You probably didn’t hear it here first, but just in case you missed it:
The Red Sox 7-0 win against the Yankees Tuesday night was the sixth in a row for the Sox versus the Yankees this season. The clubs are now tied atop the AL East.
The two clubs have similar offensive numbers this far. The Yankees are out hitting the Sox .278 to .271, and have an edge in slugging .482 to .448. The teams are tied with a .356 on base percentage. The Yankees have a decided edge in home runs 92 to 66.
In the pitching category the Sox have a large edge in era 4.19 to 4.82, and they lead the league in K’s as well as save percentage.
Josh Beckett was dominant again tonight going six innings and 93 pitches allowing only one hit. He now has 7 wins and 7 consecutive quality starts.
Jason Bay was plunked in the ribs by Jose Veras in the sixth making the total hit by pitches against the Yankees this season at 9 versus just two for the Yankees. Delcarmen tried to drill Jeter but missed later in the game.
Bay is 11-21(.524) against the Yanks this season
Jacoby Ellsbury is day to day after straining his right shoulder when he slid awkwardly Sunday and then further aggravated when he made an outstanding catch in centerfield later in that same game. Tests revealed no structural damage, a break for Ellsbury and the Sox.
Is David Ortiz starting to look a lot more like the real Big Papi? He hit a long home run in the first inning and finished with just that one hit but has now hit in six straight and looks much more confident at the plate.
The Sox drafted Reymond Fuentes of Manati, P.R. with their first pick (28th) in the amatuer draft today.
Fuentes was born in Orlando and moved to Purto Rico at age nine. He is the nephew of Mets star centerfielder Carlos Beltran.
Fuentes is a projected leadoff hitter with bazing speed and power to boot. He could rise fast.
Francona and pitching coach John Farrell has done a good job in breaking in Daniel Bard. Coming into tonights game in which he pitched a scoreless 9th Bard had pitched 10 innings with a .90 era and 10 k's.
Broadcaster and Hall of Fame pitcher Dennis Eckersly thinks the current Sox bullpen is on of the best he has ever seen.
Speaking of getting his feet wet, Eckersly has proved very entertaining while sitting in for the recovering Jerry Remy. Remy is an icon in Boston and in the booth but if he did decide to step down (and hopefully it would have nothing to due with a health issue) Eckersly would seem the obvious choice to step in permanently.
It looks like Jed Lowrie is getting close to beginning a rehab assignment. Francona said he wanted to look at him a few more days in workouts and the if all continues to go well he will get minor league at bats.
What happens after that should be interesting as it has become very obvious that Francona is much more comfortable with Nick Green at short than Julio Lugo.
Tim Wakefield faces Chien-Ming Wang tomorrow night in an ESPN game. Wang has made a couple of good relief appearances and was not good in his only start since coming off the DL.
Dice-K Matsuzaka continues to be an enigma for the Sox. Although Dice K did not walk a batter in his last start he again did not get thriought he sixth inning while allowing 10 hits. It was only the sixth time in 74 starts as a red sox that he has not allowed a walk.
Meanwhile, John Smoltz has been extending himself longer and longer in each rehab start. Smoltz pitches again this Thursday for the Pawsox and then it should be up to Boston. The question is who gets demoted from the rotation?
Many in the media have made the assumption that Brad Penny could be moved to make room. Penny who signed a 1 year deal can not be traded until June 15th.