PHILADELPHIA (AP) - It's rare that major league pitchers get away with making mistakes at this level, especially against a lineup as potent as Boston's.
Joe Blanton failed to command his pitches and the Red Sox took advantage, homering four times off the Philadelphia right-hander, in a 7-5 win over the Phillies on Saturday night.
Blanton (4-4) pitched a season-low 4 1/3 innings while surrendering seven runs - six earned - on nine hits.
``I threw a lot of pitches down the middle, not good results when you do that,' Blanton said. ``They have a lot of good hitters and when you make mistakes, a lot of times a lineup like that will make you pay.'
It was a reversal of recent form for Blanton, who was 3-0 with a 2.10 ERA in his last four starts.
``They were, in general, all not pretty good,' Blanton said of his pitches. ``A couple of them were down enough, but they were just kind of over the plate. And a couple were middle-middle. Not good at all.'
David Ortiz homered, singled and drove in two runs to lead Boston, which snapped the Phillies' six-game winning streak.
Mike Aviles, Will Middlebrooks and Jarrod Saltalamacchia also homered for Boston, which won for the seventh time in nine games. Saltalamacchia went 3 for 4, needing a triple for the cycle.
Freddy Galvis homered, and John Mayberry Jr., Hector Luna and Shane Victorino each had three hits for the Phillies as the teams combined for 26 hits.
Jon Lester (3-3) improved to 3-0 in four career starts against the Phillies despite matching a season high for hits allowed with eight and giving up four runs in six innings.
``I didn't have my best stuff, but I tried to battle through it and keep the ball down,' Lester said.
Alfredo Aceves got four outs for his ninth save in 11 chances.
Aviles gave the Red Sox a 1-0 lead with the club's first leadoff homer of the season.
Boston extended the margin to 3-0 with a pair of runs in the second, with Saltalamacchia scoring on Daniel Nava's grounder and Ryan Sweeney reaching on Lester's double-play groundout.
Philadelphia got a run back in the third on Shane Victorino's RBI double off the metal fence above the 10-foot, 6-inch wall in left. But Middlebrooks and Saltalamacchia opened the fourth with consecutive homers to put Boston up 5-1.
Saltalamacchia predicted the homer Friday night, sending manager Bobby Valentine a text from the hospital after receiving 12 stitches for a cut on his ear sustained in Friday's game.
``Everything came back good, I'm cleared to play, plus I'm due to hit a bomb,' Valentine said, reading the text sent by Saltalamacchia.
``I wanted to make sure he knew I could play,' Saltalamacchia said. ``Sometimes if you tell the manager you are going to hit one out, he'll put you in there. I felt good. The ear didn't bother or affect me.'
Philadelphia scored three runs in the fourth, highlighted by Galvis' two-run homer to left, to make it a one-run game.
Philadelphia manager Charlie Manuel had Pete Orr in the on-deck circle ready to pinch-hit for Blanton, but pulled Orr back with the bases clear.
``I thought he still had something left, thought he might settle in and give us two (more) innings,' Manuel said of Blanton.
But after Dustin Pedroia singled to lead off the fifth, Ortiz launched the first pitch he saw off Blanton in the fifth over the wall in straightaway center to give the Red Sox a 7-4 advantage.
``That was a big blow,' Manuel said. ``We couldn't catch up.'
Said Blanton: ``It was supposed to be away and I threw it down the middle.'
Sweeney saved two runs in the seventh when the Red Sox center fielder robbed Carlos Ruiz of extra bases with a highlight-reel diving catch just in front of the warning track in right-center with two outs and runners on first and second.
``I thought it saved the game,' Valentine said. ``I didn't think he had anything left. It was full extension, a top-10'er (highlight).'
The Phillies trimmed the lead to 7-5 in the eight on Jimmy Rollins' RBI infield single, but stranded the bases loaded when Victorino popped out to shortstop off of Aceves.
Victorino defended his swinging at the first pitch despite Aceves walking the previous batter, Mayberry, on four pitches.
``I was looking for a cutter and he threw a cutter, I'll swing at that every single time,' he said. ``He just beat me. I want to be the hero, but I was the goat tonight.'
Notes: Red Sox OF Cody Ross did not play after fouling a ball off his left leg in Friday's game. Boston manager Bobby Valentine said before the game that X-rays were negative. ... The crowd of 45,656 was the Phillies' 224th straight sellout and 240th counting postseason play. ... Former Philadelphia OF Pat Burrell was honored in a pregame ceremony after signing a one-day contract and officially retiring as a member of the Phillies. ... Boston right-hander Josh Beckett (3-4, 4.97) is scheduled to face Phillies left-hander Cliff Lee (0-1 1.95) at 1:35 on Sunday.
The Associated Press News Service
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