I sat in my cubicle today thinking "sweep, sweep, sweep" and through 7 innings we had it in the bag, the Red Sox would exit Yankee Stadium for the last time riding high and leave their rivals utterly beaten. It all sounded so good, and then they let it slip away.
The Red Sox lost this afternoon 3-2 after Jason Giambi hit a 2 run homer to tie the game in the 7th, and ultimately won the game in the bottom of the 9th with a bases loaded single off of Cinco Ocho. Jon Lester bounced back from a rare bad outing to give the Red Sox 6 and 2/3rds great innings, allowing 5 hits, 1 earned run while striking out 8 Yankees. That should have been good enough to win, but Mike Mussina limited the Red Sox to only 2 runs and pinch hitter Jason Giambi provided all the offense for the Yanks off of Boston's bullpen. Oki Doki let up Giambi's game-tying, 2 run home run in the 7th, Tito went to Masterson in the 9th who loaded the bases (via a single, an intentional walk and another walk). Papelbon was called in to try to get the Sox out of a tough jam and let up a game winning single by Giambi.....highlights show the pitch as being an 0-2 fastball left over the middle of the plate....why he didn't try to waste a splitter low and away i'm not sure.
A disappointing loss? Yes. A reason to think the Yankees are still in the playoff chase? No way. In the end, the Red Sox did exactly what they had to, taking two out of three in New York. The first two games went so well that we all naturally feel a little let down, but it's time to move on. The Yankees are done, over, stop thinking about them. Refocus your thoughts and scoreboard watching on Tampa, the Whitesox and Minnesota. Was this a big series in New York? Absolutely. Is this weekend's series against the Whitesox even bigger? Yep, so get ready.