The last time David Ortiz was in Angels stadium, he hit 32 home runs en route to winning the 2010 Home Run Derby. Monday, he could only muster two, but they counted for so much more, pushing the Red Sox past the Angels for a much-needed win.
Ortiz was not alone in powering the Red Sox' offense, as Victor Martinez made an immediate impact in his first at bat, singling in Adrian Beltre after a leadoff triple in the second inning. This lone RBI was more than replacements Kevin Cash, Dusty Brown, and Gustavo Molina managed in their month with the Sox combined. Ortiz continued the scoring with his first homer--a shot down the right field line that just barely reached the seats near the pole in the third inning.
That was all they would get off of Dan Haren, though, as Kevin Youkilis knocked him out of the game with a liner off his right arm in the fifth. The new Angel acquisition left the game with a "contusion". An unfortunate end to a good start for Haren, who had already struck out eight Red Sox.
It looked like the Sox were going to need that scoring early on, too, because Clay Buchholz still did not look sharp in his second start back from the disabled list. After allowing a solo shot to Bobby Abreu in a 20-pitch first inning, Buchholz came out wild and loaded the bases on a walk, a single, and a hit batter. With no outs in the second, Clay had thrown 32 pitches and was in danger of letting the Angels blow the game wide open. Then he flipped the switch, getting Juan Rivera to reach for a 1-2 curveball and pop it up to first, and seeing similar results after jamming Jeff Mathis with an inside fastball. Erick Aybar got it out of the infield, but not much further as Jeremy Hermida came in to record the easy third out.
From there, it was smooth sailing for Buchholz, who allowed only three more hits while finishing seven innings, striking out seven batters in the process. Quite the turnaround from the first inning plus.
The Sox offense was, for once, not content with just a one-run lead, either. David Ortiz hit his second bomb of the night over the high wall in right-center (he had come very close to an opposite field shot in the fifth) with Kevin Youkilis standing at second. A good thing, too, as Scott Atchison would allow a two run shot of his own in the bottom of the inning after a bloop single. J.D. Drew kept things going in the ninth, too, adding a pair of insurance runs thanks to a double that was saved from leaving the yard only by a bizarre bounce off the top of the wall. They would have had another had it not been for a blown call on a play at the plate after a pair of wild pitches sent Drew home.
Jonathan Papelbon closed it out with his first four out save of the year, flashing a very impressive splitter that's been largely missing this year. One game with Victor Martinez back in the lineup, and the Sox score more than five for only the second time since the All-Star break.