Results tagged ‘ Josh Hamilton ’
Opening Weekend in Arlington, Texas was a highly anticipated series as the reigning American League Champs, the Texas Rangers,
hosted the much-hyped lineup and starting rotation of the Boston
Ace Jon Lester took the mound for the Sox on Opening Day, followed by John Lackey and Clay Buchholz in games two and three. Boston fielded a solid lineup including the off-season acquisitions Adrian
Gonzalez and Carl Crawford, plus a healthy Jacoby Ellsbury, Dustin
Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis. With the young Saltalamacchia behind the
plate and veteran lovable David Ortiz in the DH spot, along with the
revamped bullpen including Daniel Bard, Jonathan Papelbon, Bobby Jenks,
Matt Albers, Dan Wheeler, Dennys Reyes and Tim Wakefield, the outlook was promising facing the stacked lineup of the defending AL champs.
We all know what happened in this three-game set. The Rangers dominated the Sox pitching, led by the likes of Ian Kinsler
and Nelson Cruz, who were the first pair of teammates in MLB history to each homer in the first three games of their season. Not to mention Adrian Beltre, who captured the hearts of Rangers fans after a monstrous grand slam off of his former
teammate, Lackey, who intentionally walked Josh Hamilton to load the
bases and get to the Dominican slugger. The Red Sox starters gave up 9
home runs in the first three games of the season, and in a combined 15.1
IP, had a 10.56 ERA, a 1.72 WHIP and only 6 strikeouts.
Bard, in 73 appearances last season, didn’t give up more than two
runs in a single inning. On Friday, he gave up 4 ER in 0.2 IP with one K
and 1 BB. In a combined 8.2 IP, the Red Sox bullpen garnered an 8.30
ERA, a 2.08 WHIP and 6 strikeouts.
With all the negativity surrounding the Red Sox after an 0-3 start, I
can only say a few things: First, chill out. This is three games in a
162-game season. I’m fairly certain with 159 games left that we don’t need to worry about either team’s “Magic Number” yet. Second, look at the positives. Ortiz, after a slow start in his previous three seasons, went 4-12 (.333
BA) with two home runs. Also, Gonzalez went 5-13 (.385 BA) in
his first series in a Red Sox uniform. Third, CHILL OUT. Can we take a
look at the 1998 New York Yankees? They started their season 0-3, then
ended the season with a 114-48 record and won the World Series. If this series happened in June, nobody would be talking about it.
Now that I’ve gotten my ranting and venting out of the way, I’d like to
look forward to the next 3-game set starting Tuesday when the Red Sox
take on the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field. Game one will see
Josh Beckett on the mound for the Red Sox while Josh Tomlin (2010: 6-4, 4.56 ERA) makes his
2011 debut hoping to shut down the Sox lineup. Beckett had a very
disappointing 2010 campaign. In 127.2 IP, he had a 6-6 record with a
5.78 ERA and 1.535 WHIP. “I think his pride took a beating last year,”
said skipper Terry Francona. “I definitely agree with that. I think he
feels like he has a
lot to prove” (via RedSox.com).
So, let’s take a little breather, get excited about some more baseball,
and follow Marco Scutaro’s lead in an old, familiar “Beltre Head Rub.”
P.S. In a totally unrelated, non-Red Sox note, in the 8th inning of the Mets/Marlins game on Saturday evening, the Mets inserted pinch-runner Chin-lung Hu. So I know somewhere Abbott and Costello were smiling, as we all know, “Hu’s on First?”
I climbed onto the cold, hard surface with surgery lights
beaming down on me. I had doctors and nurses all around poking me, hooking me
up to machines and asking me questions. There was so much going on and I was in
la-la land, not sure what to make of it all. The anesthesiologist asked me one
simple question, “did you decide on a dream?” I remember nodding yes,
and that was the last thing I can recall before they put the oxygen mask on me,
and my eyes closed, as I drifted off into my fairy tale.
I woke up coughing and in so much pain. The nurse handed me a popsicle and
asked how I was feeling. I couldn’t talk and the thought that I had just had my
tonsils removed didn’t help the pain at all. Shortly there after, the nurses
redressed me in my Red Sox shirt I had worn that morning and I was finally able to see my dad. He told me that the surgeon
had come to talk to him after my surgery was over and he explained to him how
the procedure went, but more importantly, he told him about the last words I
said before I went under.
Apparently, after they asked if I had decided on a dream, I went on to tell
them that I wanted to go to my happy place. They asked where my happy place was
and I explained that it was Fenway Park, in Boston, MA so I could see my
Red Sox. They all laughed and that was the last thing they heard from me.
This isn’t shocking to anyone who knows me, and I guess it completely makes
sense. The Red Sox are my life, so, in baseball terms, right along with the
rest of my team (it seems like), my doctor placed me on the 15-day disabled
list with a possibility to be out longer. I have not missed a single game
throughout my entire recovery, though. I have forced my parents to help me
downstairs so I can sit on the couch and watch my boys. Today is the first day
I’ve had the energy to write, though, so I’m taking full advantage and hoping I
make sense (I am still on pain medicine, as I am in A LOT of pain, all the
During my stint on the DL, I’ve now watched the Toronto series and
the first two games of the Texas series. We took two out of three against the
Jays and lost the first game in Arlington (which was the second in two painful
walk-off losses after the first in Toronto the night before). But, to stop
focusing on the negatives, I’m going to talk about tonight’s game against the
Jonny Lester started the game today and was absolutely dominant. He went 8
innings, giving up no runs off 5 hits, striking out 5 and walking none. It’s
really starting to show which pitchers are going to carry us into October, and
that is Jonny, Clay Buchholz and Daniel Bard. I love watching close games like
the one tonight, which was 1-0 until the 9th inning. We added on some insurance
runs in the top of the 9th to give us a 3-0 lead headed into the bottom of the
inning. I’m not sure why Francona decided to take Lester out of the game, and
not let him close it out. Bard and Jonathan Papelbon were unavailable and
anyone else we bring out of the pen would easily be a suicide mission. Maybe it
was the 100 degree temp in Arlington, and Lester having already thrown 109
pitches. But, Tito decided Scott Atchison was the man for the job and could get
the save. However, with 1 out, he gave up a homer to Josh Hamilton (that kid is
absolutely ridiculous… definitely MVP worthy) and that ended his outing.
Felix Doubront was then brought in and had a lot to prove as a rookie, and this
was his chance. Vladimir Guerrero got on base with one out, but then was gunned
down by Victor Martinez when he tried to steal second. So, now with 2 outs,
Doubront struck out Mitch Moreland looking on a 77 MPH curveball to get the
save. J.D. Drew has been incredible at the plate lately, along with Ryan Kalish
who is really proving himself. Drew scored Kalish in the 5th inning with a
2-out single to put the Red Sox on top. We all say this in Red Sox Nation about
almost every game, but that was a HUGE win and very much needed.
The Red Sox sit 6 games out of first in the AL East to the New York Yankees, and 4 games
behind the Tampa Bay Rays who hold the Wild Card spot. We are 67-51 with 44
games left to play. We end the series in Texas tomorrow, and we really need to
muster up a win. Daisuke Matsuzaka is starting for us and we really need him to
pitch a gem. We also need our offense to keep it going by getting on the board
early, not leaving men on base, especially in scoring position and capitalizing
when we have the opportunities.
Now, back to talking about the Red Sox disabled list, besides your favorite
RedSoxDoll– Jacoby Ellsbury was placed back on the 15-day DL after being taken out of
yesterday’s game in the 4th inning due to pain in his left side (where he had
the broken ribs). Dustin Pedroia started his rehab assignment with Pawtucket
tonight, and if everything goes well, should be back in the starting line-up on
Tuesday. I am SO excited for Pedey to be back, and hopefully he’ll bring the
“Laser Show” with him!
We have to keep winning series from here on out. And, I hope by the end of
August, when I meet my boys in Tampa, we’ll be well on our way to this race for
the pennant. I hope our boys can stay off the DL, and really show everyone our
heart and drive that we have to win. I also hope that I can make a few rehab
starts and get reactivated before my exciting trip to the Trop!
Go Red Sox!
Also, thank you all for being so patient and supportive! Y’all are really the best!