Lester pitches well in 16-6 drubbing of the Reds


Jon Lester‘s line wasn’t all that great, but he did pitch pretty well against the Cincinnati Reds yesterday. The Reds, known to be an aggressive and free-swinging team, got four hits and drew just one walk over four innings against him, scoring three runs. More importantly, Lester got up to 70 pitches and showed good stamina and execution of his pitches. Bryan Corey turned in more than an inning before getting into a bit of trouble, but was bailed out by David Aardsma. Aardsma gave up two runs in the following frame, and Javier Lopez surrendered one more. Craig Hansen went one perfect inning, striking out two, flashing the promise he has as a setup man.

The Sox pestered young phenom Homer Bailey in each inning, and the offense rallied in the 4th to score 7 runs on the strength of and a Jason Varitek home run. In all, the Sox garnered 9 extra base hits in this one, three of them homers. The Sox got three hits apiece from J.D. Drew and Joe Thurston, and youngster Reid Engel went 2-2. Julio Lugo returned to the lineup and went 2-3; more importantly, he was able to play the whole game without back pain, even on a diving defensive play on a grounder. His health is a welcome sign for us as Opening Day approaches.

Boston got a lot of good news yesterday; Daisuke Matsuzaka and his wife welcomed their second child, a boy, into the world, which makes him available for the trip to Japan. Needless to say, that increases the popularity value of the Sox in Tokyo about a thousand-fold. And Josh Beckett is scheduled to throw today for the first time since tweaking his back over a week ago.

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