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Closing Time: Alfredo Aceves’ rough outing dooms Red Sox in rain-shortened game

04.23.13 at 9:49 pm ET
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The bad Alfredo Aceves was on display on Tuesday night, as the Red Sox fell to the A’s 13-0 in a seven-inning rain-shortened game.

Aceves had a rough night in many facets of the game, which included two balks, four walks, a home run, an error, and seven earned runs allowed. Aceves went just 3 1/3 innings before giving way to Steven Wright, who made his major league debut.

With John Lackey possibly returning on Sunday, Aceves was likely to return to the bullpen anyways, but this outing may make Red Sox manager John Farrell‘s decision a lot easier. After trading zeroes with A’s starter Bartolo Colon in the first two frames, it all fell apart for the Sox in the third.

In the top of the third the A’s scored six times on three hits, and batted around. A bases-loaded walk to Seth Smith began the scoring, followed later by two balks and an error by Aceves, an error by Will Middlebrooks, and a couple of RBI hits in between. After retiring Coco Crisp to begin the fourth, a double and then a Smith home run ended Aceves’ night.

Wright went 3 2/3, allowing five runs on six hits, walked four, and struck out four in relief.

As loud as the A’s bats were, the Sox hitters were just as silent. Colon went seven shutout innings, allowed three hits, one walk and struck out seven against an offense that scored nine runs the night before. This was only the second time the Sox were shutout this season.

Here’s a look at what went wrong and right for the Sox:

WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE RED SOX
– Not much worked out for the Sox in this one, but one interesting note is that Jacoby Ellsbury worked the first walk off of Colon this season. Before the sixth inning free pass, Colon had gone a remarkable 24 innings to begin this season without issuing one.

– Wright took one for the team in his major league debut, eating up some innings and helping the Sox bullpen out a bit. In his 3 2/3 innings of work, he allowed five runs on six hits, walking four, and striking out four.

– Though the Sox committed two errors, it could have been three, if not for a reversed call on a ground out in the fourth. Crisp sent a grounder to Dustin Pedroia, who ranged to his right, and threw off line to Mike Napoli at first. Napoli appeared to come off the bag and slap a tag on Crisp, but first base umpire Jerry Layne ruled safe. After a brief meeting with home plate umpire Hunter Wendelstedt, they overturned the call and  Crisp was ruled out.

WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE RED SOX
– The top of the third was one half inning that the team will likely want to soon forget. In the frame, the A’s scored six runs on three hits and hit a home run. In a truly bizarre inning, Aceves also committed two balks and an error, while Middlebrooks made his first miscue of the young season.

– A night after scoring nine runs on nine hits (seven of them for extra bases), the Sox were shutout and had just three singles and a walk. Shane Victorino‘s 0-for-3 showing dropped him below the .300 mark for the first time since April 16. Napoli went o-for-3 with a strikeout and did not drive in a run for the first time since Saturday against the Royals.

– While his ability to log some valuable innings will always be appreciated, Wright’s debut probably did not go as he had envisioned. The knuckleballer gave up as many hits in this outing as he did in 10 innings at Pawtucket this season, and three more runs than he had allowed in Triple-A.

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