|Notes and Observations Week 16: Patriots Escape from New York with 17-16 Win; Clinch First Round Bye.||Connelly’s Top Ten: Patriots Win By Less Than a FOOT||Panic Mode in Full Effect, Minutemen are Struggling||Patriots Survive Gritty Challenge From Jets|
Before the season, Boston concentrated on bolstering their pitching and defense, but did not think about how useless all that is without bats. It showed Sunday, as Boston was held to two walks and five runs, as they lost to the Rays, 7-1. The still winless Jon Lester took the loss, giving up all seven runs. In fact, here’s all the flaccid Red Sox could manage:
Notice the Red Sox penchant for screwing things up at all costs; even with the bases loaded with no outs they can’t score to save their lives. After striking out the side 1-2-3 in the 1st, Lester promptly allowed a double to Longoria and a homer to Pena to begin the inning. In the 3rd, he gave up two lead-off walks followed by a sac bunt and a two-RBI single. And in the 6th, all fantasy teams promptly tried to get rid of Lester, after he gave up a walk, a homer, ground-rule double, committed a throwing error, and gave up a run on a force-out (failing to convert on a double play) to begin the inning (in that order).
Matt Garza got the win, going 8.0 innings, giving up four hits, two walks, and striking out five. Ben Zobrist stole second base in the 3rd, and he did it again in the 5th when Carl Crawford simultaneously stole third, all of which further reinforced Boston’s reputation as the easiest team to steal against, be it Varitek (as it was Sunday) or Martinez.
At least when the team is terrible like they will be this year, NESN’s Announcer Boy and Rem Dawg are fun to listen to. They were the only reason to spend three hours of your life you won’t get back Sunday.
Lester: stinks. Offense: stinks. Pitching: stinks, despite the hype and retooling.
“They did some big damage on a couple of swings … all three walks scored.” – Terry Francona on Jon Lester’s performance.
W: Matt Garza (3-0)
L: Jon Lester (0-2)
Tags: Adrian Beltre, Boston Red Sox, David Ortiz, Don Orsillo, J.D. Drew, Jacoby Ellsbury, Jason Varitek, Jerry Remy, Jon Lester, Marco Scutaro, Mike Cameron, Tampa Bay Rays, Terry Francona, Victor Martinez