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Boston at San Diego

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Boston (47-25) «000200000280
San Diego (41-31)100000000170

Matsuzaka outpitches Maddux; Red Sox hold on to top Padres

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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SAN DIEGO -- Dice-K was OK at Petco Park again, and this time it was against Greg Maddux, not a team of anonymous Cubans.

Daisuke Matsuzaka escaped a first-inning jam to outpitch Maddux, leading the Boston Red Sox to a 2-1 win over the San Diego Padres in a matchup of two of baseball's top teams Friday night.

The Red Sox have baseball's best record, 47-25. The Padres came in with the NL's best mark, but their third straight loss cost them first place in the tight West. San Diego (41-31) dropped a half-game behind the Los Angeles Dodgers, who beat Tampa Bay 6-3.

"When I found out that I would be pitching against Maddux, I felt very lucky," Matsuzaka said through an interpreter. "I felt it would be a low chance that our rotations would actually match up that way."

It did, and turned out that Matsuzaka was good as well as lucky in his first appearance at Petco Park since leading Japan to victory in the inaugural World Baseball Classic championship game in March 2006.

His 126th and final pitch was a 94 mph fastball that he blew past Marcus Giles, who went down swinging with runners on first and third to end the sixth.

Matsuzaka (9-5) allowed one run and five hits, struck out nine and walked five.

Maddux (6-4) lost to the Red Sox for the first time in six career decisions over eight starts against them. The 41-year-old also went six, allowing two runs and seven hits, with two strikeouts and two walks. Maddux, a four-time NL Cy Young winner, is 339-207 in his career.

"Good game," Maddux said. "Got outpitched."

Matsuzaka's finish was much different than the first inning, when he struggled to find his control. He walked the first three batters before retiring Mike Cameron. Giles scored on Michael Barrett's single to left, the catcher's first hit since coming over in a trade with the Chicago Cubs on Wednesday. Matsuzaka struck out Khalil Greene and got Russell Branyan to fly out to right to end the inning.

"I tried to get off to a gentle start today but that clearly didn't go so well. After getting into the jam I told myself that maybe one run would be permissible here, and that's how I approached that tight spot," Matsuzaka said.

"It looked like almost the game was decided in the first inning," manager Terry Francona said. "He loads the bases and throws a cutter to Barrett for the single, then stops them flat right there and let us peck away. That was a well-pitched game all the way around. We scored two and made it hold up."

Not only did Dice-K pitch against Mad Dog, but he got to face him, too.

"Knowing how great a pitcher that he is, I knew I would have to do my best to hold their lineup to as few runs as possible," Matsuzaka said. "And facing him in the batter's box, he threw a lot of two-seam fastballs to me and I was able to see firsthand what a great pitcher he actually is. He's one of the pitchers that I look up to so I felt very happy to be able to see his pitches live and firsthand."

Matsuzaka grounded out twice.

"He actually wanted to stay out there," Francona said. "I had to explain to him, I didn't think he's a real good hitter. He said he'll work on that next spring."

Giles said Matsuzaka was hitting the corners and keeping the ball down around hitters' knees.

"Anytime a guy can throw over 100 pitches and still have his velocity, that's impressive," Giles said.

While the Red Sox were visiting Petco Park for the first time, Matsuzaka had a pretty big win here on March 20, 2006, pitching Japan to a 10-6 victory over Cuba for the WBC title. Matsuzaka was named the classic's MVP after earning his third win.

Nine months later, the right-hander with a wide array of pitches became a $103 million rookie -- the Red Sox bid $51.11 million to the Seibu Lions for the right to negotiate with Matsuzaka, then signed him to a $52 million, six-year contract.

Jonathan Papelbon pitched the ninth for his 17th save in 18 chances.

Maddux gave up four singles in the fourth inning -- including three straight with one out -- as the Red Sox took a 2-1 lead. Dustin Pedroia had a leadoff hit to right and Manny Ramirez singled up the middle with one out. Kevin Youkilis and Jason Varitek followed with RBI hits up the middle.

"In the fourth inning there, I just didn't make good pitches," Maddux said.

Boston's hitting coach is Dave Magadan, who was fired by the Padres in mid-June last season when their team batting average dipped to an NL-worst .252

With runners on first and second and two outs in the fifth, Barrett hit a liner up the middle but second baseman Pedroia swung around to his right and made the catch.

Maddux had an embarrassing moment in the sixth when his spikes stuck in the dirt and he tumbled over, with his pitch sailing well over David Ortiz's head. Maddux got up, smiled and retired Big Papi on a grounder to shortstop.

"Senior moment," Maddux said.

Notes

  • The Padres wore their 1982 uniforms in honor of Hall of Fame electee Tony Gwynn's big league debut.
  • The crowd of 44,405 was the largest of the season at Petco and the third-largest since the downtown ballpark opened in 2004.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Daisuke Matsuzaka returns to Petco Park, site of his WBC victory, and picks up another win.  (AP)
Daisuke Matsuzaka returns to Petco Park, site of his WBC victory, and picks up another win. (AP)

Players of the Game
Boston

D. Matsuzaka
IP 6.0
H 5
ER 1
BB 5
K 9
San Diego

G. Maddux
IP 6.0
H 7
ER 2
BB 2
K 2
 
Boston Red Sox
Coco Crisp, CF4030010 .258
Dustin Pedroia, 2B3110001 .323
David Ortiz, 1B4000002 .326
    Hideki Okajima, P0000000 .000
    Jonathan Papelbon, P0000000 .000
Manny Ramirez, LF4120001 .304
Kevin Youkilis, 3B-1B4011011 .331
Jason Varitek, C2011210 .268
Wily Mo Pena, RF3000004 .222
    David Murphy, RF1000010 .000
Julio Lugo, SS4000022 .198
Daisuke Matsuzaka, P2000000 .000
   a- Eric Hinske, PH1000010 .185
    Javier Lopez, P0000000 .000
    Manny Delcarmen, P0000000 .000
    Mike Lowell, 3B0000000 .299
Totals3228227  
a-struck out for Matsuzaka in the 7th
Batting
2B - Manny Ramirez (16, Maddux)
SH - Dustin Pedroia (3)
RBI - Kevin Youkilis (36), Jason Varitek (32)
SB - Coco Crisp (14, 2nd base off Maddux/Barrett)
CS - Coco Crisp (4, 2nd base by Maddux/Barrett)
Team LOB - 6
Boston Red Sox
Daisuke Matsuzaka (W,9-5) 6511590 4.01
Javier Lopez (H,8) 0.1100000 2.76
Manny Delcarmen (H,2) 0.2000000 0.00
Hideki Okajima (H,12) 1000020 0.98
Jonathan Papelbon (S,17) 1100020 1.71
WP - Daisuke Matsuzaka (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Daisuke Matsuzaka 91-62, Hideki Okajima 10-7, Jonathan Papelbon 16-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Daisuke Matsuzaka 1-8, Javier Lopez 1-0
Batters Faced - Daisuke Matsuzaka 28, Javier Lopez 2, Manny Delcarmen 2, Hideki Okajima 3, Jonathan Papelbon 4
San Diego Padres
Marcus Giles, 2B4100132 .258
Jose Cruz Jr., RF-LF4020100 .269
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B4010122 .294
Mike Cameron, CF2000204 .258
Michael Barrett, C4021003 .256
Khalil Greene, SS4010025 .238
Russell Branyan, LF3000024 .214
   a- Hiram Bocachica, PH-RF1000000 .175
Kevin Kouzmanoff, 3B4000020 .223
Greg Maddux, P2000010 .040
   b- Chase Headley, PH1010000 .176
    Cla Meredith, P0000000 .000
    Scott Linebrink, P0000000 .000
    Royce Ring, P0000000 .000
   c- Terrmel Sledge, PH1000010 .224
Totals34171513  
a-lined out for Branyan in the 8th
b-singled for Maddux in the 6th
c-struck out for Ring in the 9th
Batting
RBI - Michael Barrett (30)
SB - Jose Cruz Jr. (6, 2nd base off Matsuzaka/Varitek)
Team LOB - 11
Fielding
DP - Giles-Greene-Gonzalez
San Diego Padres
Greg Maddux (L,6-4) 6722220 3.84
Cla Meredith 1100010 3.50
Scott Linebrink 1000010 1.99
Royce Ring 1000030 0.00
IBB - Varitek by Greg Maddux
Pitches-Strikes - Greg Maddux 85-57, Cla Meredith 15-10, Scott Linebrink 13-8, Royce Ring 11-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Greg Maddux 8-6, Cla Meredith 2-0
Batters Faced - Greg Maddux 25, Cla Meredith 4, Scott Linebrink 3, Royce Ring 3
Game Information
Attendance - 44405
Game Time - 3:08
Temperature - 69
Umpires - Home - Brian Knight, First Base - Doug Eddings, Second Base - Dana DeMuth, Third Base - Derryl Cousins