After David Ortiz's single brought in Coco Crisp in the bottom of the eighth, it looked hopeful. The Red Sox had managed just six hits and only two runners had advanced past second base, but the game was tied at 2-2.
Then, with Mike Timlin in his second inning of work, Wily Mo Pena dropped Craig Monroe's popup down the right field line and Carlos Guillen scored the go-ahead run. (The inning began with a walk and a one-out single.) In the last of the ninth, the Sox went down in order, Pena taking a called third strike to end the game.
Terry Francona, on the fly ball: "I think he saw the stands coming, knew he needed to catch it and get rid of it. Probably tried to do everything a little too quick and couldn't handle it."
Wily Mo: "I didn't take my eyes off it. I always have my eyes on the ball. I didn't think about the wall. I was just thinking about trying to catch the ball. ... That ball just hit my glove and then fell down. I didn't take my eyes off it."
It looked like Pena thought he was a little closer to the stands than he actually was. (Monroe got credit for a single on the play.)
Afterwards, Timlin was frustrated: "We've been throwing the ball really well. I'm not calling anybody out, but we haven't scored a whole lot." ... In their last six losses, the Sox have lost by a total of only nine runs.
Jon Lester said he's starting the night game on Friday. So the matchups look like this:
Friday: Jason Johnson / Chien-Mien Wang
Friday: Jon Lester / Sidney Ponson
Saturday: Josh Beckett / Randy Johnson
Sunday: Curt Schilling / Mike Mussina
Monday: David Wells / Cory Lidle
Keith Foulke plans on being in the Red Sox bullpen this weekend. ... Sources say the Red Sox and Orioles are talking about a deal for LaTroy Hawkins. Pitchers Scott Schoeneweis and Russ Springer have also cleared waivers.
Last night: For the first time in major league history, two 18-innings games were played on the same day. The Cubs beat Houston 8-6, and Arizona edged the Rockies 2-1.