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Boston almost had it, but in the end handed the Rays a 6-5 victory. Marco Scutaro started off the game with a bunt single, and despite a walk and passed ball, nothing came of it. Then the Rays started like you’d expect, with a walk and (surprise) stolen base from Ben Zobrist, who was doubled home by Carl Crawford. But the Sox answered in the 3rd. After two quick fly-outs, Eric Patterson homered, Ortiz walked, Youk tripled him home (how about that speed?), and Beltre, Drew, and Hall singled before Mike Cameron ended the inning. The result was a four-spot for Boston. Eric Patterson added another homer in the next inning after a pitching change.
But the Rays were never out of it. This was Daisuke Matsuzaka, the broken guy who can never seem to have a great game all the way through. Sure enough, the Rays broke through int he 5th, when Zobrist and Crawford singled. Willy Aybar doubled, and Kevin Cash committed a passed ball, which brought the Rays back to a 5-3 hole. Matsuzaka wasn’t any better when he started the 6th, pitching to four batters without recording an out. Sean Rodriguez doubled, Carlos Pena walked, Jason Bartlett singled on a bunt Matsuzaka couldn’t do anything with, then John Jaso (I haven’t heard of him either) singled in two runs.
The Red Sox loaded the bases with one out in the 7th, but we know how miserable they are with the bases loaded; two strikeouts ended the threat. The Rays led off their half of the inning with two singles, which later led to a sac fly after a soft ground-out to second. The substitutions then started flowing, but all for naught, as neither team could really do much of anything from then on out.
Two homers in a game was a huge help and kept the Sox going, but sadly, it wasn’t enough.
Once again, Matsuzaka showed why he is the biggest (by far) waste of money in baseball history. Sports history, for that matter. $51.11 million to just talk to someone back before they signed him was too much, by about $51.11 million.
W: Randy Choate (2-2)
L: Ramon Ramirez (0-2)
S: Rafael Soriano (22)