Red Sox win on road one day after tragedy

The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

CLEVELAND -- On the day after, the Boston Red Sox did their best, and their best was good enough for a 7-2 victory over the Cleveland Indians.
"Things seemed very insignificant. It was hard to focus on baseball," Red Sox catcher David Ross said of the team's first game following Monday's bombings at the Boston Marathon.
"Given the events and the tragedy of yesterday, it was nice to be able to send some good vibes back to Boston," Red Sox manager John Farrell said.
The Red Sox did so in somewhat unconventional fashion, winning a game despite striking out 16 times. Boston only had six hits but still won handily because five Cleveland pitchers combined to walk nine batters.
Five of those walks came in a seven-run Boston second inning, when Indians starter Ubaldo Jimenez (0-2) threw 44 pitches and only retired two batters. In one stretch that inning, Jimenez walked five of seven batters.
"I felt good, I just couldn't control the ball," Jimenez said.
Throw out the second inning, and Cleveland pitchers held Boston scoreless on three hits the rest of the game. However, the 7-0 hole was too deep for the Indians to overcome.
That seven-run rally seemingly came out of nowhere. In the first, Jimenez retired the side in order on three groundballs. In the second, he had trouble getting anyone out. He faced nine batters, and seven of them reached base and scored.
"The first inning, he was crisp and down with his pitches. The second inning, he just didn't throw strikes," Cleveland manager Terry Francona said. "Even when he was ahead in the count, he didn't throw strikes. It looked like he didn't want to give up any runs, and he wound up giving up a crooked number."
Mike Napoli went 2-for-2 with two doubles and three RBIs in the inning.
Jimenez, who led the American League with 17 losses last year, has a 21.00 ERA in his last two starts.
Boston starter Felix Doubront (1-0) held Cleveland to two runs in five innings, though he threw 104 pitches and retired the side in order in only once. He was able to keep the damage to a minimum, especially in the fifth inning. Cleveland sent seven batters to the plate in the fifth, as Doubront walked three and gave up two hits. Even so, the only run scored on a passed ball.
"It was a funny linescore," Francona said. "We got (Doubront) to 100 pitches in five innings but had nothing to show for it."
The only other run the Indians scored off Doubront came on Mike Aviles' second-inning sacrifice fly.
"We just couldn't get the big hit when we needed it," Francona said.
Napoli got Boston's two biggest hits. He led off the top of the second with a double, and in his second at-bat in the inning, he belted a three-run double.
Following Napoli's leadoff double, Jimenez walked three of the next four batters, forcing in Napoli with the first run of the game. A sacrifice fly by Pedro Ciriaco made it 2-0, and Jacoby Ellsbury followed with an RBI single to push the lead to 3-0.
Jimenez walked the next two batters, the second of those forcing in another run, and was removed from the game. Napoli then greeted reliever Cody Allen with his second double of the inning to make it 7-0.
Jimenez gave up seven runs, two hits and five walks in 1 2/3 innings.
The Indians' bullpen was sensational. Relievers Allen, Nick Hagadone, Rich Hill and Bryan Shaw combined to pitch 7 1/3 scoreless innings on four hits, striking out 15. Shaw struck out all four batters he faced.
"Our bullpen was unbelievable," Francona said. "Nothing happened because of it but they were phenomenal."
Red Sox relievers Clayton Mortensen and Alex Wilson were also very good, combining to pitch four scoreless innings on two hits.
The two teams combined for 25 strikeouts and 15 walks.
NOTES: Boston placed closer Joel Hanrahan on the disabled list with a strained hamstring. Andrew Bailey will be the closer while Hanrahan is out. ... The Red Sox recalled knuckleballer Steven Wright from Triple-A Pawtucket. Wright, who was 1-0 with a 2.70 ERA in two starts at Pawtucket, will be used as a starter with the Red Sox. ... Francona said outfielder Michael Bourn would be placed on the disabled list "in the next day or two." Bourn has five stitches in his right index finger after it was stepped on while sliding headfirst into first base in Sunday's game with the Chicago White Sox. ... Indians left-hander Scott Kazmir will be activated from the disabled list to start Saturday night at Houston. Kazmir, out since the start of the season because of a strained ribcage, made a sharp rehab start for Triple-A Columbus on Monday. He allowed just one unearned run on five hits in five innings.

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