Congratulations, Red Sox Nation! We are officially fans of 2013’s best American League baseball team. Oakland lost, so now our enjoyment of home field advantage is very much perpetuated. Oh, it’s great. It’s just so insanely great.
Lester started out strong but ended up having a mediocre night. It was a real grind. Ultimately, he gave up four runs on nine hits in five innings while walking two and striking out four. On average, that’s about two baserunners per inning, which also means a lot of pitches: ninety-seven, to be exact, which is about the number of pitches we usually expected him to need to get through at least two more innings.
With two out in the second, he gave up a run thanks to a single-double combination. He gave up a solo shot on his very first pitch of the third, a sinker gone wrong. Then he gave up four singles in the fifth, three of which were consecutive, to bring in his final two runs.
So yeah, it was a struggle. There are nights when it comes easily, and there are nights when it just doesn’t. It could have been much worse. At least he kept us in the game.
We didn’t score in the first three innings, but we scored in each of the next four. Gomes singled and scored on a single by Ross in the fourth. Drew doubled and scored on a single by Pedroia in the fifth. Nava singled and scored on a double by Ross in the sixth. And Drew and Pedroia led off the seventh with back-to-back singles, and after Napoli popped out, each scored on a single, the first by Gomes and the second by Nava with a little help from a fielding error, even Gomes was thrown out at third.
Thornton went in for the sixth, and Tazawa went in for the seventh. Two singles in to the eighth, Morales relieved him. Unfortunately, after he registered the first out of the inning, he gave up a two-run double that put Baltimore on top. And that was when Workman came in. But we failed to score in the eighth and ninth, so we ended up losing, 6-5.
But let’s not forget about that home field advantage. Now throughout Soxtober. Loss aside, that’s a pretty big consolation prize. I’m going to enjoy this.