The Red Sox are after their fourth straight victory and a series win over the Tigers Tuesday night as they take on Justin Verlander.
We'll keep you up-to-date on all the action as it goes down in Fenway Park.
Red Sox 4, Tigers 1, End 5th -- For now, though, it seems as though the show will go on. Justin Verlander bounces back in the bottom of the fifth, striking out two Cody Ross and Jarrod Saltalamacchia in a 1-2-3 frame.
Red Sox 4, Tigers 1, Mid 5th -- We've got an official game now, as Clayton Mortensen retires the side with the help of a great throw from Kelly Shoppach and tag by Pedro Ciriaco helping to erase a leadoff single up the middle as Austin Jackson was caught attempting to steal second.
Red Sox 4, Tigers 1, End 4th -- And once again, Justin Verlander falls victim to the big inning on cue.
With the rain threatening an early end to this game, the Sox needed to score in a hurry, and score they did. Back-to-back line drives off the bats of Cody Ross and Jarrod Saltalamacchia got the Red Sox off to a great start before Will Middlebrooks struck out, seemingly looking to score three with one big swing. A full-count fastball to Kelly Shoppach didn't catch the zone, however, loading the bases, and up came Pedro Ciriaco. Just one game removed from two big game-winning (if defense-aided) hits against the Yankees, Ciriaco caught a 97 MPH fastball over the plate, and lined it into right field to tie the game and reload the bases.
The next two batters would not have to do nearly so well for their RBI. A five-pitch walk to Jacoby Ellsbury would put the Red Sox up 2-1, and while Carl Crawford barely managed to put the ball in play, his high chopper got over Justin Verlander's head, and Omar Infante could not make the run-saving play, letting Crawford reach and bringing two more runs in to score. Dustin Pedroia ended the inning with a double play, but the damage has been done.
Tigers 1, Red Sox 0, Mid 4th -- As the rain starts to come down even harder, the Sox survive some more spotty control, with Clayton Mortensen working around a pair of one-out walks to get to the bottom of the fourth. It's possible, with the weather being what it is, that the Sox will have just two innings left to score a run.
Tigers 1, Red Sox 0, End 3rd -- The long wait does not seem to have phased Justin Verlander in the least, with Carl Crawford's long fly ball to right being the only danger he faces in a 1-2-3 third.
Tigers 1, Red Sox 0, Mid 3rd -- From eight straight retired, to a complete disaster for Josh Beckett, who is out of the game with an apparent back injury.
The inning could have ended so easily, with a ground ball from Infante to Mike Aviles with two outs. Instead, however, the result was an infield single, and from there things just went further south. Beckett grazed Austin Jackson with an inside pitch to put two men on, then loaded the bases with a five-pitch walk to Quintin Berry. The exact same sequence to Miguel Cabrera--falling behind 3-0, throwing a strike, and then giving up ball four--brought a run in, and brought the trainers out, signaling the end of Beckett's night.
Clayton Mortensen was able to get out of the inning without any further damage, but now the Sox need to cobble together six more innings while trying to score something off of Justin Verlander.
Red Sox 0, Tigers 0, End 2nd -- Not only do the Red Sox waste a leadoff single from Will Middlebrooks, but they let Justin Verlander start to get his pitch count back down to acceptable levels. He needs just 13 pitches to get through the second, even with the leadoff single, leaving him with 48 on his arm through the second.
Red Sox 0, Tigers 0, Mid 2nd -- Prince Fielder follows the example set by Miguel Cabrera in the first, hitting a tall fly ball that gave Sox fans some serious concern before it landed in Cody Ross' glove in right. In fact, Beckett doesn't manage to avoid the bats very well at all, giving up three fly balls in the inning. All three go for outs, however, leaving the Red Sox starter with six up, six down to start his outing.
Red Sox 0, Tigers 0, End 1st -- They say you have to get to a guy like Justin Verlander early, or not at all. That may be true, and the Red Sox may have missed a big opportunity, but if so, they've also put themselves in a position to take a different path: get him out of the game early. Verlander needs a whopping 35 pitches to get through the first, giving up a single to Jacoby Ellsbury and walks to both Adrian Gonzalez and Cody Ross as the zone seemed to tighten up on him. Jarrod Saltalamacchia would strike out with the bases loaded, costing the Sox their opportunity to score, but they've at least put themselves in a good position for the rest of the game.
Red Sox 0, Tigers 0, Mid 1st -- If Josh Beckett was irked by all the trade talks, he's not showing it yet. In fact, he might even be feeling a little weight off after the deadline, as he gets through the first in 1-2-3 fashion, albeit relying on the wind knocking down a well-hit ball to dead center field off the bat of Miguel Cabrera. Given who the Sox are up against, the Sox are in need of a good start from Beckett now more than ever.