Terry Francona benched Jacoby Ellsbury (0 for 20) in favor of Drew, who hit leadoff eight times this season. … Some interesting moves by the Rays as well, who using the rookie Fernando Perez. He homered off Wakefield on Sept. 17. Perez is a New Jersey kid who graduated from Columbia.
UPDATE, 6:00 p.m.: Spoke to Brian Cashman. He said that he and Joe Girardi will put together a list of candidates to be the third base coach and the process could take a while. He said there was a possibility that a current member of the staff could be shifted over.
Out of respect for Meacham, Cashman didn’t want to get into the particulars for his dismissal. “For various reasons, we wanted to make a change,” he said. “It was a tough decision.”
Cashman also didn’t want to address any particular candidates.
UPDATE, 8:13 p.m.: Walk, home run, home run, double. Yeah, it’s safe to say that Tim Wakefield doesn’t have it tonight. That’s five dingers for Longoria in the postseason, a rookie record.
3-0 Rays and Fenway Park is quiet as a crypt.
UPDATE, 8:46 p.m.: The Rays! The Phillies! The World Series! Only on Fox! Simpsons reruns will get higher ratings than those games. The Foxies badly wanted Sox-Dodgers and they’re going to get the exact opposite.
UPDATE, 9:33 p.m.: Lost in all the home runs is that Andy Sonnanstine is throwing a two-hitter through five innings. Joe Maddon hinted before the game that he might use Scott Kazmir in Game 5 and push James Shields to a possible Game 6. Kazmir has pitched well at Fenway Park over the course of his career (4-4, 3.02) while Shields has not (0-3, 10.12).
If this margin holds up Tampa will not have to go deep into its bullpen, either. The Rays are set up to get to their first World Series. But Boston, as you know, has been in deeper holes than this and lived to tell the tale.
UPDATE, 9:57 p.m.: The Rays have now scored 28 runs (and counting) in the last three games. The fans at friendly Fenway are booing and/or headed for the exits.
UPDATE, 10:23 p.m.: B.J. Upton just did one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen on a baseball field. After tracking down a fly ball to the base of the wall in center field, he turned and threw the ball to the first-base line, a few feet from the bag … on the fly. That dude has skills.
UPDATE, 10:41 p.m.: It’s 13-2, let’s sing the creepy Sweet Caroline everybody!