There's no shame in being shut down by Jeremy Hellickson. So I'm not too disappointed by this game. In fact, there is one strong positive to take from this: Buchholz doesn't suck anymore. He's gone from horrible to not-so-bad. He had to be pulled in the 6th, after only 87 pitches, but he's not stinking up the joint like he was back in April.
He's improving. And that's good.
One thing that isn't good is that the Red Sox lead the world in balks. Three more balks last night. There have been 45 balks in all of Major League Baseball this season. The Red Sox have 6 of them.
Balks are a bit freakish. But what irritates me is how much attention Sox pitchers give to baserunners. It just isn't worth it. Bard has struggled with this, and so has Buchholz. I miss the days when Joe Kerrigan was the pitching coach and the Sox didn't give a rat's ass about what baserunners did. Who cares if a runner steals second so long as the batter grounds out to third or flies out to left?
Sox' pitchers need to stop worrying about baserunners and focus on hitters.
Good job by the Rays for selling 20,843 seats. They have a first place team, hosting a divisional rival that happens to be one of the most storied in the game. And they barely fill half their park. Yes, baseball definitely belongs in the Tampa Bay area. Just like hockey belongs in Arizona.
Will Rhymes was carted off after being hit by a pitch on the wrist. He passed out due to an adrenaline rush. Jonathan Vilma blocked me on Twitter after I told him he owed Scott Atchison $10,000 for the cart off.
So the Sox' streak is over. But as I said in the first paragraph, there is no shame in being shut down by Jeremy Hellickson.
Doubront faces Matt Moore tonight. He isn't that good.