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WSI News - Totally Biased Game Recaps

Zobrist Slams the Sox

April 17 at Tampa Bay

KW's Daily Special:
Melted Ice Cream
The bullpen melts under pressure.

Short Take: † A night of strange calls and moves at the Trop as the Rays even up the series.

Ben Zobrist was the heartbreaker on Friday night, as his pinch-hit grand slam off Matt Thornton gave the Rays the lead and ultimately the 6-5 victory to even the series at one game a piece. For the Pale Hose, Bartolo Colon looked pretty good for the first 5.2 innings before running out of gas. Unfortunately on this night, the Sox bullpen couldnít hold the lead.

Tampa got on the board in the 2nd with a solo shot by the AL league leader in homeruns, Carlos Pena. Until the bottom of the 5th, thatís all the Rays could muster off big Bartolo Colon. The Sox on the other hand came right back to score two runs in the top half of the 3rd. AJ Pierzynski led off with a ground rule double that bounced off the dumpy synthetic turf at the Trop and over the outfield wall. AJ advanced to 3rd on a hard single by Brian Anderson. Chris Getz doubled home AJ as BA moved to third and eventually scored on a Josh Fields groundout. Sox lead 2-1.

In the 5th, Dionar Navarro doubled off Colon and eventually scored to tie the game on a double by Sox-killer Jason Bartlett. The Good Guys came right back in the top of the 6th as Carlos Quentin hit his 5th HR of the season. After Jim Thome reached on a single off Rays starter James Shields, the hottest hitter on the Sox, Jermaine Dye, homered to leftfield (his 4th) to bring home Thome and give the Sox a 5-2 lead.

The bottom of the 6th was when the wheels fell off for the Sox. Colon labored to retire two batters as Evan Longoria reached on a double. A single by Ex-Phillie (and the only guy on the planet slower than Paul Konerko) Pat Burrell and a walk to Navarro loaded the bases for Ben Zobrist to work his magic off reliever Matt Thornton and give the Rays the lead with a slam , 6-5. They would hold on to win by that score, but not before a series of strange happeningsÖ

Bad Move #1 that didnít end up hurting the Sox: After Zobristís homer, Iwamura doubled off Thornton and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Bartlett walked and stole second. With runners on 2nd & 3rd with a one-run lead, Ozzie pulled Thornton and called inÖ.Mike MacDougal!?! He was promptly removed after walking the bases loaded.

Bad Call #1 that didnít end up helping the Sox: In the 8th, Ben Zobrist reached on a single and was promptly picked off with the most obvious balk move in the history of baseball by Clayton Richard. First base umpire Mike Everitt apparently didnít agree.

Bad Move #2 that didnít end up hurting the Sox: In the top of the 9th with two outs, Brent Lillibridge steals third base. Ranger would have had a fun night if Brent would have been thrown out on that one.

Get the Rays tomorrow and take the next two. Go Sox!

Critic's Corner:
†Three Stars- Need to finish with a better dessert than Thornton's melted ice cream

submitted by Brian26

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