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Red Sox-Orioles: It Doesn't Get Any Harder Than This for a Sox Fan

ATLANTA - JUNE 27:  David Ortiz #34 of the Boston Red Sox trotts down the first base line after earning a walk against the Atlanta Braves at Turner Field on June 27, 2009 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Thomas H.Correspondent IJuly 1, 2009

A loss like this hurts so badly, my words can't describe it. All the ideas of what happened just plain hurtand what a lead we had...

John Smoltz started, trying to get his first win as a Bostonian after a tough debut. Meanwhile, Rich Hill got the start for the Orioles. After a great win yesterday, the odds seemed to be in Boston's favor.

Boston started the game quickly. In the first inning Youkilis started it all with a two-run homer as Julio Lugo also scored. Then, in the second inning, they opened up the lead to 4-0 as Dustin Pedroia had a two-run homer.

It seemed after only two innings, it was all over. In the fourth inning, it just got plain ugly: Jacoby Ellsbury got two hits including a homer while Ortiz and Youkilis also got nice hits to bring in runs. At the end of that, the Sox had a ridiculous 9-1 lead.

The fact was, John Smoltz's win was in the book. He had a 9-1 lead in the fourth inning, and he was pitching very well. Smoltz finished after four innings, just giving up one run.

Masterson pitched the fifth and sixth innings easily, and in the seventh inning the Red Sox tagged another run to make it 10-1.

Then it got ugly.

Justin Masterson started the seventh inning, but he never got out of it. Luke Scott doubled to make it 10-2, and all of the sudden, Oscar Salazar pinch-hit a three-run homer to make the game a reasonable 10-5.

In the eighth inning, Okajima had the exact same scenario that Masterson did: He entered the eighth inning and never got out of it. Luke Scott doubled again, and Reimold was now on third base. Then Oscar Salazar hit a groundball singleto the catcher!

Matt Weiters singled and it was now 10-6. Wigginton sac-flyed and Roberts singled, both bringing in runs. There was but one out.

Jonathan Papelbon came in with a score of 10-9. Pap had men on first and second when he came in, but after a nice strikeout it seemed he might weather the storm.

His worst nightmare happened.

Nick Markakis doubled into center field, and both runs scored. Somehow, Baltimore had taken an 11-10 lead. The impossible had happened in just two innings.

So the Sox went up to bat in the ninth. Jeff Bailey singled, and Youk was hit by a pitch. With two outs and two on, Jason Bay, the recent hero of the Sox, came up to bat. He lasted four pitches. On the fourth he took a high swing, and just like that the Sox had lost in a comeback game. It was one of the toughest non-playoff games I have ever had to watch.

For once I will say it: It's not a good day to be a Sox fan.

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