Lowrie seeks staying power

He works to keep hot streak going

Carl Crawford follows through on an RBI single off Gio Gonzalez in the second. Carl Crawford follows through on an RBI single off Gio Gonzalez in the second. (Ben Margot/ Associated Press)
By Peter Abraham
Globe Staff / April 21, 2011

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OAKLAND, Calif. — Jed Lowrie went to Stanford. He knows he’s not going to hit .462 for the season with a 1.232 OPS. He’s in the middle of a hot streak that has become impossible to explain.

“I understand what’s going on,’’ he said yesterday after going 2 for 4 with a home run and two more RBIs to help the Red Sox beat the Athletics, 5-3. “I’m not naive.’’

At the same time, Lowrie has to try to keep this going as long as he can. His pregame routine is now locked into place.

“I’m just continuing to put my head down and prepare,’’ he said. “The more you think about it, the more you’re just going to put pressure on every at-bat.

“I’m just going to prepare like I have every day and know the results that I’ve gotten thus far is because of that preparation.’’

Lowrie is 17 of 28 (.607) in the last eight games, with five extra-base hits and 11 RBIs. Going back to last season, 28 of Lowrie’s 67 hits have been for extra bases.

“He’s a huge threat,’’ said manager Terry Francona, who reconfigured his ever-changing lineup by using Lowrie at third base and shifting Kevin Youkilis to DH for a day.

Lowrie might have had more if not for the heroics of right fielder David DeJesus. He raced into the corner in the second inning and made a leaping grab to rob Lowrie of at least a double. Then in the eighth inning DeJesus made a sliding catch in foul territory before coming to rest against the wall.

DeJesus reached over the wall in the seventh inning but just missed snaring a home run off the bat off J.D. Drew.

“I don’t know what I did to make him mad,’’ said Lowrie. “He made two great plays on me and I thought he made one on J.D., too. You don’t see too many plays like that. He was all over the place.’’

Said DeJesus, “Afterwards, I felt bad for him. But that’s the way it goes.’’

Albers returning
The Sox plan to option righthander Alfredo Aceves back to Pawtucket today when righthander Matt Albers is activated off the disabled list. Aceves was told after yesterday’s game to return to Pawtucket. He pitched well in six relief appearances, allowing two runs on five hits over eight innings with two walks and five strikeouts. Albers appeared in two games before going on the disabled list with a strained lat muscle. He has made two rehab appearances for Pawtucket. “He’ll meet us tomorrow,’’ Francona said.

Second look
The actions of the umpires Tuesday night were a topic of conversation before yesterday’s game. Replays showed that Jacoby Ellsbury stole second as Mike Cameron struck out in the eighth inning. But Ellsbury was called out. The initial call was thought to be interference on Cameron for crossing in front of catcher Kurt Suzuki as he threw. But crew chief Tim Welke later told a reporter that no such call was made and that Ellsbury was simply thrown out. “You go back and watch it, there was no call at second,’’ Francona said. “I’m sure there was a little confusion on their end. They had time to get together and give you a good answer.’’ Francona’s issue was that second base umpire Andy Fletcher did not call Ellsbury out until after a long pause. “I know there was some confusion there,’’ said Francona. “I guess I wish that if you’re confused, own up to it. We all make mistakes. Nobody’s perfect.’’

Anniversary party
Yesterday was the 99th anniversary of the first game ever played at Fenway Park, a 7-6 victory against the Yankees in 11 innings. The Sox announced a series of activities in conjunction with the park turning 100 next year. A special logo was unveiled along with a web site, Fenway will be the first major league ballpark to reach 100 years. The team is encouraging fans to contribute to the website or submit ideas about what the celebration should entail. Fans also will be able to purchase bricks with personalized engravings to be placed inside Gates B and C. Old seats are also for sale.

Three on his watch
Ellsbury was 0 for 4 and struck out looking three times. The three strikeouts matched his career high, done once previously in 2008 . . . Sox starters have allowed four earned runs over 31 1/3 innings in the last five games . . . Carl Crawford has hit safely in three straight games, albeit only 3 for 12 . . . After sitting out four games, Marco Scutaro returned to shortstop and was 2 for 4.

Peter Abraham can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @peteabe.

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