The Embree problem: He's been really sucking, lower velocity and less-than-stellar control. I feel better with Mike Myers out there now. So Embree comes into the game in relief of Bronson Arroyo (who despite giving up a home run to Chone Figgins to start the game, pitched well). The Red Sox are ahead 5-2 -- nine outs to victory.
The first four batters Embree faces: double, strikeout, single, single. Now Boston's lead is 5-3 and there are runners at first and second. Mike Timlin is up in the pen and I see (via Gameday) that there's a visit at the mound. Okay, good, enough of Embree, let's see if Timlin can get out of this mess.
Nope. Embree stays in. He throws seven fastballs to Garrett Anderson, the last of which is hit for a three-run home run to right, giving Anaheim the 6-5 lead. ... Now Timlin is brought in. He and Mike Myers hold the line (sort of), but Matt Mantei (three walks and a single to five batters) and John Halama (two singles and a triple to five batters) team up to allow six runs in the ninth inning.
There's no way of knowing, of course, whether the Embree non-move mattered. Maybe Timlin gets Anderson, maybe he doesn't. Maybe the entire chain reaction of suckitude would have happened anyway.
Myers threw 24 pitches last night, so I assume Francona didn't want to use him, though he was forced to in the eighth, when Myers ended up facing Steve Finley and Anderson, the same guys he perhaps should have seen in the seventh. He got them both out.
Notes: Has Rip Van Millar woken up? The Cabin hit two home runs and a double and drove in three runs. ... David Ortiz has struck out six times in the last two games. ... Bartolo Colon's pitching line was somewhat bizarre: 6-10-5-1-11.
Adam Kennedy, the Angels' #9 hitter, has reached base safely in all nine of his plate appearances in this series:
Friday: single, single, single, singleThe best thing you can say about today's game is that it counts as only one loss.
Saturday: fielder's choice, walk, double, double, walk