Tune in at 7:10 PM ET as the Blue Jays take on the Red Sox. Ian Hunter will be liveblogging for your enjoyment.
Good evening, folks! Welcome to tonight's Score liveblog of the Toronto Blue Jays at the Boston Red Sox. Here are your starting lineups for tonight at Fenway Park:
Toronto Blue Jays (37-35)
SP: Henderson Alvarez (3-6, 4.30 ERA)
Boston Red Sox (38-34)
SP: Felix Doubront (8-3, 4.31 ERA)
The big news from both the Blue Jays and Red Sox camp is there were quite a few changes to the roster at the conclusion of play yesterday. The Boston Red Sox traded Kevin Youkilis to the Chicago White Sox for Zach Stewart and Brent Lillibridge.
According to Bobby Valentine, the Kevin Youkilis trade was actually completed during the game yesterday, and Youkilis came off the field after his triple for a curtain call as a goodbye to the fans.
The Blue Jays also made some moves, sending David Cooper and Mike McCoy down to Triple A Las Vegas, and they activated Ben Francisco off the DL and re-instated Adam Lind onto the 40-man roster. Francisco is in the lineup DHing tonight, whereas Adam Lind is not.
Toronto sends Henderson Alvarez to the hill for the series opener at Fenway Park. Alvarez has had a rough go as of late, giving up 9 home runs and holding opponents to a .350 average in his last 7 starts. He's also seen his ERA climb almost a full run since the end of April - from 3.62 to 4.30.
Felix Doubront gets the ball tonight for the Red Sox. He's been the benefit of quite a bit of run support this season, as Doubront has had 8.51 runs in support per 9 innings, which leads the major leagues. Felix' last outing was a win against the Marlins, but he gave up 4 runs on 9 hits through 6 innings.
@zee The way he was performing in AAA, I guess they couldn't keep him down in Triple A any longer.
As noted, Adam Lind was called up by the Blue Jays yesterday but he sits tonight's game against a left-hander.
Brett Lawrie leads it off for the Blue Jays. First pitch to him is a ball low and away.
Brett Lawrie wastes no time in that at bat, swings at the second pitch and is rewarded for his efforts. It's a single into right field to start off the game.
Here's the hot-hitting Colby Rasmus. He has 2 doubles, 4 home runs and 11 RBI's over his last 7 games.
And the running game has been opened up early in the game. Brett Lawrie swipes second base easily on the second pitch to Rasmus.
Colby Rasmus pokes one to right field, it clears the short porch in right field near Pesky's Pole for a 2-run homer.
Just like that, the Blue Jays jump out 2-0 over the Red Sox.
Felix Doubront has yet to get a batter out, and the Jays best hitter is at the plate in Jose Bautista.
Bautista hits one sharply to Will Middlebrooks at third base, and it hops off the Sox third baseman. He tries to recover, but Bautista was already well down the line.
Middlebrooks charged with an error on the play, which gives the Blue Jays their third straight baserunner. Still nobody out.
The Blue Jays cleanup man Edwin Encarnacion at the plate, it's a 2-1 count on him after he fouls back the last pitch.
Felix Doubront continues to get hit hard - Encarnacion hits one on the screws to deep centre field, bounces off the left-centre wall. Jose Bautista scores all the way from third base, now 3-0 Blue Jays.
Edwin Encarnacion picks up a double there, and that was his 35th extra base hit of the season.
Felix Doubront still looking for his first out of the game. Kelly Johnson is a good strikeout candidate here, as he ranks 2nd in the AL in strikeouts.
@zee Not against the lefty, no way.
Doubront gets that crucial first out, as Kelly Johnson flies out to Daniel Nava in left field.
Make that another hit for Toronto, Yunel Escobar pokes one through the right side. Pedroia just barely misses that bouncing ball in between second and first.
Edwin Encarnacion had to hold by shortstop, so he only makes it up to third base. Now runners on the corners with Rajai Davis at the dish.
Rajai Davis grounds into a tailormade double play, and with his speed he's able to leg it out. The Sox only get the force at second, that allows Edwin to score. 4-0 Blue Jays.
We've seen this a few times in the past week or so, Rajai Davis gets caught in between the basepaths. He's thrown out trying to steal second base, picked off by Doubront.
@zechariagelkopf This is just my guess, but I think it's because the pitches break away from the hitter when it's lefty on lefty and righty on righty.
Davis' baserunning blunder there is a rally killer, who knows how much longer than inning could've gone. But it's never good to hand outs like that to the opposition.
Daniel Nava has really been hot this month, hitting .522 over the last 7 games with 6 RBI's (12 for 23).
Nava bounces one to Kelly Johnson at second for the first out.
Henderson Alvarez is no doubt a ground ball specialist, and we'll see a lot of them tonight. He has a 2.24 GB/FB ratio, which ranks 3rd in the American League.
Just like that Boston storms back, Dustin Pedroia hits one into the right field corner. Jose Bautista crashes into the wall, which leads to an extra base. Pedroia with a standup triple.
It's a shot for a shot! Davis Ortiz hits a 2-run home run to right field, that will cash a couple runs and the Red Sox cut the lead in half. 4-2.