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Game 155: Orioles (64-90) @ Red Sox (88-67), 7:10pm

Give 'em hell, Hunner.
Give 'em hell, Hunner.

Tommy Hunter on the mound for one team and Josh Beckett on the mound for the other? Come on, now, that's just not fair. Hunter against anyone in Fenway Park probably isn't fair. Hunter with the Orioles defense behind him isn't fair. Well, these are our lemons. Perhaps we can make some lemonade.

Beckett has a 2.50 ERA and a 1.00 WHIP. He's started 28 games and is averaging about 6.1 IP per start. He's striking out almost a batter per inning. The Red Sox have won ten of the last thirteen games that he's started. That's good for them, because they need a win. The Rays lost a game in the day half of a day/night doubleheader today and Tampa's facing C.C. Sabathia for the nightcap.

The O's can prolong the race by continuing a string of improbable victories, and to be sure, this one would be no less improbable than any of the others. Dinging Jonathan Papelbon for a blown save? I mean, how often do the O's actually manage that? It seems like never.

Even with an O's victory tonight, which is unlikely in and of itself, the Sox will probably go into the playoffs. We can take solace in knowing that with the state of their pitching staff they aren't going to get very far. But not too much solace, because that's one fewer team with a chance of beating New York and keeping our ultimate enemy from experiencing any joy ever again.

Turns out there's nothing really good about being a spoiler. Go figure.