The Red Sox fell to the Royals 9-4 after a terrible sixth inning turned the game completely on its head.
Through five-and-a-half innings, Tim Wakefield looked poised to pick up the 200th win of his career. The Red Sox had scored four runs for him, with Ryan Lavarnway reaching base three times in his third Major League game, scoring one run and driving in another. Wakefield had even been reasonably impressive, limiting the Royals to just one run, albeit on sixth hits.
Then came the three disaster pitches, one after another, to Eric Hosmer, Jeff Francoeur, and Mike Moustakas. The results: three hits, five bases, and two runs. Before Terry Francona could so much as stand up in the dugout, the score was 4-3 and there was a man at second.
When Francona did make his way to the mound, he called on Matt Albers, whose carriage may have officially turned back into a pumpkin--pardon the reference--after tonight's outing. With his August-to-date being quite ugly, Albers needed a strong game, and instead provided just one out to go with a walk, two singles, and a ringing double off the wall. By the time he had left the game, the Sox had fallen behind 7-4.
It would only get worse as Franklin Morales entered to face Eric Hosmer, who had started all this trouble in the first place. Hosmer took Morales to the wall for a triple, and with two men on, the score reached 9-4. Though the Sox offense had managed its fair share of baserunners in the game, with the wind knocked out of them by the sixth, they could mount no more offense, leaving the Sox losers and the Yankees still in first place despite being blown out by the Twins.
Wakefield will have to wait at least another four days.