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Red Sox break past Blue Jays, 5-1
BOSTON -- Dustin Pedroia broke a tie with a two-run single in the seventh inning, lifting host Boston past Toronto, 5-1, on Wednesday night.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia also belted a solo home run in the three-run seventh as the Red Sox won for the 10th time in 13 games and dropped the Blue Jays into the American League East basement.
Andrew Miller (2-0) retired the only batter he faced for the win. Luis Perez (2-2) took the loss after facing just one batter.
Adrian Gonzalez had two hits and a run-scoring double and rookie Will Middlebrooks added a sacrifice fly for his 13th RBI in 10 games as Boston moved a game ahead of Toronto.
Blue Jays left-hander Aaron Laffey was superb in his first start in nearly two years, blanking the Red Sox on three hits in six scoreless innings, but saw his chance for a victory disappear when Boston rallied against Toronto's bullpen.
Red Sox right-hander Daisuke Matsuzaka gave up one run on six hits in 5 2/3 innings, striking out five and walking one in his fourth start of the season.
Brett Lawrie singled to lead off the game, moved to third on a groundout and scored on Edwin Encarnacion's single for a 1-0 lead.
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GAME NOTEBOOK: Blue Jays LF Rajai Davis registered his 25th career assist in gunning down Pedroia at the plate in the sixth inning. ... Red Sox CF Jacoby Ellsbury, sidelined since April 14 with a subluxation of his right shoulder, will begin a rehab assignment at Class A Fort Myers on Friday. Ellsbury finished second in the voting for AL MVP in 2011. ... Toronto finally got some positive news on a pitcher when an MRI exam of Henderson Alvarez revealed mild inflammation in his right elbow. Alvarez left Monday's start in the fifth inning with tightness in the elbow. ... Boston RHP Clay Buchholz remained hospitalized in stable condition with esophagitis - an erosion of his esophagus - but is expected to make a complete recovery.
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