I really had high hopes for last night’s contest because Buchholz has been pitching so well lately. Buchholz and Lester both have started to pick it up, and I thought that it had sort of, kind of, maybe gotten to a point where we could actually have some confidence about our chances and go into it feeling good. As far as our starting pitching was concerned, at least. So in that regard, this game is most definitely a step backward.
In every other regard, this game is not a step backward in the least. How can this be possible when we lost, you say? Well, because in order for it to be a step backward, it would have had to be a negative departure from the norm. And, my friends, I am sorry to say that this was not a negative departure from the norm, or any sort of departure from the norm. This is the norm.
Anyway, apparently when Buchholz takes a step backward, he really takes a step backward. Like, he doesn’t fool around. When he bombs, he bombs big. He only lasted five and one-third innings and gave up seven runs on twelve hits, a new career high, while walking one and striking out three. For the first two innings, he was cruising and looked fine. And then the badness happened and it didn’t stop. He gave up three consecutive singles in the third followed by a double play, which scored two runs all told. He gave up two sets of a double and an RBI single in the fourth for another two runs. He gave up a solo shot in the sixth and then two straight singles in the sixth before he was pulled.
Tazawa replaced him. And he really wasn’t much better. He got a strikeout but then gave up two straight singles, the latter of which resulted in two runs, both of which were inherited. Tazawa got better, though. He pitched through the seventh and eighth and was fine. And Melancon pitched the ninth.
Naturally the hitters obviously didn’t pony up enough support. We didn’t even score until the fourth. With two out, Salty singled and scored on a double by Lavarnway, who scored on a double by Aviles in our next at-bat. And that was it for us until the eighth, when Pedroia singled, stole second, and scored on a double by Ross with a little help from poor fielding.
And that’s that. The final score was 7-3. And we lost and we were mediocre and the whole usual deal.