It’s all sunshine for Red Sox today

BOSTON ? Come in off the ledge. Close the window. Have a seat. Take a deep breath. Grab a drink ? coffee, tea, whatever will help calm you down.The long national nightmare is over. A Red Sox starting pitcher pitched into the seventh inning and got a win. All is right in Red Sox world.Ok, that may be a little too optimistic. And there are still far too many holes in the Red Sox rotation. But at least for today there?s sunshine amid the gloom. If you?re looking for bad news, you?re not going to find it here. Nope.Right-hander Rick Porcello pitched a gem Wednesday night against the Blue Jays at Fenway Park. He went seven innings, giving up one run on two hits, two walks and a hit batter with six strikeouts. He earned the win as the Sox beat the Jays, 4-1, throwing 99 pitches, 69 for strikes. Just one game after Clay Buchholz was absolutely hor?ahem, horrible, Porcello was sharp, efficient, mixed his pitches against a good hitting lineup and kept batters off balance. It was the first of his five outings this season in which he did not allow a home run (he entered the game tied for the American League lead with six home runs allowed and the highest home run-to-nine innings ratio at 2.16 for AL starters).Just what you want from a starting pitcher. Kind of like what the Sox thought they were getting when they signed him to a four-year, $82.5 million extension on Opening Day, before he had even thrown one meaningful pitch for them. From the second out of the second through the final out of the sixth on Wednesday, Porcello recorded 15 consecutive outs. After a lead-off walk to Devon Travis, he struck out the next three batters. He snapped a three-game personal losing streak to the Jays, going back to Aug. 29, 2010 while with the Tigers, allowing two or fewer hits in going at least seven innings for the third time in his career and the first since May 22, 2011, against the Pirates.And it wasn?t just Porcello. The Sox got a two-run homer from Hanley Ramirez, his 10th of the season, tying Nelson Cruz for the Major League lead. Ramirez also tied his career high for most home runs in a month (with June 2008 while with the Marlins) and tied David Ortiz for the team record before May 1.Mookie Betts continued to show off his defensive skills, with another sprinting, leaping, tumbling, highlight-reel catch, robbing Devon Travis leading off the third, punctuated by the center fielder?s signature snarl.Even Junichi Tazawa pitched well against the Jays ? who have likely caused the right-hander to do some ledge walking of his own. In 23 career appearances, spanning 21 1/3 innings before Wednesday night, the Jays had hit Tazawa for a .356/.404/.778 thumping ? a whopping 1.182 OPS, higher than any other team. They had scored 17 earned runs ? with nine home runs ? for a 7.17 ERA. But not Wednesday night. After a lead-off single to No. 9 hitter Ryan Goins in the eight, Tazawa retired the next three batters.And Koji Uehara came on in the ninth to strike out the side ? Edwin Encarnacion, Kevin Pillar, and pinch-hitter Russell Martin ? for his fourth save. The 40-year-old closer, who has become an enigma, looked like his lights-out 2013 version on Wednesday.Yes, all is right with the world.OK, maybe not everything. Porcello?s outing lowered Sox starting pitchers? cumulative ERA from a major league-worst 6.03 to 5.75 ? still the worst in baseball. It was just the fifth time in 22 games a Sox starter pitched seven or more innings. The Sox are 5-0 in those games.By the way, the bullpen?s numbers are only marginally better. Sox relievers have a combined 4.03 ERA ? better than only 11 other major league teams. Their 1.35 WHIP is better than only eight other teams. And at 82 2/3 innings, they?ve been worked more than any other bullpen in baseball except the Rangers, at 83 1/3.The Sox improved to 12-10, good for second place, a game behind the Yankees, in the moribund American League East, which is separated by just two games. But they are just 6-7 in th

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