TORONTO (AP) – John Lackey made up for a terrible first start in
Toronto this season, No. 9 hitter Jason Varitek homered and drove
in four runs and the Boston Red Sox routed the Toronto Blue Jays
16-4 on Saturday.
Lackey (4-5) delivered six strong innings in his second start
since going on the disabled list after giving up nine runs in 6 2-3
innings against the Blue Jays on May 11.
The right-hander was charged with four runs on six hits and two
walks. He struck out a season-high eight.
David Oritz hit a three-run homer and Dustin Pedroia drove in
three runs as Boston amassed 18 hits. The Red Sox batted around
twice and every starter drove in at least one run in piling up the
most runs allowed by the Blue Jays this season.
Things got so bad for Toronto, utility man Mike McCoy pitched
the ninth inning.
McCoy, who had started at second base in place of Aaron Hill,
pitched a perfect inning.
Varitek ended a horrible afternoon for Blue Jays starter Brandon
Morrow (2-4) with a three-run home run in the top of the fifth that
made it 9-2.
Morrow gave up a career-worst nine earned runs, 10 hits and
three walks in just 4 1-3 innings, the 26-year-old’s shortest
outing of the season.
Blue Jays trainers checked on Morrow in the top of the second
after he was hit on the back of his right leg by a line drive off
the bat of ex-Blue Jay Marco Scutaro.
Reliever Jason Frasor took over with one out in the fifth but
fared little better.
He surrendered a hit and a walk before Ortiz hit his 16th homer
of the season that stretched Boston’s lead to 12-2.
Boston took a 4-0 lead in the top of the third as five straight
Red Sox reached with one out, batting around for the first time.
Back-to-back singles by Jacoby Ellsbury and Pedroia set up
Adrian Gonzalez, who roped a double to right that scored Ellsbury.
The hit gave the first baseman at least one RBI in eight
straight games, extending a new career high he set on Friday when
Boston won the series opener 5-1.
Morrow then loaded the bases by intentionally walking Ortiz _
after a first-inning single was 5 for 8 in his career against the
right-hander – to face Jed Lowrie, who had never faced Morrow
before popping up to end the first.
The move backfired. Morrow hit Lowrie with a pitch to force in a
run that made it 2-0.
Carl Crawford hit a sacrifice fly to left before Scutaro hit an
RBI single up the middle.
Pedroia had a one-out RBI double in the fourth and two-run
double in the eighth. Rajai Davis snapped an 0-for-23 slump with a
two-run double that cut Boston’s lead to 5-2 in the fourth.
Edwin Encarnacion’s second home run of the season, a two-run
shot off Lackey in the sixth, scored Toronto’s only other runs.
NOTES: Francona said that with a scheduled off day on Monday, he
rested Kevin Youkilis Saturday so the third baseman could have
extra rest. “He’s just a little beat up, day game after a night
game,” Francona said. Shortstop Yunel Escobar returned to
Toronto’s lineup after missing two games because of soreness in his
left quadriceps. Saturday’s announced crowd of 39,437 marked the
first time Toronto drew more than 30,000 since their season-opening
series against Minnesota. Ellsbury’s third-inning single extended
his hitting streak to nine games. … AL home run leader Jose
Bautista failed to homer for a 13th straight game, equaling his
longest drought since a 13-game run in June of 2010. Last year’s
major league-leader with 54 home runs has also gone 11 games
without an extra-base hit. McCoy became the fifth position player
in Blue Jays franchise history to pitch in a game, the first since
Frank Menechino on Aug. 28, 2004. Varitek, 39, enjoyed his first
four RBI game since last April 26 in a 13-12 win over the Blue Jays
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)