It shouldn't be this hard. ... I lost count of how many times in these last three games I yelled, "WTF?!? It's the Devil Rays!"
But a shaky ninth inning (from Myers and Schilling) was closed out without any runs being allowed, and Boston won by what looks like a nice, easy margin.
The Red Sox got to Seth McClung the second time through the order. He had retired the first nine batters, but they scored single runs in the middle three frames.
First, Boston managed only one run from a bases loaded, none out situation in the fourth. The fifth inning was a riot. After Alex Cora belted his first Red Sox home run, Doug Mirabelli beat out an infield hit to deep short. Then, with McClung and catcher Toby Hall ignoring him, Mirabelli got a tremendous jump and stole second without a throw. The slower-than-slow Belli was two-thirds of the way to second by the time Hall had caught the pitch.
Edgar Renteria generated a run in the sixth inning almost by himself. He walked, tagged and went to second on a foul pop behind the plate, took third on a passed ball and scored on John Olerud's sac fly.
That would be "clean-up hitter John Olerud". With Manny Ramirez having the day off, Trot Nixon on the disabled list, and Wakefield on the mound, it was like a split-squad lineup today. ... Still, at this stage, Olerud should never, never, never be the #4 hitter.