Texas (56-55) at Boston (64-47)

Mostly Cloudy Currently: Boston, MA
Temp: 88° F
  • Game info: 7:05 pm EDT Tue Aug 9, 2005
  • TV: FSSW, NESN
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Even though he wasn’t very sharp in his last outing, Matt Clement thrilled the Boston Red Sox.

Clement will make his second start since being hit in the head by a line drive last month when the Red Sox continue their series with the Texas Rangers.

Clement had to be carted off the field on July 26 after Carl Crawford’s liner through the box hit him on the right side of the head. The 30-year-old right-hander returned to the mound on Thursday and got the win in an 11-9 victory over Kansas City, but was largely ineffective, allowing six earned runs and five hits over five innings.

However, Jason Varitek was so impressed with Clement’s resilience he didn’t even want to talk about the grand slam he had hit during the game.

“Let’s talk about how much courage Matt had to go out there and take that ball,” Varitek said when asked about his big offensive day.

Clement, who had thrown just 38 pitches in the previous 13 days, said he felt rusty. He is tied with Tim Wakefield for the team lead with 11 wins.

“I didn’t know how I was going to react. I didn’t feel any lingering effects,” Clement said. “Regardless of the fact that I was able to get a win out of the situation, it’s just the fact that I was (able) to go through the five innings and get to the 100-pitch count.”

The Red Sox beat the Rangers 11-6 on Monday for their 10th win in 12 games. Tony Graffanino, in his 14th game since being obtained from Kansas City on July 19, had three hits, including a tiebreaking three-run homer in the fifth inning.

“This guy came in and has really helped solidify not just second base, but our ballclub,” manager Terry Francona said. “He gives us some aspects, like going first to third, taking an extra base.”

David Ortiz also homered, and Kevin Millar, Roberto Petagine and Alex Cora each added two hits for the Red Sox.

Hank Blalock went 3-for-4 with two RBIs for the Rangers, who lost for the fifth time in eight games. Texas has scored 614 runs, second in the majors behind Boston’s 620.

“Everybody kind of expects this series to be high-scoring,” Rangers shortstop Michael Young said. “It’s tough to play the Red Sox here because they score a ton of runs.”

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Starting Pitchers

J. Benoit SD vs. M. Clement Tor
4-4 Record 13-6
3.72 ERA 4.57
78 K 146
38 BB 68
1.23 WHIP 1.36