Boston Red Sox: The nightmarish inning that wouldn’t end

Heading into the eighth inning of Saturday night’s game between the Boston Red Sox and the Chicago Cubs, the Red Sox were enjoying a 3-1, thanks to the efforts of Alfredo Aceves, pressed into duty as a starter when Daisuke Matsuzaka landed on the disabled list, and David Ortiz, who hit his 300th home run as a member of the Red Sox, joining the likes of Ted Williams, Carl Yastrzemski, Jim Rice and Dwight Evans.

Ortiz' 300th homer as a member of the Red Sox was one of the few highlights for Boston on this error-filled night (Photo credit Keith Allison via Creative Commons license)

Both of the teams had their throwback uniforms on from the days of 1918, when the Red Sox bested the Cubs in six games in the World Series.

However last night, in the eighth inning, the Red Sox for one inning morphed into the Chicago Cubs.

In the top of the eighth for the Cubs, 12 batters came to the plate. Eight of those batters eventually scored. The Red Sox committed three errors in the inning, two on one play. Relievers Matt Albers and Franklin Morales were left spinning in the wind thanks to a Red Sox defense that resembled many Cubs teams of yesteryear.

It certainly didn’t help that Albers added to his own misery by walking two batters, one with the bases loaded. However the defense behind him shared in the blame. Shortstop Jed Lowrie, backing up on a popup off the bat of Alfonso Soriano, had the ball bounce out of his glove for an error, scoring Carlos Pena.

Soriano and Jeff Baker both scored on a play where neither should have scored in the first place.

Darwin Barney, who had started the inning with a single, sent a fly ball out to J.D. Drew in right field. Drew caught it and fired the ball to Jason Varitek at the plate. Soriano, who was on third at the time, had tagged up, but stopped midway between third and home and was headed back to third. Varitiek tossed to Kevin Youkilis for the easy put-out, but the ball clanked off Youkilis’ glove into left field, scoring Soriano. Carl Crawford retrieved the ball and threw home to try and catch the streaking Baker, but his throw also was off the mark, scoring Baker.

It was vintage “put a tent over that circus” type of baseball, the type of baseball that Cubs fans have often seen during the past 103 seasons since their beloved Cubbies last won the World Series.

For Red Sox fans, the comedy of errors didn’t play well at all.

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