Jonathan Papelbon doesn’t lead the league in blown saves. But for some reason, it always feels like a bigger deal when he blows one than when someone else does. And he blew another one today, giving Toronto a victory over Boston.
John Lackey was cruising throughout most of the game. He had thrown only around 90 pitches in eight innings, giving up two runs. Having him come back out for the ninth was a defensible move by Tito. Big series against the Rangers coming up, best to have the pen rested if possible. Unfortunately, Lackey gave up a leadoff homer to Jose Bautista. That made it 5-3, Sox, so Francona made the call to the pen.
Papelbon: Vernon Wells double and an Adam Lind RBI single, 5-4. DeWayne Wise pinch runs for Lind and steals second and an Aaron Hill infield single gets him to third. After a strikeout, came the big hit. Check out the video here, because I can’t do it justice.
Ahem. That tied it up, Daniel Bard came in to relieve Paps and a Fred Lewis sacrifice fly later the ballgame was over.
Just an absolutely demoralizing loss for the Sox. One that, should they fall just short of the playoffs this year, will come back to haunt them, I’m sure.