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Closing Time: Legend of Brock Holt grows after 4-double day

06.01.14 at 4:52 pm ET
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Brock Holt tied the Red Sox team record for doubles in a game with four. (AP)

Brock Holt tied the Red Sox team record for doubles in a game with four. (AP)

At the rate the story of Brock Holt is growing and growing, the infielder may become more of a legend (at least in Boston) than Steve Holt of Arrested Development fame. Now that’s really saying something about the 25-year-old’s performance as of late.

Holt continued his torrid pace with four doubles and two RBI and a walk leading off for the Red Sox in their 4-0 win over the Rays, all while manning a position he never played before. This season, Holt has hit .337/.385/.500 with one homer, 11 RBI, nine doubles and twelve runs in 86 plate appearances since being recalled on May 17. With the exception of an error in the eighth inning, where he let a somewhat-low throw from Xander Bogaerts fall out of his glove, Holt looked serviceable at first base.

Holt’s four doubles matched the Red Sox‘s single-game record for the sixth time, with the last being Victor Martinez on June 1, 2010 in Oakland. Holt is also the first major leaguer with four doubles in a game since Martinez in 2010.

Manager John Farrell indicated before Sunday’s game that the team would find any way to get Holt’s bat in the lineup once Stephen Drew returns to the team, likely on Monday.

‘€œWe know that with Stephen Drew to come to us here relatively soon,” Farrell said before Sunday’s contest. “The way Brock has solidified the leadoff spot and handled the bat, we’€™re finding ways to keep him on the field and keep his bat in the lineup.”

Holt’s contributions helped lead the Red Sox to their seventh straight victory. The win tied them with the 1942 Pittsburgh Pirates and the 1989 Detroit Tigers for the longest winning streak following a losing streak of ten games or more, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

Right now, this is Brock Holt’s world and we’re all living in it.

WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE RED SOX

Jon Lester went seven strong innings, allowing four hits, no runs, one walk and 12 strikeouts. After allowing a total of ten runs over his last two starts, Lester looked sharp from the get-go, painting the corners while commanding his fastball and cutter all day. Home plate umpire D.J. Reyburn was also calling the balls and strikes on May 3, when Lester racked up a career-high 15 strikeouts. Lester threw 112 pitches and 73 strikes, good for a 65.2 percent strike rate.

– Milton native Alex Hassan got his first major league hit in the fourth inning, a single up the middle off of Erik Bedard. Hassan’s roommate, Garin Cecchini followed suit in the seventh inning with an RBI double off the Green Monster. According to Red Sox stats guru Jon Shestakofsky, Hassan and Cecchini are the first pair of Red Sox to make their major league debuts and get a hit in the same game since September 28, 1975, when Steve Dillard and Andy Merchant accomplished the feat.

Jonny Gomes quietly had a strong day at the plate, going 1-for-2 with two walks, a run and a strikeout. Coming into Sunday’s contest since becoming the everyday left fielder on May 20, Gomes has hit .231/.326/.385 with two home runs, seven RBIs with no doubles in 46 plate appearances.

WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE RED SOX

Dustin Pedroia was ejected by home plate umpire D.J. Reyburn at the end of the third inning, likely for arguing balls and strikes. Jonathan Herrera moved over to second base, allowing Garin Cecchini to come in and make his major league debut at third base.

– Bogaerts went 0-for-5 with three strikeouts, breaking up a string of five straight games with a hit. In the five-game stretch, Bogaerts had a trio of three-hit games, overall hitting .500/.560/.682 with four doubles, two RBIs, three walks and three strikeouts in 25 plate appearances.

David Ross went 0-for-4 with a strikeout. Ross hit a liner right to third baseman Evan Longoria in the seventh inning with the bases loaded and two outs. To put it lightly, Ross has not been good at the plate this season, hitting .167/.225/.303 with two homers, five RBIs, three doubles and 25 strike outs in 66 at-bats.

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