Final in 10

Series: Game 3 of 3

Minnesota won 2-1

Game 1: Tuesday, June 22
Minnesota2Final
Boston9
Game 2: Wednesday, June 23
Minnesota4Final
Boston2
Game 3: Thursday, June 24
Minnesota4Final
in 10
Boston3

Twins 4

(40-31, 19-17 away)

Red Sox 3

(40-31, 23-13 home)

    1:05 PM ET, June 24, 2004

    Fenway Park, Boston, Massachusetts 

    12345678910 R H E
    MIN 0201000001 4 8 0
    BOS 1000002000 3 10 1

    W: G. Balfour (2-0)

    L: K. Foulke (2-1)

    S: J. Nathan (21)

    Nomar, Red Sox let one get away

    BOSTON (AP) -- Nomar Garciaparra's exceptional grab of a 10th-inning grounder up the middle ended up costing the Boston Red Sox the game.

    He stretched to catch the ball, whirled around and threw it into the Boston dugout, putting speedy Cristian Guzman at second base, and the Minnesota Twins went on to win 4-3 Thursday.

    "You do a great job getting to it, you spin and you hope," Garciaparra said. "Nine out of 10 times it is. I just got one that wasn't."

    Jose Offerman followed with a sacrifice and Lew Ford hit a sacrifice fly to left fielder Manny Ramirez off Keith Foulke (2-1).

    "That's the way we play baseball. We take pride in that," Ford said.

    The Red Sox rely on power and got three RBI from David Ortiz, who hit a solo homer in the first and a two-run single in the seventh. At times, the Red Sox defense has been shaky, although Twins manager Ron Gardenhire was incredulous that Garciaparra was given a two-base error by official scorer Charlie Scoggins of The (Lowell) Sun.

    "If Nomar makes that play, people go crazy here and erupt in all kinds of cheers," he said. "That's a base hit and an error, so that's a joke that they give that an error all the way. That's stupid."

    Garciaparra, who missed 57 games before returning from the disabled list June 9, agreed.

    "That's hilarious," he said.

    Grant Balfour (2-0) got the win and Joe Nathan finished for his 21st save in 22 chances as the Twins won for the sixth time in eight games.

    Boston has lost four of five and six of nine.

    "There should be days where we knock the ball around a little bit," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said, "but you also have to win close ones."

    Brad Radke failed to get a decision for the fourth straight game despite pitching well in all of them. He left with a 3-1 lead after throwing 121 pitches in 6 2-3 innings.

    "I felt better with 120 pitches than I did in the first inning," said Radke, who wanted to persuade Gardenhire to keep him in. "I tried, but he already had his mind made up."

    In his previous three games, Radke allowed just four earned runs with 19 strikeouts and three walks in 20 2-3 innings.

    Boston put runners at second and third against Radke in the seventh on one-out singles by Kevin Youkilis and Johnny Damon and a groundout to first by Mark Bellhorn. That's when Aaron Fultz came in and gave up Ortiz's tying single on a 3-2 pitch.

    Ortiz, who leads the AL with 68 RBI, gave Boston a 1-0 lead in the first with his 17th homer, the first off Radke in 48 1-3 innings.

    Minnesota scored twice with two outs in the second. After Michael Cuddyer struck out against Tim Wakefield and reached on Doug Mirabelli's passed ball, Michael Restovich doubled home Cuddyer and Henry Blanco singled in Restovich. Cuddyer hit an RBI double in the fourth for a 3-1 lead.

    "I felt real good," Wakefield said. "Sometimes it's better to be lucky than good."

    Like the Twins were when Garciaparra threw the ball past first baseman Kevin Millar and into his own dugout.

    "He's a guy who's going to get to that ball," said Offerman, Garciaparra's teammate with Boston from 1999 to 2002. "Lucky for us he was off balance and threw the ball away because usually he makes that play."

    Game notes


    Radke made his 300th career start. ... Boston RHP Curt Schilling is to have his fourth MRI exam on his right ankle Monday after his next start, Sunday against Philadelphia. The bone bruise hasn't caused him to miss a start. ... The Red Sox had their 100th consecutive sellout crowd, the third-longest streak in major league history. ... RHP Byung-Hyun Kim will need more than two scheduled rehabilitation appearances this week for Triple-A Pawtucket before returning to Boston, Francona said.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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