Carp’s pinch-hit single highlights Red Sox comeback win over Orioles
BOSTON — For whatever reason, the Red Sox offense just cannot seem to score any runs for John Lackey. Another chapter in that book was written Wednesday night, but this time it had a good ending, as the Red Sox rallied for a 4-3 win over the Orioles at Fenway Park.
With the game knotted at three in the bottom of the eighth with two outs, Jarrod Saltalamacchia nearly missed a home run with a wall-scraping double off the Monster in left. The Orioles then intentionally walked Stephen Drew, which set the stage for Mike Carp, pinch-hitting for Xander Bogaerts, blooping a single to shallow left, which proved to be the game-winning hit giving the Red Sox their 30th come-from-behind win of the year.
“A timely [hit], a bloop hit that finds grass over the outstretched arm of [Manny] Machado at third,” manager John Farrell said of Carp’s hit. “In that inning the at-bat by Salty was an outstanding one. We talked before the game about his ability to cover the plate and it was another big double at an important time. As we’ve seen [Carp] in a pinch-hit role, he stays prepared and fortunately we had a little luck on our side on that.”
Entering Wednesday, Lackey has received just 3.25 runs of support in his starts, which ranks 77th among 89 qualifiers in all of baseball. Once again the right-hander pitched well enough to win, but because of the Sox’ inability to score runs behind him he took a no-decision. Lackey went 7 1/3 innings allowing three runs on seven hits, while striking out four. He did allow two home runs, but luckily both were solo shots from Manny Machado and Chris Davis.
Craig Breslow (win) recorded the final two outs of the eighth inning before Koji Uehara came in for the ninth to earn his 14th save.
Trailing 3-1 entering the bottom of the seventh, Dustin Pedroia delivered with a clutch, two-RBI single scoring Stephen Drew and Jacoby Ellsbury to tie the game at three. Pedroia is now hitting .319 with runners in scoring position this season. Shane Victorino knocked in the first Sox run with a RBI single in the third.
The series will wrap-up tomorrow night (7:10, NESN) where Jon Lester will be opposed by Chris Tillman.
What they’ll be saying: The Red Sox once again showed their ability to never give up in games as they rallied from a 3-1 deficit in the seventh to eventually earn their 20th win in their last at-bat this season. Aside from Saltalamacchia and Carp’s hits in the eighth, what can be forgotten is Pedroia’s two-out hit which tied the game in the seventh … It was Lackey’s 17th quality start of the season, which leads the Red Sox, but he’s gone winless in nine of those games. He has now gone six or more innings in each of his last 14 starts, which is the longest single-season streak of his career. While it obviously has to be frustrating for Lackey not to get the run support and the wins, he has to take some stock in how well he is pitching and giving the team a chance to win every time he takes to the mound.