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Monday, April 21, 2014

Red Sox Win Ugly Game in Gross Way: Walk-Off Error

You are excused if you either didn't watch the Red Sox-Orioles game tonight or at least changed it after Boston went down 5-0 in the sixth inning. Who could have predicted that Boston (9-10 overall, 4-5 home) would rally for a wild 6-5 win at Fenway Park over bumbling Baltimore (8-9 overall, 4-5 away)?

It was tied at five in the bottom of the ninth when Mike Carp lined out to left but David Lough made a terrible relay throw and third baseman Jonathan Schoop ran from the ball like it was a grenade. The bottom line was that Dustin Pedroia scored the winning run as Boston escaped with an improbable 6-5 victory. The best part for all involved (players, fans, media) is that it didn't go to extra innings since Marathon Monday is tomorrow with its customary 11 a.m. start time.

The Jake Peavy of late 2013 made the start and Baltimore scored three in the first inning on a homer by Nelson Cruz (his third of the season, all against Boston), Matt Wieters had an RBI single and J.J. Hardy added a run with a sacrifice fly. Things got worse as Lough had an RBI double in the fifth and Adam Jones (4 hits, double, run) made it 5-0 with a run-scoring single.

For a while, Ubaldo Jimenez looked pretty good but then he remembered how much he always struggles against the Red Sox. Jonny Gomes started the comeback with a three-run bomb in the sixth (his second of the season) and David Ortiz cut it to 5-4 with an RBI single in the seventh. The tying run scored on a fielder's choice by Mike Napoli. Speaking of Nap, he got drilled right on the kneecap in the ninth but somehow stayed in the game on a cold night. Props to him, that had to kill. Coupled with his mangled finger, this hasn't been the best week of his life by any means.

It was a tough night for Lough, he actually was unwittingly Baltimore's last out as he struck out against Edward Mujica (the only batter he faced). For those four pitches, Mujica picked up his first win as a Red Sox (1-1). Boston has won the last two games after dropping Friday's series opener; they'll go for the series win this afternoon as Clay Buchholz (0-1) looks for his first victory of the season against Wei-Yin Chen (2-1).

It should be an emotional day at Fenway with the Boston Marathon going on in the background. Patriot's Day is always a special time in Boston and this year in particular with last year's bombings fresh in our minds should be particularly meaningful. The Red Sox did a great job with a touching pregame ceremony before tonight's contest. Expect more stuff tomorrow dedicated to the victims, first responders and runners.

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