The Red Sox have the first 24 outs pretty well accounted for. It’s the last three that are proving problematic.

Koji Uehara became the latest victim of the 2013 Closer Curse, joining Joel Hanrahan, Andrew Bailey and even Junichi Tazawa. Uehara allowed a game-tying homer to Toronto Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista in a game the resilient Red Sox nonetheless won, 5-4.

On a team with relatively few holes, the bullpen looms large. The issue isn’t quality, it’s about depth and dominoes, because the trickle-down effect of shifting Uehara to the ninth inning is being felt across the relief corps.

“We might not be a perfect team, but we sit at the top of the division right now,” manager John Farrell said. “We know where our challenges lie, and we’re doing everything we can to improve in any way we can.”

Both Craig Breslow and Andrew Miller were asked to go multiple innings yesterday, and it cost them a run when Breslow — following a magnificent Houdini act in the sixth inning to escape Ryan Dempster’s bases-loaded, one-out jam — allowed a solo home run to Jose Reyes in the seventh that pulled the Blue Jays within a run. After such a high-stress situation, Breslow ideally would’ve handed the ball off for the start of the seventh.

Instead Alex Wilson and Miller combined to navigate the inning after Breslow gave up the homer, with Miller then pitching the eighth before Uehara surrendered the lead in the ninth.

It seems like we’ve been referring to the middle relievers as overworked since the second week of April, and that adjective can only be applied so many times before it yields to “injured.”

What makes the lack of a reliable ninth-inning arm so problematic is the fact that the pieces are in place for a dominant bullpen. The Sox have power arms in Miller and Tazawa, though the latter’s stuff isn’t what it was during a revelatory 2012. They’ve got the lefty in Breslow who’s more than a specialist.

They’ve got Uehara for the eighth. Wilson has answered the call as a long man, and the versatile Alfredo Aceves waits in the wings.

But everyone’s role becomes jumbled without that last line of defense, and sometimes the bridge to the ninth ends up being built of Tinkertoys, with one feeble connection dooming the entire structure.