Archive for Thursday, April 5, 2007

Royals roughed up, 7-1

April 5, 2007

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— When Gold Glove third baseman Mike Lowell committed errors on consecutive ground balls, Josh Beckett figured it was time for payback.

"As many times as he's picked me up in my career, I wanted to pick him up so bad," the Boston right-hander said. "That's why I was so pumped when we got that last out."

With the help of a fine running catch by right fielder J.D. Drew, Beckett and the Red Sox escaped damage in Lowell's third-inning meltdown and went on to a 7-1 victory over Kansas City on a cold Wednesday night.

"I have no one to blame but myself," said Lowell, who also had a throwing error with two out in the ninth. "Everyone's playing under the same conditions. There were plenty of plays made out there. I didn't do it. I can't give you anything cool."

The three errors were exactly half the number Lowell committed in 153 games in 2006 when he tied the NL record for third basemen with at least 135 games played. His .977 fielding percentage coming into the season was tops among major league third baseman with at least 1,000 games.

With one out and two on courtesy of Lowell's balky glove, Beckett came back from a 3-0 count to strike out Mark Teahen.

Then Mike Sweeney hit a slicing line drive into the right-center gap that the swift Drew ran down to end the inning.

"I almost kissed J.D. Drew after he made that play in the gap," Lowell said.

"I can deal with errors. that's part of the game. But when runs come in after that you really feel bad. J.D. made a great play. It's part of the game, guys picking each other up. It made me feel a lot better.

"J.D. came in and I said, 'No one loves you more than me right now."'

Drew and Lowell hit back-to-back doubles in a three-run first inning, and Kevin Youkilis added a two-run home run off reliever Todd Wellemeyer in the seventh to make it 6-1 as the temperature dipped to 39 degrees.

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