Inquirer Daily News

Lester tries to pitch Red Sox to sweep of Blue Jays

(SportsNetwork.com) - Jon Lester tries to continue his domination of the Blue Jays when the Boston Red Sox go for a three-game sweep in Toronto Sunday afternoon.

Lester is 15-7 with a 3.55 ERA in 28 career starts against the Blue Jays. That includes a 4-0 mark in six starts last season. The lefty is coming off a loss to the Yankees on Tuesday when he allowed 11 hits and eight runs -- three earned -- over 4 2/3 innings in a 9-3 final.

R.A. Dickey counters on the hill for the Blue Jays, who will try to snap a four-game skid. The right-hander has gone 0-2 over his last three starts since beating the Yankees on April 5. On Tuesday, he allowed six hits and three runs over six-plus frames in a 9-3 win over the Orioles. Dickey did not get a decision.

In 11 games (5 starts) against Boston, Dickey is 2-3 with a 5.32 ERA.

Saturday, A.J. Pierzynski's grand slam fueled a six-run third inning, and the Red Sox survived a late charge to post a 7-6 victory.

Grady Sizemore drove in two runs and Will Middlebrooks added a solo homer for the Red Sox, who have won five of eight overall.

Clay Buchholz (1-2) permitted three runs on six hits with three strikeouts and as many walks over seven innings.

"We are hard workers and we are going to grind things out," said Middlebrooks. "It's not always going to go our way. A couple innings were rough, but we really have a good and resilient group here."

Jose Bautista finished 3-for-5 with a solo shot, two runs scored and two RBI for the Blue Jays, who have lost seven of 10. Dioner Navarro added three hits and drove in a run, Juan Francisco also homered, while Edwin Encarnacion added an RBI in defeat.

Brandon Morrow (1-2) didn't make it out of the third, charged with a bizarre line of no hits, four runs -- all earned -- and a career-high eight walks in 2 2/3 frames.

"It's embarrassing to not be able to command your fastball," said Morrow, whose ERA ballooned to 6.04. "That's the number one thing you have to do, is command the fastball, to be successful."

Boston went 11-8 against the Blue Jays last season.

04/27 07:59:05 ET