Yesterday was the perfect illustration why I don’t consider all losses to be equal. Of course mathematically they all are. A 25-0 rout is as much of a loss as a 2-1 pitchers duel or a 10-9 slugfest or a blown save in the 9th.
But emotionally (and it is always dangerous to imply baseball has any emotions) losing a game that including a tremendous comeback only to blow it in the late innings is a nice punch to the throat.
When I saw the game was 4-1 late, I simply shrugged and thought “Sox don’t have it tonight” and went back to work. Then I looked up and saw it was 4-4 after Youk’s homer and I got pumped up.
A nice come from behind win, coupled with a Lester start on Thursday and the Sox could be back at .500 for the first time all year. And with a few more wins, the Sox could finish this miserable April with a winning record!
Then Bard coughed it up to old nemesis Vlad Guerrero. Suddenly the old punching bag known as the Orioles have won the series.
What could have been an emotional win turned into a kick to the cup.
And that was just for me sitting at a desk in California. I can’t imagine what it felt like for the players.
Either way, I’m updating the tally.
DODGED BULLET GAMES – 5
April 8 – 9-6 win against the Yankees. (The Sox end their 6 game losing streak with a slugfest. John Lackey stinks but Phil Hughes stinks even more.)
April 10 – 4-0 win against the Yankees. (Beckett and Sabathia duel in a game that was 1-0 until the late innings.)
April 20 – 5-3 win in Oakland. (Red Sox survive a lead off homer and two bases loaded situations and facing the tying run at the plate to win their first road game.)
April 21 – 4-2 win in Anaheim. (The Red Sox stranded 15 men on base and Josh Beckett’s went 8 strong with no decision. But the Sox rallied in the 11th to win.)
April 22 – 4-3 win in Anaheim. (Peter Bourjos makes a 2 run errors and the Red Sox survive a bizarre passed ball by Jarrod Saltalamacchia that let a run scored from second.)
TEETH GRINDER GAMES – 8
April 1 – 9-5 loss in Texas. (The Sox tie Opening Day in the 8th with an Ortiz homer only to have Bard implode and the Sox let up 4 in the bottom of the 8th.)
– 3-1 loss in Cleveland. (The Sox drop their 4th straight as the bats are dead in Cleveland.)April 7
– 1-0 loss in Cleveland. (Sox blow a great Lester performance on a squeeze bunt and Darnell McDonald overrunning the bag to end the game.)April 12
– 3-2 loss to Tampa Bay. (A solid Lester performance is wasted as Kyle Farnsworth of all people shuts down the Sox.)April 15
– 7-6 loss to Toronto. (Bobby Jenks implodes with a 4 run seventh inning as the Red Sox waste Pedroia and Youkilis homers and a clutch RBI double by Scuatro.April 19
– 5-0 loss in Oakland. (Pedroia gets picke doff, the Sox bats go dead and waste a solid Lackey start.)April 26
– 4-1 loss in Baltimore. (Buchholz pitches tentatively and the Sox let Kevin Gregg of all people to close out the 9th.)April 27
– 5-4 loss in Baltimore. (The Sox tie the game with a 3 run 8th only to have Bard lose it in the bottom of the 8th.)
And with each Daniel Bard loss, Jonathan Papelbon’s bargaining position gets better.
Just win today.