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Big Pickoff Costs Red Sox Against Jays

When the first pitch to Victor Martinez in the ninth inning bounced in front of the plate, it did not seem like a game-changing moment.

Jose Molina was positioned to knock it down, and keep it in front of him, preventing Ryan Kalish from getting into scoring position as the tying run. Instead of knocking it down, though, Molina backhanded the ball and fired to first in one fluid motion. Kalish was too far off the bag and too slow in reacting, and the Blue Jays erased the tying run from the basepaths.

And then Victor hit a triple. He would be stranded at third as Adrian Beltre grounded out to give the Blue Jays the 4-3 win.

It was something of an ironic finish to a night where the Red Sox just could not bring their baserunners in, stranding 10 men.

Still, they crossed home plate three times, and a few years ago (or even just in 2009), that would have been enough with Josh Beckett getting the start. Not so on Saturday. It was not Beckett's worst start by any means, allowing four runs (three earned) over seven innings of work, but it was still...messy. Beckett could only record four strikeouts on the night as the Jays smacked the ball around (and, in Jose Bautista's case, out of) the park, picking up 10 hits against the one-time ace.

They didn't even have to pick up hard hits, either. One run came on an RBI bunt when John McDonald (on second base thanks to an Adrian Beltre throwing error) came all the way home on a bunt single down the first base line. Nobody was covering the plate, leaving the second baseman free to jog right in.

The Red Sox have one last shot to dodge the sweep, as Jon Lester goes up against Shaun Marcum.