Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Did Anyone Predict That One?

This is why they actually play the games on the field and not just in the newspapers. The Rays playing against the Red Sox in Fenway Park with Jon Lester on the mound? Who wouldn't predict a win for the Sox in that game. Unfortunately, two things went wrong. First, Lester had a bad third inning giving up two home runs accounting for all the runs Tampa Bay would need. The second thing that went wrong is that the Red Sox could not score. The result was a 9-1 loss allowing the Rays to take a 2-1 lead in the series.

If you are a Rays fan, that has to feel good. You know that the series will be returning to Tampa for game 6. You know that the Sox are sending out Tim Wakefield tonight and Wakefield has not pitched in a while, and has been knocked around by the Rays recently. A win tonight by the Rays would put the Sox down 3-1. No team could possibly come back from that, could they? Well, I suppose they could actually.

But, the loss last night certainly was not the plan for the Sox. The plan was to win that game, go up 2-1, and put some pressure on the Rays. Lester kept them in the game. When he left in the 6th inning the Sox were losing 5-0. At the time, it seemed like the Sox might have a chance to close that gap. Up until that point, the Sox had at least one runner on base in every inning and runners in scoring position twice. It seemed that it was just a matter of time until they plated a few runs.

The Sox, however, could not put together the hits in the right order to score. Early in the game, Pedroia, Kotsay, and Bay were getting hits, but no one was driving them in. Later in the game, the bottom of the order was getting on base, but the top was not hitting. The result was that only one run was scored, on a sacrifice fly by Jacoby Ellsbury.

The Sox need a big rally tonight. David Ortiz, Jed Lowrie, Jacoby Ellsbury and Jason Varitek are all hitless in this series. Tonight, that needs to change. Papi has to cause some damage and bring some power back to the meat of the order. Ellsbury has to get on base and create problems for the defense. Lowrie needs to drive in runs, like he has done so well in the regular season. Varitek needs a rest, and will get one tonight as Wakefield is pitching. he has looked rather inept at the plate, and I think a night or two off to clear his head is in order. Not sure what to do about Papi, but we sure need that bat to come to life.

3 comments:

Fenway West said...

That was painful in so many ways but it is a best of 7 series, tonight is not even a must win but a big night for Wake and some timely hitting could have everyone breathing a little easier.

Rooster said...

Not a "must win" game, but the next closest thing to one.

I'd love to see the bats come back to life tonight, and I'd hate to see a loss. Coming back from huge deficits in the ALCS is getting to be too much for me.

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