for this game

Late hit by Kotsay lifts Red Sox over Indians

Sep 25, 2008 - 3:43 AM By Mike Petraglia PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

BOSTON (Ticker) -- With their hopes of winning a second straight American League East title dwindling day by day, the Boston Red Sox showed Wednesday night they are still playing to get ready for the playoffs.

Mark Kotsay doubled home the go-ahead run in the bottom of the eighth inning as Boston held on to faint division crown hopes by beating the Cleveland Indians, 5-4, at Fenway Park.

The win assured the Red Sox of at least one more day with a mathematical chance of catching Tampa Bay but the Rays would have to lose their remaining four games while Boston would have win its last four to overtake the upstart franchise by a game. Tampa Bay would win a tiebreaker for the division since it won the season series, 10-8.

Kotsay's double down the right field line came off Rafael Perez (4-4) and scored Jeff Bailey, whose pinch-hit triple to left-center started the rally with one out.

"That was a nice swing," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said of Bailey's leadoff triple. "It gave us a little spark and then (Kotsay) took a real nice swing off a guy that's real tough on lefties. We played a few different guys and we still found a way to win the ballgame. Some good things happened."

One night after the Red Sox beat 22-game winner Cliff Lee to become the first team since 1973 to clinch a postseason berth by beating a 20-game winner, they wasted no time in going after Fausto Carmona.

Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz got the rally going with back-to-back one-out doubles. Kotsay, Jason Varitek and Chris Carter followed with RBI singles as the Red Sox grabbed a 4-0 lead. Carmona labored through 51 pitches just to get through the first inning.

"He wasn't able to put guys away today," Indians manager Eric Wedge said. "They fouled off a lot of pitches. He'd get ahead and they'd work hard to even up the count and then foul off some more pitches. They just really made him work. He wasn't able to put people away and they grinded through quite a few at-bats."

Carmona, who has appealed his six-game suspension for his involvement in last weekend's bench-clearing melee with Detroit's Gary Sheffield, gave up four runs and five hits in an inning of work, matching the shortest outing of his young career.

Paul Byrd, perceived by many to be battling with Tim Wakefield for the final spot in the Red Sox's postseason rotation, struggled all night. He allowed 11 hits and four earned runs over his five innings, eventually yielding the lead when Shin-Soo Choo, Jhonny Peralta and Victor Martinez opened the fifth with singles to tie the game, 4-4.

Byrd was facing his former team for the first time since being traded to Boston on August 12.

"He looked like he was a little over-excited to face his former team," Francona said. "He was scattering some balls on his arm side. He wasn't locating like he needs to. He left some balls over the middle."

"I found myself shaking off Varitek probably a little too much tonight, second-guessing some of the things that were going on," Byrd said.

Meanwhile, Bryan Bullington was superb in relief of Carmona. The Cleveland righthander allowed just two groundball singles over his five innings of work.

"Bullington was fantastic," Wedge said. "He gave us a chance to win the ballgame. You hope to get three or four innings out of him and he threw five against this lineup. It's a tough lineup so Bryan did a great job."

While committing a pair of errors, the Red Sox defense turned three double plays to help their pitchers out of several jams.

"We had our chances, just like (Tuesday) night, we had our chances," Wedge said. "We let Byrd off the hook a few times. We did a good job of coming back and tying the ballgame and giving ourselves a chance, but ultimately, we were not able to push over the top."

David Aardsma (4-2) earned the win by pitching a scoreless eighth while Manny Delcarmen earned his second save in the ninth after shaking off a leadoff walk.

After Byrd came out of the game after five innings, Francona implement a bullpen-by-committee to finish out the game, choosing to stay away from Jonathan Papelbon, Hideki Okajima, Javy Lopez and Justin Masterson. Mike Timlin, Aardsma and Delcarmen combined to throw four scoreless innings of relief.

"It's hard to go into a game knowing you're staying away from four guys in your bullpen but it was good," Francona said. "Regardless of who goes out there, you still want to play the game right, you want to win, but you want to do things that put your club in the best position health wise."

The game also marked the return of J.D. Drew to the Red Sox lineup for the first time since August 17. On the disabled list with a sore back, he singled in his second at-bat in the third inning and was pulled for pinch-runner Jonathan Van Every.

"He said he felt it in his legs just because he hasn't been able to do as much while he's been down," Francona said. "I told him to give me a call (Thursday) morning and what we may do (Thursday) is maybe DH him, maybe we won't. We'll see how he feels and go from there."








  • AL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    CLEVELAND 0 1 2 0 1 0 0 0 0 4 13 1
    BOSTON 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 x 5 10 2 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: CLE - FAUSTO CARMONA, BRYAN BULLINGTON (2ND), RICH RUNDLES (7TH),
    RAFAEL PEREZ (8TH) AND VICTOR MARTINEZ
    BOS - PAUL BYRD, MIKE TIMLIN (6TH), DAVID AARDSMA
    (7TH), M

    Sep 24 10:03 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY MARK KOTSAY SCORED JEFF BAILEY.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, M KOTSAY ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 4
    BOSTON 5 BOTTOM, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: J VARITEK (.222, 1-FOR-3, RBI)

    Indians 4, Red Sox 5  Bot 8, 0 OutsSep 24 9:46 PM
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    Indians 4, Red Sox 5  Bot 8, 0 OutsSep 24 9:46 PM
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    Indians 4, Red Sox 4  Bot 7, 0 OutsSep 24 9:18 PM
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    Indians 4, Red Sox 4  Bot 5, 0 OutsSep 24 8:48 PM
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    Indians 4, Red Sox 4  Bot 5, 0 OutsSep 24 8:46 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY VICTOR MARTINEZ SCORED SHIN-SOO CHOO.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, V MARTINEZ ON FIRST, J PERALTA ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 4
    BOSTON 4 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR CLEVELAND: T HAFNER (.206, 1-FOR-2)

    Indians 4, Red Sox 4  Top 5, 0 OutsSep 24 8:44 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JHONNY PERALTA SCORED SHIN-SOO CHOO.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, J PERALTA ON FIRST, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 3
    BOSTON 4 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR CLEVELAND: V MARTINEZ (.275, 1-FOR-1)

    Indians 3, Red Sox 4  Top 3, 0 OutsSep 24 8:11 PM


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    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY SHIN-SOO CHOO SCORED JAMEY CARROLL.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, S CHOO ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 2
    BOSTON 4 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR CLEVELAND: J PERALTA (.274, 0-FOR-1)

    Indians 2, Red Sox 4  Top 3, 0 OutsSep 24 8:09 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JOSH BARFIELD SCORED VICTOR MARTINEZ.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J BARFIELD ON FIRST, B FRANCISCO ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 1
    BOSTON 4 TOP, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR CLEVELAND: G SIZEMORE (.270, 0-FOR-1)

    Indians 1, Red Sox 4  Top 2, 0 OutsSep 24 7:53 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY CHRIS CARTER SCORED MARK KOTSAY.
    SITUATION: 4 RUNS IN, C CARTER ON FIRST, J VARITEK ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 0
    BOSTON 4 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: A CORA (.273, 0 HR, 9 RBI)

    Indians 0, Red Sox 4  Bot 1, 0 OutsSep 24 7:34 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JASON VARITEK SCORED J.D. DREW.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, J VARITEK ON FIRST, M KOTSAY ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 0
    BOSTON 3 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: C CARTER (.667, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Indians 0, Red Sox 3  Bot 1, 0 OutsSep 24 7:30 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MARK KOTSAY SCORED DAVID ORTIZ.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, M KOTSAY ON FIRST, J DREW ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 0
    BOSTON 2 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: J VARITEK (.221, 13 HR, 41 RBI)

    Indians 0, Red Sox 2  Bot 1, 0 OutsSep 24 7:27 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY DAVID ORTIZ SCORED DUSTIN PEDROIA.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, D ORTIZ ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CLEVELAND 0
    BOSTON 1 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: K YOUKILIS (.314, 27 HR, 111 RBI)

    Indians 0, Red Sox 1  Bot 1, 0 OutsSep 24 7:19 PM
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