For most of Dice-K's start on Wednesday, he was dominant. But the right-hander faltered in the fifth inning, allowing seven straight batters to reach base.
"I'm very encouraged from what I heard. I didn't see it," said manager Bobby Valentine. "[Pawtucket manager] Arnie [Beyeler] and [pitching coach] Rich [Sauveur] thought it was his best command, his best stuff, that he's had in a while. We'll take it to that next step and we'll know what we have."
Look for Matsuzaka, who has been sidelined with a neck injury, to make his next start for Pawtucket on Monday.