FORT MYERS, Fla. -- For the second straight start, Josh Beckett fell victim to a big inning against the Pirates in Bradenton. Saturday Beckett's outing was clouded by a five-run fourth inning in what would ultimately turn into Pittsburgh's 7-5 win over the Red Sox. In the pitcher's previous outing, he allowed a six-run fifth inning to the Bucs.
"I’ve got to stay away from the big inning," Beckett said. "My last two starts, those are the glaring things."
Beckett finished his afternoon going 4 2/3 innings, giving up five runs (one earned), and seven hits, striking out two and walking one. Besides the big inning, the starter's most pressing concern was an inability to control his curveball.
"It was [terrible] today," he said. "I think I threw four of 17 for strikes. Definitely got to do better than that and I did better than that in my last start. You’re trying to throw 0-0 curveballs for strikes, not balls. I threw a couple that I was trying to throw for balls, but that number’s still got to be better."
The pivotal fourth inning started with Red Sox first baseman Nate Speaks committing an error on Neil Walker's ground ball. After an Andrew McCutchen walk, Lyle Overbay ripped a two-run double.
After Dustin Pedroia cut down Overbay at third on a Pedro Alvarez grounder, the Pirates notched back-to-back singles from Matt Diaz and Dusty Brown. Brown's hit came on a grounder that ricocheted off of Beckett's foot.
"It me in the shoe. It’s nothing," Beckett said. "I learned that from all the hockey we played down in Texas. I asked [shortstop Marco] Scutaro if he would have gotten it, and he said no, so it ended up being a pretty good deal."
The problem came when Pirates pitcher Kevin Correia managed to clear the bases with a single to left.
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