Mortensen 'frustrated' with 9th-inning trouble

Mortensen 'frustrated' with 9th-inning trouble
May 5, 2013, 9:15 pm
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ARLINGTON, Texas -- Having already run through three other relievers, without the use of Andrew Bailey, and saving Joel Hanrahan in the event they ever got a late-inning lead, the Red Sox went with Clayton Mortensen in the bottom of the ninth in a 3-3 tie.
     
It didn't end well.
     
Mortensen looked sharp when he struck out pinch-hitter Leonys Martin and Ian Kinsler, but then allowed a two-out single to Elvis Andrus, and worse, a wild pitch which moved Andrus into scoring position.
     
"I was just trying to throw it low, down," explained Mortensen of the wild pitch afterward, "hopefully get a swing and miss. I buried it a little too much. A guy like Berkman, I was really trying to focus on keeping it down. I didn't want to mess up, so I over compensated and it went in the dirt."
     
With first base open, the Sox elected to intentionally walk Berkman. Mortensen got ahead of Adrian Beltre 1-and-2, but couldn't keep a slider far enough off the plate and Beltre swatted a single into right which scored Andrus with the game-winner.
     
"I had a pretty good slider, down, and he stayed on it," said Mortensen. "Good piece of hitting. I wish I could say I put it in the dirt and he swung over the top of it but it's just the way it worked out. Just one of those things where I threw him a bunch of sliders and he got one that was still up a little bit, down in the zone, he just stayed on it. Good hitter."
     
Mortensen sat, in uniform, in front of his locker, some 25 minutes after the Sox came into the clubhouse.
     
"Yeah, it's frustrating," he said. "You come out and get two outs pretty quickly and the next guy jumps on the first pitch and gets a base hit. You say, 'OK, let's get this next guy and then you throw one in the dirt, it gets away, he goes to second, and it kind of changes how you're going about it in the inning. Just kind of changed the complexion of the inning."