Another John Lackey start, another disappointing outing.
He had absolutely nothing. The Red Sox scored one in the first, but Lackey gave that back and more. Toronto put three on the board and had the bases loaded, but Lackey got out of it with no further damage.
The Red Sox got three in the second and one in the third for a 5-3 lead. But the Jays tied it back up in the fifth on Alex Gonzalez' 17th home run of the season (that's not a misprint), and took the lead in the fifth for good on Fred Lewis' check swing double down the line that drove in two. Toronto won, 9-5.
Lackey is now 9-5, but has an ERA of 4.78. He walked six and struck out two while giving up seven runs on eight hits. The Red Sox just aren't getting their money's worth with this guy.
Four Red Sox players were hit by pitches, and Terry Francona and Mike Cameron got tossed in the seventh after questioning a strike three call by home plate ump Jeff Kellogg. But the replay seemed to back up Kellogg.
The finale of the first half will see Daisuke Matsuzaka take the mound against Jesse Litsch. New York blew one last night courtesy of former future Hall of Famer Joba Chamberlain allowing a grand slam in the 8th. The Red Sox remain five back.
BTW, Kevin Youkilis was passed over again for the All-Star Game, as Paul Konerko was picked to replace Justin Morneau at first base for the AL. That's fine. Youk can stay home for three days and rest his ankle. The Sox are well-represented at the All-Star Game anyway.