Red Sox Live Blog: Sox Rally Falls Short in Ninth With Help From Umpires

Red Sox Live Blog: Sox Rally Falls Short in Ninth With Help From Umpires Postgame, Blue Jays 3-2: There were positives to speak of in the Red Sox clubhouse (Tim Wakefield's start, a 7-3 homestand) but it was clear how upset the club was about what transpired in the ninth inning.

In case you missed it, the Sox entered the ninth trailing 3-0. After Victor Martinez struck out against Blue Jays closer Kevin Gregg, Kevin Youkilis singled.

J.D. Drew followed with an RBI double to get Boston on the board. David Ortiz stepped up representing the tying run. Ortiz worked the count to 3-2 and then held up on a ball about a foot outside, seemingly getting the winning run to the plate with just one down.

But home plate umpire Dale Scott called it strike three. Ortiz was incensed and Francona ran out to protect his player.

"I'm too mad right now. I'm too [expletive] pissed off right now," Ortiz said. "Just write down whatever you guys want. Y'all know whats up."

Moments after both finally left the field, Scott ruled that Adrian Beltre offered at a pitch on which he clearly held up. Francona stormed out of the dugout again and was tossed within seconds.

Beltre singled in Drew on the very next pitch so the second call didn't necessarily hurt the Sox, but it simply reinforced the fact that Scott appeared to be in a hurry.

"I don't know man. That was interesting," second baseman Dustin Pedroia said. "They must've had a flight. I'm gonna check on that, see if they had a flight, make sure it's delayed."

Pedroia had a slight smile on his face when offering the comments, but it there was obvious displeasure over the fact that Ortiz, who already had two hits in the game, being rung up.

We will have more on this in a separate piece. Look for the live blog back in action Friday night when the Sox visit Detroit.

Final, Blue Jays 3-2: The Sox do not go down without a fight in a wild ninth inning that sees manager Terry Francona get ejected arguing not one, but two calls that appeared to be as bad as they come. J.D. Drew and Adrian Beltre both drove in runs in the frame before Kevin Gregg nails down the Blue Jays' first win in six tries against Boston this year.

The Sox go 7-3 on their 10-game homestand and now hit an extremely difficult stretch. They play three at Detroit beginning Friday, followed by a visit to Yankee Stadium for two, two at home against the Minnesota Twins and then road series against Philadelphia and Tampa Bay.

We'll head downstairs to see the boys off and get some reaction. Back up in a bit.

Mid 9th, Blue Jays 3-0: There were many times in recent years when Red Sox teams put together late rallies to steal games. That hasn't happened in 2010, when the club is 0-11 when trailing after eight innings. It may not be easy against Kevin Gregg, who has been dominant this year and has tossed 14 2/3 scoreless innings in his career against Boston.

3:44 p.m.: Manny Delcarmen retired the first two in the ninth before an infield single by Jose Bautista. Scott Schoeneweis is being brought in to get the last out of the inning.

End 8th, Blue Jays 3-0: A leadoff single by Darnell McDonald goes for naught in the eighth. The Sox will likely face Jays closer Kevin Gregg in the ninth.

Mid 8th, Blue Jays 3-0: Manny Delcarmen needs only seven pitches to coast through the seventh inning. The Sox finally have Shaun Marcum out of there. After 103 pitches he gives way to Scott Downs.

Marcum yielded two singles — both to David Ortiz — and walked one in seven innings. He struck out six.

Maybe now the Boston bats can get going. Downs was the losing pitcher in relief of Marcum back on April 27 against the Red Sox in Toronto.

End 7th, Blue Jays 3-0: David Ortiz continues to swing a better bat, but his single in the seventh is all the Red Sox muster against Shaun Marcum.

The Boston designated hitter position is now 15-for-43 (.349) with three home runs and 12 RBIs in May.

Tim Wakefield's day is done after another quality start. He is replaced by Manny Delcarmen.

Mid 7th, Blue Jays 3-0: The line for Tim Wakefield will look a little bit uglier after Travis Snider takes him deep for a two-run homer in the seventh. Snider has all three RBIs for the Jays. The rest of the team is a combined 3-for-23 with five strikeouts

End 6th, Blue Jays 1-0: The Sox had the top of the lineup coming up against Shaun Marcum, perhaps a chance to get something going. Alas, the ball never left the infield.

Marcum gets Marco Scutaro on a foul pop, Dustin Pedroia on his sixth strikeout of the game and Victor Martinez an a grounder to the mound.

Mid 6th, Blue Jays 1-0: A double and a wild pitch put a runner at third with two outs, but Tim Wakefield gets his 2,001st strikeout to get into the dugout with just 83 pitches thrown. The victim was Vernon Wells, who was also the 2,000th strikeout for Wakefield back in the fourth.

End 5th, Blue Jays 1-0: Shaun Marcum has not allowed a hit since David Ortiz's single with one out in the second inning. He has retired 11 of the last 12 overall, the only man to reach in that span being Dustin Pedroia, who took a pitch on the back end in the third.

Mid 5th, Blue Jays 1-0: A pair of doubles by Lyle Overbay and Travis Snider gets the Jays on the board against Tim Wakefield, who is approaching several other milestones.

Wakefield now needs 19 innings to surpass Roger Clemens on the Red Sox all-time list. He is vying for the 190th win of his major league career. And when he records a win this year he will become just the fifth pitcher in American League history to get at least one victory in 16 straight seasons with the same team. The last to do so was Mal Harder, who had a win in 19 straight years for Cleveland from 1929-47.

End 4th, 0-0: For some reason Shaun Marcum didn't get the same ovation when he finished the fourth with his 354th career strikeout as Tim Wakefield did with his 2,000th.

That's because most fans were groaning at the fact that David Ortiz had struck out for the 31st time in 82 at bats.

Both pitchers are working on one-hitters.

Mid 4th, 0-0: Tim Wakefield gets a well-deserved ovation after recording his 2,000th career strikeout to end the fourth. He gets it on a knuckleball (what else?) to Vernon Wells, and acknowledges the crowd with a tip of the cap. Wakefield joins Jamie Moyer, Javier Vazquez and Andy Pettitte as the only active pitchers with 2,000 strikeouts.

Wake is rolling here. He has needed just 51 pitches to dispatch the Jays thus far.

End 3rd, 0-0: Think back to April 27 if you can. The Sox were in Toronto and Clay Buchholz was matched up against Shaun Marcum in a classic pitchers' duel. It was just a matter of who blinked first, and unfortunately for Marcum it was the Blue Jays bullpen, which walked in the eventual winning run in the eighth. Boston won 2-1.

It may be too early to classify this as a pitchers' duel, but Marcum remains locked down against the Red Sox. He has walked one, allowed one hit and just hit Dustin Pedroia in the bum with a pitch, but otherwise he's been solid.

Mid 3rd, 0-0: Jose Molina rips the first hit off Tim Wakefield with two down in the third, but the knuckleballer is through three very impressive innings with just 40 pitches thrown.

I have nothing to go by in saying this, just a hunch, but my guess is you will see Wakefield out there for at least another start or two until Josh Beckett returns. They are just not going to rush Beckett back and if Wakefield can throw like this there is no reason to.

End 2nd, 0-0: Jeremy Hermida stepped to the plate with runners on the corners and two outs, exactly the kind of situation he has thrived in this year. Hermida entered batting .429 (6-for-14) with 12 RBIs when batting with runners in scoring position and two outs. He made a bid for another big hit with a bloop to center but second baseman John McDonald made a nice over-the-shoulder grab.

David Ortiz had a single in the second, improving to 8-for-26 (.307) with four extra-base hits in May. I'm just sayin.

Mid 2nd, 0-0: Another perfect inning for Tim Wakefield and this one is chugging along already. Remember, it's getaway day and we have two pitchers who like to work quick.

End 1st, 0-0: The Sox go quietly in the first against Shaun Marcum, who has allowed just 39 hits in 49 2/3 innings against Boston in his career.

Mid 1st, 0-0: A spry Tim Wakefield records the first out of the game by beating speedy Fred Lewis to first base, part of a 1-2-3 inning for the righty.

Wakefield needed just 10 pitches to get through his first inning as a starter in 18 days.

1:33 p.m.: Tim Wakefield has taken the mound in front of an extremely late-arriving crowd. We are about to get underway.

1:08 p.m.: The Blue Jays have replaced Aaron Hill at second base due to a tight right hamstring. He will be replaced by John McDonald. Here is the new Blue Jays lineup:

Fred Lewis LF
Alex Gonzalez SS
Randy Ruiz DH
Vernon Wells CF
Lyle Overbay 1B
Jose Bautista 3B
Travis Snider RF
John McDonald 2B
Jose Molina C

12:55 p.m.: The pregame updates are rather brief this afternoon. Mike Cameron is back with the team and will do some work while the game is going on with some of the trainers, according to manager Terry Francona. There are no new updates on Jacoby Ellsbury, but he continues to work out.

There are no definitive limitations on Tim Wakefield in terms of pitch count. One of the reasons for bringing him back for a start (aside from the Josh Beckett situation) is to make sure he never gets to a point where there actually would be limitations. He needs to stay stretched out in the event he is needed at the drop of a hat.

Here are a few numbers to get you in the mood:

  • The Red Sox' 14-7 record since April 20 is the best record in the American League during that stretch, and is second behind only San Diego (13-6) in terms of winning percentage.
  • Boston has played 13 games this season against teams with a .600 winning percentage or better, tied for second in the majors. It is just 3-10 in such affairs.
  • The Sox are batting .303 over their last 11 games.
  • Toronto leads the majors with 150 extra-base hits, 24 more than Boston, which ranks second in the category.
  • Left fielder Fred Lewis leads the AL for the month of May in hits (20), doubles (7), OBP (.434), slugging percentage (.673) and total bases (33).
  • The Blue Jays have never started a season vs. the Red Sox with six straight losses.

12:06 p.m.: The tarp is now off the field and it looks great, but there are a few drops falling from the sky. Just a few. More updates to come.

10:37 a.m.: The tarp is on the field but it's dry for now. Here are the lineups for the finale between the Red Sox and Blue Jays:

Red Sox

Marco Scutaro SS
Dustin Pedroia 2B
Victor Martinez C
Kevin Youkilis 1B
J.D. Drew RF
David Ortiz DH
Adrian Beltre 3B
Jeremy Hermida LF
Jonathan Van Every CF

Blue Jays

Fred Lewis LF
Aaron Hill 2B
Randy Ruiz DH
Vernon Wells CF
Lyle Overbay 1B
Alex Gonzalez SS
Jose Bautista 3B
Travis Snider RF
Jose Molina C

8 a.m.: It's been lost amid some very ugly losses to Baltimore and New York, but the Red Sox have quietly won 14 of their last 21 and have a chance to climb one rung of the American League East ladder when they host the Toronto Blue Jays in a Wednesday matinee.

With a win, Boston would have two three-game sweeps of Toronto in just over two weeks and would be three games above .500 for the first time all season.

To get there, the club may need a quality outing from Tim Wakefield, who gets his first start since April 25, a strong effort against the Orioles which preceded his transfer to the bullpen.

The Jays, who have walked 15 Red Sox batters in the series, turn to Shaun Marcum to try to salvage a win.

First pitch is scheduled for 1:35 but rain is expected. Check back periodically for weather updates.

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