The Red Sox beat the Royals, 1-0, on Wednesday afternoon in Boston, after beating them by the same score on Tuesday. It's just the fourth time in franchise history that the Red Sox won consecutive games by a 1-0 score and only the second time that they did it at home. On June 22, 1916, Babe Ruth pitched a three-hit shutout against the Yankees at Fenway Park . The next day, Ernie Shore blanked the A's at Fenway.
Jonathan Papelbon got the save in each of the last two Red Sox wins. Papelbon is the third pitcher (and first rookie) to record a save in consecutive 1-0 wins since saves became an official statistic in 1969. Dennis Eckersley did it for the Cardinals in April 1996 and Bryan Harvey did it for the Angels in 1991.
"Has that ever happened here?" asked Royals coach Buddy Bell,
well aware of Fenway Park's history of high-scoring,
no-lead-is-safe slugfests.Not for a long time.The last time the Red Sox won two straight 1-0 games at Fenway
was 1916, when the ballpark was only 4 years old and Boston was on
its way to its second World Series title in a row. Ruth beat the
New York Yankees on June 22 and Ernie Shore edged the Philadelphia
Athletics on June 23, according to the Elias Sports Bureau."Ninety years, huh?" said Beckett, who agreed to a $30
million, three-year contract extension that was announced after the
game. "Mark Redman pitched a great game. There's no way he
deserved to lose."A day after two Red Sox rookies combined to one-hit the Royals,
Beckett (12-5) struck out seven and walked none to join Toronto's
Roy Halladay as the AL's only 12-game winners. Beckett, who hit two
batters with pitches, retired his first six hitters before Angel
Berroa doubled to start the third and end the Royals' streak of 29
consecutive outs without a hit.After the game, Red Sox manager Terry Francona joked that
Beckett got the extension in the fifth inning. His deal includes a
club option for 2010 that could bring the total value to $40
million."It is something that has definitely been weighing on me this
week," Beckett said. "Nice to get it over with and move on."Jonathan Papelbon, who pitched the ninth on Tuesday night after
Jon Lester threw eight innings of one-hit ball, got three outs for
his 29th save. With a runner on second, Papelbon retired Berroa on
a shallow popup to end the four-hitter.Redman (6-5) allowed just one run and seven hits with nine
strikeouts in eight innings -- yet his six-game winning streak came
to an end. He threw 123 pitches for his first complete game since
May 2005, but Kansas City couldn't avoid a three-game sweep."It was wasted," said Bell, whose team has the worst record
(32-62) in baseball. "Three good pitching performances and we
wasted them."According to Elias, the last consecutive 1-0 games at Fenway
came in 1961, when Cleveland beat the Red Sox on May 17 and Boston
shut out Detroit a day later.Ramirez homered on the first pitch of the fourth inning to pass
Hall of Famer Bobby Doerr for sixth on the team's all-time list
with 224. Counting his time in Cleveland, Ramirez has 460 career
homers."I can't even say it was a mistake. It was a good pitch that he
hit," Redman said. "You can look at it as being frustrated, but
we're right in it."Ramirez also made a backhanded, tumbling catch on Paul Phillips'
sinking liner to end the fifth inning. The Royals also threatened
in the eighth, when David DeJesus doubled to left with one out and
was at third when Doug Mientkiewicz flied out.
It was the second time in Beckett's last 10 starts that he
didn't give up a homer. ... Royals CF Joey Gathright went 0-for-3
with three strikeouts and has two hits in his last 19 at-bats. ...
David Ortiz bunted safely against a shift in the first inning. It
was his second bunt single of the year; the other one came on April
23 at Toronto. ... Boston LHP David Wells, on the disabled list
since May 27 with a right knee bruise, threw 45 pitches in a
simulated game against Wily Mo Pena and Alex Cora. "I've got to
get my work in," Wells said. He's scheduled to pitch another
simulated game in Seattle this weekend.