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Sox Can't Overcome Mills' Implosion

For the most part, the Red Sox pitchers were good today. Jon Lester pitched 2.2 innings, giving up only a hit and a walk while striking out 4. A pair of errors behind him in the first allowed the Rays to score their first run of the game, but for the most part the ace lefty was on.

Out of the bullpen, Papelbon, Okajima, Ramirez, and Bard all had scoreless innings. Brian Shouse gave up 1 run on 2 hits, but it was Adam Mills' appearance that sunk the team. After getting the final out of the third inning, Mills returned for the fourth, and gave up 6 runs on 7 hits and a walk. It was not until the Rays had already loaded the bases, scored a run, and reloaded the bases that Mills managed to get the first out. Robert Manuel would have to get the final out of the inning after the Rays had built a strong lead.

The Red Sox still made a good run of it, though. The offense was lead by Jacoby Ellsbury, who up until today had been having a quiet spring. He turned that around with a bang--or rather a couple of bangs--as he smacked two home runs off Joe Bateman and Joaquin Benoit.

The Sox got started earlier off David Price, though, as Youkilis led off the 2nd inning with a line drive that nearly clocked Price. Though he dodged danger then, Price would have to leave the game after the next batter, Adrian Beltre, broke his bat on an infield single. A piece of the bat flew at price, and ended up cutting his right (non-pitching) hand. Joe Bateman would replace him, and allow Youkilis and Beltre to score on a Mike Cameron line drive and a Bill Hall ground out respectively. 

After Ellsbury's first homer, Pedroia singled off Bateman and was scored by a Youkilis double. The Sox loaded the bases in the inning, but Bill Hall popped out to strand all 3 runners. They scored their final 2 runs on Ellsbury's second home run.

Some notes

  • Daniel Bard threw a couple of "nasty" changeups for strikes. He also got a swinging strike on a slurve, and in fact struck out the first two batters he faced on 6 pitches.
  • Ryan Kalish worked 2 long at bats for walks.
  • Youkilis would have been 3-for-3, but was robbed of extra bases by Gabe Kapler.