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Red Sox whine, but Price shines

7/30/2013

1. OK, the call was wrong. Daniel Nava was safe, sliding under Jose Molina's tag. Jerry Meals missed the call. Rays 2, Red Sox 1.

2. It probably wasn't one of the 100 worst calls of the season -- certainly not in the league of Angel Hernandez not overturning the blown home run call in the A's-Indians game back in May.

3. Or a dozen other Angel Hernandez calls.

4. How did Nava not score from second base on Stephen Drew's double to right on the play before Monday night’s Fenway edition of "The Play"? The Red Sox can blame Meals, but there's blame to go around here, even if Nava thought the ball was going to be caught.

5. I suspect since this happened to the Red Sox -- as opposed to, say, the A's -- the uproar will be a thousand times louder. So at least we'll be that much closer to instant replay, at least on plays at home plate.

6. It's sort of like the infamous "Snowplow Game" in the NFL, when the Patriots beat the Dolphins 3-0 in 1982. You don't mess with Don Shula. After that game, the NFL outlawed the use of snowplows during games. You don't mess with the Red Sox or Yankees, either.

7. Did Joe Maddon actually intentionally walk the potential winning run in the bottom of the ninth when he had Fernando Rodney give a free pass to David Ortiz?

8. Yes, he did.

9. If Dusty Baker did that, he'd be called many awful names. When Maddon does it, he's a genius.

10. By the way, remember when Rodney was really bad, blowing five saves through May 25? He's 2-0 and 16-for-16 in saves since then, with a 2.31 ERA and 32/9 strikeout/walk ratio.

11. The real hero of the game, of course, was David Price, brilliant once again, allowing two hits and one run in 7 1/3 innings.

12. If not for a 39-minute rain delay, Price may have tossed his fourth complete game in five starts (in the three he did throw, he was under 100 pitches each game). He did come back after the delay to face one batter before leaving after 90 pitches.

13. Price didn't walk a batter, either. Since returning from the DL on July 2, he has 35 strikeouts and just one walk. I'd feel pretty good about Price starting Game 1 of a playoff series right now.

14. Tampa Bay is 20-4 in July. A patented Tampa Bay run.

15. The Rays and Red Sox have just three games left against each other -- Sept. 10-12 in St. Petersburg.

16. Evan Longoria is batting second. Rookie Wil Myers is batting cleanup. Maddon is a genius.

17. Jerry Meals ... that's right, he's the ump who blew the call at home plate in that 19-inning Pirates-Braves game in 2011. The Pirates lost and a huge collapse followed.

18. Jerry Meals ... that's right, he's also the guy who called Mark Teixeira out at first base on a game-ending double play last September, giving the win to the Orioles.

19. Can we get more instant replay before the playoffs begin? Especially if the Red Sox make it.

20. This is going be a very fun race.