Red Sox 10, Diamondbacks 3
He wants to maintain bragging rights over his younger brother, Stephen, who plays shortstop for Arizona.
Extending his dominance of the Diamondbacks, Drew hit a pair of three-run homers and drove in a career-high seven runs as the Boston Red Sox routed Arizona 10-3 Friday night in the Red Sox’ first regular-season visit to Chase Field.
Drew picked up where he left off last season, when he battered the Diamondbacks as a member of the Los Angeles Dodgers. He batted .412 (28-for-68) with seven homers and 30 RBIs in 18 games against Arizona.
“I think there’s always going to be that sibling rivalry going on,” Drew said. “He does well, I want to do better. That’s maybe a little bit to do with it. But you’ve still got to get pitches and you’ve still got to put good swings on them, and it’s worked out well.”
Drew’s eruption provided plenty of support for Josh Beckett, who improved to 9-0. Beckett matched his season high by going eight innings, allowing two earned runs and five hits without a walk. He struck out eight, also matching a season high.
Unlike Drew, Beckett had struggled against the Diamondbacks. He went 0-3 with a 6.97 ERA in four starts against Arizona while with the Florida Marlins.
Beckett has tied the fifth-best start in franchise history, matching Sonny Siebert, who won his first nine decisions in 1971. The best start is Roger Clemens’ 14-0 in 1986.
“I’m on a great team,” Beckett said. “I can’t take all the credit for being 9-0. These guys have done an unbelievable job behind me.”
On Friday night, Drew did the most.
It took Drew six innings to double the number of home runs he hit in his first 50 games since signing a $70-million, five-year contract with the Red Sox last winter.
With two on and two out in the third, Drew hit Doug Davis’ (4-7) first pitch 416 feet into the left center field seats to give the Red Sox a 4-0 lead.
Drew hit another three-run shot in the sixth—this one to the right field seats against reliever Edgar Gonzalez.
“He’s a great hitter, and it was a big night for him,” Beckett said. “The other guys pitched in too. You can’t hit three-run homers if nobody’s on base.”
Drew also doubled home a run in the eighth off Gonzalez.
“It was fun to watch him swing the bat like that,” Boston manager Terry Francona said. “The team got directly rewarded. He was a lot of our offense tonight, and we need that long term.”
Red Sox Nation turned out for Boston’s first regular-season appearance in the desert. And their team gave them plenty to cheer about from the start.
Julio Lugo led off the first by driving a 3-2 pitch from Davis 408 feet into the left field bleachers, drawing a roar from the throngs of Red Sox fans who invaded Chase Field. It was Lugo’s second leadoff homer of the season and the ninth of his career.
Davis allowed five runs on six hits in four innings, his shortest start as a Diamondback. He walked five, matching a season high, and struck out two.
“Doug didn’t have his best stuff, his best command early,” Arizona manager Bob Melvin said. “With Beckett on the mound, you give him a lead like that, it’s not a real good recipe.”
Before the game, Melvin denied that the series with the Red Sox was a measuring stick for his young club. But the Diamondbacks didn’t look like they belonged on the same field Friday night.
“We didn’t come out to play today, and we have to come out and play better against a team like that,” first baseman Conor Jackson said. “We need to come out tomorrow and show we can play with a team like that.”
With their visit to Chase Field, the Red Sox have played in all but three current major league parks—Cincinnati’s Great American Ball Park, Houston’s Minute Maid Park and San Diego’s Petco Park. … Arizona 3B Alberto Callaspo fell victim to a hidden-ball trick in the third. After beating a throw to second base, Callaspo stood to dust himself off, pulling his left hand off the bag. Lugo, standing behind him with the ball in his glove, made the tag. “Lugo just kind of slipped behind him,” Beckett said. “I was actually back there trying to get him to throw me the ball. I’m glad he didn’t throw me the ball.” The last time the Red Sox pulled the trick was May 13, 1991, when Steve Lyons caught the White Sox’s Ozzie Guillen at second base. … Eric Byrnes’ RBI single in the third extended his hitting streak to 15 games.