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Home » October 2010 Game CommentsOctober 2010 » Bill Hall-elujah

Bill Hall-elujah

As he didn’t have the impact of Adrian Beltre, Victor Martinez, or David Ortiz, Bill Hall’s possible departure from the Red Sox has not been widely discussed. If Boston exercises its club option Hall would be paid $9.25 million in 2011, a price tag that the front office may balk at since it has a cheaper infield option with Jed Lowrie.

Hall played every position but first base and catcher, so his versatility will be missed. He pinch ran for Ortiz in the bottom of the eighth, giving him a close-up look at a miracle. With the bases loaded, Kevin Cash worked a walk to push the tying run across home. “And he shall reign for ever and ever!” Because backup catchers have a long shelf life; witness Cash’s line of .133 batting average, .224 on-base percentage, and .150 slugging percentage with the Red Sox.

As ineffective as Cash was as a hitter so were A.J. Burnett and Daisuke Matsuzaka as starters. Neither pitcher made it past the sixth inning and both gave up four runs. Burnett surrendered more hits but Matsuzaka relinquished more base on balls. Mix inefficient pitchers with two of the more patient lineups in the majors and you have a four-hour extra inning contest.

Burnett’s moment of embarrassment was the third inning leadoff solo shot by Felipe Lopez that had the journeyman infielder flipping his bat. At least Lopez had his “true Red Sox moment.” Matsuzaka’s was walking Lance Berkman in the first with the bases loaded to give the visitors the early lead.

Hall filled Ortiz’s sizable cleats in the bottom of the tenth, caroming the ball off the far left field wall near where it meets the center field wall for a double. Cash came through again, this time with a sacrifice bunt to advance Hall to third. Eric Patterson joined Lopez in having the defining play of his Red Sox career, a ringing single lined past Ivan Nova’s outstretched arm. The extra innings loss meant no champagne would flow for the Yankees, who now had to win another game to clinch the division title.

Game 161: October 2, 2010 ∙ 10 innings
6H: Sergio Mitre (1), Royce Ring (1)
BS, L: Ivan Nova (1, 1-2)
2B: Francisco Cervelli (11)
WinRed Sox
7W: Robert Manuel (1-0)
2B: Daniel Nava (14), Bill Hall (16)
HR: Felipe Lopez (8)

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