Former Sox shortstop gives Detroit their first win of the season; hands old team their fifth loss


Former Sox shortstop gives Detroit their first win of the season; hands old team their fifth loss

(April 9, 2008) – The Tiger bats finally woke up eight games into the season as starter Jeremy Bonderman gets his first win of the season (1-1) in Detroit’s 7-2 victory. Bonderman pitched five complete innings giving up two runs on fives hits while striking out two and walking four Sox batters. The Tigers were led by former Boston shortstop Edgar Renteria who was 3-for-4 on the day with two doubles and two RBIs.

The Red Sox got to Bonderman in the second inning pushing two runs across the plate. After Mike Lowell was removed from the game in before the half inning began, pinch hitter Sean Casey led off the inning with a base hit to right field. He would later come around to score when Bonderman walked center fielder, Jacoby Ellsbury with the bases loaded. Shortstop Julio Lugo would, then, drive in right fielder J.D. Drew with a single of his own to right field for the second run of the inning and the game.

Sox lefty Jon Lester ran into some trouble in the top of the fourth inning. After getting right fielder, Magglio Ordonez to ground out to shortstop, Lester allowed back-to-back walks to third baseman Miguel Cabrera and first baseman Carlos Guillen. Renteria would make Lester pay with a two-run double to left evening the score. This is a memo to all Little League pitchers out there: WALKS WILL KILL YAH! A batter later, left fielder Marcus Thames worked Lester by making him throw nine-plus pitches before taking him deep to left for Thames first homerun of the season, thus putting the Tigers up 4-2.

A double by Renteria in the top of the sixth inning would seal the deal for Lester. Before being relieved by the right-handed David Aardsma, Lester pitched 5.1 innings allowing four Tigers to cross the plate on five hits while walking four batters. He would record zero strike outs. Aardsma would not let the inherited runner score by getting Thames to fly out to center and striking out center fielder Brandon Inge. Although Aardsma got out of the inning, Sox relievers had to exert a lot of energy into putting away Detroit batters and it did not help the struggling bullpen. In 23.1 innings the Red Sox bullpen has given up 18 runs nearly a run an inning not too pretty for what was deemed the strength of last year’s team. But it is only April they will come around and start pitching effectively.

The Sox gave the impression they were getting something started it was quelled by Tiger pitching. In the bottom half of the sixth, Bonderman gave up single to right to Manny Ramirez and was relieved by the left-hander Bobby Seay. Like his counterpart in the previous half inning, Seay stranded Ramirez at first by getting Casey and catcher Jason Varitek to fly out to center field and striking out Drew to keep the Detroit lead at two.

Tim Wakefield will try to take the series in tomorrow night’s rubber game against Detroit lefty Nate Robertson. Center fielder Coco Crisp will most likely get the start in center field against the left-hander. Wakefield is seeking his first win of the season, he pitched six innings allowing three earned runs on six hits and striking out four Blue Jays earning a no-decision in the Sox’s 6-3 loss. Like Wakefield, Robertson is also looking for his first victory of 2008 and coming off a no-decision to the Chicago White Sox. In the Tigers 8-5 loss to the ChiSox, Robertson went five innings allowing five earned runs on seven hits while striking out five Sox. The Sox of the red variety will attempt to push the Tigers to 1-8 on the season.

WIN: Jeremy Bonderman (1-1)

LOSS: Jon Lester (1-2)


Game Notes:

Lowell was taken out of the game in the bottom of the second inning with strained left thumb; he is day-to-day. He was injured after making a diving play on a ground ball hit by Detroit lead off hitter Ivan Rodriguez in the first inning. Casey went to first while Kevin Youkilis moved across the diamond to third to begin the top of the third.

Casey was a triple and homerun away from hitting for the natural cycle. The last Red Sox player to hit for the cycle was former-shortstop John Valentin 12 years ago on June 6, 1996 against the Chicago White Sox at Fenway Park.

Marcus Thames’s fourth inning homerun was the first homerun hit in the Fenway Park in 2008.

In the bottom of the fourth inning the Tigers nearly completed a triple play when Lugo hit a ground ball to Cabrera who then stepped on third to force out Jason Varitek, then threw to second to get Ellsbury before attempting to get Lugo at first. The last time the Red Sox hit into a triple play was against the Texas Rangers on August 6, 2001. In the fourth inning, Scott Hatteberg lined out to shortstop, Alex Rodriguez, who then stepped on second to force out first baseman Brian Daubach and then threw to first to force out third baseman Chris Stynes. The last time the Tigers turned a triple play was five days before the Red Sox last hit into one (August 1, 2001).

Julio Lugo was a busy man at shortstop tonight recording seven assists in the field.

The 3 Stars of the Game:

Edgar Renteria, DETROIT 3-4 2 Doubles, 2 RBIs

Marcus Thames, DETROIT 1-3 Homerun, 2 RBIs

Sean Casey, BOSTON 2-3 Single, Double, Run-scored

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