The Red Sox wrapped up their homestand with an 8-5 win over the White Sox at Fenway Park yesterday afternoon. Tim Wakefield improved to 11-9 on the season, and Manny Ramirez and Mike Lowell each hit their 15th home run of the season.
Gordon Edes has a look at a day of “harmonic convergence on Yawkey Way.” Michael Silverman has the Red Sox wrapping up a 6-5 homestand, which he says was a “swirl of mixed messages.” David Heuschkel notes that this one came right down to the end, where a rusty Jonathan Papelbon had to reach deep to record his 22nd save. Paul Jarvey has the Red Sox surviving a rare late meltdown by their bullpen.
Dan Shaughnessy and Steve Buckley each have a look at Jon Lester finishing his long road back from cancer by getting the call to start for the Red Sox tonight in Cleveland, replacing Julian Tavarez in the rotation. Steve Krasner also has a look at Lester getting the call to rejoin the big club. Lenny Megliola says that Lester’s return is an inspiration. Ron Chimelis has more on the surprise announcement of Lester’s promotion. Alex Speier says that the return of Lester to the big leagues is a big deal. Jarvey has more on Lester, including Papelbon saying that it will be a surreal moment to see Lester back out on the mound. Brendan McGair says that Lester had an extra spring in his step Sunday afternoon after getting the news. Jon Couture has Lester coming a long way since his first “B” game appearance in spring training.
Sean McAdam has the offense stepping recently up for the Red Sox, especially Manny Ramirez, who hit .385 on the homestand with 4 homers and 13 RBI. Rich Thompson has more on the Red Sox offense getting back on track the last few games, and also looks at Mike Lowell ending a mini-slump with two hits, including a three run homer yesterday. Krasner also has a look at the performance of Hideki Okajima, who saved the day after Manny Delcarmen faltered a bit in the seventh. Nancy Marrapese-Burrell has Tim Wakefield being able to talk about the performance of another knuckleball pitcher in yesterday’s game. Buckley notes that this was a rare event, as each team used a knuckleballer, the first time that has happened in five years. Speier looks at the rookie treatment in baseball, from which Daisuke Matsuzaka and Hideki Okajima are not immune.
Silverman’s notebook has Joel Pineiro being designated for assignment following the game to make room for Lester, and Tavarez moving to the bullpen. Edes’ notebook has more on Lester’s promotion. The Projo notebook has more on Pineiro being designated to make room for Lester. Heuschkel’s notebook has Lester getting ready for “the most significant start of his young career.” Jarvey’s notebook has David Ortiz hoping to return to the lineup on Wednesday. Couture’s notebook has more on Ortiz.