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Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Adrian Gonzalez's first walk-off hit as a member of the Boston Red Sox
If the Boston Red Sox go anywhere this season, I can guarantee that highlights of last night's improbable victory over the Baltimore Orioles at Fenway Park will be featured prominently.
Adrian Gonzalez hit a two-run double off the Monster in the bottom of the ninth off Orioles closer Kevin Gregg giving Boston (21-20) its fourth straight win, 8-7 over Baltimore (19-21).
The Daisuke Matsuzaka experience was in full effect during a miserable, rainy night. He went 4.1 innings, allowing five hits, five earned runs, seven walks and two strikeouts. I don't know who they could put in his rotation spot but hopefully the Red Sox brass can come up with another fake injury and they can give him a seat next to John Lackey on the disabled list.
The Orioles built up a 6-0 lead with two runs in the first, one in the third, two in the fifth and one in the sixth.
Derrek Lee had an RBI double in the first and Vlad Guerrero (3 hits, 2 runs) drove in a run with a ground out. Matt Wieters had an RBI single in the third, Mark Reynolds had an RBI single in the fifth and J.J. Hardy drove in a run with a sacrifice fly. Finally, Adam Jones had an RBI single in the sixth.
After Orioles starter Chris Tillman pitched five scoreless innings, Jed Lowrie (2 hits, 2 runs) got the comeback underway with an RBI double in the sixth. Jason Varitek and Gonzalez added RBI singles in the frame and Kevin Youkilis roped an two-run RBI double to pull the Red Sox within a run at 6-5.
Reynolds hit a solo homer to center off Boston reliever Alfredo Aceves (1-0) in the seventh to give the Orioles a 7-5 lead. It turned out to be the only mistake for Aceves as he went three innings for the win. He allowed two hits and struck out one for his first win with the Red Sox.
Varitek cut it to 7-6 in the seventh with another RBI single.
Jacoby Ellsbury (2 hits) walked and stole second with one out in the ninth against Gregg. Pedroia worked a nine-pitch walk, setting the table for Gonzalez's sweet stroke off the Wall.
Tim Wakefield gets the ball tonight in place of Lackey. The O's counter with young lefty Zach Britton (5-2). Boston looks to sweep the two-game set and continue this stretch of good baseball.