John Farrell spent the past two years managing the Toronto Blue Jays, a team some expected to win the American League Eastern Division in 2013. So perhaps it was only fitting that the Red Sox clinched the division title with a 6-3 win over the Jays at Fenway Park.
Jon Lester gutted his way through seven innings allowing one run on five hits and a pair of walks while striking out eight for his fifteenth win. He threw 82 of his season-high 123 pitches for strikes. The win was the 100th of his career.
Boston got out to a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning when Dustin Pedroia scored on a wild pitch by Toronto starter Esmil Rogers. They added a second run two innings later when Mike Carp was walked with the bases loaded.
The Blue Jays threatened in the top of the fourth inning when they loaded the bases with no one out, but Lester induced a 5-2-5-2 double play and ended the threat with a strikeout. Toronto finally pushed a run across in the fifth on an RBI single by Brett Lawrie.
The Red Sox extended the lead to 5-1 with three runs in the bottom of the seventh. David Ortiz drove one in with a single and Mike Carp singled home two more.
The Jays closed the gap a bit in the eighth with two runs over Junichi Tazawa who, in the words of NESN's Dennis Eckersley "didn't have it at all tonight" but Farrell stopped the bleeding by bringing in Koji Uehara for what amounted to an unusual five-out save.
Pedroia singled Will Middlebrooks home with the final Red Sox run in the bottom of the eighth to finish the scoring.
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