This was a great game. We played well and clean. It just felt really right and natural to be scoring and pitching and winning. It was just nice.
Pedroia doubled in the first and scored on a wild pitch. With one out in the third, Nava doubled, and Papi and Napoli both walked. When Carp drew a third straight walk, Nava came home. Then we hit four straight singles in the seventh to score another run; Bradley, Pedroia, Nava, Papi, done. And one double play later, another single by Carp scored two. As one last statement of victory, Middlebrooks led off the eighth with a single and scored two outs later on a single by Pedroia.
Lester finally cracked in the fifth. With two out, he gave up one run thanks to a single-single combination plus a two steals thrown in. In the end, it was just the run in all seven glorious innings he pitched. He gave up five hits and two walks, and he struck out eight. And he was fantastic.
Tazawa came on for the seventh and gave up a double followed by a groundout. Then he gave up a two-run home run. And then Uehara came on. And then the game ended and we won, 6-3.
So it was pretty ordinary as wins go, and we’ve been very fortunate this season to have had our fair share of those. But winning, while awesome, wasn’t even the highlight.
The highlight was that we now officially own the AL East. That’s right. One day after clinching our playoff berth, we also clinched the division. It’s our first division title since 2007, and it’s been a long time. But if it has to do with 2007, I like it. It’s ours. Yes. Let the champagne rain. Now that’s what I call winning. Let’s get this done!