That's number seven.
The last two games of this series turned into Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better. Every time the Red Sox scored, the Twins would turn around and do the same. Wednesday night, Boston scratched a run across in the top of the third. Minnesota came back with three in the bottom half.
Boston picked up another run in the sixth to cut the gap to one. Then the Twins did the same to extend their lead to two once again.
We didn't see Kevin Slowey at his best, but he's starting to look more and more like the toughest competitor in the rotation. He buckles down when things get tough (it's a cliche', I know), and he finds a way to make a good pitch when he needs to. In the first inning last night Slowey's pitch count ballooned, but he kept the Red Sox off the board. It paid off, and he battled through another five, finishing the night with 99 pitches.
Offensively, Denard Span was the player of the game. His perfect night also included a walk and a stolen base, and you can't ask for much more than that from your leadoff hitter. Span's OBP is now an uber-impressive .409; certainly a pace that's not likely to be maintained, but considering Denard's prospect status just a couple of years ago, I'd have never guessed it was possible. He's been a catalyst for this offense this season, and a great leadoff hitter.
Jose Mijares, Matt Guerrier and Joe Nathan combined to throw three scoreless innings and preserve the win. Mijares' walk of Kevin Youkilis in the eighth was the only blemish for the crew, who otherwise didn't allow a single base runner.
Nick Punto's 0-for-4 night means he's still hitting for a lower average (.187) than David Ortiz (.193). On the bright side, we're not paying LNP double-digit millions.
Stars of the Game
#3: Jason Kubel (2-for-3, 2B, BB, R, RBI, .170 WPA)
#2: Denard Span (4-for-4, 2 R, BB, SB, .177 WPA)
#1: Kevin Slowey (6 IP, 6 H, 5 K, 1 BB, 2 R, .123 WPA)