BOSTON (AP) — Jarrod Saltalamacchia doubled off the left field wall in the eighth inning, scoring Carl Crawford from first and giving the Boston Red Sox their fifth straight win, 1-0 over the Detroit Tigers on a rainy Wednesday night.
Boston’s Clay Buchholz and Detroit’s Phil Coke each pitched seven shutout innings. Then Daniel Bard, who replaced Buchholz to start the eighth, threw one pitch before the game was delayed for 26 minutes by rain. When play resumed, Bard (1-3) retired the side in order.
Ryan Perry set down the first two Red Sox batters in the bottom of the eighth. But Tigers manager Jim Leyland brought in lefty Daniel Schlereth (0-1) to face lefty Crawford. The move backfired when Crawford walked on a full count. Leyland visited Schlereth on the mound but left him in and Saltalamacchia got his go-ahead hit.
Jonathan Papelbon got his eighth save in nine opportunities, striking out the last two batters after Victor Martinez opened the ninth with a double.
Detroit lost for just the second time in nine games in a game played in a steady drizzle that got much heavier in the top of the seventh. In spite of that, the starting pitchers were outstanding.
Buchholz, who won his previous three starts, struck out seven and allowed four hits and one walk. Coke, who was 0-3 in his previous five starts, had four strikeouts and gave up three hits and a walk.
Buchholz escaped a bases-loaded jam in the seventh, striking out Austin Jackson with his career-high 127th pitch on a full count. Jackson tried to hold up his swing and plate umpire Fieldin Culbreth checked with first base umpire Gary Cederstrom, who signaled that Jackson had swung.
The right-hander had retired the first batter of the inning then hit Jhonny Peralta with a pitch. Peralta went to second on a single by Alex Avila. Ryan Raburn struck out before Buchholz hit another batter, Brandon Inge, loading the bases. It was Buchholz’s first two hit batsmen of the season.
Then he fanned Jackson after several foul balls.
Through six innings, each team managed just three hits.
For Detroit, all three were doubles — by Miguel Cabrera in the fourth, Avila in the fifth and Jackson in the sixth. Jackson moved to third on a sacrifice, but Buchholz retired the next two batters.
Boston got a one-out single by Dustin Pedroia in the first and a leadoff single by Kevin Youkilis in the second, but both were out when the next batter hit into a double play. Jed Lowrie singled with two outs in the fifth and didn’t move up.
Notes: Boston RHP Daisuke Matsuzaka went on the 15-day disabled list with a sprained ligament in his pitching elbow that could sideline him for a month. The move came two days after another starter, John Lackey, went on the DL with a strained right elbow. … Tigers DH Martinez said the time he spent with Boston after being traded there in July 31, 2009 was “the best time of my career.” He said “we did everything we could do to come back” but signed a four-year, $50 million contract with Detroit last November. … Both teams had their previous games rained out on Tuesday. … The Tigers have at least one extra-base hit in all 42 games, the second longest streak in team history. The longest is 51 in 1919.