Bard Implodes, Sox Lose 5-4 To Jays

All of a sudden, Daniel Bard has become more of the problem and less of the solution. For the third straight appearance, he was scored upon and his earned run average over the last nine days has jumped a full run.

Today, it was two walks and an errant throw by Bard on a bunt attempt that loaded the bases in the top of the 8th and the Red Sox leading 4-2. A ground out and a base hit later, the Red Sox were looking up at wrong end of a 5-4 Toronto lead and what would turn out to be the final score.

Manager Terry Francona said after the game that it's a matter of fastball command. Bard said it's mechanical and that he feels it on every pitch. Certainly, trying to repeat your mechanics - especially at the Major League level - can be a challenge, but you're left wondering if feeling "it on every pitch" isn't a euphemism for some kind of injury.

If you're looking for a bright spot, the Orioles beat Tampa this evening to keep the Sox 4 games up in the Wild Card race. Tampa conveniently comes into Fenway for the next four games.