Games 30 through 32 - Red Sox
Red Sox 7, Rays 3
Rays 14, Red Sox 5
Red Sox 4, Rays 3
Fortunately for me, we party for real on Mother's Day at my house. So hard, in fact, that I slipped beyond the boundaries of consciousness precisely as Jonathan Papelbon put runners on 1st and 3rd with nobody out in the top of the 9th last night. The last thing I remember thinking is, "I hope they only get one here".
I'll let Terry Francona tell the rest of the story. "Pap really turned into Pap," said the Sox skipper after the game. Indeed he did, punching out Carlos Pena, B.J. Upton, and Sox-killer Carl Crawford in succession. SoSHer AgentOrange put it succintly, saying, "After that inning, all I can do is laugh. And go change my underwear." Really glad I had that last glass of wine.
Lost somewhat in the bullpen's once-again game-saving heroics is yet another middling effort by Sox starters. Sure, Josh Beckett only gave up 3 runs, but he also only went 6 innings, and he gave back a 3-1 lead. As of today, the non-Wakefield contingent of the rotation carry ERAs more commonly associated with softball pitchers: 6.42 (Beckett), 6.31 (Lester), 6.90 (Penny), and 5.28 (Masterson) - not to mention the tidy 12.79 that sent Daisuke Matsuzaka to the DL.
All that, and the Sox are 20-12. This can't be a bad thing. Though the groin injury Dustin Pedroia suffered last night and Kevin Youkilis' lingering maladies may prove to be. In the beastly Jason Bay we trust.
Last night's win kept the Sox from their 5th consecutive series loss to the Rays, delaying Tampa's final payment on their ownership option. The Sox don't see Joe Maddon's boys again until August, and I know I'm not the only Sox fan grateful for that.