Some things never change with John Lackey.
The Boston Red Sox pitcher had a shutout going against the Detroit Tigers in Game 3 of the ALCS on Tuesday and was pulled with two outs in the seventh. What was unusual is that Lackey had just gotten an out and not really in trouble when he was pulled.
“C’mon man, you gotta be shi–in me,” Lackey could be seen saying.
Lackey had only allowed four hits and no walks while striking out eight in 6.2 innings. He had thrown 97 pitches when he was pulled. Red Sox manager John Farrell went to Craig Breslow to get the lefty-lefty matchup for Alex Avila, who blasted a huge 2-run home run in Game 2. Breslow walked Avila and got Omar Infante out to end the inning.
Those with good memories may recall that Lackey had a similar reaction in Game 1 of the 2009 ALDS against the Boston Red Sox when he was still with the Los Angeles Angels. Lackey was throwing a shutout in Game 1 against the Sox and allowed a hit to start out the 8th. He threw a wild pitch, then got Casey Kotchman to ground out. With lefty Jacoby Ellsbury coming up, manager Mike Scioscia did the same thing Farrell did and pulled Lackey for lefty Darren Oliver. The move paid off — Oliver held the Sox scoreless the rest of the game, and the Angels won 5-0 and swept the series.
GIF via @CorkGaines