STATE OF THE SOX: Boston won 6-3 over the A’s yesterday at Fenway Park for a 2nd straight win following a 2-game losing streak…The Red Sox improved to 4-1 against AL West teams in 2014…The Sox are now 5-4-1 in series play this season with their 2nd series victory at home.
· The club is 1 win shy of reaching .500 for the 1st time since they were 2-2 on 4/4 after the first 4 games…This is Boston’s 8th chance at a .500 record since 4/4.
· 10 of the Sox’ 13 runs over the last 2 games have come on 4 home runs.
SEEKING A SWEEP: The Red Sox are looking to complete their 1st series sweep of the season and 1st overall since a 4-game sweep from 9/19-22 vs. MIN…Boston last swept the A’s from 6/3-5/11 in 3 games here at Fenway Park.
· A win today would give the Red Sox their first win streak longer than 2 games this season.
LESTER DAZZLES: Yesterday Jon Lester fanned a career-high 15 batters in 8.0 shutout IP on 1 hit and 2 BB…The 15 SO set a team record for a LHP in a regulation 9-inn. game.
· Elias says he was just the 3rd Red Sox pitcher with at least 15 strikeouts and no more than 1 hit allowed, along with Pedro Martinez in 1999 vs. NYY and Smoky Joe Wood in 1911 vs. SLB.
· He was just the 3rd major league LHP with 1 or no hits allowed and 15+ strikeouts in the last 100 years, along with Randy Johnson (2 times, 1992 and 1997) and Warren Spahn (1960).
· Lester now has 8 career starts allowing 1 or 0 hits, tying Pedro Martinez for the most among Red Sox in the last 100 years, and the most in the AL since 2006.
SLAMS APLENTY: Jonny Gomes hit his 5th career grand slam in the 1st inning yesterday, the team’s 3rd slam this season and their 2nd in as many days (Pedroia on Friday).
· This marks the 10th time the team has hit grand slams in consecutive games, 1st since 2010 (Marco Scutaro on 7/28 at LAA; David Ortiz on 7/30 vs. DET).
· The Sox have never hit a grand slam in 3 consecutive games…It has only been done twice before in MLB: DET from 8/10-12/93 and CWS from 6/23-25/06.
· Boston’s 12 grand slams since the start of 2013 are 5 more than any other ML team (SEA 2nd with 7).