Indians 8, Red Sox 3

Derek Lowe has been booed off the field at Fenway Park, too.

So as much sympathy as he had for Boston starter Josh Beckett on

Thursday night, Lowe was happy to be in the other dugout as the

Cleveland Indians rolled to an 8-3 win.

”When you play here, you understand that’s part of it,” said

Lowe, a member of the Red Sox 2004 World Series championship club.

”When you go out there and probably don’t pitch the way you’d

like, they’re going to let you know about it.”

Boston fans were so focused on Beckett, who played golf last

week a day after he was scratched from his scheduled start with a

sore lat muscle in his back, they seemed to have little energy for

the Indians.

Jack Hannahan hit a two-run homer and Jason Kipnis had a solo

shot off Beckett, whose return to the rotation couldn’t have gone

much worse. Beckett (2-4) gave up seven runs on seven hits and

walked two in 2 1-3 innings as Cleveland built a 7-1 lead.

Michael Brantley went 4 for 5 with two RBIs for the Indians.

Lowe (5-1) pitched six effective innings against his former

team, allowing two runs and nine hits with one walk and three

strikeouts. He was as solid as he needed to be with the Indians’

offense taking full advantage of Beckett’s struggles.

”You can’t ask for any better start than getting seven runs in

the first three innings,” Lowe said. ”I did my best to try to

give them back.”

Dustin Pedroia extended his hitting streak to 11 with a leadoff

homer in the seventh, cutting Cleveland’s lead to 7-3. But that did

little to lift the somber mood at Fenway Park as Red Sox fans

watched their team lose for the 11th time in its last 12 home

games.

Boston, last in the AL East at 12-19, has dropped eight of nine

overall.

Beckett, who has a 5.97 ERA, was booed just a few hours after

manager Bobby Valentine downplayed the uproar over the pitcher’s

golf outing.

Word surfaced Wednesday that Beckett had hit the links with his

sore lat and fans jeered him early and often as the Indians teed

off for seven runs before the third inning was over.

It’s not the first time Beckett’s off-the-field decisions and

commitment to the team have come into question.

After last season, it was revealed that he was among a group of

pitchers who ate fried chicken and drank beer in the clubhouse

during games on days they didn’t pitch.

In his postgame interview Thursday, Beckett grew more terse each

time his golf outing was mentioned.

”We get 18 off days a year,” he said. ”I think we deserve a

little bit of time to ourselves.”

The first homer was Hannahan’s two-run shot into the Boston

bullpen, where a few relievers got up and started stretching their

arms as it became apparent Beckett would not be out there for

long.

It got worse in the fourth when Kipnis led off with a homer,

Asdrubal Cabrera singled and Travis Hafner walked. Beckett got a

mock cheer when Carlos Santana flied out for the first out of the

inning, but the boos came right back when Shin-Soo Choo followed

with a double.

”We’ve seen some games when we’ve been dominated by him,”

Cleveland manager Manny Acta said. ”Today the guys just came out

swinging. We got into some good counts and hit some mistakes pretty

good.”

Brantley was up next and one fan yelled ”FORE!” when he lined

a foul ball down the right-field line, but all the chuckles quickly

subsided when Brantley doubled to left-center. It was the second

straight double for the Indians, ending Beckett’s night.

Fans cheered when Valentine came out of the dugout and

immediately signaled to the bullpen for lefty Andrew Miller.

There wasn’t much to cheer for again until Pedroia came up with

the bases loaded and two outs in the eighth, but he popped out to

second on the 41st pitch of the inning by Vinny Pestano.

NOTES: The Red Sox paid tribute before the game to public

address announcer Carl Beane, a day after he died after having a

heart attack while driving. The Red Sox went without a PA announcer

during the game as part of the tribute, which also featured a

moment of silence after a series of still photos were shown on the

center-field monitor. … It was Brantley’s fourth four-hit game,

tying his career high. … Lowe made his second appearance at

Fenway since he helped Boston win the 2004 World Series.