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Josh Beckett bounces back as Red Sox crush Rays 12-2

Apr 13, 2012, 5:57 PM EDT

Josh Beckett AP

Josh Beckett struck out just one batter Friday, but he went eight innings and limited the Rays to one run as part of a 12-2 Red Sox victory in the home opener at Fenway Parl.

Beckett, at 94 pitches, appeared set to go for the complete game before the Red Sox scored eight times off Joel Peralta and Josh Lueke in a long bottom of the eighth inning. That caused manager Bobby Valentine to reverse course and bring in Mark Melancon for the ninth.

Beckett wasn’t blowing the Rays away today, but he got some swings and misses early on and he was able to make quick work of what has been a weak bottom half of the order for Tampa Bay. Apart from the red-hot Carlos Pena and Evan Longoria (currently hitting back-to-back in the second and third spots), no one in the Rays lineup entered the day with an average over .250.

Beckett faced questions about his thumb injury all week  after giving up five homers Saturday to the Tigers in his season debut. Those aren’t likely to go away with his velocity still down a bit. However, if he shows fastball command and his good curve (which has always tended to come and go), he can still be effective for the Red Sox while throwing 89-91 mph.

  1. nflfollower - Apr 13, 2012 at 6:03 PM

    One thing we know, baseball is a long season.

    • wendell7 - Apr 14, 2012 at 10:02 AM

      He said his thumb was fine.

  2. bigharold - Apr 13, 2012 at 6:09 PM

    Did that bring his era down to single digits?

    • aceshigh11 - Apr 13, 2012 at 6:17 PM

      Heh…he’s actually at 5.86…FOR NOW, anyway.

  3. aceshigh11 - Apr 13, 2012 at 6:10 PM

    This is JUST what the doctor ordered.

    A solid performance from one of our supposed “aces” and a burst of offense in front of the crowd for the home opener.

    It may be short-lived, but things are good for Red Sox fans for one day at least.

    • bloodysock - Apr 13, 2012 at 6:27 PM

      I think the doctor ordered an MRI on Ellbury’s shoulder.

      • aceshigh11 - Apr 13, 2012 at 11:31 PM

        Well-played, my good man.

  4. 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Apr 13, 2012 at 6:12 PM

    Beckett will be just fine. He’s not the only guy that Fielder and Cabrera are going to eat for breakfast this year. Today he commanded his stuff well all day velocity or not.

  5. jimranes - Apr 14, 2012 at 9:20 AM

    Home cooking for the Sox. The Red Sox showed some vestiges of a powerful lineup yesterday at the Fens.

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