Red Sox Hand Dodgers First Baseball Series Loss Since Mid-June

The Boston Red Sox become the first team in more than two months to win a Major League Baseball series against the Los Angeles Dodgers as Jake Peavy pitched a complete-game three-hitter.

The Red Sox beat the Dodgers 8-1 last night to take two of three games in the interleague series in Los Angeles.

The victory came on the one-year anniversary of the nine-player trade between the teams in which the Red Sox sent the Dodgers their three highest-paid players: first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, pitcher Josh Beckett and outfielder Carl Crawford. It also put the Red Sox back in first place in the American League Eastern Division by one game over the Tampa Bay Rays, who lost to the New York Yankees 3-2 in 11 innings.

The Dodgers, who lead the National League West by 9 1/2 games, failed to win a series for the first time since losing two of three games in Pittsburgh from June 14 to 16.

The Yankees avoided a three-game series sweep in St. Petersburg, Florida, yesterday as Alfonso Soriano hit a one-out double in the top of the 11th inning, stole third base and scored on a sacrifice fly by Curtis Granderson.

The Detroit Tigers improved their AL-best record to 77-53 by routing the New York Mets 11-3 to complete a three-game sweep. Miguel Cabrera hit his 42nd home run of the season for the Tigers and now has 10 in his past 19 games.

The Atlanta Braves avoided a fourth straight loss in St. Louis with a 5-2 victory against the Cardinals. Mike Minor allowed one run over seven innings for the Braves, who have the best record in the National League at 78-52.

The Cardinals fell to 76-54 and are tied atop the NL Central with Pittsburgh, which was shut out 4-0 by the San Francisco Giants.

Also yesterday, Roy Halladay returned to the mound for the first time in three months and allowed two runs over six innings in the Philadelphia Phillies’ 9-5 win against the Arizona Diamondbacks. It was Halladay’s first win since April 19.

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