Red Sox Miss Playoffs After 'Worst Collapse Ever'
Last-day losses cap miserable month for Red Sox, Braves
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 29, 2011 12:34 AM CDT
Boston Red Sox third baseman Mike Aviles sits in the dugout after Boston's 4-3 loss to the Baltimore Orioles.   (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
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(Newser) – The Boston Red Sox are in the record books and out of playoff contention after a terrible night capped a terrible September. The Red Sox allowed two ninth-inning runs in a 4-3 loss to the Baltimore Orioles last night, the AP reports. Minutes after the Red Sox trudged off the field—still tied with the Tampa Bay Rays for the final playoff spot—the Rays secured the spot by beating the New York Yankees 8-7, having fought back from being down 7-0 in the middle of the seventh inning.

"With that, the best team ever suffered the worst collapse ever," laments Scott Lauber at the Boston Herald. The Red Sox had led the Rays by nine games in the wild-card standing on September 1 but they imploded as the Rays surged. No other team has ever missed the playoffs after starting September with such a commanding lead, although the Atlanta Braves weren't far off: They lost 4-3 to the Philadelphia Phillies last night and will now miss the postseason, having been up by 8 1⁄2 games at the beginning of the month.