Boston needed this win to stay in front of the AL East and slow down the surging Rays. Jon Lester needed it too, to save his season and show his fans and himself that he is a top tier pitcher in the majors. Both Boston and Lester got what they hoped for Tuesday afternoon, as Boston pulled away late and Lester pitched a gem to keep Boston 1 1/2 games in front of Tampa Bay in the standings. Lester's 6+ innings of two run baseball set the tone for the Red Sox offense, as they held a small lead until the eighth inning. Boston's bullpen of Matt Thornton, Junichi Tazawa and Koji Uehara did not give up a hit in relief and preserved the win for Lester. Here are the four at bats that changed the game:
1) One Mistake Lester pitched a 1-2-3 first inning and was feeling good, but on his first pitch in the second inning to Wil Myers, he threw a sinker ball that didn't drop and Myers crushed it over the Green Monster for a 1-0 Rays lead.
Koji Uehara threw an eleven pitch ninth inning and struck out two to end the game quickly for the Sox. Wednesday night, Boston faces the Rays and Ace David Price. The Red Sox will counter with their own lefty, Felix Doubront. First pitch is at 7:10pm.