for this game

Red Sox complete sweep of punchless Athletics

Aug 3, 2008 - 11:55 PM By Mike Petraglia PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

BOSTON (Ticker) -- Daisuke Matsuzaka and the Boston Red Sox continued to feast on the struggling Oakland Athletics.

Matsuzaka allowed just two runs and four hits over six innings and rookie Jed Lowrie had a key two-run triple as the Red Sox completed a three-game sweep of the A's with a 5-2 victory Sunday at Fenway Park.

The Red Sox are 3-0 since they dealt Manny Ramirez to the Dodgers and acquired Jason Bay from Pittsburgh in a three-way deal at Thursday's trade deadline. Red Sox manager Terry Francona held a team meeting prior to Friday's game, and the team hasn't missed a beat.

"One of the things we talked about (on Friday) was not looking back or forward and just attacking what's at hand," Francona said. "We did that very well."

Bay had two more hits for Boston Sunday and is 4-for-11 in a Red Sox uniform, including a three-run homer Saturday.

"The first day was kind of a mulligan as far as everything that happened. Getting out there and the last two days have been a lot more routine," Bay said. "It's a testament to these guys because I feel like I've been here three weeks, not three days. It's been an easy transition."

Coco Crisp added a pair of sacrifice flies for Boston, which finished its nine-game homestand with a 4-5 mark. Oakland lost its sixth straight contest and dropped to 2-13 since the All-Star break.

Matsuzaka (12-2) bounced back from a rare loss and struck out eight, while walking two.

"Today my fastball and breaking ball were good, so I felt I was able to pitch well, overall," Matsuzaka said through an interpreter. "I wanted to keep throwing into the seventh inning but with the rain and everything, even if I were able to stay in the game, that would have been the end of my start.

"The slider is one of my go-to pitches, and if I can have that slider I had out there today more consistently, it would certainly make it a lot easier to pitch."

The righthander improved to 2-0 against the A's this season.

"Daisuke came out and threw his fastball, stayed in his delivery and the ball came out of his hand real well," Francona said. "On top of that, his slider had real good depth to it. "He looked like he was pitching with confidence. We played with energy. It was a good day."

For the second straight game, the Red Sox jumped on Oakland's starter in the first inning. Facing lefthander Dallas Braden (2-2), Dustin Pedroia doubled off the wall in left and Kevin Youkilis followed with a single to center, giving the Red Sox a 1-0 lead. It was Youkilis' team-leading 75th RBI.

"He's swinging the bat good," Francona said of Youkilis. "Maybe that's the kind of hitter he is. He's seeing the ball very well. He always has good at-bats. It doesn't matter what the score is, he's going to give you the same at-bat every time."

Mike Lowell began a three-run rally in the fourth with a one-out double to left-center. After Jason Bay singled to put runners on the corners, Lowrie tripled over Carlos Gonzalez in center, scoring two runs and giving him five RBI in the last two games. Crisp capped the scoring in the frame with a sacrifice fly off reliever Santiago Casilla.

Braden, who allowed six hits and four runs over 3 1/3 innings, nearly didn't start the game as he was fighting the effects of flu-like symptoms.

"I feel all right, just a little weak - nothing major," Braden said. "I don't know, probably just some bad pizza, who knows, can't really pinpoint it. Just a 24-hour thing I think.

"I got into some jams, got out of some jams, didn't get out of one. I felt fine all things considered, just tried to give me team a chance."

Braden headed out to the bullpen for pregame warm-ups with lefthander Dan Meyer, who would have taken Braden's spot as the emergency starter.

"I thought that Dallas Braden, who wasn't feeling real good, to go out there and battle the way he did, he gutted it out there," A's manager Bob Geren said. "He was kind of low energy. He's been fighting a little bit of a sickness and he gave me all he had. I'm proud of him for doing that."

Meanwhile, Oakland's offense continued to produce next to nothing since the All-Star break.

Oakland batters fanned eight times through the first five innings, with their only scoring coming when Daric Barton drilled his fourth homer of the year to the A's bullpen with one out in the fifth, cutting Boston's lead to 4-2.

"We just didn't get enough runs again," Geren said. "Daric Barton came in, hit a two-run homer that got us back in the game. Our bullpen did a pretty good job again. You look back, bad series going 0-3, but we did hit a few home runs here, which we've been lacking and our bullpen's been basically real good.

"You've got to try to always take something positive out of a loss so we had a couple of positive things today and this series."

Following a 37-minute rain delay in the bottom of the sixth, the Red Sox added an insurance run when Crisp delivered his second sacrifice fly.








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

    BATTERIES: OAK - DALLAS BRADEN, SANTIAGO CASILLA (4TH), JOEY DEVINE (6TH), ALAN
    EMBREE (6TH), HUSTON STREET (7TH), DAN MEYER (8TH) AND ROB
    BOWEN, KURT SUZUKI (7TH)
    BOS - DAIS

    Aug 3 5:15 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY COCO CRISP SCORED JASON BAY.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J LOWRIE ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 2
    BOSTON 5 BOTTOM, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: J ELLSBURY (.259, 1-FOR-2)

    Athletics 2, Red Sox 5  Bot 6, 0 OutsAug 3 4:23 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY DARIC BARTON (4) TO RIGHT WITH 1 OUT IN
    THE 5TH OFF DAISUKE MATSUZAKA SCORED BOBBY CROSBY.
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 2, BOSTON 4
    DUE UP FOR OAKLAND: R BOWEN (.189, 0-FOR-1)

    Athletics 2, Red Sox 4  Top 5, 0 OutsAug 3 3:10 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY COCO CRISP SCORED JED LOWRIE.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, J VARITEK ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 0
    BOSTON 4 BOTTOM, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: J ELLSBURY (.260, 1-FOR-1)

    Athletics 0, Red Sox 4  Bot 4, 0 OutsAug 3 3:02 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    TRIPLE BY JED LOWRIE SCORED MIKE LOWELL AND JASON BAY.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, J LOWRIE ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 0
    BOSTON 3 BOTTOM, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: J VARITEK (.220, 0-FOR-1)

    Athletics 0, Red Sox 3  Bot 4, 0 OutsAug 3 2:55 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY KEVIN YOUKILIS SCORED DUSTIN PEDROIA.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, K YOUKILIS ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: OAKLAND 0
    BOSTON 1 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: D ORTIZ (.261, 14 HR, 47 RBI)

    Athletics 0, Red Sox 1  Bot 1, 0 OutsAug 3 1:49 PM
  • 5
    roots
    dukerulez911 Added 5 roots

    Athletics vs. Red SoxJul 21 4:40 PM