Red Sox thwarted in eventful ninth vs. Giants

Red Sox thwarted in eventful ninth vs. Giants

SAN FRANCISCO -- The top of the ninth inning of Wednesday night's 2-1 Giants win over the Red Sox unfolded like something out of a Hollywood script. The sold-out crowd, seemingly evenly divided between the Giants and Red Sox, gave it the feel of an important postseason production.

Hanley Ramirez, with one hit in his last 17 at-bats, led off against Giants closer Santiago Casilla with a fairly well-hit ball into left field. Mac Williamson, who had just given the Giants the lead in the eighth with his first Major League homer, had the ball bounce off the heel of his glove for a two-base error.

"I was playing that ball to come back to me a little bit," Williamson said. "I called off Denard [Span]. I thought I was going to be right under it and it kind of darted the other way. I tried to recover and didn't make the play."

That brought the Red Sox faithful to their feet. The Giants fans quickly followed.

"We caught a break there, man in scoring position to lead off," Red Sox manager John Farrell said. "I felt like we had a good matchup there with Jackie."

There was no way Farrell was going to ask Jackie Bradley Jr., a .321 hitter, to bunt. He struck out looking.

"Casilla made some pitches and got the calls," said Farrell, who thought the last two pitches were a tad outside. Bradley had a short discussion with home-plate umpire Tim Timmons that led nowhere.

Chris Young, who had already homered and was swinging a hot bat, was due up. Farrell went with David Ortiz as a pinch-hitter, knowing Giants manager Bruce Bochy would call on lefty Javier Lopez, Ortiz's former teammate.

"He's the best hitter on the team," Young said. "He has to get an at-bat there."

Said Farrell: "I liked David vs. Lopez better than the other matchup."

Lopez walked Ortiz on a full count, and Rusney Castillo was sent to run for him.

"He draws a big walk there and it's a situation there we have two shots at it," Farrell said. "They made the pitches to get out of it."

Travis Shaw, who entered the game as a pinch-hitter in the seventh, struck out after sharply fouling off a pitch to the right side.

Bochy then went to righty Hunter Strickland, and Farrell countered with lefty-hitting Marco Hernandez, who drilled a one-hopper on the first pitch to Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford for the final out.

"It was a good baseball game," Boston starter David Price said. "We had the big hits yesterday and they had the big hits today."

Rick Eymer is a contributor to and covered the Red Sox on Wednesday. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.