June 14, 2003
Red Sox starter Derek Lowe went 7 1/3 innings and showed a pitcher
can be dominant despite having only one strikeout. The Sox'
much-maligned bullpen followed with hitless relief. The offense was
solid again with 12 hits, including four doubles and two triples.
there was the defense: Freddy Sanchez recorded 10 assists at third base, one shy
of the major league record for a nine-inning game, in only his second big
league start at the hot corner. Kevin Millar notched 20 put outs at first base,
two shy of the major league mark for a nine-inning game at first. It was a night
when no one in a Red Sox uniform was left to raise his hand and woefully utter
"My bad." Boston rallied from an early two-run deficit by scoring its first six
runs with two outs en route to an 8-4 triumph over the Houston Astros before
34,562 at Fenway Park.
was Lowe that he yielded just one outfield put out, a fly to center by the
game's first hitter, Craig Biggio. Twenty of Lowe's 22 outs came on the ground,
including eight straight. He threw 112 pitches, 78 for strikes, and improved to
4-0 at Fenway this season. Lowe's performance seemed unlikely when he gave up a
solo home run to Geoff Blum on just his third pitch. But the sinkerballer grew
stronger as the game wore on and held Houston at bay through seven innings,
except for Jeff Bagwell's solo home run off the Coke bottles in the third. It
was Bagwell's 12th home run of the season, and first since May 5 - a span of 140
led the Sox' four-run uprising in the fifth with a three-run double that scored
Jason Varitek, Nomar Garciaparra, and Manny Ramirez to give Boston a 5-2 lead it
would not relinquish. Trot Nixon's two-run triple an inning earlier had tied the
game at 2. Todd Walker had an RBI triple and Garciaparra a run-scoring single in
a two-run sixth. Johnny Damon had a team-high three hits as every starter
reached base except for Sanchez.
Even with an
8-4 advantage, Jason Shiell and Alan Embree pitched as if they were clinging to
a one-run lead. Shiell replaced Lowe after Lance Berkman's one-out RBI double in
the eighth, and got Richard Hidalgo to ground out and struck out Orlando Merced
looking. Embree entered in the ninth and after striking out Brad Ausmus and Adam
Everett he ended the game by getting Biggio to line to Sanchez.
starter Tim Redding (4-5) allowed six runs (just two earned) on eight hits in 4
2/3 innings, walking three and striking out one. Sanchez managed to wow the
crowd without getting a hit. The Fenway faithful were chanting his name because
of his play at third, arguably the highlight of an all-around team effort.
Ramirez has reached base safely in 13 straight games, with 20 hits and 12 walks
in that span. He has scored at least one run in eight of his last nine games.
Robinson's grandson, Jesse Robinson Simms, was at Fenway as part of a joint
venture between the Red Sox and the Jackie Robinson Foundation to celebrate its
30th anniversary. Founded by Robinson's widow, Rachel, the foundation provides
four-year college scholarships and leadership development to minority students.
In 1998, it launched a $12 million endowment campaign to anchor the foundation
financially and ensure the availability of scholarships for future generations.
To date it has raised more than $8 million.