Buchholz, Napoli Power Sox Past Jays

Clay Buchholz pitched seven solid innings, Mike Napoli lit up the Rogers Centre, and the Red Sox (19-8) got back on track Wednesday with a 10-1 blow-out of the Toronto Blue Jays (10-18).  This one was never close, as the Boston bats stayed hot and crushed five home runs off Mike Buehrle and two Blue Jays relievers.

Clay

Stephen Drew started the barrage when he tagged a belt-high fastball into the second deck off of Buehrle.  The veteran lefty had been lucky to that point, when Mike Napoli and Daniel Nava began the inning with very deep fly-ball outs.  After a hit-by-pitch to Will Middlebrooks, Drew ended the good fortunes of Buehrle.

The two runs would have been enough for a dominant Buchholz, whose curveball was snapping off as good as it has all year.  Buchholz went seven shutout innings, allowing only two hits and three walks and struck out eight Jays.  He retired nine straight at one point, and only allowed one batter past first when Adam Lind walked with one out in the seventh and reached third  on a single by Melky Cabrera, who proceeded to run himself into an out trying to stretch it into a double.

The offense continued to make it an easy time for Clay, as Mike Napoli and Daniel Nava connected on back-to-back shots in the fourth, with Napoli’s moon shot traveling an estimated 472 feet before it found a landing spot.  In the Sox half of the seventh, this game was officially turned into a run away.  With two outs, Jonny Gomes drew a walk from Buehrle which would chase the lefty.  Esmil Rogers relieved, but provided little of it for Toronto.  After a Dustin Pedroia single, Jonny Gomes came home on a wild-pitch to make it 5-0.  With the count 2-0 to David Ortiz, John Gibbons decided to intentionally walk Ortiz and let his right-hander take his chances with Napoli.  Rogers set up Napoli with a 3-0 count, and Napoli did what Napoli has done all year – deposit a get-me-over fastball into the souvenir section.  His second homer travelled an estimated 467 feet (though Middlebrooks and Napoli later admitted believing the second had travelled farther.)

The Sox would add two more tallies on a Mike Carp home run and a Nava RBI single in the ninth inning to finish off the route.  It was Carp’s 2nd game in a row with a home run as he continues to be a pleasant surprise off the bench for Boston (12-25 with 9 extra base hits). 

Toronto added their lone run in the eighth when Alex WIlson relieved Buchholz, and Jays third baseman Brett Lawrie tripled in Maicer Izturis.  Clayton Mortensen pitched 1 1/3 scoreless innings to finish out the game. The Sox and Jays play the rubber match tonight as Ryan Dempster gets the ball looking for his 2nd win in a Red Sox uniform.

Inside the Numbers

 -The Red Sox have 16 of their 31 home runs this season at the Rogers Centre in only 5 games.  They have 15 combined in their other 22 games combined.

-David Ortiz went 1-3 with a double (10 XBH) to lower his average to a paltry .487

-Stephen Drew is 6 for his last 15 with a triple, home run, and 5 RBI, raising his average from .119 to .193.

-Clay Buchholz is the first pitcher to start 6-0 in his first six starts since Josh Beckett started 7-0 in 2007.  He has not allowed more than two runs in any start (1.01 ERA, best in MLB)

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