Boston, MA (Sports Network) – Mike Lowell hit a two-run homer in his return from the disabled list and Josh Beckett turned in eight strong innings as Boston clipped Cleveland, 3-1, in the second of a four-game series from Fenway Park.
Beckett (3-1) gave up just one run on three hits, fanning eight without a walk for his second straight win.
“Beckett was very good — he threw his breaking ball very well tonight,” said Boston manager Terry Francona.
The 30-year-old, who missed more than two months from mid-May to late July, posted his first home victory of 2010 with the effort but was ejected late in the game for his role in a mutual bench-clearing event.
“I am feeling good,” said Beckett. “They coaching staff is allowing me to steadily build up my stamina.”
Bill Hall also homered for the Red Sox, who won their sixth game in eight thanks in part to Jonathan Papelbon’s 25th save with a scoreless ninth.
Lou Marson’s solo homer was the lone offense for the Indians, whose three-game win streak was halted.
David Huff (2-10) was tagged in the loss for seven hits and three runs over 5 1/3 frames.
The game was halted several minutes in the bottom of the eighth after Indians reliever Jensen Lewis threw a pitch behind Sox third baseman Adrian Beltre. It was the fourth time in the contest a player had been either hit or thrown behind — Beckett was responsible for plunking Shelly Duncan and Shin-Soo Choo earlier in the game.
Both benches cleared with Beckett jawing the most at the Indians. Though no serious contact was made between players. Lewis was ejected by home plate umpire Tim Welke, while Beckett and Cleveland third base coach Steve Smith were later given the heave by Welke.
“Players usually take care of themselves, and some of our players felt that our best player was hit on purpose and they were probably trying to protect him,” said Cleveland manager Manny Acta.
Joe Smith took over for Lewis and turned in a scoreless frame, then Papelbon entered in the ninth and retired the side in order.
In the home second, Beltre singled ahead of Lowell’s two-run shot over the Green Monster. It was the veteran’s first long ball since June 11 against Philadelphia, in his first game since June 22. He’d been sidelined since then with a strained right hip and was activated from the 15-day DL prior to the game.
Marson’s solo shot in the third halved the Tribe’s deficit, but Hall’s one-out shot in the fourth restored Boston’s two-run edge.
Boston has taken six of the last seven over Cleveland in Beantown…Before the contest, the Red Sox placed infielder Kevin Youkilis (torn thumb muscle) on the 15-day disabled list…Prior to the game, the Indians placed catcher Carlos Santana (left knee sprain) and outfielder Travis Hafner (right shoulder inflammation) on the 15-day disabled list and recalled Huff and Marson from Triple-A Columbus.