BOSTON (AP) – Texas manager Ron Washington repeated a phrase a few times that summed up the day for his pitchers.
“One out, seven batters,” he said of a fourth inning in which the Rangers allowed eight runs en route to a 12-7 loss to the Boston Red Sox on Saturday.
“One out. Couldn’t get it,” he said. “Sometimes the outs are hard to get.”
The Rangers led 3-1 going into the fourth and starter Colby Lewis (11-10) thought he’d worked out of some early-inning control problems.
That was before he gave up Jarrod Saltalamacchia’s two-run homer that tied the game 3-all and started the downfall for Texas.
“I don’t know. What was your assessment of it?” a frustrated Lewis said of his outing. “I had Salty out on a 2-2 pitch and he didn’t call it. The next pitch he hits a homer.”
Two batters later, Lewis was done and reliever Yoshinori Tateyama entered. The right-hander allowed four runs and two hits, with a pair of intentional walks that set him up to face a pair of right-handed batters. He got one, but gave up a key two-out RBI single to pinch-hitter Mike Aviles that kept the inning going, setting the stage for Carl Crawford’s grand slam.
“I think I should get an out against a right-handed hitter,” Tateyama said through a translator. “I could not do that.”
That wasn’t it. Boston got three straight singles against reliever Merkin Valdez before Dustin Pedroia grounded out to end the big inning.
The Red Sox sent 13 batters to the plate and bounced back from a 10-0 loss to the Rangers the night before.
“That was our inning to hit and luckily nobody missed pitches,” said Josh Reddick, who had two of his career-high four hits in the fourth.
Erik Bedard (5-9) earned his first win since joining Boston in a trade with Seattle. The Red Sox averaged just 3.3 runs in his first three starts, but gave him plenty of support this time. By the time the fourth inning was over, Boston had a 9-3 cushion.
Bedard went six innings, allowing three runs and five hits. He walked four and struck out six.
“Bedard came out and gave us a strong start,” Reddick said. “He got roughed up a little bit early, but luckily this lineup doesn’t give up and came back there and pounded the ball.”
Pedroia barely missed a grand slam, hitting a shot high off the center-field wall with the bases loaded in the sixth. Boston tagged six Texas pitchers for 16 hits.
Adrian Beltre drove in two runs and Esteban German hit a solo homer, his first of the season, to open the ninth for Texas.
Lewis lasted only 3 1-3 innings, allowing four runs and seven hits. He was pulled shortly after Saltalamacchia’s homer to left tied it 3-all in the fourth, but Tateyama didn’t fare any better. He threw three straight balls to Adrian Gonzalez, the last of which got past catcher Yorvit Torrealba and allowed Pedroia to move to second. The Rangers intentionally walked Gonzalez with the next pitch.
Kevin Youkilis lined out to right, but Tatayama had more control problems and threw a wild pitch that allowed Pedroia to go to third. Texas went ahead and walked David Ortiz intentionally, loading the bases with two outs.
Aviles singled to right and Boston took a 4-3 lead. That left the bases loaded for Crawford, who drove a 1-0 pitch deep into the seats in right.
Reddick followed with his second single of the inning. Saltalamacchia singled and Jacoby Ellsbury drove in Reddick with an infield single for Boston’s eighth run of the fourth.
Bedard looked to be in trouble early when Elvis Andrus and Josh Hamilton hit back-to-back singles, putting runners at first and third with one out. Michael Young followed with a hard line drive, but it was right to Gonzalez at first. He made the catch and trotted to the bag to complete a double play.
Gonzalez had his second unassisted double play in the fourth when Texas tried a suicide squeeze. Craig Gentry popped up the bunt and Gonzalez caught it on the run, then just had to tag Torrealba at the plate.
Young and David Murphy had RBI singles for the Rangers. Beltre added a fielder’s choice that put Texas up 3-0 in the third.
Hamilton hit an RBI single in the eighth and Texas scored three times, cutting the margin to 12-6.
NOTES: RHP John Lackey pitches for Boston on Sunday in his first start since his three-game winning streak ended with a 5-2 loss to the Yankees on Tuesday. LHP Matt Harrison is scheduled to pitch for Texas, 10 days since his last start. He did pitch two innings of relief against Tampa Bay on Wednesday. … Hamilton struck out swinging and lost his grip on the bat, launching it several rows up into the seats. The fan who caught the bat appeared to be OK.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)