It looked for a time that the Seattle Mariners would break their 13- losing streak on Saturday night, as they held a 1-0 lead over the Red Sox going into the 7th inning.
Rookie Blake Beavan was pitching a dandy, allowing just five hits. (I wonder what the "10-27-10" on his glove means? I guess last October 27th has a special meaning for him.) But then Jason Varitek singled and Marco Scutaro hit a ground-rule double. (I'm not as sure as Don and Jerry that the fan who grabbed the ball as it was going into the stands interfered, or that Tek would have scored had the ball stayed in play. But Red Sox security removed him anyway. Still, the fan should know better and let it go when hit by a Red Sox player.) Jacoby Ellsbury, probably the Red Sox MVP of 2011 so far, made it academic anyway when he singled in two runs, and later he scored on a wild pitch to make it 3-1.
The Sox have now scored 93 runs in the 7th inning, the most of any inning this season.
Josh Beckett pitched seven strong innings, and allowed just a home run in the 7th to former Brooklyn Cyclone Mike Carp.
Daniel Bard loaded the bases with no outs in the 8th, but he tried to nail a runner at third on a bunt, but the ump blew the call. Kevin Youkilis touched the bag before the runner did, but he was called safe anyway. Bard then got a fly ball to left, a strikeout, and a ground out to third to extend his scoreless string to 25 innings.
Jonathan Papelbon pitched the ninth for the save, and the Mariners have now dropped 14 straight. They went 0-for-13 with runners in scoring position. When it goes bad, it really goes bad.
The Red Sox are now three games up, as the Yankees lost to the A's, 4-3 earlier today.
Congratulations to Terry Francona, who won his 1,000th MLB game as a manager tonight, and his 715th in a Red Sox uniform. He continues to be second all-time in Sox history on the manager's win list behind Joe Cronin.
The Red Sox are now 61-37, and on a pace to win 100 games. Who would have thought that when they were 2-10 in April? They also reached 60 wins on Friday night in the fewest games since 1979.
The Sox are now 14-3 in the month of July. This is a helluva team, folks. Enjoy the ride.