February 19, 2018
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Pedroia powers Red Sox past Oakland

Bob DeChiara | USA Today Sports | BDN
Bob DeChiara | USA Today Sports | BDN
Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia (15) is congratulated by third base coach Brian Butterfield after hitting a grand slam during the sixth inning against the Oakland Athletics at Fenway Park in Boston Friday night.
By Wire Service Reports, Special to the BDN

BOSTON — Dustin Pedroia hit a grand slam and Clay Buchholz worked 6 1/3 strong innings as Boston took the series opener from visiting Oakland 7-1 Friday night.

A.J. Pierzynski drove in a run and scored twice on two hits while Jackie Bradley Jr. added an RBI double for the Red Sox, who bounced back after dropping both ends of a doubleheader to the Tampa Bay Rays on Thursday. Buchholz (2-2) allowed a run on three hits and three walks while striking out five to earn his second straight win.

John Jaso tripled and scored while Yoenis Cespedes doubled for the Athletics. Dan Straily (1-2) started for Oakland and allowed two runs on four hits and three walks while striking out three.

Grady Sizemore led off the second inning for the Red Sox with a double and came around to score when Pierzynski’s single glanced off third baseman Josh Donaldson’s glove and trickled into left field. Bradley’s two-out double to deep center plated Pierzynski to make it a 2-0 gap.

Jaso led off the next half-inning with a triple to deep center that just got past Bradley’s leap and came in on a two-out wild pitch to cut the deficit in half. Boston loaded the bases on two hits and a walk against Dan Otero in the sixth before Ryan Cook came on to face Pedroia and left an 0-2 breaking ball over the middle of the plate that was slugged over the wall in left.

GAME NOTEBOOK: Pedroia’s grand slam marked the 100th home run of his career. … Umpires briefly reviewed Pedroia’s home run to check for fan interference but upheld the call. … Former Boston players Coco Crisp, Jed Lowrie, Brandon Moss, Josh Reddick and Nick Punto combined to go 1-for-17.

Uehara surrenders winning run

Right-handed closer Koji Uehara, who gave up a walk-off homer to then-Tampa Bay C Jose Lobaton in last year’s AL Division Series, was taken deep for a winner by another Tampa Bay batter when shortstop Yunel Escobar beat him in the second game Thursday night. It was only the second run of the season allowed by Uehara, who gave up his fourth Fenway homer since joining the Red Sox. Tampa Bay recorded 2-1 and 6-5 wins.

Replay irks Pedroia

Second baseman Dustin Pedroia, after losing on the day the Red Sox gave away his bobblehead, thought he was safe at the plate in the seventh inning of Game 1, but the call was not overturned because the replay was inconclusive. “I don’t really know what the rules are,” he said. “I just know that if you plow the catcher, you’re ejected and out and then fined and then suspended, so … I think my job is to go as hard as I can to the back part of the plate and slide and I did that.”

He added: “I just don’t like the whole inconclusive deal. Replay, you should just check it out and you’re either out or safe. I don’t know what inconclusive means — maybe that means that someone doesn’t want to make a decision. … We all make decisions every day, some of them are hard, some of them are not. You gotta make them.”

Doubront struggles again

Left-handed pitcher Felix Doubront, working Thursday’s nightcap, gave up four runs, three earned, in six innings and left with the lead. After winning his first start of the season, he is 0-3 with two no-decisions in his past five outings. He gave up a season-low five hits Thursday.

Sizemore snaps skid

Outfielder Grady Sizemore snapped a 3-for-40 spell with an RBI single in the fifth inning of the nightcap Thursday. However, he was picked off first — an inning after being thrown out at second trying to advance on a pitch in the dirt.

Napoli extends streak

Mike Napoli reached base in both games to extend his streak of reaching to a career-high 24 consecutive games. He is batting .303 over that span and .297 for the season. However, he took a called third strike with the tying run on third and one out in the ninth inning of the nightcap.

Strong start for Victorino

Right fielder Shane Victorino, who led the Red Sox by getting hit with 18 pitches last season, received his first HBP of 2014 with the bases loaded in a five-run fifth inning in Game 2. He went 2-for-4 with two doubles. Five of his eight hits since his delayed start of the season have been doubles.


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