The Red Sox bashed their way to another victory last night with three home runs. I think it has less to do with a sudden offensive resurgence but rather the fact that Orioles relievers couldn’t throw a strike past Helen Keller.
Matt “Accelerant” Albers took the mound in the seventh, inheriting first and third with none out from starter Brian Matusz. Albers avoided pinch hitter David Ortiz’s bat when the slugger curiously laid off a fat fastball. Jeremy Hermida managed to swipe second on the strikeout, avoiding the double play. Marco Scutaro rendered the number of outs irrelevant, cleaning out a fastball inside for a three-run homer.
A visit to the mound didn’t improve the visitors’ situation; Albers proceeded to surrender a double to Dustin Pedroia and walk Victor Martinez. Kam “Methanol” Mickolio took over and did his best Albers impersonation, serving an inside meatball that Kevin Youkilis launched into the Monster seats for a four-run lead.
The local nine would need every one of those runs as Ramon Ramirez allowed Adam Jones to homer and Nick Markakis to double in the ninth. Jonathan “Pyrophoric” Papelbon toed the rubber and the next three Orioles singled to pull their team to within a run.
With runners on first and second and one out, Papelbon pulled himself together and struck out journeyman Ty Wigginton and rookie Rhyne Hughes. The Red Sox closer indulged in a celebration not unlike Joba Chamberlain when he finally secured his fifth save. Papelbon seemed to revel his increasing value in the free agent market rather than his team’s victory.
|Game 18: April 24, 2010|
|6||BS, L: Matt Albers (1, 0-3)|
|2B: Luke Scott (4), Nick Markakis (7)|
HR: Ty Wigginton (6), Adam Jones (3)
|7||W: John Lackey (2-1)|
H: Ramon Ramirez (1)
S: Jonathan Papelbon (5)
|2B: Dustin Pedroia (6)|
HR: Jason Varitek (4), Marco Scutaro (2), Kevin Youkilis (3)