Results tagged ‘ Yankees ’
After a long and agonizing two months, I finally have the
time to sit down and write—and not to mention the day I was able to do this,
I’m literally snowed in after a “blizzard” dropped six inches in North-Atlanta
(which is an absurd amount for Georgia, so everything is shut down).
These last two months have been somewhat of a roller coaster ride for yours
truly, which makes perfect sense because the Red Sox off-season has also sent
the Nation into swirling winds of excitement, hope and utter craziness while we
wait for these last thirty-four days of the “Hot Stove” season to
wind down. With all the recent acquisitions, and my pure eagerness for baseball
season to start, I can’t stop thinking about the potential we have for 2011.
Yes, I understand that everyone is “World Series Champs” in the
winter months, but if you take an in-depth look at our starting line-up (no matter
what order Terry Francona decides on), plus our starting rotation, it is only
right for all of us to think we could be major contenders this upcoming season.
On December 6, 2010, five days after my twenty-first birthday, Adrian Gonzalez
was sent to the Red Sox via trade with the San Diego Padres for three minor
league prospects (RHP Casey Kelly, first baseman Anthony Rizzo, outfielder
Reymond Fuentes) and a PTBNL (Eric Patterson). The twenty-eight year old first
baseman, who will be wearing number 28 for the Sox, is coming off an
outstanding season with his hometown team. In 591 at-bats, the lefty hit
.298/.393/.511 with a .904 OPS and belted 31 long balls, with 101 RBIs. The
three-time All-Star (’08, ’09, ’10) and two-time Gold Glove winner (’08, ’09)
knew what to say in his Fenway Park press conference to win over the hearts of
the Nation, stating “I’m ready to beat the Yanks.”
Then two days later on the 8th of December, rumors finally came to
rest when it was confirmed that the left fielder for the Tampa Bay Rays, Carl
Crawford (29), signed a 7 year, $142 million contract with the Boston Red Sox.
The four-time All-Star (’04, ’07, ’09, ’10) and 2010 Gold Glove and Silver
Slugger Award winner is entering Boston in his prime. Last year, he hit 19
homers, with 90 RBIs and batted .307/.356/.495 with an .851 OPS. In this
blockbuster deal, Crawford becomes the highest paid outfielder to never hit twenty home-runs in a season.
Happy birthday to me, right?
Although there were plenty of other notable transactions the last few months, I
have to say I’m very excited to see a healthy line-up including Kevin Youkilis,
Dustin Pedroia and Jacoby Ellsbury. Our bullpen could possibly see more changes
by adding another lefty in the mix, however, with Daniel Bard, Bobby
Jenks and Jonathan Papelbon ready to step on that mound, I have a very good
feeling about our pitching staff.
February 13th is slowly but surely creeping up on us, pitchers and catchers
will report, and the chilly Hot Stove season will finally coming to an end.
It’s hard to picture myself at a ball game when all I see is white when I look
outside, but I know that very, very soon I will be able to sit back, eat my sunflower seeds, and finally enjoy another memorable baseball season.
I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season, and I want you all to know how
great it feels to finally be back!
As many of you
know, I am currently a full-time college student studying communications and
journalism. Something that you might not know, unless you follow me on Twitter,
as I talk about it constantly, is that I also work full-time at a local sports
bar. Between school, work, and moving into my new apartment, I have had little
time to enjoy writing, and more importantly, writing about baseball.
Although it’s a shame that I haven’t been able to post frequently, I never
stopped watching the game that I love most. Despite my Red Sox not being able
to play in the October madness, I still thoroughly enjoyed every moment of the
postseason. I was able to watch live as Roy Halladay threw the second no-hitter
in postseason history, the first being Don Larsen’s perfect game during the
1956 World Series. I attended the unbelievable and heartbreaking Game 3 of the
NLDS — Giants v. Braves at Turner Field, in which the Giants slimmed the
chances of my National League team to make it to the World Series. As I am an
avid Yankee hater, and also being born in Dallas, Texas, I was beyond thrilled
when the Rangers won the American League pennant and shocked the world as they
devastated the “Pinstripes” from competing for their 28th World
Series title. Although most media outlets downgraded this year’s series because
there were no Phillies or Yankees—as a baseball fan, I couldn’t have been
more eager for the history that was going to be made. In a very exciting and
heart-wrenching 5-game series in the 106th annual Fall Classic, the Giants took
home for the first time since they relocated to San Francisco, the first time
since 1954, that beloved Commissioner’s Trophy against the Texas Rangers.
“People ask me what I do in winter when there’s no baseball. I’ll tell you
what I do, I stare out the window and wait for spring.” -Rogers Hornsby
A part of me died inside on October 3rd this year, as the Red Sox season ended
short. But, an even bigger part of me escaped when the near-flawless Brian
Wilson (1-0, six saves and 0.00 ERA in the postseason) struck out Nelson Cruz,
honored his late father in his post-save ritual, and turned around to celebrate
with Buster Posey, Tim “The Freak” Lincecum, World Series MVP Edgar
Renteria, and the rest of the Giants team. It was real, then. Baseball season
had ended, and I had to get ready for the most lonely time of the year.
So, here I sit, during my three-hour break between my classes, in the cold and
rainy Atlanta weather which consistently reminds me that there is no more
baseball to be played this year, reminiscing on all the ups and downs of the
From Ubaldo Jimenez throwing a no-hitter in April, to Dallas Braden and Roy
Halladay’s perfect games. From Armando Gallaraga’s perfect game that wasn’t, to
Doc’s no-no in his first postseason appearance. From being able to witness
first-hand Ryan Kalish make an outstanding catch in center field at the Trop
and Daniel Nava’s grand-slam at Fenway Park in the first pitch of his first
at-bat in the major leagues, to Stephen Strasburg, Aroldis Chapman and
“The Freak.” From all the rookies trying to prove themselves, to all
the heroes, the living legends and the players who make this game what it is.
From all the walk-offs, come-from-behind victories, devastating losses, to all
the unbelievable, non-human-like, “there’s no way that was possible”
plays that were made—this year, this season, just proved and reiterated to me
that this game is the greatest game in the world. Baseball will stand the test
of time, it will be safe during a time of crisis, it will give children hope,
and give us all something to live for, it will bring strangers together, it
will form stronger bonds between fathers and daughters, mothers and sons, as we
are all able to enjoy this astonishing pastime…. and be a part of something
bigger than ourselves.
For the next 102 days, all I have are memories of the past, and hopes for the
future as I wait for the day that pitchers’ and catchers’ report. With all of
the free agents, exciting off-season hires, and all the changes that will be
made in all the different organizations in the coming months, I can only look
forward to one thing: that beautiful Spring day in which I hear those beloved
words, “Play ball!”
It is September 21 and the regular season is scheduled to end on October 3. With 12 games left to play, the Red Sox are 83-67. They sit 8 games out of first in the AL East and 6.5 games back in the Wild Card. We have two games left against the Baltimore Orioles, a three-game series this weekend at Yankee Stadium, a four game series against the Chicago White Sox next week and we end our regular season at home in a three-game series against those awful pinstripes.
Me…negativity? Yeah, right!
Most people would say that this year has been somewhat of a disaster. I highly disagree. OK, so we’ve been dealt some tough hands, and we’ve been thrown some nasty curve-balls. But, the success that we have had this year despite the injuries we have sustained is remarkable. We have played the majority of the season without some of our key players and have managed to stay in contention.
We still have 12 games left and Clay Buchholz will be starting tonight in the second game against the Orioles. He’s looking for his 17th win this season and with a 2.48 ERA, he has continually been a starter that we can depend on every outing. He is holding opponents to a .229 average this season and is 7-4 with a 2.38 ERA in 12 starts at Fenway.
Our starting line-up for tonight’s game is as follows:
1. Scutaro, M 2B .272 AVG
2. Drew, J RF .257 AVG
3. Martinez, V C .296 AVG
4. Ortiz, D DH .261 AVG
5. Beltre, A 3B .327 AVG
6. Lowrie, J SS .259 AVG
7. Kalish, R CF .233 AVG
8. Nava, D LF .246 AVG
9. Anderson, L 1B .267 AVG
As important as it is to have an ace on the mound, you can’t win games without scoring runs. The Red Sox, this season, seem to leave runners on base in very critical situations. We need to see more clutch hitting throughout our entire line-up. We can’t continue to count on a few players to drive in runs (Adrian Beltre and David Ortiz lead the team in RBIs with 98 and 92 respectively). Let’s make these last 12 games interesting, and not back down now!
Whether or not we can mathematically come back and make it to the
playoffs really doesn’t matter to me anymore. I love baseball and I love watching my team win games. I just want to see all of our guys succeed and play great baseball. We need to go out with a bang!
really started to sink in, though, is that we are in the home stretch…
baseball season is coming to an end and I am not happy about it!
Go Red Sox!
At 4:15 AM on Friday morning, I still hadn’t fallen asleep. My alarm
was set to go off at 6 AM and I had a long day ahead of me (much longer than I
could have ever presumed). As I was lying in bed, tossing and turning, I
couldn’t begin to comprehend that in a few short hours I would be in St.
Petersburg, FL at Tropicana Field within feet of my favorite players. Finally,
I dozed off and it seemed like only five minutes later, a loud buzzer woke me
up. I was too excited to realize how little sleep I got, and really didn’t care
that I would be facing my day on two hours of sleep. All I could think about
was a group of guys that consume my everyday thoughts and emotions, and how I
was about to experience what I love more than anything else in this world: Red
My dad and I headed to Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport at 6:30 AM and
boarded our flight to Tampa. We sat in our seats and waited patiently for the
rest of the passengers to board. I couldn’t help but notice five or six people
wearing Red Sox hats walk on to the plane and take a seat as well. I’m somewhat
of a social butterfly and love meeting new people, especially ones who share
the same love that I have for baseball and the Red Sox. So, I made my way over
to talk to a couple a few rows ahead of me. They were very kind, and they were
headed down to see the games as well. They go to Sox games every year in
different cities. Last year they went to Fenway and this year they were headed
to the Trop just like me! I talked a little bit with a few other Red Sox fans
and it’s absolutely amazing to me how one little symbol (the Boston
“B”) can bring so many people together. I always find a way to talk
baseball with people and this was no different! During the flight, I was
finally able to start reading “The Teammates” by David Halberstam. It
was recommended to me by a few of my Twitter followers so I had to check it
out. I absolutely love it so far and it was the perfect read to start my
After we landed (which wasn’t the smoothest landing, I might add), we got our
luggage, ran some errands (we had to buy some baseballs so we could hopefully
get a few autographs) and finally made it to the hotel. We quickly changed,
went to grab a late lunch then finally headed over to the Trop. As we pulled up
to the stadium, I couldn’t believe that we were actually going to be watching
baseball in a dome. I had never been to a dome baseball stadium and it just
didn’t seem right. We arrived around 4:40 and the gates opened at 5:10, two
hours before game time. As soon as we got in, I looked around, certain I was in
a mall. I raced down to the third base wall and stood next to tons of other
screaming Red Sox fans. I was in awe. There’s just something about a baseball
field, whether it’s indoors or outdoors, that truly makes me happy. There’s
nothing else like it. And, to top it all off, the whole team was right there,
stretching and getting ready to start batting practice.
Watching BP was fun, mainly because I love watching all the guys warm-up and
joke around with each other. All of the players walked by, a few acknowledging
the fans (Ryan Kalish and Daniel Nava were two that really stood out), but most
were too preoccupied to give us the attention that we wanted. I wasn’t able to
get an autograph the first night, but I really didn’t care because I was just
so happy to finally be there. The game went great, we beat the Rays 3-1 and Jon
Lester and Victor Martinez really stepped up at a very crucial time. Lester
went seven innings, giving up only one unearned run off two hits. He struck out
ten, while walking five on 106 pitches. It was definitely a turnaround from his
previous outing. VMart belted two homeruns that night and caught what Terry
Francona said was “the game of his life.” Daniel Bard came in for the
8th inning to set-up for Jonathan Papelbon who closed the game out and recorded
his 33rd save on the season. After the game, they allowed fans to walk on the
field and exit through center field. My dad and I decided that we wanted to do
that, and we were able to take some great pictures. It was a perfect ending to
a perfect day.
Luckily, on Saturday, my dad let me sleep in to catch up on the sleep I missed
out on the night before. I wasted a lot of my day by not waking up till 1 PM,
but I really needed it. After I got ready, we ate a late lunch again and then
headed back over to the field. I decided that I wanted to be closer to the
dugout this time so I could watch parts of the NESN pre-game show. I was at the
wall, right next to the dugout and it was great being able to see some of the
behind-the-scenes action of the broadcast. As soon as I reached the field, I
noticed Elizabeth Dreeson (@redsoxgirl46)
was on the field and I had to take some pictures for her! She was able to meet
a lot of the players and even interviewed Darnell McDonald (you can check out
her blog with her latest post about her adventures here)! The next person I noticed
was Heidi Watney. She was getting ready to do her portion of the pre-game show
and was sitting right in front of me. After she finished, a few of the fans
called her over for autographs. She graciously came over and signed for
everyone, including me, and was even nice enough to take a picture with me. It
really meant a lot, because she does hold the position that I would love to
possess some day. It showed me the type of person she is and I was pleasantly
surprised. And to answer the question all of you have been asking…no,
I did not tell her I intend to take her job someday! I truly enjoyed witnessing
that side of the media that I never get to see, and it makes me want to be a
part of it that much more. It was kind of like watching a Red Sox game from a
sports bar, when I could be sitting on top of the Green Monster.
Game two of the series was another incredible pitching match-up. Clay Buchholz,
who had a 0.00 ERA in his previous three starts, and is an AL candidate for the
Cy Young Award was facing Rays pitcher Matt Garza. Buchholz went 7 1/3 innings,
giving up four hits and two runs (one earned) while striking out five and
walking two. VMart kept up his hitting from the previous night, hitting another
solo shot in the top of the eighth to break the 1-1 tie and give us the lead.
However, when Buchholz returned for the bottom of the inning, he quickly gave
up that lead when B.J. Upton hit a lead-off, game-tying homerun. A few crucial
errors occurred for the Sox in the bottom of the seventh inning, though. The
first being a bad pick-off attempt by Buchholz that sailed into the right field
bullpen, allowing Carlos Pena to advance from first to third. After that, J.D.
Drew made a mental error by chasing a foul ball down the right field line and
catching it to make the out. However, that was only the second out of the
inning and Pena was able to tag-up and score from third. Pena’s run was the
first run allowed by Buchholz in 26 innings. One incredible defensive play was
made my Ryan Kalish in the bottom of the second, though, when he robbed Upton
of a possible RBI double or triple by making a diving catch in center field
(with a somersault at the end) to end the inning. As a
baseball fan, I was very excited about the bonus baseball we encountered that
night. I’ll never complain about free baseball, although it was heartbreaking
to watch Dan Johnson hit a walk-off homerun to win the game 3-2 against my team
in the bottom of the tenth inning. Being there to witness that was surreal,
bittersweet, but most of all, depressing.
That picture is me and Jamie Brooks (@jsbsox). I was able to meet her at the game on Saturday!!
Sunday came way too fast for my liking, but we had all day to waste because the
game was changed to the 8:00 PM ESPN game (which my dad was not thrilled about
because we had to change our flight from Sunday night to Monday morning). We
decided to go to the beach for a little while since we were staying in
Clearwater, which was only a 10-15 minute drive to the shore. I refused to wear
a bathing suit because I was on this trip to watch baseball, not get a tan. We
spent about an hour out there taking pictures and we even got some ice cream.
It was very relaxing (but very hot) and I was just ready to get back to the
field. After the gates opened, I rushed down and decided to try a new spot
during BP and I ended up on top of the dugout, right where the players walk in.
Within the first few minutes, Terry Francona came out of the dugout and started
signing autographs. I was lucky enough to have him point at me so I threw my
ball to him and he signed it and threw it back. A lot of the players
acknowledged us but I knew how focused they were on the final game of the
series. While I was standing there, Dick Vitale, a season ticket holder in the first
row behind home plate, showed up. My dad has always been a fan and talked me
into getting his autograph. It’s kind of ironic that I went to a three game
series to watch the Red Sox and I ended up walking away with two broadcasters
and a manager’s autographs. Oh well, it is what it is and I wouldn’t have
changed it for the world. But, there was a very essential game about to start
and we really needed to win, but the baseball God’s had something else in mind.
John Lackey was starting for us that night while we faced James Shields. Lackey
went 6 1/3 innings, giving up five runs on nine hits, walking three and
striking out seven. The turnaround in the game was in the bottom of the sixth,
when Lackey gave up three runs, a two-run game-tying homer by Carl Crawford and
then a bases loaded, one-out RBI single from Dan Johnson (the hero from the
previous night). It could have been two runs, however, VMart had a great block
of home plate to prevent the second run to score. But, the damage was done and
the Rays were on top 3-2 and never gave up the lead again. Yamaico Navarro had
his first RBI in the big club in the top of the fifth when he singled to score
Mike Lowell from third. The Rays ended up winning the game 5-3 and took two out
of three at Tropicana Field. It was a very tough weekend for the Sox, as we
fell 6 1/2 games behind the Rays and Yankees in the AL East and the Wild Card
Despite losing the series, I had such an incredible time. The cowbells, I must
admit, were a bit obnoxious and I would be perfectly content never having to
listen to them… ever again. A few of the Rays fans even stooped as low
as the World Cup and brought vuvuzela’s. It wasn’t completely
abhorrent, however, I could never imagine having to deal with
that every single home game. I guess being a Red Sox fan isn’t so bad after
all. If I had to choose my favorite part of the entire weekend (which is almost impossible), it would be having the opportunity to watch Daniel Bard warm-up and pitch in two of the three games. He is my favorite player and my dad was amazed at how many pictures I took of him (sorry, dad)!
Regardless of the injuries, the disappointments this season, and all the
heartbreak we’ve sustained, it was absolutely worth every penny to be able to
spend a weekend with my daddy, watching my favorite boys. So, thanks dad, for
everything. I had such a wonderful time with you and I know these memories will
last a lifetime! My trip to the Trop was an experience I will never forget, and
I just hope that we can turn this season around and show everyone what we are
If you would like to see all the pictures from this weekend, add me as a friend on Facebook! I should have them up very soon!
Go Red Sox!
Well, after these past nine days that I’ve taken to somewhat rest, recover and commence a few rehab starts, I’m ALMOST ready to be reactivated. I’ve started my Fall semester of college and I’m aiming for a 4.0… after two days of class—so far, so good! I’ll keep you guys updated on that, but it will be taking up the majority of my time. Anyway, I’m still in some pain, but I see the doctor tomorrow morning and he’ll be able to give me more precise details as to when I’ll be fully recovered. I’m thinking, by Friday morning, I better be back to normal! I’ve got a long weekend ahead of me full of Red Sox baseball and I need to be in tip-top shape!
Now, enough about me and more about what really matters—baseball!
The Red Sox started their three-game series against the Seattle Mariners tonight and walked off the field with a 6-3 victory. John Lackey went eight innings giving up 3 runs (only 2 earned) off 6 hits, walking 2 and striking out a season high 10 batters. Lackey is now 12-7 with a 4.51 ERA. It was one of his best outings and came at a very good time for the team. Marco Scutaro lead the team offensively going 2-for-4, with a 2 RBI ground ball single to right in the fifth and then again in the seventh inning. J.D. Drew and David Ortiz each helped out, bringing in 2 runs on their RBI singles respectively to give us a 3-run lead. Jonathan Papelbon came in to close out the game, giving off a lead-off single, then retiring the next 3 batters to claim his 31st save of the season.
On to some other news, now, I’ve got to bring up what everyone seems to be discussing, which is the Red Sox claiming Johnny Damon on waivers today. The future is still unknown, and there’s still time for everything to get worked out, however, if it does happen, I think that Damon could be a huge contributor, offensively and defensively, for us and could be that extra drive we need to give us a run for the playoffs. Damon isn’t sure he wants to come back to Boston, but as we all know, if the trade doesn’t get worked out, we have at least kept the Rays and Yankees from being able to get him. Personally, I miss the old shaggy Damon from his Boston years. Most people considered him a “traitor” (including me, at times, I’m not going to lie) after he went to the Yankees, but you can’t deny his talent at the plate. During his career in a Red Sox uniform, he hit .295, with 461 runs, 56 homers, 299 RBIs, 98 stolen bases and a .362 OBP. I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t mind seeing that in our line-up again.
Currently, the Red Sox sit 5.5 games behind the first place Yankees and 5 games behind the Rays who hold the Wild Card spot. I feel very redundant, as all my posts seem to talk about keeping faith and hope that we can make it to the playoffs. But, I want to inform you all of something—until it is mathematically impossible for us to still be in contention, I won’t give up. You will never hear the words, “maybe next year,” come out of my mouth because I will believe, always.
I now have three days to finish up my rehab starts, see my doctor one more time and fully recover before my exciting daddy/daughter weekend starts. I’m really looking forward to seeing my favorite boys up close during batting practice and experience first-hand the games I love to watch every night, no matter where they are in the country. I’ve seen the Red Sox play numerous times throughout my life, in different stadiums, but something tells me this weekend, this series against the Rays, will be one of the greatest weekends of my life. There’s nothing more important to me than family, baseball and the Red Sox—and I get to have all of those in one weekend. How did I get to be so lucky?
Red Sox Doll
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!
Unless we’re talking about hand grenades and horseshoes, of course… But, this is baseball.
David “Big Papi” Ortiz hit a grand slam in the bottom of the ninth inning to get us within one run of tying the game. We were trailing 6-1 with almost no hope of winning when we came up to bat in the ninth at Fenway Park. With one out, Detroit Tigers closer, Jose Valverde, walked the bases loaded and Big Papi took full advantage and went yard with his 22nd homer of the season. Adrian Beltre hit a 2-out double to keep the momentum up and J.D. Drew was then intentionally walked to enable a force-out. But, that wasn’t needed when Mike Cameron came up to the plate and with a full count, struck out looking to end the game. We walked off the field with the scoreboard showing 6-5 in the Tigers favor.
This was a tough loss for the Red Sox. There was one positive I can think of, though, and that is the determination and drive our players have. They didn’t give up. That is what baseball is all about. The game is never over until it’s over– not until the last out is made.
With that being said, we have to look back on this game and wonder what happened, wonder why we lost and what went wrong. I mean, if you look at who was on the mound for us tonight, and the fact that Papi hit a grand slam, and we still walk away with the loss, it just doesn’t make much sense.
Jon Lester had one of his worst outings. He gave up 4 runs on a career high 11 hits, throwing 115 pitches in 6 innings. I hoped after sweeping the Angels, and having an off-day, our offense would have stayed alive and we would dominate this series. However, we didn’t even get on the board until the 5th inning when Marco Scutaro hit a solo homer on a 1-1 pitch. We leave too many runners on base, especially RISP, in crucial situations. We must get on the board early and keep the momentum up throughout the game.
We need to make sure everyone stays healthy and hope that we can gain some major ground in the 59 games that are left to be played (currently we are 58-45). After the Rays beat the Yankees tonight at Tropicana field, we are now 6.5 games out of the wild card and 7.5 games from first. With the trade deadline quickly approaching (4 PM on Saturday), I really hope we can get some bullpen help. Luckily, Dustin Pedroia and Jacoby Ellsbury will be back in the line-up within the next few weeks so our fielding and offense should be set.
I feel like these wild, late-inning wins rarely happen for us anymore. I feel like all of Red Sox Nation is hurting, right along with our team, and nobody has any hope anymore. We have to keep the faith. Our boys, our players that we live for and watch every single day still have hope that we can do this, and we should too.
So, no, almost didn’t count tonight. But, can I please remind all of you about 2004? I’m sure none of you can forget, but take a look back at the standings on July 31st and tell me again that we can’t do this, and that there is no hope for us.
Ok, so it wasn’t as jaw dropping
as Armando Galarraga’s un-perfect-perfect game. But, Jon Lester had a perfecto
into the 6th inning of Saturday night’s game against the Mariners.
Eric Patterson ruined his heroic act from Thursday nights game, when he dropped a fly ball with 1 out in the 6th hit by Jack Wilson for
a two-base error. When will major league players understand the little league
concept of using two hands when catching a fly ball? Lester still had the no-no
possibility but that was shortly shattered by the next batter, Michael Saunders,
who jacked a 2-2 curveball over the right field wall. We then trailed 2-1 and
nothing good came after that. Lester had 13 strike-outs (career high) in his 8 and 2/3
innings pitched. He was obviously solid through 7 innings, other than the
homerun he gave up. However, in the 8th inning, something happened, and he lost
his momentum and gave up 2 more runs. When he was taken out of the game, we
were down 4-1 and we were not able to score again. We ended up losing the game
It’s not rocket science, but we can’t expect to win games by only scoring 1
run. And we definitely can’t count on our starter’s to do all the work, as much
as we’d like to be able to. Run-prevention can only do so much when you have a shaky bullpen like we do. David Ortiz was
the only reason we were even on the board that night, belting his 19th homer of
the season in the 4th inning. It’s so frustrating that we keep losing these games in late innings, which only proves one thing— we need to work on our pen.
Fast forward to Sunday’s afternoon game in which Daisuke Matsuzaka started. He prevailed through 6 innings, giving up only 1 run on 4 hits with 5 walks and 4 strikeouts. He was taken out and replaced by Daniel Bard who came in for the 7th. Bard pitched the 7th with 1 hit, 2 ground outs and a strike out. He was taken out in the 8th with no outs after giving up a single and Hideki Okajima came in (which was, without a doubt, Tito’s mistake). From there, all hell broke loose. Oki loads the bases with no outs. He gave up 5 straight singles, Michael Saunders being one who hit a 2-run single which put the Mariners up front 3-2. Milton Bradley came in as a pinch hitter, and singles on a bunt which scores Casey Kotchman. We end up losing this one 4-2, giving up 11 hits, and no errors, although we had a few mental errors.
Oki misplays two bunts which truly cost us the game. Bard should have been kept in to finish the 8th, then bring in Jonathan Papelbon for the 9th to close it out. Why did Terry decide to bring Oki in when Bard is completely and utterly dominating? We have a one run lead in the 8th inning, and we replace Bard, who now has a 1.86 ERA (lowest on the team) with Oki, who now has a 5.81 ERA. I understand the pitch count, and the idea that we need to save him so we can use him more. But, I’m sure you all have heard the quote by Leo Durocher, “You don’t save a pitcher for tomorrow. Tomorrow it may rain.” We need to win games one at a time and not worry about the next day’s game. If we keep doing this, we’ll go 0 for the next 30 games.
We need to start making better defensive decisions. Our starters, for the most part, are doing their job and leaving the game with the lead. But, our pen is really struggling and we need to do something about that ASAP. It’s also tough for our offense to truly dominate when we aren’t playing with Dustin Pedroia, Victor Martinez or Jacoby Ellsbury.
It’s hard to stay hopeful when we are now 8 games out of first and 5 from the Wild Card spot. This is the worst deficit we’ve sustained since May 23. We are now 55-44. Positives— V-Mart could be back tonight for the series opener in Anaheim and most of our guys should be back by mid-August. But, is it too late? We can’t let this split series against the Mariners keep us down. We have to keep going out there every single day and fight—fight for our lives, practically. We must stay in contention with the line-up we have, so when we get all of our boys healthy, we can come back and, at the very least, take over the Wild Card. Let’s just hope the Yankees and Rays go on some major losing streak so we can gain some ground. We’ve done it before and we can do it again.
I feel like the Red Sox might give me a heart attack before I turn
Tonight was a very smooth night for the Red Sox. John Lackey pitched great–he
had a no-hitter into the 8th inning against the Seattle Mariners and lost it
with 2-outs when Josh Bard hit a line-drive into right-center for a single. So,
it was a bummer that Lackey lost his bid for a no-no, but we went into the 9th
inning with a 5-run lead (6-1) and brought Manny Delcarmen in to close it out.
Just 3 outs… that’s all we needed and the Red Sox could walk away from a
great game with the win and all of Red Sox Nation could get some much needed,
But, the Red Sox have to make things interesting. Manny…being Manny… (never
heard that one before) and Jonathan Papelbon jointly ruined our lead and the
game ended up tied after 9, which forced us into extra innings. Daniel Bard
came in for the 10th and had a nice 3 up 3 down appearance (I can’t get over
how much I love him). Hideki Okajima came in for the 11th and 12th and managed
to get out of a 1-out, bases loaded jam to end the 12th inning. Eric Patterson
turned out to be the hero of the game, with a 2-out, 2-run double in the 13th
to put the Red Sox on top 8-6. Then, Ramon Ramirez came in for the bottom of
the inning and earned the save while Oki was given the win.
It’s upsetting that Lackey was snubbed of his 10th win this season because our
pen was unable to hold the lead. Over 8 innings, Lackey threw 116 pitches, gave
up only 2 hits and 1 run, with 6 strike outs and only 1 walk. He left the game
with an enormous lead, and no question, his best outing in a Red Sox uniform,
and ended up with a no-decision. I guess, as they say, life isn’t fair and
obviously neither is baseball.
That was the short version of what happened in the game tonight. But, really,
it ended up being a little over a 4 hour game with my blood pressure raised to
a point where it might be safe for me to be put on some medicine for it (just
kidding, kind of).
Before this game, the Red Sox just ended a 3-game series in Oakland where we
lost 2 out of 3 and lost even more ground in the AL East race. After winning
tonight, though, we are now 7 games behind the first place Yankees and 4 games
from the Rays who still hold the Wild Card spot. Josh Beckett will make his
return tomorrow night for the second game in this 4 game series against the
Mariners. I’m so glad he’s back, I just hope he’s not too rusty and can make it
at least 6+ innings. After using a lot of our bullpen tonight, we really don’t
have many options if he gets in to trouble early.
So, I don’t think I’ll need blood pressure meds just yet, but if the Red Sox
keep this up, come October, I might just have to make a visit to my doctor. I’m
not sure she would understand, though. “Ms. Doll, why are you stressed out
lately? What is the reason for the rise in your blood pressure? You are only 20
years old.” Oh, the Red Sox bullpen keeps blowing leads and my boys aren’t
hitting. I’m sure she would love that as an answer. Her solution would not be
medicine, but a referral to a therapist, I’m afraid.
Go Red Sox!
I finally get a chance to sit, relax, write and watch a Red Sox game.
It’s been a few days and I’ve definitely been having withdrawals. I’m
writing this as I watch the Red Sox start their 10-game road trip in
This past weekend’s 4-game series against the Rangers
was not the kind of second half start I was hoping for. We lost three
out of four games at home and are now playing ten games away from Fenway
starting in Oakland with a 3-game series against the A’s. Then we head
to Seattle for a 4-game weekend series against the Mariners and end our
road trip in L.A. with a 3-game series against the Angels. Is it just
me, or is everyone else nervous about this trip? What happened the last
time we went out west? I’m sure none of you have forgotten about that
dreadful series against the Giants where we lost Dustin Pedroia, Clay
Buchholz, and Victor Martinez to injuries and all three were placed on
the disabled list.
Luckily, Clay Buchholz will be
back on the mound for us on Wednesday night to end the series against
the A’s. Also, Josh Beckett is scheduled to make his return to the big
club on Friday for the second game against the Mariners. Jeremy Hermida
is now with Pawtucket on a rehab assignment and could be rejoining the
Red Sox as early as this weekend in Seattle. And Mike Lowell is ready to
start rehab, will be playing with the PawSox, and could be back next
week, depending on his recovery.
As doubtful as I could be just
because of all the injuries we’ve sustained, not even mentioning our
record in the last 13 games (5-8), and how many games back we have
fallen from the first place Yankees (6.5 in case you were wondering), I
still believe that we can do this. There is still plenty of baseball to
be played and it is looking very likely that most of our guys who are on
the DL will be back by mid-August (just in time for my trip to
Tampa…!!). We are only 2.5 games behind the Rays who hold the Wild
Card spot. We have to stay positive. There are so many people who say
they are a part of the greatest Nation in the world, who sure seem to
be fair-weather “fans.” What happened to having some faith?