Matt Garza was perfect for 6 innings and allowed one hit in 7 2/3 innings and the Tampa Bay Rays offense backed him up in a 13-0 win over the Boston Red Sox in front of 20,341 at Tropicana Field.
The Red Sox fall to 14-8 on the season but stay in a virtual tie for first since the Blue Jays lost tonight as well. The Rays improve their record to 9-14.
Things were so bad for the Red Sox tonight that Jonathan Van Every had to come in from right field to pitch and bail out Javier Lopez, who went to right field, in the bottom of the 8th inning.
Josh Beckett started for the Red Sox tonight and looked strong through the first two innings as he allowed just a single to Pat Burrell and had 4 strikeouts. Then it went south for him. He went 4 2/3 innings, allowing 7 runs on 10 hits and 3 walks and finished with 8 strikeouts.
Hunter Jones allowed a run on 2 hits with 2 strikeouts in 1 1/3 innings while Takashi Saito allowed a hit and had a strikeout in a inning of work. Lopez could find himself out of a job after tonight’s performance that saw him allow 5 runs on 4 hits and a walk. Van Every finished the final 2/3 of an inning by allowing a hit and a strikeout. Van Every’s fastball registered 76-79 MPH on the gun.
The lone hit for the Red Sox tonight came from Jacoby Ellsbury who led off the 7th with an infield single.
I’m not sure if Beckett felt comfortable with George Kottaras behind the plate tonight but it sure did seem that way in the first two innings. The first two hits he gave up in the 3rd inning weren’t exactly hard hit balls. But after that inning, Beckett was never the same.
Tonight he resembled 2006 Beckett. We need him to be 2007 Beckett or it could turn into a long season.
Justin Masterson will look to turn things around for the Red Sox tomorrow night at the Trop. He’ll be opposed by Andy Sonnanstine.