"It was right down the middle, up in the zone," Shields said, shaking his head about the gopher balls
. "They're good hitters over there, and they took advantage of it.
Craig Breslow gave up a home run to Caleb Joseph and has served up eight gopher balls
in 53⅔ innings.
Although Lima just escaped Bert Blyleven's single-season record of 50 gopher balls
; no other hurler has ever given up homers with such frequency.
He has served up eight gopher balls
in 26⅔ innings this year.
Wakefield served up a total of 10 gopher balls
during that streak.
Of the 156 gopher balls
served up by Sox pitching, 111 came with nobody on base.
In contrast, John Lackey has served up 21 gopher balls
but they have cost him just 25 runs.
With 15 gopher balls
served up, Dempster is third in the league.
That was significant considering that in his previous three starts, he had served up six gopher balls
Masterson worked 21-2/3 innings between gopher balls
Overall, 12 of the last 15 gopher balls
off Sox pitching have come with nobody on base.
It was only one game, but first-place Boston couldn't pull the trigger with men on base, gave up three gopher balls
, and looked bad in the field - read Julio Lugo - in dropping a 5-4 decision to the St.
Okajima went 689 pitches between gopher balls
. The homer snapped his personal shutout streak at 17 innings.
He went 672 pitches between gopher balls
, then went 33 pitches between Sheffield's homer and Marcus Thames' in the fourth; 11 between Thames' and Carlos Guillen's later in that inning.
It won't be a Boston pitcher, though the three starters Bonds will face here are all prone to serving up gopher balls
. The trio of Daisuke Matsuzaka, Julian Tavarez and Tim Wakefield are three of the four most homer-prone Boston pitchers, surrendering 23 among them, with Matsuzaka giving up nine, seven of them to left-handed batters like Bonds.