(I cannot tell a lie — this sign doesn’t appear on the lawn of a Red Sox groundskeeper, nor anywhere in New England)
It’s amazing to think the Red Sox won 56 out of 81 games at Fenway Park this season without the lousy working conditions holding them back, but you never know when the reigning AL MVP might have trouble being accountable with a routine play. In the aftermath of Boston being swept by the Angels, the Providence Journal’s Joe McDonald fixates on a play that occured just prior to Juan Rivera’s RBI single off Jonathan Papelbon in the 8th inning of Sunday’s 7-6 defeat.
With the Red Sox still leading 5-2 in the top of the eighth inning, the Angels had runners on first and second when Kendry Morales hit a would-be double-play grounder to Pedroia. It took a bad bounce, forcing Pedroia to dive for the ball and when he made it to his feet he only had time for a play at first.
When asked if he could he ve turned a double play on Morales’ grounder, Pedroia gave a bold answer.
“Yeah, it took a bad hop,” he said with blood gushing from his right knee from the dive. “Our infield [stinks]. It’s the worst in the game. I’m not lying about that. That is true. It took a bad hop and I just tried to put my body in front of it to get an out.”
Pedroia talked about teams capitalizing on breaks, just like the Angels did in the last two innings en route to victory. Papelbon didn’t make a bad pitch in the situation, he induced a ground ball. Morales did hurt the Sox with a hit, either. It was a bad break for Boston.
“I think about those things, too,” said Pedroia. “That stuff upsets me. My job is to take 1,000 ground balls a day, and other guys’ job is to get the field perfect so we can play baseball. It happens. That’s the way it goes.”