291, 0-FOR-1, BB)

    Royals 2, Red Sox 5  Bot 5, 0 OutsMay 21 8:58 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY DAVID ORTIZ SCORED JULIO LUGO.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, D PEDROIA ON FIRST, J ELLSBURY ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 2
    BOSTON 4 BOTTOM, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: M RAMIREZ (.291, 0-FOR-1, BB)

    Royals 2, Red Sox 4  Bot 5, 0 OutsMay 21 8:55 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JULIO LUGO SCORED COCO CRISP.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, J LUGO ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 2
    BOSTON 3 BOTTOM, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: J ELLSBURY (.279, 1-FOR-2, HR, RBI)

    Royals 2, Red Sox 3  Bot 5, 0 OutsMay 21 8:45 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY JASON VARITEK (6) TO RIGHT WITH 1 OUT IN
    THE 5TH OFF BRETT TOMKO.
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 2, BOSTON 2
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: C CRISP (.294, 0-FOR-1)

    Royals 2, Red Sox 2  Bot 5, 0 OutsMay 21 8:38 PM
  • 5
    roots
    RUWTbot Took away 36 roots

    Royals 2, Red Sox 2  Bot 5, 0 OutsMay 21 8:38 PM
  • 41
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 36 roots

    Royals 2, Red Sox 1  Bot 5, 0 OutsMay 21 8:32 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY ALEX GORDON SCORED JOEY GATHRIGHT.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, A GORDON ON FIRST, D DEJESUS ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 2
    BOSTON 1 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR KANSAS CITY: J GUILLEN (.238, 1-FOR-2, RBI)

    Royals 2, Red Sox 1  Top 5, 0 OutsMay 21 8:28 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JOSE GUILLEN SCORED JOEY GATHRIGHT.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J GUILLEN ON FIRST, A GORDON ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 1
    BOSTON 1 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR KANSAS CITY: M TEAHEN (.259, 0-FOR-1)

    Royals 1, Red Sox 1  Top 3, 0 OutsMay 21 7:55 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY JACOBY ELLSBURY (4) TO RIGHT WITH 0 OUT IN
    THE 1ST OFF BRETT TOMKO.
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 0, BOSTON 1
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: D PEDROIA (.296, 2 HR, 23 RBI)

    Royals 0, Red Sox 1  Bot 1, 0 OutsMay 21 7:17 PM
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    paulrharvey3 Added 5 roots

    Royals vs. Red SoxMay 21 12:06 PM