Final in 12

Series: Game 1 of 3

Boston leads 1-0 (as of 7/8)

Game 1: Tuesday, July 8
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in 12
Toronto1
Game 2: Wednesday, July 9
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Toronto7
Game 3: Thursday, July 10
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Toronto1

Red Sox 2

(51-37, 23-25 away)

Blue Jays 1

(48-42, 22-20 home)

    7:05 PM ET, July 8, 2003

    Rogers Centre, Toronto, Ontario 

    23456789101112 R H E
    BOS 00001000001 2 9 0
    TOR 00000000000 1 8 0

    W: T. Jones (2-4)

    L: J. Tam (0-3)

    S: B. Kim (2)

    Little's move pays off for Damon, Sox

    TORONTO (AP) -- Boston's new-look bullpen did the job Tuesday night.

    Four relievers combined for five scoreless innings, and Jason Varitek hit a go-ahead single in the 12th inning as the Red Sox beat the Toronto Blue Jays 2-1.

    Newly acquired Todd Jones (1-0) pitched two hitless innings, and new closer Byung-Hyun Kim got three straight outs for his second save in two chances.

    "Maybe the bullpen that everybody made fun of can help the team out the last few months of the season," Jones said.

    Jones, a former All-Star, signed with Boston on July 2 after being released by Colorado the week before. He was 1-4 with an 8.24 ERA in 33 appearances with the Rockies.

    "I was in Denver pitching in the fourth inning," Jones said. "Any way you can wipe away what I did for the first two-and-a-half months of the season, and have a chance to be in a clubhouse where the guys remember when you were good, is great."

    Boston starter Tim Wakefield allowed one run on six hits in seven innings, striking out seven and walking none. Mike Timlin and Alan Embree each pitched a scoreless inning before Jones entered.

    "The pitching was outstanding throughout the game. Wakefield gave us everything he had out there for seven innings, and then the bullpen came in there and pieced together a good outing," Boston manager Grady Little said. "We're awfully proud to see that. We've had some tough games in the recent past."

    In the 12th, Johnny Damon led off with a double off Jeff Tam (0-3), and Varitek, who had entered as a pinch-hitter in the 10th, singled to center.

    Little removed the struggling Damon from the leadoff spot before the game. Damon, who batted eighth, went 3-for-4 with a walk. He entered the game in a 4-for-37 slump that dropped his average to .249.

    "I relaxed a little bit," Damon said. "I wasn't putting too much pressure on myself. I knew my swing was almost there."

    Toronto, which has lost eight of 10, escaped a bases-loaded jam in the 11th when Damian Jackson flied out for the third out.

    Damon appeared to hit a go-ahead double in the 10th, but a fan in right field grabbed the ball when it was in fair territory, keeping Bill Mueller from scoring from first.

    Boston, which leads the majors in batting average, runs, hits, and on-base percentage, managed just one run off Roy Halladay, who has won 12 straight decisions since April 15. He allowed just four hits in nine innings.

    "I was happy with my start," Halladay said. "It was nice to go out and pitch against a team we are competing against for a playoff spot."

    Toronto's Shannon Stewart singled in the first, advanced to second on a grounder and scored on Carlos Delgado's single. Delgado leads the majors with 93 RBI.

    Doug Mirabelli tied it in the sixth with a homer into SkyDome's third deck in left field.

    Game notes


    Little said he would use Trot Nixon and Bill Mueller in the leadoff spot instead of Damon. He didn't say how long it would last. ... Blue Jays manager Carlos Tosca doesn't want Halladay to pitch in the All-Star game. Halladay will be working on three days' rest Saturday against the New York Yankees. ... Halladay is 12-0 in his last 16 starts.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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