The Red Sox were burned by the red line Friday night in the ninth inning of a 10-inning, 14-13 loss at Fenway Park, when the Angels' Vernon Wells hit a home run that should have been ruled a double.
The arcing fly went to left-center and hit off the line that runs along the top of the Green Monster, bouncing high and back to the field -- theoretically, back in play. That cut Boston's lead to 11-10 with one out.
Second-base umpire Ted Barrett signaled gone, without argument from the Red Sox and their manager Bobby Valentine.
"It bounced straight up," Valentine said after the game. "Was it a home run?
"I didn't see anybody thinking it was not a home run," Valentine continued. "There wasn't anybody on the field that didn't think it was a home run -- I didn't think. That's the first I've heard of that. No one even came back with the replay and said ... how does it bounce straight up like that if it's not a home run?"
Red Sox closer Alfredo Aceves, who blew the save and took the loss, gave up the homer. Wells has 30 homers lifetime against Boston, fourth among active players.
The Halos plated two more runs in the inning and headed to the ninth up, 12-11. None of those runs were decisive, and Wells may have scored anyway. But the Angels nonetheless received a gift, perhaps in part because the Red Sox may have been unsure of the ground rules of their own park.
"When I hit it, I was just thinking it would hit off the wall and then I saw the way it bounced off, so I assumed it was a home run," Wells said. "Once I got in here, they told me otherwise. But we'll take it."
If the ball had bounced over the Green Monster after hitting the red line, it should have been ruled a homer. Had it cleared the line entirely and bounced back onto the field, it also should have been gone.
"Yeah, I mean I thought it was a home run," Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia said before being told it should not have been a homer. "Oh really? I'm not sure. Looked like a homer from my angle."