Derek Lowe has apparently found whatever it was he was missing during the first two months of the season.
Lowe will try for his fourth straight solid outing when the Red Sox continue a three-game series with the visiting Minnesota Twins.
Lowe, who won 37 games in his first two full seasons as a starter for Boston, got off to a 4-5 start with a 6.84 ERA in his first 10 outings. But the veteran right-hander has since turned things around, going 2-0 in his last three outings. He has yielded two runs in his last 19 innings.
Lowe has pitched seven scoreless innings in each of his last two starts, including Thursday’s 11-0 victory at Coors Field in Colorado. Lowe scattered four hits, allowed four walks and struck out three.
“You’re supposed to fail here, you’re supposed to give up a lot of runs, you’re supposed to give up hits,” Lowe said of Coors. “Maybe the weather helped. It was cold and rainy. I guess if you’re going to have any chance of pitching well, it was today.”
Lowe has won consecutive decisions for the first time since April 23 and 29, lowering his ERA to 5.25 in the process.
The Red Sox opened this series with a 9-2 victory on Tuesday. Nomar Garciaparra hit a grand slam for his first homer of the season, and David Ortiz and Manny Ramirez added solo homers. Ortiz also doubled in a run to give him an AL-leading 65 RBIs.
Garciaparra missed Boston’s first 57 games and was activated June 9 after recovering from tendinitis in his right Achilles’. He entered with a .265 batting average in nine games with one double, two triples and three RBIs. After going hitless in his first three at-bats, he connected for his fifth career grand slam.
Despite the win, the Red Sox remained 4 1/2 games behind the first-place New York Yankees in the AL East.
Matt LeCroy doubled home a run for the AL Central-leading Twins, losers of three of four.