Wright's SoCal homecoming spoiled by Angels

Wright's SoCal homecoming spoiled by Angels

ANAHEIM -- The pain and pleasure of the knuckleball is the uncertainty of where it will go. Red Sox knuckleballer Steven Wright found that out the hard way in the nightcap of Monday's doubleheader against the Angels.

After Wright allowed a solo home run to Albert Pujols in the second inning, other Angels hitters joined in on the party in the third, scoring four more runs, to eventually hand the Red Sox a 7-3 loss.

Wright got two quick outs in the third, but wound up facing eight more batters before getting out of the frame. In that span, only one ball left the infield. Wright walked three, allowed two infield singles, hit one batter and threw one wild pitch.

The loss was a tough pill to swallow for Wright, who is from Moreno Valley, Calif. and was playing in front of a few dozen friends and family members.

"It is always tough. It doesn't matter who you are throwing in front of," Wright said. "I felt good out there and that one inning kind of got in front of me. I had two outs. I shot myself in the foot. Had I been able to limit that inning, I probably would have been able to go deeper and give the team a chance to win."

Wright was activated before the start of the nightcap as the Red Sox's 26th man.

"He had a lot of movement tonight and he was trying to find a release point that would allow it to finish in the strike zone, but after a few quick outs in the third, it was elusive for him," said Red Sox manager John Farrell.

Wright said he was overthrowing a little bit to begin the night, but rode it out and finished the game allowing six runs on six hits in five innings.

"It gets frustrating when it moves like that and you can't throw it for strikes. It limits your options," Wright said. "After that, I found the rhythm and I think that's a lot of it. I was able to get back to the rhythm quickly. It snowballed in that one inning."

Wright had his best start of the season on May 23 against the Angels in Boston, allowing two runs on four hits in 6 1/3 innings for the win.

Thanks to a humid night in Anaheim, Wright said the ball was moving more than it had in a while.

"That's the most frustrating thing. I felt good," Wright said. "You feel like you have good stuff to compete."

Quinn Roberts is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.