Closing Time: Dustin Pedroia, Wade Miley lead Red Sox past A's

John Tomase
June 05, 2015 - 5:53 pm

The Red Sox believe they're good enough to win the American League East and make the playoffs. On Friday night, they played like it. Wade Miley earned his fifth win of the season with his fourth quality start in five outings and Dustin Pedroia paced the offense to lead the Red Sox to a 4-2 victory over the A's that didn't feel that close. "Tonight I had good command of the fastball, really got on a good page with [Blake] Swihart," Miley said. "We scored some runs early and got the momentum on our side, and I just wanted to keep it that way. We were able to pull that one out." Before the game, general manager Ben Cherington made it clear that he believes the pieces are in place for the Red Sox to win the division without making a major trade. A new-look lineup then did enough to make a winner of Miley, with the 1-2 duo of Pedroia and Brock Holt combining to record five hits. The Red Sox did their damage against A's left-hander Scott Kazmir (4 2/3 IP, 9 H, 4 R), who saw his ERA climb to 3.14. The Red Sox struck for their first run just two batters into the game, when Pedroia led off with a single and Holt followed with a double that outfielder Ben Zobrist boxed around, allowing Pedroia to score. A Hanley Ramirez sacrifice fly, an error on a Mookie Betts bunt, and another Pedroia/Holt combo accounted for the final three runs. That was more than enough for Miley, who pounded the corners at the bottom of the strike zone while throwing 69 of his 96 pitches for strikes. "I was down in the zone," Miley said. "If you get a fastball down in the zone and locate, you get some balls on the ground. It worked out." The game included a scary moment when Oakland's Brett Lawrie broke his bat and a piece flew into the stands, where it struck a woman in the head. She was removed from the game on a stretcher, bloody and screaming, with what police later told were life-threatening injuries. "Obviously there's a lot of concern," Mile said. "I didn't see what happened, but my thoughts and prayers are with those guys, and I hope everything works out." SWENSON GRANITE WORKS ROCK SOLID PERFORMER OF THE GAME: Second baseman Dustin Pedroia continued his torrid pace since moving into the leadoff spot, going 3 for 4 with a pair of runs. Vote on the Rock Solid Performer of the week and enter to win a VIP Boston Baseball Experience at WHAT WENT RIGHT -- LHP Wade Miley bounced back from his worst start in a month, against the Rangers, to limit the A's to two runs on six hits in 7 1/3 innings. He struck out six, walked just one, and allowed a solo homer. -- Filling in for Pablo Sandoval, third baseman Brock Holt went 2 for 4 with an RBI and a stolen base. -- Newly acquired outfielder Alejandro De Aza made a nice running catch on a soft liner to record the last out of the game. -- Outfielder Rusney Castillo went 2 for 3 with a run. WHAT WENT WRONG -- Mike Napoli went 0 for 4 as his average dropped to .209. -- Closer Koji Uehara recorded the save, but not before putting two runners on and nearly surrendering the game-tying two-run homer in the ninth. -- Catcher Blake Swihart went 0 for 4.