Legendary closer Mariano Rivera, who is set to retire at the end of this season, was honored before yesterday’s Red Sox/Yankees game here at Fenway Park.
The Red Sox gave the eventual first-ballot Hall of Famer a painting of himself, a 42 placard that had been used in the Green Monster scoreboard and was signed by each Red Sox player, a grandstand seat (with the No. 42) and the pitching rubber from the visitor’s bullpen.
“The game has adjusted to him,” Yankees first baseman Lyle Overbay said. “He hasn’t had to adjust for 18, 19 years. You look at all pitchers, they start coming up with new pitches because they’ve got to adjust. You look at Roy Halladay and he used a power sinker and then he started throwing the cutter and now he’s throwing the cutter all the time. (Rivera) has revolutionized the game.”
Star of the Game: Daniel Nava went 4 for 5 with an RBI and run. He is batting .306 with a .392 on-base percentage.
Buchholz’s Line: Red Sox starter Clay Buchholz — in his second start since returning from the DL — went 6.0 innings, allowing one run, no earned runs, on two hits and four walks while striking out three. He improved to 11-0 with a 1.51 ERA in 14 starts.
Napoli Ejected: Sox first baseman Mike Napoli blasted a 414-foot two-run homer with two outs in the first inning, then was ejected for spiking his batting helmet after he struck out looking in the bottom of the sixth. Interestingly, that was Napoli’s first career ejection.
Red Hot Offense: Besides Nava and Napoli, several other Red Sox batters had strong nights. Dustin Pedroia was 1 for 3 with two walks, two RBIs and two runs. David Ortiz was 2 for 4 with two RBIs, a walk and run. Xander Bogaerts was 2 for 3 with a walk and two runs.
By Christopher Smith