In what was supposed to be the most winnable game of this three-game series, the Red Sox were utterly crushed by the Texas Rangers, 9-1.
With Felix Doubront going up against Scott Feldman (who started the night with an ERA approaching 6.00), a substitute for Roy Oswalt, who was scratched with a tight lower back, the Sox just needed to play up to their level against a struggling starter. Even with a mediocre Doubront outing, they should have had a good shot.
Instead, they were almost completely silent against one of the most mediocre arms they're likely to run into on a contending team like this. A second-inning home run from Jarrod Saltalamacchia would put the team up 1-0, and then...nothing. Allowing baserunners one at a time, Feldman held the Red Sox down in the third, then the fourth, the fifth, the sixth, and the seventh. It was a terrible offensive showing from what is supposed to be one of the best lineups in the majors.
Even had the Sox' bats been alive, however, it would likely have made no difference, because Doubront wasn't even mediocre. After being bailed out by a tremendous play from Will Middlebrooks in the first, Doubront managed to dig himself out of a hole in the second, and then finally fell completely apart in the third. Hard-hit infield singles got things started before hard line drives dealt the killing blows, leaving the Sox in a 4-1 hole after three.
While Doubront would bounce back for a short time, he would once again struggle in the sixth, surrendering a two-run homer to Mike Napoli before recording an out. In came Franklin Morales, showing all the struggles one might expect from someone jerked back and forth from the bullpen (where he was struggling) to the rotation (where he was not) back to the bullpen in little over a month. By the time the long inning was at an end, the Sox trailed by 9-1--a gap they would not close as the night wound down.
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