DETROIT (AP) — The Boston Red Sox have no idea how long Tim Wakefield will pitch. He might just go on forever.
“As long as Wake wants to keep working the way he does, I don’t see any reason for this to stop,” Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. “He’ll be done when he wants to be done, I guess.”
The 44-year-old held the Detroit Tigers to two runs on five hits in seven innings Friday, as the Red Sox picked up their 12th win in 14 games, winning 6-3.
“I’m just doing what I’ve always done — trying to help my team win games,” said Wakefield, who picked up his 195th career win. He’s been with the Red Sox since 1995, picking up a pair of World Series rings.
“In a way, you are amazed by him, but in another way, you just expect him to be here forever,” Dustin Pedroia said. Wakefield started his lengthy career in Pittsburgh, playing for current Tigers manager Jim Leyland in 1992 and 1993. “He’s everything that’s good about major-league baseball,” Leyland said.
The Red Sox, who have scored 34 runs in their last three games, got homers from Jacoby Ellsbury and Carl Crawford in a five-run third inning.
“I was fighting my mechanics for the first two innings, but that big third really helped,” Wakefield said. “When the guys give you that kind of cushion, it gives you some wiggle room to make those adjustments.”
Rick Porcello (4-3) gave up a season-high six runs in three innings in his first start since allowing one hit in eight innings
in a win over Pittsburgh. “In my last start, I had command of all my pitches,” Porcello said. “This time, I was fighting it. I was just trying to find a rhythm and a release point.”
Rookie Charlie Furbush kept the Tigers in the game with five shutout innings of relief. He has not allowed a run in 8 2-3
innings in his first two major-league appearances.
The Red Sox trailed 2-1 until taking the game over in the third. Ellsbury started the inning with a solo homer, his second in as many days. Pedroia walked, Adrian Gonzalez singled and Kevin Youkilis gave the Red Sox a 4-2 lead with a two-run double.
One batter later, Crawford hit his fourth homer to put Boston ahead by four runs. Crawford has nine hits in his last 12 at-bats, including two homers and seven RBIs.
The five-run inning was Boston’s third in the first two games of its four-game trip to Detroit.
“Obviously, we are swinging the bats really well right now,” Pedroia said. “We’re playing great baseball, but we know enough that we’re not going to get satisfied with ourselves.”
The Tigers added a ninth-inning run off Jonathan Papelbon. The teams traded first-inning runs, with Ellsbury scoring on a
wild pitch before Miguel Cabrera’s single drove in Austin Jackson. Detroit took a 2-1 lead on a massive second-inning homer by Jhonny Peralta. The ball, estimated to have traveled 430 feet, took one bounce in the right-centerfield stands and landed on the concourse between statues of Hank Greenberg and Charlie Gehringer.
NOTES: The Tigers traded 2B Scott Sizemore to Oakland before the game for LHP David Purcey. Sizemore was expected to replace Placido Polanco as Detroit’s everyday second baseman, but hit just .223 in his two major-league season. Purcey struggled early this year with Toronto, and was designated for assignment, but had a 2.13 ERA in nine games with the A’s. … The Tigers called up LHP Andy Oliver from Toledo to start Saturday’s game and optioned reliever Ryan Perry to the Mud Hens. … Leyland said after the game that Ryan Raburn will take over as Detroit’s everyday second baseman. … The
last few innings of the game were played in an increasing fog. … Boston has won nine of its last 12 games in Detroit.
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