The Red Sox are choking this game away. If the runners left on in the first five innings wasn’t enough, the last two innings have featured gaffes of colossal proportions.
First was John Lackey hitting Francisco Cervelli with his first pitch of the seventh inning. Cervelli had celebrated his homer with perhaps somewhat more aplomb than was entirely necessary, but down two and with over 100 pitches facing the leadoff batter is not the time by any stretch of the imagination. After New York’s pitching coach found himself ejected, the HBP predictably came back to haunt lackey after a bunt single and a GIDP brought Cervelli home to score, making it 5-2.
All could have been forgiven, however, if the Sox had just taken advantage in the bottom of the inning. The team once again loaded the bases, this time with just one out, and could have tied things up with a solid double. But Jarrod Saltalamacchia struck out swinging on three straight sliders out of the zone, and after Darnell McDonald worked the count full, he took a hack at what would have been an RBI-inducing ball four.
Frustrating doesn’t begin to describe it.