David Price turned in an ace-like performance Thursday night. (Kirby Lee/USA Today Sports)
One bad throw ruined what was supposed to be a momentum-turning night for the Red Sox.
With one out and the bases-loaded in the ninth inning, pinch-hitter Daniel Nava grounded what should have been a game-ending double play to first baseman Hanley Ramirez. But the Sox infielder’s throw home sailed over the head of catcher Sandy Leon, allowing two runs to score, handing the Angels a walk-off, 2-1 win over the Red Sox at Angel Stadium.
It marked the first time this season the Red Sox have lost four games in a row.
The ninth-inning collapse came against Red Sox closer Brad Ziegler. The reliever had been immediately greeted by back-to-back singles from Mike Trout and Albert Pujols. Then, after three failed bunt attempts by pinch-hitter Carlos Perez, Andrelton Simmons loaded the bases with a base-hit to center.
It spoiled what had been one David Price’s best outings with the Red Sox, with the lefty pitching eight shutout innings, striking out seven while scattering seven singles. He threw 109 pitches.
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With his first-inning single, Dustin Pedroia extended his streak of reaching base to 31 games.
WHAT WENT RIGHT
– Leon made things happen in the third inning. The catcher led things off with single, and then moved to third with an aggressive baserunning play on Brock Holt’s base-hit to right field. The extra base resulted in the game’s first run, with Leon scoring on Mookie Betts’ sacrifice fly to left field.
– Overaggressiveness once again caught up to Angels manager Mike Scioscia, this time in the form of Jefry Marte getting caught stealing third base for the second out of the fifth inning. It seemed like an odd stolen base attempt considering Los Angeles had runners on first and second with one out, down by just a run. As it turned out, the play was followed with base hits from Gregorio Petit and Johnny Giavotella to load the bases. Price would escape thanks to an inning-ending ground out to shortstop by Yunel Escobar.
WHAT WENT WRONG
– There were some instances where Angels’ starter Jered Weaver’s velocity-free style flummoxed Red Sox hitters.
– The Red Sox couldn’t do much damage against Weaver, who came into the game with a 5.32 ERA. THe soft-throwing righty only gave up a run over 5 2/3 innings, with JC Ramirez protecting his line by inducing a deep fly out to left by Ramirez with a pair of Weaver’s runners on in the sixth inning.