Looking beyond the box score as we wonder how last night – and this season – might be different if the Red Sox had gone the safer route and re-signed Cody Ross (who just went down for the year with a dislocated hip) rather than make a three-year commitment to Shane Victorino...
|Jacoby Ellsbury, CF||1-for-6, 2 R, RBI, K, 2 SB: Now up to 44 steals, he’s approaching the second-most of his career. For now, that’s 50, which came in 2008 – when he was caught 11 times. So far this season, he’s been nabbed only four times.|
|Shane Victorino, RF||1-for-5, 2 RBI: His 11th-inning, game-winning single gave him a hit in four straight games, and prolonged a hot streak that’s seen him hit .350 with a .942 OPS over his past 14 games – while dealing with an injury that’s prompted him to hit right-handed versus some righties.|
|Dustin Pedroia, 2B||2-for-6, RBI, 2B: The multi-hit game was just Pedroia’s third of the month, and fifth since the All-Star game. He had five in the 11 games that preceded the break.|
|David Ortiz, DH||2-for-3, 2 BB, K, 2B: The Red Sox went 3-for-14 with runners in scoring position, but don’t blame Big Papi: neither he nor Jarrod Saltalamacchia ever got an opportunity.|
|Daniel Nava, LF||1-for-2: Singled in one of his two trips before Jonny Gomes took over, the substitute walking and striking out in three plate appearances.|
|Mike Napoli, 1B||0-for-5, 3 K: The struggles continue for Napoli, who’s 0-for his last-12 and has struck out three times in three consecutive games.|
|Stephen Drew, SS||0-for-5, 2 K: Even after going hitless in five trips, he still has the third-best slugging percentage (.434) among Tuesday’s Sox starters, trailing only Ortiz (.584) and Saltalamacchia (.447).|
|Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C||1-for-4, R, BB, 2B, 2 K: The catcher hit the 30-double plateau for the first time in his career.|
|Will Middlebrooks, 3B||2-for-5, R, 2B, K: The third baseman knocked his 14th double of the year in extending his streak to four straight games with a hit since being brought back up to the majors.|
|Ryan Dempster, SP||7 IP, 4 H, ER, 2 BB, 4 K. The veteran righty was terrific, needing only 88 pitches to navigate seven strong innings in which he allowed only six baserunners. His ERA is now 4.50 – which represents the baseline ERA for a quality start.|
|Junichi Tazawa, RP||1.2 IP, 2 H, BB, K, HR: He wasn’t as sharp as he’s been lately, surrendering a gopher ball – and the lead – to the Blue Jays’ J.P. Arencibia.|
|Craig Breslow, RP||IP, 2 K: As Breslow continues to get the job done and solidify himself as a late-inning stalwart for the Sox, Ben Cherington’s under-the-radar move of Breslow for Matt Albers last July becomes all the more shrewd.|
|Koji Uehara, RP||1.1 IP, K: The closer got the win by retiring all four hitters he faced and dropping his ERA to 1.32.|
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