|Notes and Observations Week 11: Defense Leads Battered Patriots to Victory Over Bills 20-13||Connelly’s Top Ten: Patriots Win Despite Cannon’s Assassination Attempt on Brady||Patriots and Bills Set To Do Battle on Monday Night Football||Connelly’s Top Ten: Patriots vs. Rex|
For most of the game, Boston was in firm control, but the 8th inning was rough, as Daniel Bard blew the lead and gave Toronto a 5-4 win. Toronto seized the early lead in addition to the late one, scoring twice off John Lackey. With two on and two outs, Toronto put two more singles on the board to plate the runs. They forced Lackey to throw 31 pitches in the 1st inning alone.
Boston answered back in the 2nd, leading off with a single from Dustin Pedroia. Kevin Youkilis singled himself, then Pedroia advanced to third on a fielding error in center field. Another fielding error at third allowed Ryan Lavarnway to reach before a wild pitch advanced the runners, allowing Jason Varitek to pick up an RBI on a ground-out to tie the score at two.
Jacoby Ellsbury led off the 3rd with a triple and scored on a sac fly from Marco Scutaro. They added another run to make it 4-2 in the 6th on a lead-off homer from Adrian Gonzalez.
Toronto had their chances to do more damage earlier on. They had runners at the corners with one out in the 5th, but Jose Bautista decided not to chance scoring on a fly-out to left. In the 6th, Lackey (back on after 103 pitches through five innings) hit Brett Lawrie to lead off the inning, then Lawrie stole second and also took third on a throwing error from ‘Tek. He also neglected to score on fly-out to center, at which point Lackey left the game after 115 pitches. Franklin Morales then induced a ground ball which came back home. Varitek held onto the ball despite being bowled over for the second out before Morales picked off the runner at first to end the inning.
In the 8th, Bard came on to set things up for Jonathan Papelbon, who worked the 9th anyway despite Bard’s aforementioned collapse. He led things off with two walks, the allowed the next runner to reach on a sacrifice attempt when Bard himself committed a throwing error. A soft grounder scored one runner before a single scored two more, giving Toronto three runs in the inning for a 5-4 lead. A double play ended the inning, but the damage was done; Boston went down in order twice to complete the loss.
Gonzo’s home run gave the Sox an insurance run that didn’t have something to do with errors.
After such a massive win the night before, Boston finally looked to be getting on the right track. But Bard wasn’t having any of that.
W: Ricky Romero (15-10)
L: Daniel Bard (2-8)
S: Frank Francisco (15)
Tags: Adrian Gonzalez, Daniel Bard, David Ortiz, Dustin Pedroia, Franklin Morales, Jacoby Ellsbury, Jason Varitek, John Lackey, Jonathan Papelbon, Kevin Youkilis, Lars Anderson, Marco Scutaro, Red Sox, Ryan Lavarnway, Tim Wakefield, Toronto Blue Jays