So the Red Sox gave the ball to Brad Penny, who has been doing very well and at home and lately as well. He went up against Garret Olsen, who so far this season was 3-2 with a 4.58 ERA.
Brad Penny started with absolute fire, his outside fastball was a beauty as he struck out two in the first inning alone.
The offense came into the game quickly two, after a walk by Rocco Baldelli the captain Jason Varitek hit a home run over the Green Monster, giving the Red Sox a 2-0 lead in the second inning.
In the third inning though, the Mariners grabbed their first run. Russell Branyan hit a double to score Ichiro, but thanks to a nice defensive effort between Varitek and Youkilis, Branyan was gunned out at first.
In the fifth inning, with both pitchers going on well, Brad Penny lost his lead as Russell Branyan yet again hit in a run, this time Chris Woodward scored.
Kevin Youkilis’s double in the fifth inning was to no use, and after the seventh inning, both pitchers had already disappeared.
Brad Penny went six innings, giving only two earned runs on six hits. He only gave up one walk, and his outing was actually very impressive.
Yet Olsen beat him out, going 6.1 inning with two runs but only four hits. Unlike the Red Sox bullpen, the Mariners bullpen would be perfect.
As both teams went hitless in the seventh inning and eighth inning, it looked as if the game would automatically go into extra innings.
Then Takashi Saito came into the game, and that changed.
His slider seemed to not hit the plate, and if his fastball wasn’t fouled or hit it was always just a ball. It became clear he might not get out of the inning clear.
He gave up three walks due to his bad slider and fastball, and with only one out Chris Woodward came up with the bases loaded.
The Mariners lead was 3-2, and even though Saito didn’t give up anymore runs the inning was felt.
Boston didn’t come close to scoring in the bottom of the ninth inning, going down in order to former Red Sox player David Aardsma, and the Sox were defeated.
Later in the day, the Yankees beat the Blue Jays in the 12th inning, and the Sox lead is now one game in the AL East. Its way too close, and I can’t say that today is a good day to be a Sox fan.