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Closing time: Red Sox hit new low in atrocious blowout loss to Yankees

04.24.14 at 11:03 pm ET
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This was the worst.

For the second time in the Red Sox‘ three-game series against the Yankees, a brutally brief outing by the starting pitcher and a horrific performance in the field resulted in disaster.

“I think the sooner we move past this one the better,” said manager John Farrell. “We need to execute at a higher level without question. Defensively — sloppy night and you think that’s one area you do have control over and yet we didn’t put forth a very good defensive effort here tonight.”

After what was arguably his most successful outing of the season on Saturday, Felix Doubront lasted a mere 2 2/3 innings Thursday evening as he gave up seven runs, three of which were earned, en route to the Red Sox’ 14-5 loss to New York at Fenway Park. The outing matched his shortest appearance of the season and his career — a game against the Rangers where gave up five earned runs on six his over 2 2/3 innings on the mound.

For the second consecutive appearance, Doubront left the mound with a 1-0 hole after the first. This time, though, the southpaw could have gotten away unscathed if not for a fielding error by Xander Bogaerts at short. The miscue should have ended the inning, but instead put Carlos Beltran on base with Alfonso Soriano up to the plate. Soriano proceeded to rip a double to the gap in right-center, bringing in the first run of the night.

Doubront started off the second with his second walk of the game. Once again, though, the base-on-balls that could have been erased turned into another scoring opportunity for New York. Dustin Pedroia struggled with the transfer on an attempted double play and dropped the ball, leaving runners on first and second with no outs. After the runners moved to second and third on a wild pitch, Yangervis Solarte brought them in on a double to left.

New York closed out their second-inning scoring after Joe Girardi challenged the umpire’s call that Beltran had been hit by a pitch. The play was overturned and ruled a wild pitch, plating Solarte from third.

The next 2/3 of an inning were all Doubront as he served Mark Teixeira a curveball down the middle of the plate that eventually landed over the Green Monster. With one out, Doubront had a fielding error of his own allowing Brett Gardner to land on first base. Gardner went on to steal second and third before he came home on a single to center. Doubront’s night finally came to an end after he gave up a single to Jacoby Ellsbury to make it a 7-0 game.

“I wouldn’t say it’s effort related whatsoever,” Farrell said. “There’s ability here, the effort is there. Their work effort is consistent, and yet an error has not only extended innings, but then where typically a pitching staff or an individual pitcher can pick up a defensive player, that hasn’t happened.”

WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE RED SOX

– Boston had five errors on the night and four out of the five yielded runs. The Red Sox now have 19 errors on the season, which puts them in the top 10 in the majors. The five errors are the most the Red Sox have registered in a single game since 2001. With five unearned runs permitted on Thursday, the Red Sox have given up more such tallies this year than any other American League team — 17. The team also had three wild pitches, a passed ball, three steals allowed and failed to convert other plays that weren’t ruled errors (such as an easy double play pivot by Xander Bogaerts on which he bounced the throw to first).

– Doubront finished Thursday’s game with a final line of seven runs, three of which were earned, on six hits, two walks and one strikeout over 2 2/3 innings.

– After giving up a double to start off his relief appearance in the top of the six, Craig Breslow seemed to settle into the game. By the time he started the seventh, though, he became a part of the Red Sox breakdown of defensive fundamentals. Breslow gave up a single and a walk to start off the inning. A fielding error by Brock Holt loaded the bases before a soft line drive brought in two runs. By the end of his appearance, Breslow had given up five runs, four of which were earned.

– Although the Red Sox forced CC Sabathia to have a high pitch count early in the game, the team failed to capitalize as it managed just two earned runs on three hits, three walks and two hit batters. Sabathia had eight strikeouts in the appearance.

WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE RED SOX

– Bogaerts had a pair of hits (an infield single and an RBI double), and now has a career-best eight-game hitting streak.

– Entrusted with the thankless task of mop-up duty in the third inning, Burke Badenhop delivered a strong performance, logging 2 2/3 shutout innings. He stranded a runner on second upon entry, and has now retired the first batter he’s faced in all nine of his appearances, stranding all seven of his inherited runners.

– Holt’s position with the Red Sox may be up in the air after Will Middlebrooks returns in the coming week, but the third basemen easily made one of the only strong defensive plays of the game for Boston. Holt dove to his right and snagged a line drive by Beltran to kick off the top of the fourth inning.

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