Gavin Floyd must have been pretty confident that he was going to suck this season. Why else would he make a pre-season bet that if he won 12 games, he would have to shave his head? With an attitude like that, Floyd would fit right in around here. I mean he almost sounds like someone around here who always thinks the worst, and who has also put his hair on the line in the past.
Floyd looked like he wouldn't get number 12 Sunday when, in the first inning, he started hanging curveballs and handing out free passes. A hanging curveball to Dustin Pedrioa and a walk to JD Drew set the stage for Mike Lowell to drive yet another hanging curve, on 0-2 no less, just over the left field wall. It was nothing more than a 331 foot lazy fly ball, and looked like it could have been caught by Carlos Quentin. But Q! misjudged his distance to the wall, caught his shoulder on the underside of the padding and came up just short with a pathetic-looking jump attempt.
Floyd settled down a bit after the first, and especially after the Sox offense started to get to Buchholz. Jermaine Dye got things started for the Sox with a solo-shot in the second, but it was the third inning that proved the difference. Carlos Quentin made up for his mediocre defensive effort with his American League leading 32nd home run, a game-tying 2-run shot, which was followed two batters later by Jim Thome's 2-run blast on a Buchholz hanger. All of the Sox homers were tape-measure shots.
Floyd cruised into the 6th, where he faltered, and was pulled after just 81 pitches. From there the Sox bullpen generally shut the BoSox down, pitching 3.2 innings of no-hit ball. The Red Sox loaded the bases against Matt Thornton in the 7th inning, but, as I pointed out in the gamethread, he wasn't pitching poorly or getting squeezed. It was just that close pitches didn't go his way. Octavio Dotel put out the fire in just two pitches by inducing a double play from Lowell, and Bobby Jenks worked a 1-2-3 night to close things out.
A bit of a brief recap tonight. I'm working on another project you should see later this week.