It was going to end eventually. All of it.
Papelbon stranding the million baserunners he allows. Nick Green leading the team in UZR. The pen not allowing multiple runs since the All-Star Break.
Clay "Rhymes with but better than Smoltz" Buchholz started it out, pitching 5.2 innings and striking out 5, allowing only 2 runs. His stuff was quite impressive - nasty curves and changes, and a sharp fastball. His team scored 6 runs off some rookie. Times were good. Then the pen came in. Oki and RamRam gave up runs, but didn't upstage the Lord of the Dance, the Tower of Papel himself. With two assists from Nick Green, Jonathan Papelbon allowed three runs to tie the game up. Then Manny Delcarmen reminded us all why he should never pitch more than one inning. The Sox valiantly rallied, but came up short in the 11th.
Baseball is a cruel sport. Cruel and unusual. Solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short. Actually that's golf. But being a baseball fan, even of one of the best teams in the game, can be trying. A good NFL team only loses a handful of times; some go undefeated. Harry Potter always catches the Golden Snitch.*
Not so in baseball. A good year in baseball is winning 58.6% of your games (95 wins in 162 games). So one way to look at it is that a playoff team still has to earn its 67 or so losses. Well, they earned one tonight.
*I hear he also wears a shirt that says, "No Snitchin'!"