|Toronto (73-84) «||4||0||3||2||2||0||0||11||14||0|
BOSTON -- The Boston Red Sox got drenched Monday night, but not with champagne.
On a night when they came to the ballpark with a chance to clinch a playoff berth, the Red Sox scratched ace Josh Beckett from his scheduled start and watched substitute Michael Bowden spot the Blue Jays seven runs in the first three innings en route to Toronto's rain-shortened 11-5 victory.
"We're in a pretty good place," Red Sox catcher Victor Martinez said. "Let's see what happens. We have to wait and come back tomorrow and play again."
It was the fourth straight loss for Boston, which could have clinched the AL wild card with a win and a Texas loss. The Rangers lost 11-0 to the Los Angeles Angels later Monday night, leaving the Red Sox six games ahead in the wild card with six to play.
Torrential rain suddenly began falling in the bottom of the seventh, when the Red Sox had one run in and two men on with nobody out in the seventh.
The game was called after a delay of 62 minutes.
And the champagne was left in storage for another night.
Boston will have a chance to earn the playoff berth Tuesday, when Clay Buchholz faces Toronto's Ricky Romero.
"It's inexcusable," said Bowden, who did not blame the short notice for his struggles. "They could have told me at 7:05 and I should have been able to put forth a better effort than I did tonight. It's just a terrible feeling, going out there and letting the team down and giving up that many runs so early."
"I'm trying to finish strong. I've never been in a slump like this before," said Richmond, who gave up four runs on six hits and two walks, striking out three in six innings. "After I got all those runs, it was just plain and simple: pound the zone."
Toronto won its fourth straight game, matching its longest winning streak of the season. The Blue Jays had lost six straight to the Red Sox and eight in a row at Fenway Park.
"It's nice to get a win here, finally," manager Cito Gaston said. "I've always thought it's tough to manage here, too. You never know when you have enough runs for this place because before you know it, you turn around [and it's going] the other way."
"It looked like we were going to continue to swing the bats," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. "But we also got ourselves into a position where ... we didn't want to be in."
Beckett had been scheduled to make his second-to-last start of the regular season, but he was scratched after complaining of back spasms. Francona said he was still expecting the right-hander to pitch Saturday.
So the Red Sox turned to Bowden, who was making the second major league start of his career. He got one quick out before Hill homered and then the next four batters hit safely to give Toronto a 4-0 lead. Youkilis hit a two-run shot in the bottom half, but Barajas hit a three-run homer in the third to make it 7-2.
Bowden (0-1) did not come out for the fourth inning. In all, he allowed seven runs on seven hits and a walk, striking out three.
"The hope, especially with a young guy, is he'll take it and run with it and everybody will have a great night," Francona said. "This was kind of the flip side."
|Rod Barajas is greeted by teammates after his three-run homer in the third inning. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
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|Toronto Blue Jays|
|Jose Bautista, RF||5||1||2||3||0||0||0||.236|
|Aaron Hill, 2B||4||1||1||1||0||0||2||.285|
|Adam Lind, DH||4||1||1||0||0||1||0||.302|
|Vernon Wells, CF||3||1||1||0||1||0||0||.262|
|Edwin Encarnacion, 3B||3||3||2||1||0||0||1||.223|
|Kevin Millar, 3B||1||0||1||0||0||0||0||.213|
|Lyle Overbay, 1B||4||1||3||2||0||0||1||.271|
|Rod Barajas, C||4||2||2||3||0||1||3||.234|
|Travis Snider, LF||3||0||0||0||0||1||1||.235|
|John McDonald, SS||3||1||1||1||0||1||0||.242|
|2B - Vernon Wells (35, Bowden), Lyle Overbay (35, Bowden)|
|HR - Jose Bautista (9, Jones), Aaron Hill (35, Bowden), Rod Barajas (19, Bowden)|
|SF - John McDonald (1)|
|RBI - Jose Bautista 3 (33), Aaron Hill (104), Edwin Encarnacion (35), Lyle Overbay 2 (61), Rod Barajas 3 (71), John McDonald (10)|
|2-OUT RBI - Jose Bautista (15), Rod Barajas 3 (26)|
|Team LOB - 5|
|Toronto Blue Jays|
|Scott Richmond (W,8-10)||6||6||4||4||2||3||3||5.35|
|Pitches-Strikes - Scott Richmond 102-60, Casey Janssen 13-4|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Scott Richmond 5-10|
|Batters Faced - Scott Richmond 26, Casey Janssen 3|
|Boston Red Sox|
|Jacoby Ellsbury, CF||2||0||0||0||2||0||0||.298|
|Dustin Pedroia, 2B||4||0||1||1||0||0||3||.295|
|Victor Martinez, C||3||1||1||0||0||0||0||.301|
|George Kottaras, C||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.227|
|Kevin Youkilis, 3B||3||2||2||3||0||0||0||.305|
|David Ortiz, DH||3||1||2||1||0||0||0||.238|
|Jason Bay, LF||3||0||0||0||0||2||1||.266|
|Joey Gathright, LF||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.278|
|J.D. Drew, RF||3||0||1||0||0||0||1||.272|
|Brian Anderson, RF||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.235|
|Casey Kotchman, 1B||2||0||0||0||1||0||0||.270|
|Alex Gonzalez, SS||2||1||0||0||1||1||2||.236|
|2B - Dustin Pedroia (47, Janssen), J.D. Drew (30, Richmond)|
|HR - Kevin Youkilis 2 (27, Richmond, Richmond), David Ortiz (28, Richmond)|
|RBI - Dustin Pedroia (68), Kevin Youkilis 3 (90), David Ortiz (95)|
|2-OUT RBI - Kevin Youkilis 2 (41)|
|Team LOB - 6|
|Boston Red Sox|
|Michael Bowden (L,0-1)||3||7||7||7||1||3||2||10.80|
|HBP - Snider (by Hunter Jones)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Michael Bowden 67-37, Hunter Jones 28-18, Dustin Richardson 24-15, Manny Delcarmen 10-7|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Michael Bowden 4-2, Dustin Richardson 1-3, Manny Delcarmen 1-2|
|Batters Faced - Michael Bowden 17, Hunter Jones 11, Dustin Richardson 6, Manny Delcarmen 3|
|Attendance - 37591|
|Game Time - 2:22|
|Temperature - 66|
|Umpires - Home - Jerry Meals, First Base - Ron Kulpa, Second Base - Mike DiMuro, Third Base - Dale Scott|