David Ortiz Hits First Homer as Red Sox Crush Toronto
Toronto's Brett Cecil and first-year Red Sox Brad Penny were the starters of tonight's game.
Cecil came into the game 2-0 with an ERA of 1.80, one of the young pitchers stepping up for Toronto's injury-filled rotation. Penny entered the night with an ERA of 6.69, despite a winning 3-1 record.
The game was scoreless after two and a half innings, but Jason Varitek hit a solo home run to lead off the third inning and get the Sox on board 1-0 in what was a two-run inning for Boston.
Two innings later, Tek homered again to lead off the fifth inning. Both of his home runs were from the right side of the plate against the southpaw Cecil, though he usually bats left-handed as he is a switch hitter.
Following a Dustin Pedroia double, David Ortiz stepped up to bat later on in the fifth inning. To straightaway center field, Papi drove his first home run of the season, a two-run dinger that put Boston up 5-0.
It was the first time he had homered in the regular season since Sept. 22 of last year in Fenway against the Cleveland Indians.
The inning had not ended, however. A single by Kevin Youkilis and then back-to-back home runs by Jason Bay and Mike Lowell capped off a six-run fifth inning that gave the Red Sox an 8-0 lead in the ballgame, the largest lead of the night.
Despite the big loss, Toronto avoided a shutout. In the top half of the seventh inning, Rod Barajas drove in Lyle Overbay with an RBI single off of the Green Monster, and later scored when Marco Scutaro grounded into a double play to give the Jays their first two runs.
Their third run came in the eighth inning, when Overbay doubled off of Manny Delcarmen to drive in Vernon Wells.
Penny pitched 6.2 innings, allowing two earned runs on nine hits to pick up his ninth win of the season. Though Penny pitched a good game, offense was the bright spot for Boston, as the 8 runs were scored, and everyone in the lineup had a hit.
Center Fielder Jacoby Ellsbury singled to add to his hitting streak, having now hit in 15 consecutive games. Ellsbury also tied a Major League record in outs made, catching 12 fly balls in center.
David Ortiz added a double to his two-run home run, and finished the night two-for-five with two RBI and two strikeouts. Kevin Youkilis was activated just before the game from the 15-day DL.
Youk had three hits in his return to Boston, maintaining a batting average over .400. The red-hot Jason Bay was two-for-three with a two-run home run and two RBI as well as a walk, while veterans Mike Lowell and Jason Varitek combined for three home runs and four hits on the night.
Cecil was handed his first loss of the season, allowing all eight Red Sox runs on 11 hits in 4.2 innings pitched. His ERA rises from 1.80 to 4.38.
Alex Rios and Vernon Wells both had three-hit nights for Toronto. Lyle Overbay and Rod Barajas each had an RBI, with three hits and two runs scored between the two of them.
The Toronto offense put almost every ball into play, as the team drew only one walk and struck out twice. 12 of the 25 non-strikeout outs, of course, ended up in Jacoby Ellsbury's glove.
The Sox have now taken the first two games of the opening series as well as season series with Toronto.
They are undefeated thus far against everyone in their division, save Tampa Bay. Boston will go for a sweep Thursday night when Jon Lester faces Robert Ray in the third game of this series.
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