Beckett's ex-girlfriend sings national anthem

CLEVELAND – This was a pinch-hitter Josh Beckett probably didn't expect to see.

Country singer Danielle Peck, an Ohio native who used to date the Boston Red Sox ace, sang the national anthem and "God Bless America" on Thursday night for Game 5 of the AL championship series.

Beckett pitched Thursday as his team faced elimination. Boston trailed the Cleveland Indians 3-1 in the best-of-seven series.

Peck was a substitute for Taylor Swift, another country star, who was slated to handle the singing duties.

"(Peck's) record company called and said she's got Ohio ties and we said, 'Perfect,"' Indians vice president Bob DiBiasio said.

Peck's manager, Bob Burwell, initially issued a no comment to media inquiries about the singer's relationship with Beckett through the Indians and said all interviews "will abruptly end" if their wishes aren't honored.

Later, all interview requests were politely declined.

DiBiasio said the Indians were unaware of the history between Beckett and Peck.

"An incredible coincidence," he said. "Honestly."

Ya think they woulod have come up with a better dirty trick than this. Really, now on to game 6 where we'll be fired up and whoop some tribe butt!!!!!