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June 23, 2007
Game Story: Hansack dominant in PawSox 4-1 victory
LOUISVILLE, Ky.-The Pawtucket Red Sox did not get an offensive
explosion Saturday night, but right-hander Devern Hansack's performance ensured
that they didn't need one.
Hansack (3-6) retired the first 21 batters he faced and took a
perfect game into the eighth inning to help Pawtucket to a 4-1 win over
Louisville in the second of a four-game series at Slugger Field.
Hansack lost the perfect game in the eighth, but threw eight commanding innings,
allowing three hits and one run while striking out seven. He left after the game
was delayed by rain in the top of the ninth.
"I felt good tonight and was able to throw all my pitches for
strikes," Hansack said. "The best part for me was not throwing many pitches.
They kept hitting the ball in the air and on the ground and my teammates played
"I really don't care if I get strikeouts when the other team is hitting the
first or second pitch right at one of my teammates."
The PawSox got nine hits, which was enough support for Hansack.
After being shut out 7-0 and limited to four hits in the series
opener Friday, it didn't take the PawSox long to put a run on the board. With
one out in the first, Joe McEwing homered to left off Elizardo Ramirez to give
Pawtucket a 1-0 lead.
The PawSox added another run in the second when the slumping Jeff Bailey singled
to left, stole second and later came home on a groundout by Bryan Pritz, who was
called up from Portland Friday.
Louisville left fielder Joey Votto prevented a Pawtucket run in the third. With
two out and McEwing on first base after reaching on a fielder's choice, Bobby
Scales lined a ball into the gap in left-center. Votto made a diving catch to
prevent the ball from going to the wall.
Hansack breezed through the Bats' lineup over the first seven innings, retiring
the first 21 batters. He got ahead in the count to every batter but three.
Anderson Machado was the only batter able to push Hansack to three-ball count.
Hansack went to 3-2 on Machado with one out in the seventh, but struck him out
with a fastball.
Through the first six innings, Hansack threw only 54 pitches, including six each
in the fourth and sixth. The only hard hit ball off Hansack until the eighth was
a liner by Aaron Herr in the second which McEwing caught at third base.
Leading off the eighth, Aaron Herr broke up both the perfect game and the
no-hitter with one swing. Behind in the count 1-2, Herr lashed a line drive over
the head of right fielder Brandon Moss for a double. A rattled Hansack then
balked Herr to third. Hansack struck out Mark Bellhorn, but Jesse Gutierrez
plated Herr with a groundout to third, ending the shutout and cutting the PawSox
lead to 2-1.
Mike Edwards and Chris Dickerson followed with singles, but Hansack struck out
Ryan Jorgenson to strand the tying and go-ahead runs. Rain arrived after the
final out of the eighth, triggering a 70-minute delay.
When the game resumed Travis Hughes relieved Hansack. Hughes allowed two
baserunners with one out but retired Herr and Bellhorn to notch the save.
Hansack threw 85 pitches, including 64 strikes.
Pawtucket batters didn't exactly tattoo Louisville Ramirez (0-1), reaching the
right-hander for only four hits in his 62/3 innings. Ramirez retired eight of
the final nine batters he faced and exited in the seventh in favor of Gary
Majewski, who was optioned to Louisville by the Reds earlier this month.
The rain apparently stirred Pawtucket's bats. After getting only two hits in
innings 5-8, the PawSox reached reliever Kirk Saarloos for three hits and two
runs in the ninth, both scoring on a single by Moss. Jeff Bailey and Michael
Tucker led Pawtucket with two hits each.
--JEFF ROBINSON (Special to the Journal)
Posted by Corey Bourassa at 10:06 PM to PawSox
Sox Streakers for June 23
-Coco Crisp, eight-game hitting streak, during which he is 15 for 27 (.556)
-Manny Ramirez, six-game hitting streak, during which he is 10 for 22 (.455)
-Kevin Youkilis, six-game hitting streak, during which he is 8 for 23 (.348)
-Dustin Pedroia, five-game hitting streak, during which he is 11 for 28 (.393)
-Julio Lugo, 0 for his last 20
Red Sox vs. Chris Young
-Manny Ramirez, 2 for 4 (.500), 1 HR
-David Ortiz, 1 for 3 (.333), 1 HR
-Coco Crisp, 1 for 3 (.333)
-J.D. Drew, 1 for 11 (.091)
-Julio Lugo, 0 for 2
-Doug Mirabelli, 0 for 3
-Eric Hinske, 0 for 5
-No other active Red Sox player has an at-bat against Young.
-For his career, Young is 1-1 with a 7.88 E.R.A. against Boston.
Padres vs. Tim Wakefield
-Marcus Giles, 2 for 3 (.667)
-Jose Cruz Jr., 9 for 46 (.196)
-Russell Branyan, 2 for 11 (.182)
-Geoff Blum, 2 for 12 (.167)
-Mike Cameron, 2 for 16 (.125)
-Michael Barrett, 1 for 10 (.100)
-Josh Bard, 0 for 2
-Hiram Bocachica, 0 for 3
-No other active Padres player has an at-bat against Wakefield.
-Wakefield is 1-0 with a 3.00 E.R.A. for his career against San Diego.
-All-time series: Boston 5, San Diego 2
-Over his last seven starts, Young is 2-1 with a 1.27 E.R.A.
-Wakefield's only career start against San Diego came with the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1993.
-San Diego has lost six of its last seven home games.
-The Red Sox have allowed one run in their last three games; San Diego has scored five runs in its last three games.
Posted by Mike McDermott at 8:56 PM to Projo Sox Streakers
Updated game story: Sox' Petco debut a success -- barely
BY SEAN McADAM
Journal Sports Writer
SAN DIEGO – This was the Master vs. the Student -- one starting pitcher looking for career win No. 340 and the other with a career victory total not yet in double figure.
But following a harrowing first inning, the rookie got the last laugh against the legend.
Daisuke Matsuzaka needed 35 more pitches than Greg Maddux to record the same number of outs – 18, over six innings – but earned the win the ageless Maddux couldn’t. Run-scoring singles from Kevin Youkilis and Jason Varitek produced the only two runs of support for Matsuzaka, and they were enough as the Sox won their third in a row and sixth in their last seven, 2-1 over the San Diego Padres Friday night.
Matsuzaka won his second straight decision and contributed his fourth straight quality start. The Sox have scored a meager four runs in his last four outings, but Matsuzaka has managed to win the two most recent.
Pitching in Petco Park for the first time since winning the championship game of the inaugural World Baseball Classic in March of 2006, Matsuzaka walked the first three hitters he faced, loading the bases with nobody out.
But after yielding a run-scoring single to Michael Barrett with one out, Matsuzaka dug in and limited the damage by striking out Khalil Greene and getting Russell Branyan on a flyout.
''I tried to get off to a gentle start,'' said Matsuzaka, ''and that clearly didn’t go so well. After getting into the jam, I told myself, 'Maybe one run would be permissible here,' and that’s how I approached that tight spot.''
''The game was almost decided in the first,'' said manager Terry Francona. ''He stopped them flat (after the three walks) and let us peck away. We scored two and made it hold up.''
Matsuzaka’s 32-pitch first, however, took its toll. By the time he struck out Marcus Giles with a 94 mph fastball to end the sixth, he had run his pitch count to 126, deemed sufficient by Francona.
'' 'Savvy’ would be a good word to describe him,'' said Francona of his starter. ''He may be new here, but he knows how to pitch.''
Javy Lopez and Manny Delcarmen combined to get through the seventh. Hideki Okajima tossed a perfect eighth with two strikeouts and Jonathan Papelbon earned his 17th save in 18 opportunities in the ninth, striking out the Padres’ best hitter, Adrian Gonzalez, with the potential tying run on base.
Maddux, meanwhile, displayed his typical pinpoint control, walking just one intentionally in six innings and needing just 91 pitches through that span. But in the fourth, the Sox began to get to him. After Dustin Pedroia led with a single to right and Maddux got David Ortiz on a twisting pop-up to left, three straight Red Sox hitters lined singles up the middle.
The last two, from Youkilis and Varitek, scored Pedroia and Manny Ramirez.
''Maddux has been doing this for a long time,'' said Francona in admiration. ''But we got some balls up and through the infield (in the fourth) and it was enough. If we pitch (well), we always have a chance to win.''
The Sox have done more than pitch well of late; they’ve dominated. They've only allowed one run in the last 28 innings, dating back to the eighth inning of Monday night's road-trip opener in Atlanta.
Playing in the best pitcher’s park in baseball, the Sox collected just one hit over the final three innings – an infield single from Coco Crisp -- against the typically stingy San Diego bullpen.
But Boston’s bullpen was equally effective. The key might have been the work of Delcarmen.
After Lopez got Jose Cruz Jr. to groundout to third to open the seventh, Gonzalaez followed with a single to left. Delcarmen came on to face the Padres’ fourth and fifth hitters, Mike Cameron and Barrett, with little margin for error.
He got Cameron on a popup to third and Barrett on a liner directly at Crisp in center.
''He threw the ball well, with velocity, and located,'' said Francona. ''And he did it with the game on the line. That’s got to be good for his confidence and ours, too (in him).''
The Sox improved to 11-5 in interleague play this season and improved to 24-13 on the road, the best away mark in the majors.
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