Starting pitcher Jon Lester got off to a strong start for the Red Sox, allowing just five hits through six innings while blanking the opposing Cubs. But in the bottom of the seventh inning, Lester gave up a double to first baseman Jeff Baker and walked catcher Welington Castillo, setting up a homer by third baseman Luis Valbuena. The three-run bomb narrowed Boston’s lead to 4-3 entering the eighth inning.
Neither team gave up a hit in the eighth, and Boston closer Alfredo Aceves picked up his 16th save of the season after Welington Castillo hit into a double play.
Boston’s offense came courtesy of catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia, who gave the Red Sox a 2-0 advantage in the fourth inning with a homer that scored designated hitter David Ortiz. Third baseman Will Middlebrooks knocked in a run in the sixth inning, and left fielder Scott Podsednik added to the Red Sox lead an inning later with an RBI single that sent shortstop Mike Aviles home.
The win boosted the Red Sox to a 32-33 record, while the Cubs stand at 22-43. The third and final game of the interleague series will take place Sunday at 8:00 p.m.
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