Okay. It’s no big deal. I mean, it better not turn into a big deal. Just because the Rays managed to stave off elimination doesn’t mean that this whole thing is going to be a disaster. Granted, I really would have liked to wrap this up already, but the extra playing time can’t hurt. Still, I want to get this done.
This was just a close game all around. We scored first; Ellsbury led off the game with a single and came home when Pedroia batted into a force out. Then both teams went one-two-three in the second and third, and both teams had opportunities to score in the fourth, of which they did not take advantage. Ellsbury doubled in the fifth and scored on a wild pitch to make it two-zip.
Buchholz gave up his first run in the bottom of the fifth; en route to securing the inning’s first two outs, he gave up a single and a double, and then he made a mistake that resulted in a three-run home run. In total, Buchholz gave up three runs on seven hits in six innings while walking three and striking out five. So that was really the only blemish of his performance, and it tied the game at three.
Neither team scored again until the eighth. The sixth had been Buchholz’s last inning; Breslow and Tazawa pitched the seventh, and Morales and Workman pitched the eighth, during which the Rays edged ahead by one run. This should not have been the case, because we had plenty of opportunities ourselves to score, but Morales opened the inning with a walk that turned into a run two singles and a popout later on a groundout.
Things were looking up in the ninth, when Pedroia managed to tie the game at four; Middlebrooks led off the inning with a walk, and Bogaerts came in to pinch-run. Bogaerts scored when Pedroia grounded out, which at the time was critically important.
I thought we would hold out and settle it in extras. Instead, Uehara came on for the ninth, and with the Rays two strikes away from playoff elimination, they came back to win it with a walkoff solo shot. It was absolutely awful. It was really crushing. I mean, we were so close. We were so close to putting them away, or at least to setting the stage for us putting them away. The Rays are still down to elimination, but it was just really awful to see them come back like that. The final score was 5-4.
In other news, the Pats dropped one to the Bengals, 13-6.