BoSox score in ninth to take opener from O's
Boston, MA (SportsNetwork.com) - Jonathan Herrera drove in the deciding run with a broken-bat pinch-hit single in the bottom of the ninth inning as the Boston Red Sox took game one of a doubleheader with the Baltimore Orioles by a 3-2 score.
Herrera's one-out hit off T.J. McFarland (1-2) brought home Jonny Gomes, who opened Boston's half of the ninth with an infield single and was pushed to second on David Ross' sacrifice bunt.
Stephen Drew had a solo homer earlier for Boston, which began its current 11- game homestand with three straight losses to the NL Central cellar-dwelling Chicago Cubs. Jon Lester turned in eight excellent innings in a no-decision, permitting just two unearned runs on five hits and fanning seven without a walk.
Koji Uehara (4-2) struck out two in a 1-2-3 top of the ninth to record the win.
Miguel Gonzalez matched Lester throughout the afternoon, yielding two runs -- one earned -- and striking out six over a season-best eight innings of work.
Gonzalez gave up both of his runs in the second inning and Lester was reached for two in the third -- each coming on a two-out error by Red Sox third baseman Xander Bogaerts. The two starters were stellar from that point on, though, as neither team mounted much of a scoring threat until Boston's final at-bat.
Gomes greeted McFarland by legging out a bouncer to short before Ross moved him into scoring range to bring up Herrera, who fought off an inside pitch for a jam-shot that fell over the head of O's second baseman Jonathan Schoop and enabled Gomes to slide home safely.
Lester put Boston in position to end its skid -- and halt Baltimore's four- game win streak -- by not allowing an extra-base hit in a mostly dominant performance.
He was let down twice by his defense in the third inning, as the Orioles' Delmon Young reached on a throwing error by Dustin Pedroia to open the frame prior to advancing a base on a Caleb Joseph single. Lester set down the next two hitters, but Bogaerts botched Steve Pearce's grounder as both Young and Joseph crossed the plate to pull Baltimore even at 2-2.
An Orioles' error an inning earlier helped stake the Red Sox to a two-run advantage, after Drew put Boston in front with his first homer since re- signing with the club in May.
Jackie Bradley Jr. laced a double two batters following Drew's shot, then later came around when Schoop threw wildly to first after fielding Brock Holt's two-out infield hit.
Gonzalez allowed just two more hits over the remainder of his stint, retiring 14-of-16 batters between the third and seventh innings.
Lester has pitched to an 0.96 ERA over his last five starts, allowing just four earned runs in 37 2/3 innings during that stretch ... Bogaerts finished 0-for-4 and is now hitless in 27 consecutive at-bats ... Joseph had two of Baltimore's five hits ... Twelve of the 14 home runs Gonzalez has allowed this season have been solo shots.
07/05 16:38:40 ET