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Lester Strong As Red Sox Avoid Sweep By Toronto

This article is more than 10 years old.
Boston Red Sox's J.D. Drew, right, watches his two-run home run in front of Toronto Blue Jays' John Buck in the fifth inning of a baseball game on Sunday in Boston. (AP)
Boston Red Sox's J.D. Drew, right, watches his two-run home run in front of Toronto Blue Jays' John Buck in the fifth inning of a baseball game on Sunday in Boston. (AP)

The Blue Jays were mathematically eliminated from the playoff race with the loss.

Victor Martinez also homered for Boston.

Lester (18-8) won his fifth straight start and became the first Red Sox lefty to win 18 games since Bruce Hurst in 1988. Lester pitched out of bases-loaded jams in the third and fifth, allowing four hits and four walks in all.

He struck out only four, snapping a string of four straight games in which he'd fanned at least 10.

Shaun Marcum, who hadn't allowed more than three runs in an outing in six starts, lasted 5 1-3 innings for Toronto and gave up six runs on nine hits while striking out three. It was his worst start since he allowed eight runs, including a career-high four homers, to the Red Sox on Aug. 11.

Marcum (12-8) gave up Martinez's solo homer in the fourth, then got into real trouble in the fifth when Jed Lowrie and Bill Hall singled to start the inning and Daniel Nava followed with a ground-rule double over the short fence down the right-field line. Yamaico Navarro singled to left to score Hall, and Nava came in when left fielder Mike McCoy let the ball roll past him for an error.

One out later, Drew hit a two-run homer over the Red Sox bullpen to make it 6-0.

Jose Bautista went 0 for 4 and failed to homer for the first time in four games. He has a major league-leading 49 homers, the most in Toronto history.

This program aired on September 20, 2010. The audio for this program is not available.

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