Misery, misery, more misery for the Red Sox and their fans. In a game entirely too reminiscent of the season opener, the Red Sox enjoyed a strong outing from Jon Lester, but could do nearly nothing against the opposing ace--in this case Ricky Romero--eventually falling 1-3 when a ninth inning rally died out.
Lester was fantastic today--far stronger than in his first outing, frankly--but had the one period of weakness that unfortunately resulted in more production than the Tigers managed against him a week ago. The questionable decision to not only leave him in for the eighth but to have him keep going with 115 pitches on his arm and having just given up a walk will probably come under scrutiny. Given that Bobby Valentine had nobody even warming up, it probably deserves to as well.
The real problem, of course, was the offense. To his credit, Ricky Romero was electric today, but perhaps not so electric as the team made him seem. After a first inning that saw two balls hit to the track, the Sox showed no inclination of making Romero work for his outs or even pay for his strikes. The pronounced slump of Kevin Youkilis in particular is getting difficult to overlook, but it was a failure of the lineup as a whole that led to this fifth defeat.
Hopefully the homecoming will light some fire under this team, because at the moment that seems to be distinctly lacking.