Rapid Reaction: Blue Jays 9, Sox 7
April, 30, 2013
By Gordon Edes | ESPNBoston.com
TORONTO -- How many bleeping cities can one man claim to have?
David Ortiz tried Tuesday night to add Toronto to his list, hitting his third home run in nine games and clearing the bases with a three-run double that gave the Sox their only lead of the night.
But the Blue Jays, who have had as wretched a month as the Red Sox have had a great one, rallied for a 9-7 win that kept the Sox from setting a club record for wins in April.
Edwin Encarnacion hit a two-run home run off Sox reliever Junichi Tazawa in the seventh, his second deep drive of the night, and the Jays tacked on another run in the eighth on a single, sacrifice bunt and single off Joel Hanrahan, who was making his first appearance since coming off the disabled list.
The Sox finish April with an 18-8 record, while the Blue Jays are now 10-17. Ortiz lined out to center for the final out against Jays closer Casey Janssen.
Papi-meter: With his third home run and three-run double in the seventh, Ortiz raised his RBI total to 15 in just nine games. He has hit safely in all nine, and 21 straight dating back to last season.
K-cups: Mike Napoli came into the game within four of Manny Ramirez's club record for RBIs in April, 31. Instead, the Sox first baseman struck out four times. This was the second four-K game of Napoli's career; the first time came on June 11, 2010, when he was with the Angels.
Napoli finished the month with 40 strikeouts, the second player to reach that number in April. Chris Carter of Houston was the first.
Knock, knock: You can watch a ballgame from your hotel room here, and on rare occasions, you might even get room service. In the fifth inning, Edwin Encarnacion hit one off Jon Lester into the fifth deck of the Rogers Centre, just inside the left-field foul pole and about 20 rows shy of a hotel room overlooking the field. That's the same place Manny Ramirez hit one for the Sox in another lifetime (2001). ESPN's home run tracker estimated the Encarnacion home run at 427 feet. Manny's, incidentally, was measured at 491 feet.
Lester lacking: After shutting out the Jays for seven innings here three weeks ago, Jon Lester fared much worse on his second go-round, allowing six runs on six hits and two walks in six innings. A walk and Jose Bautista's double in the first scored Toronto's first run, and Lester loaded the bases on a single, walk and hit batsman in the third. Catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia tried to bail him out but instead threw the ball into right field for a two-run error on an errant pickoff attempt. J.P. Arencibia's double made it 4-0. Lester, who was looking to run his record to 5-0, instead wound up with a no-decision.
Speed kills: At least in this instance. Jacoby Ellsbury reached base four times Tuesday night (two walks, two singles), but in the fifth, with two on and Mike Napoli at the plate, Ellsbury was picked off at second base by Jays starter Brandon Morrow.
Omens, anyone? Even with the loss, the Sox finished the month with the majors' best record for April, the 11th time they've done so. The past two times, 2004 and 2007, the Sox won the World Series.