Rapid Reaction: Red Sox 3, Blue Jays 2
September, 15, 2012
By Mark Polishuk, Special to ESPNBoston.com
TORONTO -- Pedro Ciriaco atoned for an earlier misplay with some clutch hitting, lining an RBI double in the ninth that put the Boston Red Sox ahead for good in a 3-2 win over the Blue Jays. After catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia opened the inning with a double, Jays reliever Steve Delabar retired the next two Sox batters before Ciriaco lined a 2-1 pitch into left field that broke the game's 2-2 deadlock.
It was Ciriaco who was responsible for the tie score thanks to a fifth-inning error at third base. A Rajai Davis grounder handcuffed Ciriaco as Toronto center fielder Anthony Gose advanced from second to third on the play. Gose later scored on a bases-loaded sacrifice fly from Adam Lind, which led to another Boston error as Jacoby Ellsbury's off-target throw allowed the other two runners to advance, though the Jays wouldn't score again.
Boston closer Andrew Bailey earned his fourth save of the season by blanking the Jays in the ninth, striking out two in the process.
Cody Ross put the Red Sox on the board in the second inning, lining a 2-1 pitch from Toronto starter Carlos Villanueva over the wall in left-center field. It was Ross' 21st home run of the season, three back of his career high of 24 homers in 2009.
Ross also scored Boston's second run of the game when he took a two-out walk in the fourth and then came around to score after back-to-back singles from James Loney and Saltalamacchia. If the offense wasn't enough, Ross also easily threw out Adam Lind trying to score from second on Yunel Escobar's first-inning single, though this was less a case of Ross making a good throw than it was Lind making an ill-advised attempt at the plate.
It wasn't all good news for Ross, however, as he took a key strikeout in the eighth that stalled a Boston rally. With one out, the Red Sox had loaded the bases on three walks and Ross worked a 3-0 count off of Delabar before eventually doing down swinging. Loney followed with a pop-up to end the threat.
A night after his spectacular diving catch that perhaps saved the game for the Red Sox, Daniel Nava made another impressive play in left field. This time, Nava jumped and took a bumpy landing against the wall to catch a Davis fly ball in the second.
Clay Buchholz allowed one earned run on four hits over seven innings, matching his season high by issuing five walks. While Buchholz was a little on the shaky side and left with a no-decision, the start was still an improvement over his recent form, as he had posted a 5.79 ERA over his last four starts.
The Red Sox will go for the series sweep tomorrow at the Rogers Centre when left-hander Jon Lester takes the mound against Toronto ace Brandon Morrow.