BOSTON -- The frustration level wasn't nearly the same as it was the last time they lost a series to the Boston Red Sox, though the discontent was still palpable. And as the Orioles packed their bags in the visiting clubhouse at Fenway Park yesterday, there remained a feeling that they had let another opportunity slip away.
No, there wasn't a controversial pitching change or a blown five-run ninth-inning lead as there was in the ill-fated final game of the series here in mid-May. Instead, the Orioles were agitated by plate umpire Rob Drake's strike zone. They lamented several defensive gaffes, including two misplays by left fielder Jay Payton in the same inning and a dropped fly ball by right fielder Nick Markakis. And they wondered how many times they could lose in the same frustrating fashion.