John Lackey is guilty of not having pitched well for much of the season. But you can't accuse him of not caring.

The righthander was as emotional as a linebacker during his start against the Tampa Bay Rays yesterday, flinging his arms in the air in disgust when his defense failed him and reacting angrily when manager Terry Francona removed him from the game in the sixth inning.

But Lackey made no apologies. For him, every start is worth fighting for.