We played a two-game series against the Rays and got swept.
Tuesday’s game began auspiciously with us paying tribute to the 2004 team. But it didn’t end well. Buchholz pitched as decently as any of our other starters this year, but in terms of the way he’s been pitching lately, his start was mediocre at best. He gave up five runs, four earned, on eight hits over six innings while walking two and striking out five. In the second, he gave up two walks followed by a home run that score three. And in the sixth, he gave up two straight singles and then another single two batters later that scored two runs, one of which was made possible by Nava’s fielding error, hence the unearned run. Atchison pitched the seventh and to one batter in the eighth, Miller pitched the rest of the eighth, and Padilla pitched the ninth.
We got on the board in the second; we started the inning with two back-to-back singles followed by a flyout, and Valencia batted in our first run with a single. We started the third with a strikeout and then hit two back-to-back singles again. This inning possibly did us in, because if we’d been able to take full advantage of our opportunity there, it’s possible that perhaps we could have won in the end. But a caught-stealing at third basically put a damper on things. Pedroia doubled after that, and we scored on a balk. And that was it. The final score was 2-5.
On Wednesday, Lester pitched six innings and allowed three runs on four hits while walking one and striking out five. He was solid for most of it but unraveled at the end. All three runs were scored via the home run. He gave up a single in the fifth followed by two consecutive home runs. Mortensen came on for the seventh and gave up a single, and then Hill came on and gave up another single; three at-bats later, Hill gave up an RBI double. Melancon finished the seventh and pitched the eighth, and Breslow pitched the ninth.
We had actually scored first; Salty walked and scored on a single by Nava in the second. And then Pedroia walked to lead off the sixth, stole second, moved to third on a single by Ross, and scored on a sac fly by Loney. The final score was 2-4.
Wednesday’s game actually began auspiciously as well with us announcing the All-Fenway team comprised of our greats throughout our long and illustrious history, with plenty of old faces and plenty of new. The starting lineup included Carlton Fisk, Jimmie Foxx, Pedroia, Wade Boggs, Nomar, Ted Williams, Fred Lynn, Dwight Evans, Pedro Martinez, Lefty Grove, Jonathan Papelbon, Papi, and Terry Francona. The first reserves included Jason Varitek, Mo Vaughn, Bobby Doerr, Mike Lowell, Johnny Pesky, Yaz, Dom DiMaggio, Trot Nixon, Roger Clemens, Luis Tiant, Tim Wakefield, Dennis Eckersley, Dick Radatz, and Joe Cronin. The second reserves included Rich Gedman, George Scott, Jerry Remy, Frank Malzone, Rico Petrocelli, Jim Rice, Reggie Smith, Tony Conigliaro, Babe Ruth, Smoky Joe Wood, Curt Schilling, Bill Lee, Jim Lonborg, and Dick Williams. And, last but not least, the pinch hitter was Bernie Carbo and the pinch runner was none other than Dave Roberts.
Why before Wednesday’s game? Because Wednesday’s game was our last home game of the year. It would have been nice to win it. Instead we will finish the season with our worst record at home since 1965 and our first losing record at home since 1997: 34-47. Now Fenway will soon be covered with snow, silent in the long, cold winter that lies ahead with only the bitter memory of losing as an aftertaste.
Sports Then And Now
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