Editor’s note: NESN.com is going to tell the story of the 2012 Red Sox in Bobby Valentine’s words. Each game day, we will select the best Valentine quote that sums up the day for the Red Sox.
Just when the season couldn’t hit a new low, it did.
The Athletics — or rather, the former Red Sox prospects that
now play in Oakland — dispatched Boston’s pitchers one by one in Friday night’s
20-2 romp, teeing off for 14 runs against five relievers.
Of the seven pitchers the Red Sox used in the contest,
including starter Aaron Cook, only Junichi Tazawa emerged unscathed. He struck out two batters in 1 1/3 scoreless innings of work to
lower his ERA to 1.72.
any fun for anyone, that’s for sure,” Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine told
reporters after the loss, “except the guys on the other side.”
Most of those
guys on the other side were familiar faces, too. Former Sox farmhands Brandon Moss,
George Kottaras and Josh Reddick combined to drive in 13 of the 20 runs to
crush the Red Sox. In the process, all three blasted at least one home run.
But Oakland’s beatdown on the Red Sox bullpen started with
former closer Alfredo Aceves. Making his first appearance since his new role was announced,
Aceves showed no sign of improvement, yielding a two-run shot in the fifth.
Daniel Bard, who pitched in his first major league outing
since early June, couldn’t stop the bleeding when he received the baton. He
gave up a solo home run to Kottaras, who finished the game with his first
career multi-homer game.
Shortly thereafter, the woes just snowballed onto the entire
bullpen. After a solid stretch since joining the Red Sox at the trade deadline,
Craig Breslow only lasted 1/3 of an inning as the Athletics punished him with
But Reddick delivered the final nail in the coffin later in
the seventh inning against reliever Mark Melancon, smacking his first career
grand slam into the right field seats. Even Vicente Padilla was tagged for two
runs in the eighth inning.
It was the first time the Red Sox had allowed 20 or more
runs in a game since Aug. 21, 2009 against the Yankees. And it was quite the
humiliating experience for the Red Sox clubhouse.
“There’s really nothing to talk about,” second baseman
Dustin Pedroia said after the game. “The score was 20-2.”
So on this night, the scoreboard did all the talking.