The Red Sox held on for much of Sunday afternoon's game, but could not keep pace with the Nationals for all nine innings, falling 4-3 as the Nationals pushed three across in the last three innings.
Jon Lester looked for all the world like he was going to end this game early. After surrendering a run in the first on a double, a sacrifice fly, and a ground ball, the third inning saw him completely fall apart, even without allowing a run. Allowing a single and a walk with one out, the Sox would ultimately elect to walk Ryan Zimmerman after Lester twice completely missed his spot to fall behind 2-0. The fourth pitch to Zimmerman, an intentional ball, nearly sailed to the backstop, with only a leaping grab from Salty saving at least one run from scoring.
Lester would manage to strike out the final batter of the inning looking at a fastball that dotted the inside corner, however, and that seemed to fire him up. Lester would roll through the next three innings while the Sox tied the game in the third when Dustin Pedroia beat out a double play, and took the lead in the fourth on a big fly from David Ortiz.
Boston's lefty starter would keep right on rolling into the seventh, which is where everything just seemed to go wrong. A bad hop on a ground ball to third, a first pitch changeup cued into left field, and suddenly it was two on with no outs. A double steal made up for a strikeout from Jesus Flores, and while Roger Bernadina gifted the team an out on a pop-up bunt, Lester could not get Ian Desmond, who doubled off the wall to make it 3-2, Nationals.
The lead would only last into the bottom of the frame, as the Sox again scored on a ground ball out, but it was only a short reprieve. Going into the ninth, Alfredo Aceves gave up a walk to Bryce Harper with one out, and then after having a few close calls go against him, surrendered the go-ahead double to Bernadina. With the Sox not scoring in the ninth, they fell to 29-31.
|Final - 6.10.2012||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R|
|Boston Red Sox||0||0||1||1||0||0||1||0||0||3|