Everything was in line for a Sox win last night. Pedroia had the night of his life. He didn't quite get the cycle. His last hit was a second double instead of a single, so it's hard to complain. Dice-K had a quality start and left with a three run lead. Okajima regained some of his old form and held fast in the inning he pitched. Then the glimmer twins, Manny Delcarmen and Craig Hansen, gave it all away and then some.
The Sox bullpen's ERA for this series was a bloated 12.00. In 2004 and 2007, the Sox won the World Series largely because the bullpen was extremely effective. This year, who do they turn to exactly? I think, in spite, of some recent rough outings that Oki will remain a viable option. Other than him, who can be a bridge to Papelbon? David Aardsma?
I defended the Sox performance on the road earlier in the season by saying that all teams have road woes. However, their play on the road the past few weeks has been pathetic and inexcusable. You have to win on the road some times. If the Red Sox pulled it out last night, I would've been happy with that. It was a competative three game series. Playing the Rays close and leaving Tampa with one win is an acceptable result. The way they lost last night is just demoralizing. They failed to do any of the little things that will finish off a victory. I think the All-Star break is coming just in time. Sheesh.