Youkilis propels Sox past Blue Jays

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BOSTON (AP) – Matt Clement held Toronto to two hits over six innings and Kevin Youkilis had a two-run homer as the Boston Red Sox roughed up Josh Towers again and beat the Blue Jays 7-4 Thursday night.

Clement (3-2) did not allow a runner past first base until there were two outs in the sixth, when Lyle Overbay doubled to score Troy Glaus. That just spoiled Clement’s shutout bid; he allowed only one run with four walks while striking out three.

Keith Foulke worked a scoreless seventh before Rudy Seanez gave up Glaus’ two-run homer in the eighth. Julian Tavarez allowed a solo homer to Eric Hinske and a single to Aaron Hill in the ninth before being relieved by Jonathan Papelbon, who got two outs for his 11th save in 11 chances.

The rookie struck out Russ Adams, who hit a go-ahead double Wednesday night off Papelbon. With two on, the right-hander retired Vernon Wells on a comebacker to end it.

Towers (0-6) became the first six-game loser in the majors, allowing five runs in the first inning, settling down, then giving up Youkilis’ homer in the sixth. The Blue Jays are 5-3 against the Red Sox this season, and all the losses have come in Towers’ starts.

Boston had 12 hits – three by Youkilis but none by David Ortiz, hitless for the second consecutive game. Manny Ramirez was the only other batter in the Red Sox starting lineup without a hit.

Youkilis grounded out leading off the first, then six of the next seven batters reached base against Towers. The right-hander allowed just four singles over the next four innings before Mike Lowell, who had a two-run double in the first, doubled and scored on Youkilis’ second homer of the year.

Glaus’ ninth homer of the season made it 7-3.

Notes: Wells has reached base safely in all 27 Toronto games, tying Bret Boone (2003) and Victor Martinez (2006) for the longest streak to begin a season. … Adams, who snapped an 0-for-14 slump with his big hit Wednesday, was moved from the No. 8 spot to leadoff in the batting order. … Boston LHP David Wells threw 40 pitches off a mound and is scheduled to throw another 40-45 pitches on Sunday, 50-60 on Wednesday and pitch a simulated game next Saturday. If all goes well, he could appear in a minor league rehab stint May 18, manager Terry Francona said. … The Red Sox optioned 1B Hee-Seop Choi to Triple-A Pawtucket after activating him from the disabled list. … Commissioner Bud Selig was at the game and in town to honor the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, who got their logo on the Green Monster.

AP-ES-05-04-06 2212EDT

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