Orioles 6, Red Sox 4
It is perhaps their lowest moment yet: with Josh Beckett on the mound, facing off against a woeful Tommy Hunter, the Red Sox have been defeated by the Baltimore Orioles Wednesday night.
Josh Beckett for five innings was about as good as he's ever been. While he allowed a solo shot to Mark Reynolds in the second inning, it was on a pitch that went where he wanted it to, more or less, and was more the result of a good swing than anything else. Otherwise, he was on fire, striking out five batters while facing just two over the minimum.
The failure, ultimately, was not the sort of crash and burn act that Sox fans have gotten used to, but a slow, gradual sinking into the ocean that has been September. The sixth saw a run come in on a pair of singles (with a stolen base thrown in), but Beckett still looked alright, so he was back out for the seventh, where again it was Mark Reynolds bringing the pain with a long ball--this time a two-run shot off a hanging curveball that tied the game.
Still, the game remained tied, and so with the bullpen one giant mess, Beckett remained in...right up until he was stuck in a second-and-third situation with one out. In came Aceves, and on his second pitch of the game, away went the tie. Vladimir Guerrero singled up the middle, two runs came across, and that, as they say, was that.
Three For The Road
The Red Sox will not be AL East Champions in 2011, though there wasn't really much question about that anymore. The Yankees have officially clinched the American League East with a win over the Tampa Bay Rays.
Of course, when combined with the Yankees' win in the first half of their doubleheader with the Rays, that New York victory means that the Red Sox actually gained half a game in the wild card race. It hardly feels like it.
And that is why. Nothing more really needs be said.
Up Next -- A blissful off-day.