BOSTON – Even on a night when the Red Sox get a decent effort – and a quality start – from their starting pitcher, the outcome has become all too familiar – a loss. The Sox fell to the Jays, 4-2, at Fenway Park Tuesday night, stretching their losing streak to five games against Toronto.
Righthander Rubby De La Rosa took the fall this time, going six innings, giving up three runs on nine hits, including a home run, and two walks with one strikeout. His record fell to 3-4, while his ERA rose from 3.54 to 3.64. De La Rosa threw 112 pitches, 66 for strikes. But the Jays swung and missed at just four pitches. He faced 28 batters, throwing first-pitch strikes to 13, 10 of which were called, with two put in play, and one fouled off. It was his first loss at Fenway, where he had been 3-0 with a 1.38 ERA.
Jays rookie righthander Marcus Stroman got the win, improving to 7-2 (3.03). He went seven innings, giving up one run on six hits and two walks with eight strikeouts.
Stroman, who kept the Sox scoreless on one hit over seven innings last week in Toronto, now has a three-start winning streak, including the last two against the Sox.
Colby Rasmus opened the scoring with a solo home run, his 14th of the season, to straightaway center field in the second inning off De La Rosa.
The Sox tied the game when second baseman Dustin Pedroias two-out double in the third off Stroman scored Brock Holt, who had singled.
But the Jays went ahead in the fourth when Anthony Gose’s two-out double scored Juan Francisco and Rasmus opened the inning with consecutive singles.
Edward Mujica and Andrew Miller each pitched a scoreless inning for the Sox, but Junichi Tazawa gave up a run in the ninth.
Xander Bogaerts led off the ninth with his eighth home run off Casey Janssen, but that was all the Sox would get as they fell to 1-7 over their past eight games.
MVP: Marcus Stroman
Stroman went seven innings, giving up one run on six hits and two walks with eight strikeouts, improving to 7-2 (3.03). He won his fourth straight decision and third straight start, including the last two against the Sox. In a seven-game stretch, he has posted an ERA of 1.75, allowing nine earned runs over 46 1/3 innings, while pitching at least seven innings, allowing one or no run in five outings. He has allowed just one run over his last three starts, spanning 21 innings, for a 0.43 ERA.
GOAT: Rubby De La Rosa
De La Rosa went six innings, giving up three runs on nine hits, including a home run, and two walks with one strikeout. Although he recorded his fifth quality start in nine outings, record fell to 3-4, while his ERA rose from 3.54 to 3.64.
Colby Rasmus’ solo home run in the second inning to straightaway center field opened the scoring, setting the tone for the game. He entered Tuesday’s game batting just .173, going 13-for-75, over his last 25 games. He went 2-for-4 Tuesday, with a solo home run, two runs scored, and an RBI, to give him a four-game hitting streak. He has recorded an extra-base hit and an RBI in each of his last three games. Of his 54 hits this season, 28 or 52 percent have been for extra bases.
QUOTE/TWEET OF THE GAME:
“It’s probably in everyone’s best interest that he does not make the start,” – manager John Farrell on Jon Lester being scratched from his Wednesday start.
NUMBERS TO KNOW:
The loss to the Blue Jays gives the Sox their eighth series loss at Fenway this season and 18th overall. They have lost seven of their last eight games following a five-game winning streak…After beating the Blue Jays 14-1 win in Toronto on July 21, the Sox have lost five straight to the Jays…The Sox are 0-5 against the Jays at Fenway this season. It is the first time the Sox have started a season with as many consecutive losses to the Jays at home since going 0-6 against Toronto at Fenway in 1989…In his last 12 games Xander Bogaerts is batting .295, going 13-for-44 with two home runs, a double, five RBI, and eight runs scored…Brock Holt went 2-for-5 with a double and a run scored. His third-inning single snapped an 0-for-15 slide… John Farrell used his 21st manager’s challenge of the season on Dustin Pedroia’s groundout in the eighth inning, but the out call stood. The Red Sox have had 11 calls overturned, 5 confirmed, and 5 stood as called.
WHAT IT MEANS:
The Sox season continues to look bleaker and bleaker. On Tuesday, every other team in the division won. While the Sox fell to 48-59, 11 games below .500, 12 games behind the division-leading Orioles, and five games behind the fourth-place Rays. At .449 only the Astros and Rangers have worse winning percentages in the American League.
The Sox and Jays wrap up their three-game series Wednesday at 7:10 p.m. at Fenway. Left-hander Jon Lester (10-7, 2.52) is scheduled to start, opposed by left-hander Mark Buehrle (10-7, 3.19).
But with Lester’s name attached to many trade rumors, his status is uncertain. Manager John Farrell said if Lester is still with the Red Sox on Wednesday, the left-hander will make his scheduled start against the Jays. If Lester is gone, right-hander Brandon Workman will be called up from Triple-A Pawtucket to make the start.
Workman has made 11 appearances, eight starts, for Boston this season, posting a record of 1-3 with a 4.13 ERA. He has made 10 appearances, all starts, for Pawtucket this season, posting a record of 6-1 with an ERA of 4.45.
Buehrle lasted just three innings, giving up six runs on nine hits and a walk, with two strikeouts and two home runs in his last outing, July 25 at Yankee Stadium. He took the loss, dropping his record to 10-7, with a 3.19 ERA. He has faced the Red Sox just once this season, going seven innings on May 22 at Fenway Park, giving up two runs on seven hits with no walks, five strikeouts, and a home run.