Tuesday May 24, 2011 | 12:49 AM

Daniel Bard spoiled Red Sox fans with his 1.93 ERA last year, his first full major league season.

On Monday night, Bard allowed an inherited runner in to tie the score, and then allowed the go-ahead run in the eight inning of a 3-2 Red Sox loss to Cleveland. Bard is 1-4 with a 3.65 ERA, and two blown saves.

Bard has also pitched 24 1/3 innings, second highest among American League relievers (Kansas City's Tim Collins has 25 2/3 IP).

Maybe the Sox need to back off using Bard so much. It will help if Bobby Jenks returns to form from the DL.

Meanwhile, Pawtucket's Kyle Weiland (3.45) put in one of his best performances (7 IP, 5 H, R, BB, 4 K). As pitchers keep dropping (Lackey, Matsuzaka, Jenks, Doubront - all on the DL), Weiland might eventually be an option for the Red Sox.

Tommy Hottovy (1.69) followed Weiland and gave up a home run, while striking out 2 in 1 IP ... Blake Maxwell (3.24) pitched a scoreless ninth.

Before we talk about the Sea Dogs, did you see the 23-innings game in the Florida State League? Jupiter topped Clearwater 2-1.

While Jupiter used 7 pitchers, Clearwater sent 8 to the mound. But two of the "relievers" were infielders, who both pitched two scoreless innings. A pitcher, Justin Friend, pitched the 23rd and lost.

Time of game: 5 hours, 37 minutes.

The Sea Dogs needed less than 3 hours to beat New Hampshire 7-3. The key moment may have been the pregame ceremony, featuring a "sacrifice" of baseball gear, including cleats and bats. See the Press Herald story.




About this Blog

Kevin Thomas covers baseball and basketball for the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram. He wisely moved to Maine in 1994 after working for the St. Petersburg Times. He is married to Nancy and they have nine children.

Follow his thoughts on the Boston Red Sox and Portland Sea Dogs on Clearing the Bases

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