Game Story: Sox lose in 14 innings, 3-1

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Game Story: Sox lose in 14 innings, 3-1

BOSTON Apparently the Red Sox cant just beat up on the pathetic Mariners every single night.

The Sox certainly didnt play well enough to beat the Kansas City Royals, and played just badly enough in a rain-delayed 14th inning marathon session to lose by a 3-1 score at Fenway Park.

Mike Aviles pushed a run across with a squeeze bunt and an Alcides Escobar sacrifice fly to center field gave KC an insurance run while saddling reliever Randy Williams with his first loss as a member of the Sox.

The Sox had three chances in the final five innings to win the game with a runner on third base and less than two outs, but frustratingly came up empty each time in an impressive show of extra inning futility.

The Red Sox scored their lone run in the bottom of the second inning with two outs after Carl Crawford reached on a fielders choice. Crawford scampered to second base for his 11th stolen base of the season and then scored on a Josh Reddick double that was smoked to the gap between right field and center field.

Lester protected the one-run lead for nearly his entire return outing from a strained left lat, but faltered in the sixth inning as fatigue caught up to him. Melky Cabrera opened the frame up with a single and then scored all the way from first base on a Billy Butler double into the left field corner. Butler was gunned down trying to advance to third base, and Lesters night was over after 89 pitches when he walked Eric Hosmer as the next batter he faced.

Red Sox celebration quickly washes away walk-off loss

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Red Sox celebration quickly washes away walk-off loss

NEW YORK -- It had the potential to be the most awkward celebration ever.

In the top of the ninth inning at Yankee Stadium, before their game was complete, the Red Sox became American League East champions, by virtue of one other division rival -- Baltimore -- coming back to beat another -- Toronto -- in the ninth inning.

That eliminated the Blue Jays from the division race, and made the Sox division champs.

But that ninth inning reversal of fortune was about to visit the Red Sox, too.

Craig Kimbrel faced four hitters and allowed a single and three straight walks, leading to a run. When, after 28 pitches, he couldn't get an out, he was lifted for Joe Kelly, who recorded one out, then yielded a walk-off grand slam to Mark Teixeira.

The Yankees celebrated wildly on the field, while the Red Sox trudged into the dugout, beset with mixed emotions.

Yes, they had just lost a game that seemed theirs. But they also had accomplished something that had taken 158 games.

What to do?

The Sox decided to drown their temporary sorrows in champagne.

"As soon as we got in here,'' said Jackie Bradley Jr., "we quickly got over it.''

From the top of the eighth until the start of the bottom of the ninth, the Red Sox seemed headed in a conventional celebration.

A two-run, bases-loaded double by Mookie Betts and a wild pitch -- the latter enabling David Ortiz to slide into home and dislodge the ball from former teammate Tommy Layne's glove --- had given the Sox a 3-0 lead.

Koji Uehara worked around a walk to post a scoreless walk and after the top of the ninth, the Sox called on Craig Kimbrel, who had successfully closed out all but two save opportunities all season.

But Kimbrel quickly allowed a leadoff single to Brett Gardner and then began pitching as though he forgot how to throw strikes. Three straight walks resulted in a run in and the bases loaded.

Joe Kelly got an out, but then Teixeira, for the second time this week, produced a game-winning homer in the ninth. On Monday, he had homered in Toronto to turn a Blue Jays win into a loss, and now, here he was again.

It may have been a rather meaningless victory for the Yankees -- who remain barely alive for the wild card -- but it did prevent them the indignity of watching the Red Sox celebrate on their lawn.

Instead, the Sox wore the shame of the walk-off -- at least until they reached their clubhouse, where the partying began in earnest.

It had taken clubhouse attendants less than five minutes to cover the floor and lockers with plastic protective sheets. In a matter of a few more minutes, the air was filled with a mix of beer and bubbly.

President of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski wore a goggles and only socks on his feet.

As the spray reached every inch of the clubhouse, David Ortiz exclaimed: "I'm going to drown in this man.''

Defeat? What defeat?