Despite a strong start from John Lackey, the Red Sox bats were shut down by Houston starter Brett Oberholzer as the Astros shutout the Red Sox 2-0 Monday night in Houston. It was the first of ten straight road games for the Red Sox.
Lackey pitched very well for the Sox going six-plus innings allowing two runs on eight hits, while striking out ten. The Astros scored their first run in the fifth on an RBI single from Robbie Grossman and then added another in the seventh as an inherited runner scored on a suicide squeeze. Junichi Tazawa and Craig Breslow each pitched a scoreless inning of relief.
Oberholzer went seven shutout innings allowing just four hits and then two Houston relievers combined for two innings of one-hit relief, led by Josh Fields who struck out all four hitters he faced. The Red Sox finished with just five hits, led by Dustin Pedroia who had two in the loss.
The teams will continue their series tomorrow night (8:10, NESN) where Steven Wright will make the first start of his major league career and go up against Jordan Lyles.
What they'll be saying: The Sox couldn't get anything going all night against the worst team in the league in the Astros. It spoiled another terrific start from Lackey as the right-hander continues to not get much run support. Going into tonight Lackey has gotten an average of 3.45 runs of support per start, which is 79th in all of baseball. Only 16 players, among qualifiers receive less support ... This was supposed to be a road trip where the Sox could win some games and look to increase their lead in the AL East. Obviously, one loss isn't going to ruin the whole trip, but they cannot afford a losing streak at this time of year, especially playing the Astros.