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Pedro gives up only four hits

4/10/2004

BOSTON (AP) -- Pedro Martinez gave the Boston Red Sox just what
they needed: A quick game, a strong outing and a win.

Martinez held Toronto to four hits over 7 2-3 innings to
outpitch AL Cy Young winner Roy Halladay on Saturday night and lead
the Red Sox to a 4-1 victory over the Blue Jays. Homers from David
Ortiz, Manny Ramirez and Mark Bellhorn accounted for all of
Boston's runs

It was more than enough for Martinez.

"As he got into the game, he got pretty confident in what he
was doing," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. "That was pretty
obvious."

The Red Sox had a dreadful day on Friday.

After losing to Baltimore on a bases-loaded walk in the 13th
inning the night before, the team sat in its plane for three hours
because of mechanical problems and didn't arrive back home until
about 6:30 a.m. They had just a few hours sleep before the home
opener, which they lost to Toronto 10-5, and their depleted bullpen
had to be rescued by reserve first baseman David McCarty, who
pitched the final two outs to mop things up.

With the two aces on the mound on Saturday, though, everyone was
able to get home early: The game lasted just 2 hours, 13 minutes.

"I just tried to pick up my relievers," Martinez, who was not
available for comment after the game, said in a statement read by a
team spokesman. "They needed an outing like that from me."

Martinez struck out seven and walked two and did not allow a
runner past second base until Orlando Hudson hit a solo homer in
the seventh. He has not lost his first two decisions of the year
since his first full season, 1994.

Martinez struck out Kevin Cash to start the eighth before Reed
Johnson singled to center. After Frank Catalanotto struck out on
Martinez's 106th pitch, Francona came to the mound to pull his
starter -- asking for the ball before Martinez had a chance to talk
him out of it.

"I told him he did a whale of a job and (Keith) Foulke would
finish it up for him," Francona said. Martinez, who talked
then-manager Grady Little into leaving him in the game when Boston
blew a three-run lead in Game 7 of the AL championship series last
fall, did not put up a fight.

"I think all pitchers, hopefully, want to stay in the game.
They're competitors," Francona said. "I thought that was the
perfect time to get Foulke in."

With the crowd chanting "Pedro!" he walked off the mound and
slapped hands with Ortiz before pointing skyward and disappearing
into the dugout. Foulke got the last four outs for his second save.

Halladay allowed three runs on seven hits and two walks,
striking out seven. It was an improvement over his opener, when he
gave up six earned runs in 6 2-3 innings, but he still dropped to
0-2 for the season.

"With Pedro on the other side, your whole goal is to keep your
team in the game," Halladay said. "Whenever he's out there, there
isn't a whole lot of room for error."

Ramirez was 3-for-4. Cesar Crespo led off the sixth inning with
the first of two infield hits and, one out later, Ortiz hit his
second homer of the season to make it 2-0.

Hudson made it 2-1 in the seventh, but Bellhorn added a solo
shot around the Pesky Pole to give Boston a 3-1 lead and then
Ramirez lined one into centerfield in the eighth to make it 4-1.

Game notes
Gabe Kapler made an extra base hit-saving catch on Josh
Phelps in the second inning. ... Catalanotto has a hit in every
game so far this season. He singled in the first. ... Toronto,
which scored 10 runs on Friday, scored 10 or more six times in 19
games against the Red Sox last year. ... Boston purchased RHP Frank
Castillo's contract from Triple-A Pawtucket on Saturday and
designated first baseman Brian Daubach for assignment. Castillo,
who pitched for the Red Sox from 2000-01, spent last year in
Triple-A for Oakland and Atlanta. Daubach was 0-for-1 with a walk
in two pinch-hitting appearances this season for the Red Sox. ...
Fans in the centerfield bleachers wore wigs and beards in tribute
to Johnny Damon's new hairstyle. They called themselves "Damon's
Disciples." ... The Red Sox set a club record by selling out
Fenway Park for the 66th consecutive game. The streak started May
15 last year.