The Blue Jays kept getting close, but Marcus Stroman couldn't shut the Red Sox, and could never recover from falling behind 3-0.
Stroman gave up six earned runs in 5.2 innings, allowing nine runs, five walks and struck out only four. It was a fourth straight poor start for Stroman who saw his ERA balloon over a run.
It was not a great start for Marcus Stroman and the Blue Jays. Stroman gave up three runs in the first three innings, including a two-run single to David Ortiz in the bottom of the third inning.
The Jays responded in the top of the fourth against Red Sox starter Steven Wright. Like we see with R.A. Dickey, the knuckleball is fickle and the same pitch that stymied the Jays offence, allowed them to take advantage and get the first three batters on base in the inning.
They scored their first run on a Justin Smoak single through the shift and had two runners on with no one out. Devon Travis struck out and Russell Martin hit into a double play to end the threat.
The Red Sox added another run in the bottom of the inning to restore their three-run lead.
The Jays bounced back again in knuckleball fashion. With runners on second and third, Michael Saunders struck out swinging for the third out, but the ball hit off of Ryan Hanigan’s knee and allowed Saunders to reach first and both Ryan Goins and Jose Bautista came around to score.
The Red Sox scored to make it 5-3 in the bottom of the fifth as Stroman couldn’t hold Boston off the board as the team started to fight back.
Once again, base running allowed the Jays to get the run back in the top of the sixth. Devon Travis went to second on a wild pitch and stole third before he scored on a Kevin Pillar groundout.
The Blue Jays thought they got out of the sixth inning without allowing the Sox to add more, but an out call at home plate was overturned and made the game 6-4 as it was ruled that Blake Swihart got in before Martin's tag.
Safe or out? You be the judge. pic.twitter.com/dTdsNQ8QCS— Ian Hunter (@BlueJayHunter) June 4, 2016
The Red Sox shut down the Blue Jays in the seventh, eighth and ninth innings to win the game and even the series at one game a piece. Jesse Chavez and Drew Storen pitched well in relief, and it's nice to see them potentially getting back on track.
Martin got a single to lead off the ninth, but Craig Kimbrel shut the door for the save.
Jays of the Day: Ryan Goins (+0.104) was 1/3 with a run scored and almost threw Swihart out at home in the sixth inning on a relay.
Jays Suckage: Marcus Stroman (-0.368) could not shut down the Red Sox offence when the team was starting to mount a comeback. Martin (-0.101) had several key at bats, and singled to lead off the ninth inning but was doubled up on a Kevin Pillar double play the next batter (-0.184).
Up next: The rubber match of the three game series gets underway tomorrow at 1:35 p.m. with Marco Estrada facing Eduardo Rodriguez. Josh Donaldson, who missed today's game with a thumb injury is day to day.