If it wasn't Josh Beckett going 4-0 against the Yankees with a 1.85 ERA in 2011, it was Vicente Padilla irritating Mark Teixeira by buzzing batters off the plate when they played for the Rangers.
But on Friday night, both Teixeira and the Yankees had the last laugh. Teixeira plated the go-ahead runs off of Padilla with a triple, and the Yankees won 10-8.
Teixeira was reveling in moment after the game, harping on Padilla's tendency to plunk opposing hitters.
"I was making some jokes that I have to get in line [to criticize Padilla] — he doesn't have a lot of friends in the game," Teixeira said. "In the NFL, he would probably be suspended by [commissioner] Roger Goodell for eight games or a whole season [for hitting people]. But this is baseball."
Padilla didn't hit anyone on Friday night, but he was off-target, giving up two earned runs on two hits. And he wasn't the only Red Sox pitcher missing the mark.
During the seventh, Andrew Miller and Padilla each yielded two earned runs while only recording one out apiece. It took Scott Atchison, who allowed an inherited runner to score, to strike out Yankees catcher Russell Martin to end the nightmare.
"Andrew had [Curtis] Granderson on a pretty close 3-2 pitch and then a ground ball and, you know, that's one out sooner than I really wanted to bring in Padilla," manager Bobby Valentine said. "He’s been pitching so well. I thought we could squeak it out."
The poor pitching night, however, started with Beckett, who had been so strong against the Yankees last year.
He pitched five innings overall but allowed five earned runs in the first inning, a hole the Red Sox could not climb out of.
"It was tough just rhythm-wise," Beckett said. "I was battling myself especially in the first inning. I kind of sped up my mechanics there in the middle innings and, at least out of the windup, it made a difference. The stretch was pretty tough."
You could say the same for the Red Sox.
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