looked up at reporters after they walked away from
and wondered what the fuss was about.
''Did he pitch tonight?'' Varitek joked.
By the time this one ended, Lester's gem seemed like a different game.
hit a tiebreaking RBI single in the 13th inning and the
Boston Red Sox
5-2 Friday night in an interleague matchup between division leaders.
's solo homer off fill-in closer
with one in the ninth tied it, but the Phillies couldn't pull out their third straight comeback win in extra innings.
(2-0) got the only batter he faced,
, to bounce into a double play to end the 12th.
pitched a scoreless 13th for his first save. He hit two batters to bring the tying run to the plate before fanning
to end it.
Lester was long gone by then. He allowed one run and two hits, striking out 11 in seven innings. The left-hander retired 18
of the last 19 batters he faced.
''Lester was so good,''
started Boston's winning rally with consecutive one-out singles off
(0-1). After Kendrick walked Varitek to load the bases, Ellsbury lined a single to right.
followed with a sacrifice fly and
added an RBI single to make it 5-2.
unavailable after saving consecutive wins against the
New York Yankees
the last two nights, the
turned to Ramirez to protect a 2-1 lead. Ramirez struck out
before Howard connected, sending a long drive to the seats in right for his 19th homer.
nearly won it for the Phillies in the 11th, but his long drive to right hooked foul at the last second. Manager
came out to discuss it, but there was no replay.
''He said he stayed on it all the way and it was foul,'' Manuel said, referring to his conversation with first-base umpire
Kendrick was called up from Triple-A earlier in the day to replace reliever
, who went on the disabled list with a calf injury. Kendrick won 21 games as a starter over the last two years, but lost a
four-man competition for the No. 5 starter's job in spring training. He unraveled after pitching a perfect inning.
''The pitches were up in the zone,'' he said.
J.D. Drew and
homered off Phillies starter
, who gave up two runs and five hits in seven innings.
Lester seems to have completely regained his form from last year when he won 16 games, threw a no-hitter on May 19 against
Kansas City and was the club's most reliable postseason pitcher.
Lester allowed 11 runs in his first two starts and 13 in consecutive starts last month. Since then, he's given up one run
four times in five starts. In his last outing, Lester was perfect for 6 1-3 innings before finishing with a two-hit complete
game in an 8-1 win over Texas.
''Comfortable, confident,'' Lester said.
Drew and Youkilis hit opposite-field homers an inning apart to give the
a 2-1 lead. Drew was booed each time he came up because Philadelphia fans still can't forget that he refused to sign with
the Phillies after being selected with the second overall pick in the 1997 amateur draft.
drove in Philadelphia's first run on a groundout in the second. Lester was unhittable the rest of the way. He struck out the
side swinging in the fourth and fifth, and retired 14 in a row at one point.
Lester is the first
pitcher to record double-digit strikeouts in three straight starts since
did it in August 2004. He has 34 in that span.
DH David Ortiz made his first start at first base since the 2007 World Series. Ortiz, who came in hitting just .203, probably
won't be in the lineup against two left-handed starters the rest of the series. Youkilis moved to third and Lowell was on
the bench when the game started. ... In his fifth rehab start, Boston's
surrendered four runs and six hits over six innings for Triple-A Pawtucket. Smoltz is returning from shoulder surgery last
June. ... The Phillies struck out 20 times.