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Young Red Sox Back Up Lester's Tremendous Start

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SEATTLE - SEPTEMBER 13:  Starting pitcher Jon Lester #31 of the Boston Red Sox pitches against the Seattle Mariners at Safeco Field on September 13 2010 in Seattle Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
SEATTLE - SEPTEMBER 13: Starting pitcher Jon Lester #31 of the Boston Red Sox pitches against the Seattle Mariners at Safeco Field on September 13 2010 in Seattle Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
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Of the Red Sox' nine starters, five of them had a combined 779 major league at bats. Jed Lowrie's 440 accounts for more than half of those. They don't think that means anything, though, as Lowrie, joined Lars Anderson, Josh Reddick, Ryan Kalish, and Daniel Nava in providing four of the Sox' six hits, and all five of their RBI for the night.

It was 26-year-old Jon Lester, though, that stole the show. He wasn't unhittable tonight, but he was the next best thing. Throwing eight innings of one-run ball, Lester struck out 12 batters--hitting double digits for the fourth straight game and falling just one short of his career high. The only real trouble Lester ran into was in the seventh inning, allowing a pair of walks and a single to bring in the Mariners lone run before finishing the game on a high note, striking out the side in the eighth.

The Sox scored all the runs they needed in the second inning off Seattle starter Doug Fister. Adrian Beltre, as has so often been the case, was the catalyst, providing a leadoff single to get things going. Jed Lowrie quickly followed up with a doubles, bringing the first run in. Josh Reddick grounded out to bring in run number two, and Daniel Nava and Lars Anderson managed doubles of their own to put up a three-spot on the Mariners.

Fister managed to keep the Red Sox quiet for much of the rest of the game before giving up a walk to Marco Scutaro. Ryan Kalish came to the plate hitless on the night, took strike one, and then knocked strike two deep out of the park and into the stands in right. With Lester's arm spent, Daniel Bard pitched around a ninth inning single to finish off the game.

It's Daisuke vs. Luke French tomorrow as the Sox hope to go over .500 on their trip out west.