I had high hopes for this game. Very high hopes. After all, it is the Orioles, and we are throwing Beckett. Oh, wait.
Beckett lasted six innings. He gave up six runs on seven hits, two of which were home runs, the first a solo shot with one out in the second and the second a three-runner with two out in the sixth. That three-run home run was an inside-the-park home run. Ellsbury looked like he was about to make a particularly Ellsbury-esque catch, the kind of catch that only Ellsbury could make. Instead, he collided with the wall and lost the ball. It was the first inside-the-park homer the Orioles have hit at home and the first we’ve allowed since 2006. Thankfully, Ellsbury is okay. The game’s result, not so much.
Beckett walked four and struck out five. He threw 108 pitches, seventy-one of which were strikes. What can I say? He didn’t have it. We’d just played fourteen innings against New York and some terrible games overall this month. We needed a big night. He didn’t deliver.
We actually struck first. The bases were loaded with two out in the first, but Lowrie flied out. What a waste of an opportunity. We plated one in the second; Drew led off the inning in the first and was out on a force by Scutaro, who scored on a double by Ellsbury with a little help from some bad fielding. Lowrie must have felt really bad about that because he homered to lead off the fourth on the second pitch of the at-bat, a changeup he walloped to right field.
We didn’t have many opportunities after that until the eighth, when the bases were loaded with one out and Salty and Scutaro both blew it. Then Ellsbury was hit in the ninth and scored on a single by Pedroia.
And that was it. Aceves and Weiland pitched the last two innings. And they were scoreless. Not that that counts for anything at all whatsoever, since we lost, 6-3.
To recap our predicament, we are now officially tied for the Wild Card with the Rays with two games left to play in the regular season. In the month of September, our record is six and nineteen with a nine-game drop in the standings, and exactly one month ago today was the last time we had even a two-game winning streak. On August 17, our Wild Card lead was ten games. If we don’t right this ship, like, immediately, we will be the first team in the history of the existence of the Wild Card to blow a double-digit lead. We’re Boston fans. We believe. We’ll always believe. But words can not describe the anger, frustration, denial, and fear that Red Sox Nation is currently experiencing.
We have to win today. At the very least, Johnny Pesky deserves a happy ninety-second birthday.
In other news, the Pats lost a close one to the Bills, 34-31. It should never have come to that.