64-41: Kazmir shuts down Sox, Devil Rays rally in the 7th for win


Tampa Bay beat Boston today, 5-2, and ended their losing streak on the strength of a great start by lefty Scott Kazmir, who is healthy again.

Kazmir pitched six scoreless innings, striking out eight and scattering six hits and a walk in his continued domination of the Red Sox. He needed 97 pitches to get that far, and the depleted Devil Ray bullpen managed to hold the Sox to two runs to seal the win.

Daisuke Matsuzaka (12-8) matched Kazmir for six innings, save for a minor hiccup in the 2nd, but ran into trouble in the seventh. A Dioner Navarro home run and a Josh Wilson single ended his evening, but Manny Delcarmen couldn’t put the skids on the Devil Ray rally, giving up two more longballs, and Tampa finished with five runs in the frame. That was enough to cost the game.

Manny Ramirez and Kevin Youkilis both homered back-to-back in the eighth to account for the only Red Sox runs, but there was no real rally to speak of.
Boston struggled again against a tough lefty starter, and this is one reason I think they really need to pick up a fourth outfielder who can mash against lefties, like Bobby Kielty or Kevin Mench. J.D. Drew was out of the lineup, and Wily Mo Pena did go 2-3, but we all know his defensive inadequacy.

The lead now stands at eight games.

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