In addition to strong starting pitching, successful teams inevitably have a competent closer at the back end. Jonathan Papelbon struggled (IIRC) to a 3.80 ERA last year and had eight blown saves.
Papelbon has made no secret about his intentions, in the Assante Samuel mode of "get paid". Yet, what has the Sox closer been doing lately?
Tonight he allowed a pair of hits to start the ninth, and has come back by mixing his pitches...it's a 3-2 count with two on and Damon on deck...
Strike three and the Red Sox win. Ugly, but a win nonetheless in the series rubber game.