BOSTON (AP) -- Oakland won 20 in a row. Anaheim has won its last
10. And the Boston Red Sox keep falling further behind in the AL
''I feel there's no need to panic,'' outfielder Cliff Floyd said
Sunday after Toronto beat Boston 9-4 to drop the Red Sox 8½ games
behind the Angels in the wild-card race, and 9½ behind the New York
Yankees in the division. ''If they continue to win, you're not going anywhere anyway,''
Floyd said. ''But it makes it harder when you don't win the games
you think you should win.'' Esteban Loaiza (8-8) allowed three runs on nine hits in seven
innings, striking out one and walking none to win for the fourth
time in six starts. Vernon Wells homered, Carlos Delgado scored
four runs and Chris Woodward went 3-for-4 with three RBI for
Toronto, which was mathematically eliminated last week. Frank Castillo (5-14) retired the first nine batters before
allowing three unearned runs on two Boston errors in the fourth. ''It's like a black cloud over my head,'' said Castillo, who
allowed five earned runs on nine hits and two walks, striking out
eight in 6 2/3 innings. ''Unfortunately, it's just been one of
those years for me.'' It's also been one of those years for the Red Sox, who started
the year 40-17 but have since lost six more games than they've won.
The magic number to eliminate the Red Sox is 12 in the division and
13 in the wild-card race with 21 games to play. Told that the Angels were winning again, Boston manager Grady
Little said he believed his team still has the capability to run
off a long streak and get back in the race. ''At this time of year, that is what a ballclub need to do,''
Little said. ''We have been unable to get any kind of streaks
going, and that is the story.'' Rey Sanchez doubled and scored in the third to give Boston a 1-0
lead. But Castillo gave up a leadoff single to Dave Berg in the
fourth, then Eric Hinske reached when shortstop Nomar Garciaparra
lost a popup in the sun. One out later, first baseman Brian Daubach
threw away a fielder's choice, allowing Berg to score to tie it. Josh Phelps walked and Woodward hit a sacrifice fly to make it
2-1 before Jayson Werth singled home another run.
The Red Sox tied it in the bottom of the fourth when Cliff
Floyd, Daubach and Trot Nixon all doubled. But Toronto scored two
in the sixth on four consecutive singles and three in the seventh
on Wells' homer and an RBI double by Woodward. Floyd homered in the eighth to cut Boston's deficit to 8-4.
Daubach had three hits for Boston.
Pedro Martinez will throw on the side again Monday and
could start on Wednesday. ... Shea Hillenbrand hasn't homered in 23
games for Boston. .... Shannon Stewart, who left Saturday's game
after being hit by a pitch on the left forearm, did not play for
the Blue Jays. He said he would probably play on Monday. ... Floyd
has five homers, all solo shots, and eight RBI. ... Red Sox
batters have struck out eight batters in the first inning over the
last three games. ... Woodward has 27 RBI over his last 37 games.