Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Kazerud: Fail? I Guess.

Jason is a Met. As far as I've been able to gather, donning this particular uniform curses you to years of misery and collapse. I'm not going to say I actually KNOW anything about the Mets other than the occassional jokes I hear about them and a few stories from reporters about their sad, sad season endings recently, but I can't imagine that The New York Mets was what Mr. Bay had in mind when he decided he was going to sign somewhere that was not Boston. Let's be clear about that, he wanted more money than Theo would have ever given him, and I am ok with that.

Yes, I loved the 36 home runs. I loved the paleness, and sure, even the Canadian-ness. The defense I did not love (and I found myself muttering many times when Kaz tried to field 'if that were Manny, people would be all over him for that'.... though that MAY have just been my bitterness talking).

Maybe my stance on defense is a little ... bias?... because I don't get the fielders that I want. But NO, I do NOT enjoy watching CRW field. I didn't enjoy watching Kaz field. Coco? I adored watching that guy track down a fly ball. Awesome. But he's gone now. And the reason for that, as Loyce Crisp would say (in my imagination), "It's cause you suck, son." There were around three different inside jokes in there that I wasn't going to make, but they happen. I don't know. I guess I'm never happy.

And I'll never be happy again, because Gonzo is STILL gone! I just want my Gonzo back. Even if we do happen to pick up another infield Gonzalez, it won't be the same. He's not Alex. He's not my shortstop. Besides that, I don't think I really like Adrian Gonzalez. His name reminds me of a very sad blue. We don't need sad blue on the Red Sox, right? RIGHT?! Who's with me? Anyone? No? Fine.

So, tomorrow is New Year's Eve, and I've still got my Mikey. And my 'I've still got my Mikey' I mean 'The Red Sox haven't dumped Lowell off on another team yet' and God bless that. On top of it all, I'm really starting to feel ok about the rotation again. Yeah, I dislike John Lackey, but I don't know the dislike is a permanent thing. Some players, I will never like. Ever. I don't think Lackey is one of those players, but I refuse to warm up to him right away. See... it only took me four seasons to warm up to JD Drew. I hated him because he was made of glass, and he took my Little Tek away from me. Even after his now-classic grand slam in the 2007 ALCS, I did not like him. But now? Now I don't think he's so bad, and I even found myself cheering for him at the end of the season. Maybe it's because POS was traded off. Maybe, just maybe, I disliked JD Drew that much more because I associated him with POS, but once that association was broken, the hatred could naturally dissipate.

No, I don't know what the hell I'm talking about half of the time. But I do love Ducky.

But, good luck today to my darling Mr. Awesome, whose fantastic thumb surgery is today to repair the wonderful injury that kept him with me! Thank you, thumb tendon. I don't know what I'd do without Mike Lowell, especially so soon after losing Tedy Bruschi to retirement. I just don't think I could have handled it. So yeah, no trading away my Mikey. Please?!

Ok, time for me to move Kaz to the former player list.... sigh.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Mikey Awesome: Ours. For Now.

Have I really become so irrational and... well... insane, that I was THRILLED when I found out Mikey needed thumb surgery? When did I become Annie Wilkes, hoping to keep poor Michael incapacitated so he can't leave me, er, the Sox. I don't want him leaving the Sox. That would be Misery.

Did you see what I did there? I referenced a movie plot and then finished it up by saying the name of the movie slyly so you wouldn't know what I was doing. Then, of course, I ruined it all by telling you all about it. But, I'm wondering if my love for Mikey has taken a turn for the weird and inappropriate. I found out that Mike needs thumb surgery and I literally squee'd for joy, because this means that I get to claim he is a part of my favorite team for that much longer. I don't delude myself into thinking that they won't try to move him again, because I know they will, but I don't want Mikey to go. Not before Christmas. Not like this.

Just like when I wanted Jason Varitek back simply for the fact that I wanted him, knowing full well that he would be detrimental to the team, I want Mikey. Actually, Mikey being detrimental is far less a certainty than Tek was. I believe that Mike could be an asset, especially if there is no bounce back for Papi (which, really... is anyone REALLY expecting? Curious!). I don't know. I desperately miss baseball. Football is not enough for me. No, I need the excitement of every day, knowing there's a game. The off season is painful and slow. And cold. Have I mentioned that it's cold? Yeah, not a big fan of this.

I've been counting down to opening day for a while now. Can't wait, especially now since there's that much more of a chance that Mikey will be there for it. I love that man.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Not Trusting Theo: No Effect On My Desire To Go To Games

I may have mentioned it before, but really, no matter how much I dislike each individual component of the team, I love the team. I have tickets right now for three games at Fenway next season, and I will be heading to Baltimore, as usual, to see the Sox there. No matter HOW badly I dislike the moves by our esteemed GM.

I am a harsh Theo critic, perhaps unfairly. The fact that he tries to conduct business without any of the emotional, sentimental stuff getting in the way is what bugs me, but I know that's his job. He's not supposed to be sentimental. He's supposed to think of the greater good for the club. But the 'greater good' always seems to be getting rid of players that I want to keep. I've said it before, I would not be a good GM because I don't want to separate the heart and mind when it comes to baseball. Thank God I'm a fan so I don't have to. In 2004, Theo was a hero. In 2005, I had no issues with him, except that whole Renteria mess. I questioned it. Of course I did. In 2006, that's when Theo started breaking my heart. He traded Arroyo for Wily freakin' Mo, who... I don't even think he has a job any more. What happened down the stretch in 2006? We needed pitching like people in hell need ice water. We were throwing every straight-off-the-garbage-heap player we could find on the mound, and.... well, we all know how '06 ended. Maybe I unfairly expected Theo to be a fortune teller, and to realize that pitching is harder to come by than hitting, so you don't trade a decent mid-level starter who can eat innings for some unproven bat that has nothing but unachieved potential.

In 2007, there was Gagne. At the time, I thought it was a good move, but it was not, and again, I unfairly blamed Theo for it. Oh man, I almost forgot that 2007 was also the year of Lugo. And Drew. Holy hell, that was a bad year in terms of talent. Yeah, we won the world series and all, but Lugo, Drew, and Gagne in one year? Brutal.

In 2008, he got rid of Mirabelli. Unforgivable.

Now, at the end of the '09 season, he brings us Lackey. And Cameron. I don't see either as a smart move, and of course, here's why.

Cameron is the better of the two, short years, not too much money, great defense. We desperately needed defense in the outfield. As much as I loved Kazerud, he was not a defensive wizard, and don't even get me started on CRW. Watching him play defense on an average day usually gets me pretty angry. Whatever. Defense is fantastic, and I love preventing runs. The problem is, Cameron is seemingly replacing Kazerud, who was a very decent hitter and managed a good HR or two whenever we needed it. Mike Cameron is not going to replace Jason's bat, and we all know it. Fine. As long as the defense is shored up a bit, I guess I can do without the bat. But the guy will be 37 years old at the start of the season.... so, I don't know, I guess I'm expecting some DL time and a serious fade after the all-star break.

Now for Lackey. I HATE this signing. Aside from my personal hatred for all things Lackey, and that goes all the way to the stupid look on his face or how he was running his big whiney mouth about the Sox during the playoffs, I hate the deal. Listen, I admitted my irrational dislike for all things Theo, but one thing I've found to be true - When Theo falls in love with a player enough to give them a stupidly large contract, it doesn't tend to work in our favor. I understand that 5yrs/$80+ M is the running rate for top-of-the-rotation pitchers, but the only people Theo hands out big years to turn into busts. Rentaria. Lugo. Drew (and I put him on this list even with my growing affection for the man). Him falling in love with a player frightens me. I'm not even so concerned about Lackey's terrible numbers at Fenway. I am concerned with his terrible numbers against AL East opponents, though. This deal truly concerns me, and the fact that I now run the risk of having to see Lackey pitch in my park terrifies me as much as the thought of watching Penny pitch terrified me. Oh, how I long for Arroyo.

Now that I'm done being all mopey and irrational and emotional, so far this is what the team looks like to me (considering the Lowell deal is not official on paper or in my heart yet): C- Victor Martinez (toying with the idea of calling him either Vicky or Victory.... I'll explain at some point). 1B- Asshat, 2B - Munchkin, SS- Marco Scutaro, 3B - Mr. Awesome, LF - Mike Cameron, CF - CRW, RF - JD. Pitching Rotation: Beckett, Lester, Lackey, Dice-K, Wakefield.... don't know where Dahmer fits into all of this... we've never stuck with a six man rotation for more than a week, so maybe he's the odd man out. I'm hoping he's the odd man out. I don't even know who's in our bullpen any more... Paps, Oki, Strike-out-king, Rambo, Rambo 2, Boof Bonser?, Bard.... no clue. We'll see.

Something like 63 days till pitchers and catchers report. God bless a short offseason.

Friday, December 11, 2009

All I Can Do Is Mutter 'Why?'

I have yet to come up with an answer. Jeremy Hermida, another Ramon Ramirez, Marco Scutaro, that Atchinson guy, Max Ramirex, and Boof Bonser.

Please, someone answer me why.

I will have a farewell Mikey post up as soon as I stop weeping dramatically.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Wait.... Perspective: I Lost It

Because I am a thoroughly irrational and ridiculous girl, despite my well-documented love for most things Red Sox, I am angered this morning. Are you kidding me, Theo? SERIOUSLY?! You're going to get rid of my Mikey? NO! I do not accept this. I was supposed to get one more damn year of Mike, and now you are trying to take him away from me? Do. Not. Want.

I am horribly, terribly angry this morning, and I'm allowed to be. Mike is definitely one of my favorite players. As a matter of fact, his handsome face is staring at me from my calendar this month. It is the month of the Mikey, and now I am losing him? Horrendous. Unacceptable. My sentimentality is offended beyond belief, so much that I refuse to even look at this from a rational, team-benefiting perspective. Nope, I'm just going to bitch and moan about it until I feel better or take a liking to one of the spare pieces of garbage that Theo's been amassing.

Really though, I'm angry, and so very sad. And no, I don't think any player that Theo's been coveting or acquiring will do anything to improve our team. I think his additions are actually going to make the team worse. We need a bat, so... we trade away one of the guys who was actually pretty good with a bat? What? I know he hit into a ton of double plays, and his 3B range wasn't so hot any more, but come on! And yes, I get it. Theo has surrendered this year as a rebuilding year, but does that mean he has to take away our opportunities to win? I'm starting to think my dream about him trading Jon Lester might not be so crazy after all. Now I am concerned. And again, I'm aware that I'm being irrational, but I don't care. I'm allowed to be irrational when I want to be. And right now, I want to be.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Winter Meetings: Cold This Year

I always get my hopes up for the winter meetings and end up sleeping most of the way through them. Why? Because they're boring. Really, when's the last time Theo did anything fun at the winter meetings? Nope, can't think of anything, can you? You can't, because he didn't. Or maybe he did, but nothing is coming to mind.

Our signings thus far, that I've heard of, are Scutaro, Atchinson, and Hulett. Should I be jumping for joy over these acquisitions, because I'm not. I was almost not interested enough to even look up the spelling of Hulett's name. I hear the Yankees are getting/have gotten Curtis Granderson? That's great. I've mentioned before that I like grouping all the players I dislike together, so Granderson would be a good fit for the Yankees. Some may recall that Curtis is officially on my shit list forever because of that whole 'breaking up Beckett's no-hitter' thing back in June. I'm not worried about Granderson anyhow.

But other than that, it's been quiet. I hear Penny signed with the Cardinals? I guess he missed Smoltz. Together, their ERA's can balloon up and they can ride them off into the sunset, or some other such silliness. Yeah, still disappointed that I never got around to watching Smoltz pitch live and that i DID get around to watching Penny pitch live, but I'll survive this disappointment. I'm a trooper, after all.

I've gone through the schedule, up to the All-Star Break, and used my incredible powers of deduction and my mind-blowing ability to count to five, and I've pegged the games I plan on getting tickets for next season. There are only a few, but I'm sure I'll be at more than a few games. What would the season be like without the Red Sox live at Fenway and Camden? I just don't know.

And yes, I am still mourning the fact that Gonzo is a Blue Jay.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Perspective: I Haz It.

Once or twice, every December, I like to go back to 2004. Don't get me wrong, I like to go back there all the time, but in December especially. December is cold, and stressful, and right now the Patriots suck, so I go back and relive it. You know what I'm talking about. October 27th, 2004. Remember? Of course you do.

See, I like to do this because it helps keep everything in perspective, and it helps make the pain of the off-season so much more tolerable. And I don't know about you, but every time I look back, I can remember it all. I remember where I was, watching on a TV with a time-delay of a few seconds. Being on the phone with a friend whose TV did not have a time delay. Hearing her stifle her screams of excitement as Foulke threw to first because she didn't want to ruin it for me, and celebrating madly after it was done. I can't forget. I can't forget the excitement I felt.

I can't even imagine what it was like for people who lived and died with the team their whole lives. In 2004, I was all of 20 years old and I definitely didn't grow up in a sports-oriented house. I never even HEARD of the Red Sox until 8th grade. Don't ask me how that happened. I'm not sure, but Nomar was the first player I ever heard about. Strangely, I never took a liking to him. I didn't live a sheltered life. We owned a TV and had the newspaper delivered. I had friends who were, presumably, sports fans. But the fanaticism didn't get passed to me for whatever reason. So, no, I didn't suffer the way everyone else did, but the joy I felt was still incredible. I still like to think I did my time. There was no one in my family that I could think back and say "Man, I wish so-and-so was still around so they could have seen this." Nope. Nothing. But it was still incredible.

So, here we are, on the verge of hitting 2010 on the calendar. 11 years since I discovered this team. Five full seasons have passed since we first raised that 2004 championship banner. Does anyone remember April 11, 2005? You bet your ass you do. So do I. Of course I do, because I love the Sox. I love to remember. I love each and every member of that 2004 team... maybe not LOVE everybody, but I can't dislike any of them. It's illegal. You CANNOT, as a Red Sox fan, openly dislike any member of that team, with the obvious and glaring exception of Johnny Damon (though if he signs with a different team, he can be sort of loved again). I don't want to hear how you all hate Manny now. I'll never hate Manny. I can't. And yes, I still love Pedro, because I HAVE to. I keep my tabs on Arroyo. I grinned every time I heard Dave Roberts in the broadcast booth this season, even if he wasn't so good. I keep tracking devices on Doug Mirabelli. My love for Bellhorn has never wavered. Never. And it won't. I think back to Bill Mueller and smile all the time. Orlando Cabrera... no matter what uniform he's in, I want o hug him. Wherever Kevin Millar goes, I go. Baltimore, Toronto, doesn't matter. I plan my vacations based on where he's playing. Hell, I rallied to get Trot Nixon a job. Why? Because he's one of the 25, that's why.

Why the heck am I bringing up all this anyway? Well, for one, it's my blog and I can. Two, it reminds me that despite what I think about the team, it can get better. You never know who's gonna click and bring us back to the promised land. Why am I not waxing poetic about 2007? Well, because you just sort of knew, didn't you? I know I did. It wasn't surprising and death-defying (except for that whole Cleveland thing....) 2007 was fantastic, don't get me wrong, and I loved that team... except Lugo... but even that doesn't measure up to 2004. Nothing will ever measure up to 2004. 2004 gets me through any awful, long, winter day. It reminds me of spring, and sunshine, and Pedro's afro, and I can't help but feel good. I love feeling good, so I go back to 2004.

Now that I feel good, I can stay positive about the silly things Theo is doing. By all means, GM. Continue on! You've got my support. I've got visions of spring training dancing in my head.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaawn: Good morning!

I've been hibernating. Feels like a whole new year already. We're close to one, but not there yet. Tickets for spring training went on sale already, and soon we'll be in virtual waiting hell. No, I'm really not looking forward to it, but I'll be there because hell, I love those stupid Red Sox.

That being said, I'd like to welcome everyone back into the revolving shortstop door of hell. I'm going to absolutely hate to do it, but it's time to update my cast of characters again and move Gonzo back into the former player category. So now we're stuck with Scutaro. Pardon me if my enthusiasm for this isn't shining through in my writing. It's only because, well, I'm just not enthusiastic about it. You know what the Twins did? They got J.J. Hardy. I wanted J.J. Hardy. I knew that the Sox wouldn't bring back Gonzo, but I hoped to high heavens that they would consider trading for Hardy. Young, relatively talented, certainly no worse than anyone else we've had in here (except Gonzo), and controllable in the arbitration market.... to my knowledge anyway. Listen, I like him. It's not just because his name is Hardy. I think he would have been good for this team. But no. We've got Scutato. Hoo-ray.

So now we wait for the craziness of the winter meetings to hopefully produce a left fielder for us. Or a center fielder if they move Jacoby to left. Hell, let's get Coco Crisp back! Is Manny available? No? Pity, I would have liked to see him in a Sox uniform again. And yes, I know I am the minority in that opinion. Honestly, I'm not going to panic whether we get Bay, or Holliday, or none of the above, because my expectations of the team coming into this year are ZERO. I expect it to be a complete re-building year as we prepare for the final bows of Papi and Mikey, and the last appearance of the shell formerly known as Jason Varitek. We'll probably see Beckett pack up his huntin' rifles (and possibly Jonathan Papelbon) and head for greener pastures. Lord knows Theo won't think about giving him a long term contract. It's crazy how fast we've gone through four seasons of the Commander and Mr. Awesome. Feels like they've been part of the team forever. I like it that way, but I guess I have to be prepared for that to end.

I had an awful dream that Theo traded my Binky to the Yankees, which I KNOW he would never do, but it was a tad traumatizing, and it made me lose even more faith in our GM. I know the phrase is "In Theo We Trust" but there are just so many of his moves that seem completely boneheaded that I have to, you know, not trust him. I'd like to see Theo pick up some talented "talent" this offseason instead of picking up some high-ranked "potential." Though I will have to say, Tug might be the most ridiculous name I've experienced.

Someone call Julian Tavarez, please. One thing we do need on this team is personality. Munchkin's giant ego can't do all the work itself. Even with him, the giant hole left by the departure of Manny's ego is still just painful to acknowledge. I want fun! I want bowling on the field, taping guys to the dugout, wacky handshakes and hugs everywhere. If we're gonna suck this year, it might as well be fun to watch!

Welcome to the Winter Meetings, everyone. Some of my favorite times of Hot Stove Season.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Unbelievable: Nothing has changed

Yes, I'm upset we got swept. Yes, I blame Tito for a handful of stupid moves, and Paps for blowing game 3 when, really, he should have been ready. But I blame the team as a whole for looking positively pathetic in the first two games.

That being said, if you're one of those people who have demanded to trade or release any of the following players based on the playoffs (Papi, Tek, Beckett, Lester, Papelbon, Youk, Pedroia, Bay... ok, ANYONE on the team), please leave now because your kind are not welcome here.

I keep insisting that everyone has bad days, and yes, Papelbon picked a very bad time to have a bad day, but that doesn't negate his value. Seriously? We've won two world series championships this decade! Can we put the damn pitchforks down and realize that we had some bad luck? Every team goes through streaks, and ours happened to hit on a bad one during the playoffs. Really? REALLY, you're going to blame Beckett and Lester for the losses in games one and two? Can I please remind you that we had what, eight hits? One run. In two games. Come on! Blaming the pitchers for lack of offense. Sure, I would have loved to see them pitch better, but three runs a piece shouldn't kill a team with such good offense. It did. Nothing can be done now.

This is the last I'm going to say about the playoffs in this blog, because really, I don't care once the Sox are eliminated. I don't have a particularly soft spot in my heart for any of the teams involved. I'm just going to tip my imaginary hat to another winning season and playoff appearance and start back up with the rumor mill after the winter meetings. Enjoy the break, folks. A lot of us need it.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Twins: AL Central Champs

Wow. Way to choke, Tigers.

And congratulations, Twins. You assholes better bring that fight to Yankee stadium, or I am going to be pissed.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Yay: Regular Season Review

Continuing in the tradition I started last year, I am going to go over my top five favorite games of the year that I got to attend. It's not bragging. Just think of it as a way for me to ward of alzheimers for a few minutes, ok?

Unlike last year, the games I attended this year were not record breaking (well, one was) or definite shoe-ins. I actually had bad luck at the park this year, and finished up with a .500 winning percentage after seeing them only win twice in six games from June to the first week in September... but I don't want to make a post about the best losses of the year. So, here they are, counting down to number one....

#5 - Josh Beckett vs. CLE (10/3) - Final score 11-6 Sox
Josh wasn't particularly dominant in the first two innings, and he only went five, but those last three were pretty snazzy (and very much appreciated!). His line looked like this: 5 IP, 7 H, 4 ER, 3 BB, 5 K, 98 pitches. Not very Beckett-like, but he still got the win and kept his season ERA down below 4, which ALWAYS makes me happy. This game also featured Victor Martinez's first career grand slam (2nd inning), and Dusty Brown's first major league hit (a solo HR in the 8th). Munchkin also had a home run, and so did Brian Anderson (1st and 3rd innings respectively). Even with half a little league lineup, our offense looked incredible, and our pitching looked good. No, it wasn't great. Also, a BIG reason for this being on my list.... I was given the tickets for free, and you can never take free Sox tickets for granted. It didn't hurt that the seats were five rows behind the Sox on deck circle.... ok, I'm bragging a little here, but I swear, I'm not usually like this. Hopefully I'll put up some pictures eventually.

#4 - Tim Wakefield vs. MIN (4/22) - Final score 10-1 Sox
Another big-offense type game. I love those kinds of games. Granted, this was a rain-shortened affair, and the game was called after 7 innings, but come on. Minnesota wasn't going to score 9 runs off the best bullpen in baseball in 2 innings. I don't even see that as a possibility. Wake was great. This was during the part of the year where he was MVP while Beckett and Lester were struggling. Home runs were given to us from Asshat, Captain Planet, and Mr. Awesome. This was back when Asshat was hitting .462 (no, I didn't remember that, I had to look it up). Even though I missed the top half of the 1st due to train issues, it still ended up being a great, very enjoyable game on Admin day! Yes, I am an Admin, so it was only appropriate that my boss let me leave early to go to the game. It was a great day, for sure.

#3 - Josh Beckett @ BAL (8/1) - Final score 4-0 Sox
I loved this game. I love Camden Yards, and I love Josh Beckett, so the combination of the two is an amazing thing. Up until this point, I hadn't yet seen Josh pitch live for the season. I was supposed to have seen him three separate times before this point, but due to suspensions and scheduling changes, I missed him every time. He definitely rewarded my patience with 7 scoreless innings on the day that Victor Martinez made his Red Sox debut (yes, I love getting tickets for August 1st every year so I can see the new aquisitions or lament the recent departures). Another 5 K's for Josh, and one pristine inning a piece for Oki and Bard, and the Sox may as well have played "Dirty Water" at the end of the game... Baltimore, you're my (other) home! Josh picked up his league-leading 13th win, and he was looking like an unstoppable force. What's not to love about that?

#2 - Tim Wakefield vs. CLE (5/7) - Final score 13-3 Sox
Yep. This was the one record breaker that I saw this year. Some of you may recall this game. In the 6th inning, 12 men came up to bat and 12 men came around to score all before recording an out. The scoring in the inning was capped off by a 3-run HR by Jay Bay. I remember fans cracking up laughing in the bleachers, getting supreme enjoyment out of the moment. Three different pitchers tried, two in vain, to record that first out. Right after Bailey's hit in his only AB of the inning, people behind me were laughing, "How many outs? That's right NOBODY OUT!" Not the most clever catch phrase in the world, but in the moment, it worked. We were all happiness and smiles. How can you not enjoy scoring 12 runs in a single inning, never mind doing it all before the first out? Six innings and only 2 runs allowed from Wakefield made this one of the most fun Wakefield starts I've ever been to. Way to break a record, guys!

and finally... and this really shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone....

#1 - Jon Lester vs. TEX (6/6) - Final score 8-1 Sox
Once again, Johnny's got my best game of the year. Rather, I got his best game of the year. This was the infamous attempted murder game. Mike Lowell tried to kill me. Standing room only tickets on the monster resulted in my friends and I sitting in the first row closest to the Fisk pole. That's where Mike Lowell's home run ended up. I'm glad we didn't touch the ball, in retrospect, because there may have been fan interference. It was originally called a double, but it very clearly was up over the line. It smacked off the padding at the very top of the wall. Since we didn't touch it, the home run went to review, we were shown on TV, and the umps got the call correct. I will never mock Mike Lowell again. Oh, on top of that? Jon Lester had a perfect game going through 6 innings. He gave up a walk, a hit, and a run in the 7th, but he ended with a two-hit complete game victory, 11 beautiful, perfect strike outs, 107 pitches, and a win. Michael Young, for getting both hits of the night, is on my shit list (with Curtis Granderson) for the rest of his career. I know he was just doing his job, but that doesn't mean I have to like it. A lot of analysts were saying this after the game, but Jon DID look better in this one than he looked in his no-hitter (my #1 game of last year). He was brilliant, and after the rough start he had to his season, it was a great way to remind people just how amazing he can be. I look forward to seeing him start game one of the ALDS this week. I've seen what he's capable of. I feel good about it.

So those are my best games of the year. All in all, it was a pretty good season for the Sox. Thank God it's not over!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Timothy: Better Not Go Out Like That

I will not accept it. That was not the end of Timmy Wonderpitches, and we all know it. The man will come back next year, win 15 games, and get his name at the top of that All-Time Red Sox Wins list like he deserves. And then he can go out in glory.

Who am I kidding? The personal awards and accolades have always been more important to me (and most fans) than to Tim. He doesn't care if he gets that record. All he cares about is that he's been able to put on his cleats and call himself a Red Sox (sock? Still not sure what sounds right to me) for fourteen years. Love him or hate him, you know he's never made it about himself. That's why it's our responsibility as loyal fans to do just that.

I want the record for him. I want to see him go out a winner, on top, not as a sad, injured man who only goes three innings. I will not accept that reality. And as much as he doesn't want to make it all about him, I suspect that he doesn't want to accept that reality either. Besides, he's a knuckleball pitcher, and they're generally made out of magic and slow moving fast balls, so he can stretch it out a little while longer. No one wants to see that be his last game... except maybe this one guy I know, but he doesn't count.

So, we've lost 6 games in a row. You know what that means, right? We're just due for a long winning streak!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Congratulations: The AL Wildcard Is Ours Again

I know, for talking to various people and reading various blogs, that I'm the only one not happy with this. Let me clarify - I'm perfectly thrilled to be in the post season, and I have absolutely no qualms about going in as the wild card... my problem is the way we won it. It just felt cheap. It didn't feel cheap in '04, though I will readily admit that those were different times.

Maybe I've become too entitled. Maybe I should just be happy and uncork some champagne and celebrate, but winning despite losing just doesn't feel right. The thought of the post-season doesn't feel right yet. Maybe it will. I'm hoping it will, anyway.

I'll be at Fenway at some point this weekend. I don't know when and I don't know where I'm sitting. I don't even know who's giving me the tickets. All I do know is that I'll be there, and it's supposed to rain all weekend. I don't care, I'm willing to sit through the rain.

Unfortunately, there is absolutely nothing positive I want to say about last night's game. It was, in a word, awful. Or another word, painful. I could go on like this, but what's the point? The night inevitably ended in champagne showers so I'm not going to dwell on just how disgusting this team has looked in the last week or so. I'm going to put on my big 'ol smile and remember that this team isn't like the '07 team, who had invidivual parts that I absolutely hated. Same for just about every team since I started paying attention to baseball. There's always been that one cog that drives me up a wall. This team doesn't have that. I like every player on this team (of course I don't count Paul Byrd as being 'on the team' because I doubt he'll be making much of a post season appearance). Each individual piece is cool by my standards. Maybe that's why it feels different, because I like them? Who knows.

Congratulations to the 2009 AL Wildcard Champion Red Sox!

Now can we focus on getting your shit together and rememebering how to win, guys? Thanks!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Losing: It's Got to End

Enough, guys. Seriously, I've had enough. The magic number is one. ONE! If the Sox had just not sucked yesterday, we would have been popping champagne, too. I can't take it any more. First they make me suffer through a three game sweep by the Yankees, ending with what I'm assuming is an insane celebration right in front of our boys' faces (which I didn't bother to watch even a moment of, thank you). Now, they make me suffer through rain-drenched suck. That's the worst kind of suck!

I don't feel like being rational and reasonable and defending the wild card and talking about how resting players is good. I don't think it's good, I think it's lazy. I don't want these guys working on their swings in the batting cages, I want to see them out on the field. Because, and you'll forgive me if I'm a little unreasonable, time off seems to do these jerks* NO good! Post ASB? They sucked. After what felt like every day off this season, they lost. I know I'm exaggerating. I know I'm being completetly ridiculous, but come on. Can't we just wrap this thing up? PLEASE?!

*DISCLAIMER: I don't think any of them are jerks. Actually, I'm quite fond of the whole team.

Beckett's got back spasms and Binky's all bruised. It sounds like the beginning of a bad nursery rhyme... which, of course, is exactly what I was going for. Also, I want them to clinch a post season berth with a win, not with another team's loss. It just seems a little more undeserved if you don't win it yourself. But what do I know, I'm just a lazy, rambling, part-time blogger.

I'll be watching the game tonight... the WHOLE game. Because I want to see them win and celebrate on Fenway turf. How sweet is that going to be? Just make sure that Paps doesn't start drinking early.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Gonzo: Sending Us All Home Happy

If you weren't at that carnival ride of a game last night, please change the heading to "Gonzo: Keeping us all home happy" or something similar. I could say plenty about this game, and I'm sure I'll say quite a bit, but I'll start with this...


Not sure there was any adventures this game DIDN'T include, except maybe having the teams run frantically out of the path of a giant boulder hell bent on destruction... but even that could have possibly happened in the third inning.

We had constant lead changes, we had the Sciocia face, we had silly substitutions, we had Remy and Don, we had blown saves and stupid plays, good pitching, bad pitching, squeezing, blown calls, you name it! Thoroughly entertaining!

Yes, ball four to Nick Green was actually strike three and I willingly admit that. However, it was only fair that the umpires gave us that run back, because they were very clearly (to me... since I'm obsessive) squeezing Daniel Bard in the top 9th. The game should have been tied at that point anyway. I think if it had been tied, Captain Planet would have been called out on the third pitch, but the umps knew they had done a great disservice to the Sox by squeezing our rookie.

Hey umps! No squeezing the rookies!

So, this of course sets up the brilliant bloop hit by Gonzo that absolutely should have been caught... or at least there should have been a dive attempt. No hustle out there in left field, I'll tell ya. But I'll take it. And I'll thank anyone who thought Gonzo showed up with no bat to go jump off the Tobin (or, preferrably, something far less fatal and much more humbling... but I can't think of any examples, so please be creative). Love. That. Man. The End.

Oh, and I don't want to hear at all about the stupid gaffe by Tek. Far as I'm concerned, it didn't happen. And it didn't matter because we won. We won without Youk, VMart, and Paps. We used almost every man off the bench, with the exception of Kottaras. And not for nothing, but the entire game was put in the hands of a triumverate of shortstops! And I didn't dislike ANY of them!

Now if only the stupid Yankees had lost, that would have been the perfect way to end the night. Oh well, it'll happen. Optimistic of me or not, but I'm still looking towards division gold. Or material, as I'm all but certain that they don't make the pennants out of gold. Maybe plastic? I don't know. Not gold though. So I'm eyeing division whatever-they-make-the-pennants-out-of. Yeah!

Commander on the mound tonight. Let's hope he's gotten that ship corrected now that his flu problem seems to have flown. Look at me, trying to be clever. Ok, that's enough out of me! Go cheer on the Sox! (I know, it's 10:40 AM, but it's never too early to start. Let 'em hear it! Intimidate some umpires!)

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Daisuke: Not Your Mama's Matsuzaka!

I commend you if you understand the heading of this post, because I don't. It was literally the first thing that came to my mind... though I don't know how it could have figuratively been the first thing and... ok, I digress.

The guy who pitched last night was good. Don't know who he was, but he looked an awful lot like Dice-K. Weird. I hope that doesn't sound racist, just because the pitcher was obviously Japanese. He actually shared many physical atributes with Dice, so it's weird. I wonder where we got him.

All kidding aside, if you say that you expected that from Dice after the whupping he was receiving from single A players, you're a filthy liar. I know we're all happy about the results, but not even the most optimistic among us would have expected great results like that. Still only counts for a win, but any win is important in September. Or October. Or hell, August. You know what? I will willingly take wins in any regular season games. They all count equally to me.

Hope all is well with Victor and his family.

Gonzo is exactly what I've always wanted at shortstop. I'm happy. Do you feel the happy? I mean, he even started a rally that resulted in the Sox scoring the only two runs they would need. He personally scored the first. Brilliance. Brilliance! Just absolutely love Gonzo. My heartbrokenness over losing him the first time around was just another factor in my disdain for Lugo. I wasn't ready to let go (same thing on the whole #7, right field situation), but having Gonzo back is like being wrapped up in a high-quality blanket and given a cup of Bigelow green tea - the official tea of Terry Francona - before being read a bed time story. It's comforting. I love. See me filling with love? Well, no, you can't, but take my word for it. I am filled with love.

How can I scream at the shortstop when I love him so dearly?

Off-topic (not that I ever really have a 'topic' per se), I was discussing with a friend this morning the difference in Dustin when he's wearing a hat, and when he is not. Then I made a drawing of it. I'm a terrible artist, but I get a good giggle out of it. The concept is this.... when Munchkin is wearing his hat, he looks like he's 10 (especially if he's clean-shaven). When the hat comes off, he looks 40, regardless of the facial hair status. It is a very weird thing, because even other balding players don't have such a large gap in their age appearances. He is unique. If I ever get around to posting pictures again, I'll put that one up. And I'm apologizing in advance for it. Sorry, all.

That Papi home run last night? Made me feel October. Have you ever felt an entire month in one swing? It's intense.

Hoping for more of that feeling around 7:10 tonight.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Hi September: It's Been So Long!

Um.... well. This is awkward. I know, dear blog, that we haven't talked in a while. And I know I've promised to check in with you, and tell you about all of my crazy baseball adventures, and go off on tangents about as many games as possible. But I haven't. I've been lazy, and I feel terrible about it.

OK - so it's not as much laziness as it is busy-ness. I'm in grad school, after all. And I work full time. Plus, I like to go and see my friends on occassion. So, just because I didn't write up a long review of Progressive Field, Wrigley Field, and US Cellular Field doesn't mean that I don't love you. I do, and I always will. Anyway.

Last night was my last game of the season. I don't have tickets for any other games and now that the weather is getting (staying?) cold again, I won't have any will to be at Fenway. Those cold games, I prefer to watch them from the warmth and comfort of my own home. Does that make me a bad fan? I don't know. I'd like to think not. This game, back to the point, worked out incredibly well for me. I was SUPPOSED to see Dahmer vs. Camel, and that didn't make me happy. I don't care for Dahmer, and I am absolutely disgusted by Camel. HOWEVER, due to my favorite rain delay of all time, Jon Lester's game got bumped to Sunday, and I ended up seeing him instead. Lester vs. Sharky. Yeah, I loved this match-up too.... and if you don't think that James Shields looks like a shark, then you aren't paying attention. Strangely enough, the best picture I was able to get for the night was of James Shields smiling and looking ridiculously un-shark-like. I missed Lester in the pen due to traffic, and when I got to the park, Shields was warming. Someone remind me, and I'll post that picture tonight.

I felt good about the game right from the start. Seeing Lester walk out to the mound with that Beckett-esque strut he has developed, I knew he was going to be good. And he was good. He was bloody freakin' good! 8 IP, 0 ER... couldn't have asked for a better outing. And Wags, nailing the door shut. Brilliant. Ew... Wags? That's a horrible nickname. That definitely won't do. I won't be calling Wagner that again. He hasn't prompted a nickname from me yet, but it definitely won't be Wags. Gag!

And oh.... my Varitek. I love that man dearly. There is no questioning my affection toward the Captain. Even I cringe when I see him come up to bat, especially with the bases loaded. He squandered 5 baserunners all on his own yesterday, but did manage to come up with a very lucky 2-run single. Oh, I screamed all right. Jumped right out of my chair, fists in the air. I don't care if that ball should have been a ground-out to end the inning. I was just thrilled that it wasn't. If this was the last game I will see Varitek in live, that was a great final memory of him to have. This time, I really think it's over. I don't think the team will pick up his option, and I think his pride won't let him pick up the player option. I don't even know if I'm really sad about it. He's way past his expiration date. Though, I have to say I want to see him stick around. I think he'd be a great bullpen catcher! Or coach. He'd make a fantastic coach, what with all his intangibles. And stuff.

I guess that's all I really have to say about that game. Great pitching matchup, great pitching PERFORMANCES (on both ends), offense where and when we needed it from the left field line (Bay, Lowell, and Tek), and perfect weather. You just can't ask for much more from Fenway Park on a Sunday in September.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

2009 Jimmy Fund Telethon

There are few causes that I bother with... actually, there's only one. Not that I believe other causes aren't worthy, but the Jimmy Fund radio telethon just MEANS something to me. I know I don't have a huge blog following. Hell, I don't know if ANYONE reads these silly ramblings, but every year, I will do whatever I can to prompt people to donate.

The goal is $5 million. Right now, according to the website (, they're at about $400,000. The telethon has been on the air for just over 5 hours, and they haven't even raised $100,000 an hour yet. It IS a 36 hour telethon, and I know a lot of the big donations come later on, and towards the end, so I'm not worried. I also know that when given the chance, people prove that they're loving, caring, and want to help. Especially in Boston, people have such a good relationship with the Jimmy Fund. We care about this cause around these parts.... and if you don't, maybe you should.

I know the shape the economy is in, but as I was listening to the radio this morning, I heard a stat (and I hope I get this correct) that 80% of their donations last year under $100. I don't know how true that is, but if it is true, it blows my mind! Think of it. If everyone you knew would give just five dollars... man, that would be over a hundred dollars just from THIS floor of this office! For the price of a Starbucks coffee and a scone, you can help the Jimmy Fund reach their goal of helping people with cancer. You can go without coffee for one day to help children going through chemo, can't you?

I got into a debate this morning with a friend. He's convinced that there will never be a cure for cancer and there's no point in trying to find one. My reply to him was simple... Even if there's NEVER a cure, we can still work our hardest to improve the quality of life for people who were stricken with the disease. We can still give parents precious years with their sick children. We can make sure that a few more parents are around for college graduations. We can give people hope, and comfort, and make it so that their last years on Earth aren't years full of pain and suffering. And along the way, if we can find cures for even a percentage of the types of cancer out there, then that's a bonus! My God, it's not all about finding a cure, it's about giving hope. Everyone needs hope sometimes.

So consider the people in your life who have been affected by cancer. I pledge every year in memory of my father in the hope that the research they're doing will be able to save someone else's father. Even if you don't know anyone personally... as a baseball fan, look at Jon Lester and Mike Lowell. They were the lucky ones. They survived. They are proof that the research is working!

Do it for guys like Greg Montalbano, who lost his fight with cancer last week. Do it so guys like Greg can live full lives. Greg is a testament to the fact that there is still so much work to be done. He was too young to be lost to this awful disease, and while I didn't know him, my heart goes out to his family and friends.

Do it because it's the right thing to do.
Here's the number... 877-738-1234

Tim Wakefield: Triumphant Return

On a day that had many people (including myself) mourning the loss of Ted Kennedy, Tim Wakefield made his return to the Sox. We hadn't seen Tim since the All-Star game, where he had a prominent place on the bench and a great view of the game. I don't care what your politics are, or what you thought of Ted Kennedy, he did plenty for the people of this country, so I don't want any badmouthing. Rest in peace, Ted.

Wakefield made his return alright, and pitched as if he didn't miss over a month of the season. One ER. That's all he gave up. Pretty snazzy, huh? It was nice to see Wakefield back. But of course, I wouldn't expect him to let an injury keep him away from the Jimmy Fund telethon. He HAD to be back by now. I think it's written in his contract. More on the Jimmy Fund later.

Big Papi with two (that would be TWO) home runs last night. I watched his first walk-off in two years while sipping a delightful basil lime martini. I'll tell ya, I could do that every night. Heroic walkoffs and awesome cocktails? I LOVE that combination. It's nice to have a spark in this lineup when we need it most. And, for the record, no. No I'm not rooting for the Yankees while they play the Rangers. I'm also not rooting for the Rangers, but I would PREFER that the Rangers won. This division has not been handed to the Yankees yet. I want the Yanks to have to fight for it.... and lose. But fight, nonetheless!

Really, though, that home run in the 9th was just what this team needed. Can they keep it up? Can Papi be Papi when we need him? Can Beckett stop the suckfest that he's been propagating the last few outings and be Beckett? Can Brad Penny be out of town before the first pitch tonight, never to return!? Can these things happen!? I hope so.

No. I'm not sad that Penny was released. It had to happen. It had to happen for a long time now. So now that two out of Theo's three major reclamation projects from the beginning of the year have failed, can we PLEASE have a change in the motto of who we look for when acquiring pitchers? Saito has been.... ok. Nothing spectacular and I certainly don't trust him in close games. Penny and Smoltz failed. How much more of this has to happen before our GM realizes that it's not working. Time for a new strategy!

Farewell, Brad Penny. I'm glad I didn't bother coming up with a nickname for you. Thanks a lot for pitching on July 4th, and sucking really badly, therefore making me waste my best seats of the year on a crappy, horrible game. Thanks for that. I appreciate it. Now get away from Beckett, you're tainting him!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Billy Wagner: Not Even Close to Making My List

What is the list, you ask? The list is the 'Top 100 Players I'd Like to See Theo Pick Up at Some Point." Wagner was not on that list. Neither was Penny. Neither was Lugo. Drew wasn't either.... and Gagne... no way. you know, I could go on and on about the names of people that Theo picked up that I don't care for and didn't want, but it makes no difference. I ultimately have no say of who is on my favorite team. I root for them anyway. You know who WAS on my list? Alex Gonzalez. So I have no reason to bitch about acquisitions for the rest of the year. I got who I wanted.

I've been playing a game since Gonzo has come back. You've been playing it, too, but you might not have known. The game is called "Lugo would have..." The point of the game is to predict what Lugo would have done with any ball that gets hit towards short. During the course of the game, you'll hear me shouting "Lugo would have missed that!" or "Lugo would have fallen on his face while pretending that he had the range to get there." or "Lugo would have thrown that away." or "Lugo would have found a way to completely botch that double play." The game is really fun for people like me who never liked POS. It's more fun for people who, like me, adored Gonzo's abilities on the field. The best part about the game is that we're all winners, because whatever Lugo WOULD HAVE done, he would have had to do it on another team. Yay! Gonzo's contributions with the bat, which have been fairly decent so far, are just bonuses in my mind, and I don't care what anyone has to say to counter that. Consider me happy.

We're not going to discuss the Commander here right now. I didn't write about his last start. I couldn't. I'm waiting until his next start to pass judgement.

As for Clay Buchholz... ugh. Please go home to Triple A, where it's safe and warm and such. I just don't like him. I can't help it. I tried, and I failed. Send him away.

And Jon Lester... that was probably the least lucky ND I've seen for him in a while. He pitched fine. I saw nothing wrong with his game. I saw some clumsiness on the field and some baseballs taking weird hops, but he deserved that win. Oh well, like I say some times... team stats are more important than individual stats. I've said that before, haven't I? Well, if I hadn't, I probably meant to.

Congratulations to CRW for snagging a Red Sox record of 55 bases. The old record belonged to Tommy Harper. I'm not sure if he was in the house last night to witness the event, but I do know he was rooting Ells on. I think we all were. I like seeing Red Sox records broken by decent people. CRW seems decent. Fun thing is, with more than a month left to the season, he has a good shot at shattering that record but good. Good luck with that!

I'm excited about Timothy's return tonight, and NO, I don't ever want to see Brad Penny coming out of the bullpen. The thought of that frightens me just slightly less than seeing him announced as a starter. Maybe Penny can drive Buchholz down to Pawtucket and get lost on his way back?

Friday, August 21, 2009

Jon Lester: Spits In The Face of People Who Don't Want to be Cool*

*Or that might be a gigantic lie that I made up right now.

Fabulous pitching last night from our end. 8 IP, 1 ER from Jon Lester was more than I hoped for, but I'm certainly happy to have it. It's a shame that he doesn't have about three or four more wins in his tally, because he definitely deserved to win his three starts prior to this, but I'm just going to have to let it go. He's got about five more starts to the year, so he could conceivably finish with 14-15 wins. Not stellar but good enough for me.

He's not gonna win the Cy Young, so I care less about his individual stats that the team stats.

It's nice to see JD Drew, well, do just about anything really without hurting himself. That man is made of glass. He is. It's not his fault, it's just how he was created. I'm toying with the idea that maybe he's part robot. I've never seen anyone as emotionless as Drew, even after hitting two home runs last night. Correct me if I missed it, because I honestly would like to know that there's some human left in there, but he just never looks ANYTHING! Not happy, not sad, not excited or worried... just nothing. Whatever, I guess. If he hits, he can look however he wants to.

I hate to say this. I really, really, really hate to say this and I'll probably change my mind about it in a few days, but it's looking like a good idea to keep Tek seated and let V take over for a while. He can hit. We need offense. I'm sorry, Jason! I am! But you just look so gosh-darned good with the coaching staff! Maybe... no. No, I won't say it. We all know. But I still love you dearly.

It hurt me physically to type that last paragraph. So now I'm wounded like half the roster.... maybe they all got hurt thinking the same thing. I'm just late to the party. Oh well. Elephant Man vs. Penny TO-NITE, LIVE! At GLORIOUS Fenway Park!

Go Sox. Go as far as you can. Or something

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Doc Halladay: Showing Mercy For Once

Yeah, the Sox do try to bring their A game against Halladay for the most part. But the only time I can recall seeing such a short outing from him is when he had appendicitis a while back. Five innings? Wow. If he's healthy, he was just showing us a little bit of mercy. He knows we need the wins, and his team really won't benefit from them one way or another. Or he might have been tired. Been pitching an awful lot of complete games this year. But, because this is my blog, I'm going with the pity/mercy train of thought.*

*Please note, I don't actually believe this, but I'm allowed to come up with whatever silly conspiracy theories I want.

Dahmer was good yesterday. I'm not a big fan of his, but I guess I'll give credit where it's due. 1 run in 6 IP is a good way to stay in the rotation. However, knowing that I'll be in Chicago in a few weeks, I really don't want to run the risk that I end up seeing him. Though I don't want to have to see Dice-K either. It's a tricky situation. Lesser of two evils might be Dahmer.... and that is officially the most twisted sounding sentence I've ever written in this blog, especially if you don't follow along with my nicknames. People who read that must be thinking 'man, that Dice-K guy must have done something HORRIBLE if he's considered to be worse than Dahmer. To my recollection, Dahmer was a pretty bad dude." And my response to these people is 'yes, he did do something pretty bad. Have you seen the way he was pitching this year?!' and then we'll all laugh and move on with our lives.

Hi, Gonzo! I know you're not reading this, but I want to remind you that I'm ecstatic to have you back. The two hits last night didn't hurt either. I really appreciated the effort from the whole team. You know, I was having a pretty awful day yesterday, and I think a bad game may have sent me over the edge. Because I'm overly dramatic and quick to anger. Can't help it. So, I really really needed that win, and they got it.... not just for me, but for all of Red Sox Nation and.... yeah. You understand. It made me happy. It gave us a lead in the Wild Card race. What's not to like? Thing of it is, it didn't really help our standing in our division, but it didn't hurt us either! Next series, we face the Yankees. Lets try to put a little dent in that 7 game lead.

First, we face Brett Cecil with Jon Lester on the mound. The boys have been scoring no runs for Lester lately, making it hard for him to win. I'd like to see him get some support tonight. I know he has as much support from me as I can physically manage. So put on your Papi jerseys, take a sip from your Red Sox freezer-safe glass that you got from the Red Sox team store, turn on NESN at 7:10 and start cheering. We're in the home stretch. We need all the help we can get!

Oh, and get ready to welcome Remy back to the booth! I'm so happy he's well enough to return. Glad to know he'll be back where he belongs (at least part time) on Friday. Don't think that means I don't still adore Eck, because I do. Can we fit all three of them in the booth?

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Good Sign: Winning Games

When Beckett has a rough night and gives up 7 runs and Papelbon can't find the strike zone or escape unscathed from jams and we STILL win? That's what I call an awesome game, folks. No, it wasn't particularly easy to watch, and yes I swore repeatedly at Joshua, but he's allowed to have off-nights just like everyone else, and he was long past due for a bad performance. At least according to my logic he was.

Congratulations are in order for Kelli and Dustin Pedroia. I'll tell ya though... the thought of Pedroia raising a child is a little scary (mostly due to the personality for him I've made up in my mind). By all accounts, little Dylan is a healthy baby, so I'm happy for them.

I really have nothing else to say about that game except that I'm glad I watched it. It's nice to see Gonzo back in these parts. Makes me a happy girl.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

There is a Reason that I'm Still In Love With This World

And that reason's name is Alex Gonzalez.

Yeah, I wept a little tear of joy. What's it to you? You'll have to forgive my emotional outbursts, but I LOVE this man. The last shortstop that I gave my heart to.

I sent a text to a friend this morning when I read that Gonzo had cleared waivers... "What are the odds that Theo makes me happy and reaquires Gonzo?"

The reply? "He should. But he won't. Don't bother getting your hopes up."

So I didn't. I didn't think about it all day. My hopes were down. I was fully prepared to go through the season with Captain Planet at short. I was prepared, and I was ok. And then 1:00 came and I get a text from a different friend "Red Sox reaquire ss Alex Gonzalez from the Reds! He's back!"

He's back, my friends. He is back, and you can't pry this smile off of my face. There will be no airmailed balls into the third row behind first base. There won't be sloppy double plays. I have all the confidence in the world that if he gets to it, he makes the play. I love Gonzo, and I'm so happy to see him back! Don't bother trying to bring down my opinion of him. Aint gonna happen.

Welcome back, Gonzo. You have no idea how happy I am to see you!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Josh Beckett: Making My 201st post a Happy One!

No doubt about it, when Beckett is pitching the way we know he can, I am enthralled. He befuddled the Tigers the other day and it was great. It's extra great that it gave me the opportunity to use the word 'befuddled.' You'd be surprised how infrequently I get to use it!

Two Tigers got solo home runs off of my dearest Josh. They only ended up with three hits, so you know, perfectly acceptable. This game, in particular, has made the whispers of Cy Young pop back up for Beckett.

I want to stop these whispers now. He's not going to win the Cy Young, and I'll just get my hopes up and get angry again like I did in '07. My guess is that it's going to Halladay, and he has the numbers to deserve it. But there's still a month and a half left to the season, so things can change. All the reasons that CC won in 07 have become the argument for Halladay in 09. Let's take a look, shall we?

Beckett 20-7, 3.27 ERA, 200.0 IP, 189 H, 76 R, 73 ER, 17 HR, 40 BB, 194 K, 5 HBP
Stupidface 19-7, 3.21 ERA, 241 IP, 238 H, 94 R, 86 ER, 20 HR, 37 BB, 209 K, 8 HBP

2009 - so far
Beckett 14-4, 3.10 ERA, 3 CG, 157 IP, 132 H, 61 R, 54 ER, 12 HR, 42 BB, 145 K, 4 HBP
Halladay 12-5, 2.73 ERA, 5 CG, 165 IP, 158 H, 55 R, 50 ER, 14 HR, 21 BB, 138 K, 3 HBP

Beckett's ERA's a little higher, and the IPs are lower... it's early, still. I know. And no, I'm not letting Stupidface into this year's Cy discussion. I don't think he deserves another one, since he clearly did not really deserve the one he got two years ago. All the good in the world that did him. He couldn't manage to beat his main Cy competition head to head. Questionable. I guess that's what an extra 40 IP will do to you by the end of the season!

According to my super scientific method of counting out the days in the schedule, Beckett's got about 9 starts left to shine those numbers up a little bit. Think he could do I? I sure do.

Oh, and don't think for a second that I haven't appreciated all of the offense from Kaz and Mikey. Granted, yesterday's game was a little less than spectacular on the offense side of things, but we were missing JD, Munchkin, AND Asshat. Hard to win games without two of your major offensive weapons. No, I don't count JD as a major offensive weapon. Munchkin and Asshat? Yes.

FoxSports is reporting that my beloved Alex Gonzalez has cleared waivers and can be traded to any team. Do I dare to even give myself hope????

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

200 Posts: And I Still Have Nothing Good To Say

This, I'm sure some of you will realize, is the scene when Tito got the boot during last night's game. But, my automatic reaction to this...

... is to imagine that the umpire is singing "Give me the beat boys, and free my soul. I wanna get lost in that rock and roll and drift away!" But not just singing it. Really, really getting into it. And Francona just looks slightly amused at the inappropriateness of the situation. I'm sure the exchange went something like this.

Tito: Scott, what are you doin out there (spit)? Do you even have your head in the game (spit)?
Scott: Terry, don't worry about my head. I went to this awesome concert last night, and I just can't get the songs out of my head.
Tito: Concert? You're.... kidding, right? Weren't you working at, I don't know, this park last night?
Scott: Yeah, but man, you gotta make your own music.
Tito: No (spit), you need to pay attention to what's going on! My guy was safe and...
Scott: Terry, Terry, Terry.... calm down. I saw the play.
Tito: But you got it wrong!... (spit)
Scott: That's ridiculous. I've got the power of good-time rock and roll on my side.
Tito: The power of what?
Scott: (singing) "OHHHHH Give me the beat, boys, and free my sooooooooul"
Tito: This is (spit) ridiculous. Can I eject myself from the game?
Scott: (still singing) "I wanna get lost in that rock and roll and drift awayyyyyy! Wooo!" (throws fist up in the air excitedly)
Tito: Ok.... um... That's it, Terry! You're out of here! (pause) See ya.

I think baseball would be more fun if it were more like the stuff I have in my head. Not to say it's not fun.... but it could be SO MUCH MORE!

Youk: The New Revenge Bringer?

Wow. That game was one of those games that you have to really watch.... at least the first few innings. It's a horrible thing to say, for sure, but I love when players charge the mound as long as no one really gets hurt. I guess that's the wrestling fan in me. Youk has always seemed like kind of a hot head. I'm surprised this is only the first time he's been up there. I'm also BEYOND surprised, as I think Don pointed out last night, that Youk made it all the way to the pitcher. The first baseman was essentially like, two feet from where they ended up. Maybe he wanted to see a fight, too? Then again, if that scary mug were charging toward someone near me, looking hell-bent on revenge, I probably wouldn't intervene either. I also have to agree with Jim Ed - that was a weak helmet throw. I understand it's probably hard to throw your helmet menacingly while running, but I expected just a little bit more from him. I do hope that Youk isn't hurt, though. That would be bad... although with our over-abundance of 1st base types these days, we might be able to wing it.

So Junichi Tazawa, welcome to your average, every day start. You'll have guys who couldn't turn a double play if their families lives depended on it (which, luckily they don't, otherwise Munchkin and Captain Planet would be screwed). I'm sure you know already, Junichi, that this isn't going to happen here every day. Just every few days or so. Or once a year, really, and you were just lucky enough that it happened to coincide with your first start in the majors. I'll give the kid credit. He looked shaky in the first, and that wasn't helped at all by the two blown double plays in a row, but he survived and he came away with his first big league win to counteract that terrible first big league loss that he should have never been responsible for.

I didn't see Tito get tossed, as I was baking when it happened, but it must have been comical. Also, Rick Porcello probably shouldn't have thrown at two of our guys and expect to not get tossed. He may have only hit Youk, but he came dangerously close to giving VMart a ball-shaped bruise on his ribs. Eck was unsure at first about Porcello's intentions, but there was no doubt in my mind that he was trying to hit him. I'm glad that by the end of the broadcast, Eck came around and realized what we all were thinking. Come on, Tigers. You really think Tazawa was trying to hit your guys? He had pitched two innings and was probably a little nervous. His control wasn't there. Porcello's control was there, though, until his guy got hit. Weird.

And how about that Mike Lowell, the beautiful man that he is, coming into the game on his night off and hitting two home runs! TWO! He is the reason we won the game. Just think, if Youk didn't charge the mound, we may have lost this game.

Again, Paps tried to make it interesting in the 9th. I'm just glad that he didn't make it TOO interesting. And not for nothing, but Curtis Granderson, stop being the bane of my existence, ok? Enough it enough (and it's time for a change?)!

Commander on the mound tonight. I can't wait, and admit it, neither can you.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The Red Sox: Doing Stuff and Things that Confuse Me

So.... what the heck happened yesterday? I'm confused. The Sox, last night, they scored more runs than their opponent? I mean, the fact that they scored runs at all is mind boggling, but more than the Tigers? I don't know what happened. Is that allowed? Should Bud Selig, in all his useless glory, be called in to confirm that this is legal according to the rule book (not that I expect Bud to know the rule book). We're (sigh) only 5.5 games back now, with still almost two months to play. Awesome!

All kidding aside, that was not a pretty win, but you hear it all the time... there are no extra points for style. Penny was decent. I'd like to see him go longer in the games, but I know I can't have everything. MDC blowing the save in 7th made me twitch angrily for a few minutes, but then I remembered that he's still upset about the whole Fetus debacle, and I forgave him. If it were me, I would have given up runs, too.

So there goes my psycho conspiracy theory that the Red Sox actually enjoy losing. I was so convinced! It made too much sense.... the swinging at the first pitch, the staring at strike three, the pretend injuries... All of them were pretend. Don't think for a second that Jed Lowrie is really hurt. He just doesn't enjoy baseball. I don't know why he does it. And Kazerud? Hamstring? Come on, our old left fielder used that one. At least come up with an injury of your own. I don't know what's bothering Drew this week. Wakey? Well, he's gotten used to his August vacations. That whole 'livelihood' thing really gets bothersome when the kids want to go to Disney, eh, Timmy?

Ok, ok, I'm done with my stupid joke. I get it. It's not funny, I'll stop.... I guess. I did tell you that if the season ended today, we'd be in the playoffs. I do not lie about important things like that. Everything else? All fair game. For all everyone knows, I don't really like Jason Varitek at all.


I have no idea what's gotten into me today. I can't believe I just typed that. It's almost sacrilegious. I think I'm just giddy from a beautiful, perfect, wonderful combination of a Red Sox win, a Yankees loss, and Shawn Michaels in a chef's hat. And if you aint down with that, I've got two words for you...


Mike Lowell.

Yeah, that works. Junichi Tazawa vs. Rick Porcello on the mound tonight. Do we think that Eck will learn the Japanese word for 'cheese'? Here's hoping.

Monday, August 10, 2009

It's the End of the World as we Know it: And I Feel Fine

Really, I stewed this weekend about the putrid show (or should I say absence of) offense, but what good did it do me? The Red Sox didn't keep me awake last night. I'm not sure what kept me awake last night, but it wasn't the Red Sox. It wasn't the Yankees, it wasn't Jon Miller, or Joe Morgan, or the incessant clips of the Luis Tiant special that they just. kept. showing. I've got nothing against Luis Tiant, but for chrissakes, ESPN, I've got to watch my team lose. Get Luis off my screen, I want to watch Pedroia ground out after swinging at the first pitch!

The whole entire week of baseball sucked, and I genuinely figured I'd be furious beyond belief all day today. I wasn't. I found myself not even caring about the losses, because I looked up at my calendar and realized that it's August 10th. Seriously! We've got nearly two months left to the season. Even if the season ended today, or tomorrow, do we make the playoffs? Maybe not today, but tomorrow, I bet we do!

The bats suck, that's for sure. But man, our pitching has been TREMENDOUS! John Smoltz... well we all knew that experiment had to end. I feel awful about it, I do, but it had to. Junichi Tazawa? Just a kid. He'll be ok. I'm so not worried. Even Clay gave us a great start. How can you really argue with that? We've seen the bats go dead at the same time before. While I admit, this is a little scarier than I'm used to, I can't imagine they'll be this dead for the rest of the season, so just have a drink and take a deeep breath. We're going to be ok. Seriously... have you looked at Beckett's ERA lately? 3.12. I kid you not. Jon Lester has a 2.somethingawesome ERA since the beginning of June. Our pitching is there. We just need to get the bats up and about.

Hang on, folks. We're nearing the end of the ride, but we still have plenty of hills to climb. It's meant to be fun. I have to remind myself of that some time.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Ok, I Admit It, I Fail

Yes, I am woman enough to admit that I was wrong. This whole John Smoltz thing? It's a disaster. I figured a few bad starts, maybe a slightly elevated ERA, and then the future Hall of Famer would settle down and... I don't know... get some outs? Listen, it just didn't work out that way. I wanted it to work more than anyone I know. When everyone around me was jumping on the 'designate Smoltz' bandwagon, I stayed on the 'give him another chance' one. I think I've finally jumped off. Last night... it was one of those nail-in-the-coffin type moments for me. He can't seem to hold a lead. Ever. I don't know what it is. I do feel absolutely terrible for him because I wanted him to succeed, and I was thrilled when Theo got him. But, this only futhers my theory that I should never be a GM or a manager (not like that would ever happen) because I make decisions about the sport I love with my heart and not my head. In the same line of thinking, since Theo made the move I wanted him to make, maybe he shouldn't be a GM either.

Really, Theo? Paul Byrd AGAIN?! You have so much talent in the minor leagues (PS - where Clay Buchholz should be) and you sign Byrd? Ugh. No, you don't get it, do you? Guys like Byrd and Penny... they're not what we need. I'm not saying we need a Roy Halladay, although that would have been ultimately nice, but we don't need the five innings, 6 ER, 5 BB per outing kind of guys.

Don't mind me. I'm a little frustrated. We don't have Fetus, but we do have Gargoyle and Penny and Smoltz couldn't buy themselves wins right now. No one is scoring runs for Jon Lester, we're 3.5 games back in the division, and goddamn Longoria! You know what I mean. You all know what I mean.

Listen, we've got the Commander on the mound tonight. If he can't get us a win, I don't think I can stomach the rest of the series. He better bring his F-game with him (none of that A-game crap. I actually want to win).

Monday, August 3, 2009

Welcome to August

Man, what a week, huh?

I've been going to Baltimore annually for a long time, and I can say that I don't quite remember seeing it that crowded ever. Don't get me wrong. It's always crowded when the Sox are in town on a weekend, but I felt like it was especially crowded this weekend.

I wanted to head into the park on Friday night to see Smoltz pitch, but after the drive, I was just too tired so I watched it online. I'll admit, when he starts, I almost expect a loss. I hope for a win, but I don't expect one. Getting him the win was nice of Youk, considering that Smoltz probably did not deserve it. That's the benefit of being on a team with a really good offense. They score you runs, you win more games. It doesn't even matter that his ERA is somewhere north of, of I don't know, Saturn? Is Saturn north enough? I guess it really doesn't matter. He won.

Saturday, I hoped with all of my might that Josh was terrible. The funny thing about Josh is, when he says that he has his best stuff, it's usually after a loss. I clearly recall on a few separate occassions, after a particularly rough beating administered by some unsuspecting team, Josh claimed that his stuff was just 'too good.' I know I don't know a lot about the mechanics and minutae of pitching, but really? I'm expected to believe that he gave up 8 runs because he was too good? Well, if he says so. So because of that, every time he pitches, I hope that he is awful. Saturday, he was awful. He was terrible to the tune of 0 ER and 7 IP. Granted, he had a lot of luck with the double plays, but he was still good enough. 13 wins, my friend. Two months left to go. I doubt he'll get to 20, but you never know. I'm not even going to go into the possible Cy Young talk, because they'll just give it to some stupid fat ass who really doesn't deserve it anyway.

I'm mixed about my feelings towards Victor Martinez. While I try to find a nickname that I feel suits him, he will more than likely be called VMart because there is no way I'm writing out Victor Martinez every time. Matter of fact, that's probably the last time you'll see me write it out, so cherish the moment, ok? It's not that I dislike him, per se. My issue comes in the fact that we had to surrender a perfectly good Fetus to get him. I adored Fetus. Honestly I did. I wish him all the best and I'm very sad to see him go. I will always root for him because he seems like such a genuinely nice guy. I hope the major leagues are good to him, where ever he may end up. I'm among the minority who faults Theo for not dumping Buchholz. I'm not sold on him. I just don't think he has what it takes to be a successful major leaguer. It would be nice if he could prove me wrong, I'm just not buying it with him. So we get rid of a pitcher I love to get a catcher who's purpose is to replace the catcher that I love. It's not that I dislike VMart... I'm just sad that he has to be here, is all.

I admit, sitting at the park on Saturday, seeing Fetus' name come up beside the score for Cleveland made me a little misty eyed. I'm sure Manny Delcarmen was misty eyed right along with me. Poor guy. His sadness made him give up two runs on Sunday (or so I heard). I didn't see a second of the game on Sunday, as I was stuck on the god forsaken George Washington Bridge until... oh, just about 20 minutes ago. What the hell?! I haven't been over that bridge in years, and now I remember why I always avoid it like the plague. I moved two miles in forty minutes. I wanted to jump off the goddamned bridge. What the hell, New York?!

So, I hear we scored 18 runs? Awesome. Think we can keep it up against Garza tomorrow? I hope so!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Relax: This Is Only A Test.

That's what I kept telling myself as the innings went on, and the Sox failed to string together hits. It's now been just about 49 innings since the Red Sox have put up a crooked number (Thanks to the fine research done over at Joy of Sox). 49 innings scoring only 1 run or fewer (that would be no runs for those of you not paying attention). We've lost 5 in a row. The Sox look like a little league team.

This is only a test.

Remember that when Brad Penny goes 5 innings tonight. It is only a test. When Papelbon loads the bases with no outs, it's only a test. When 'Tek strikes out swinging on a ridiculous pitch that he shouldn't have been swinging at? Only a test. When Jacoby swings at the first pitch and pops it up into the outfield? Only a test. When JD Drew stares at strike three for what feels like the 85th goddamned time in a row and you just want to scream "SWING THE F&*%ING BAT, YOU STUPID ASS! YOU'RE NOT GETTING PAID TO BE A F*&%ING MANNEQUIN!"... even this is only a test. A test of what, you ask. You know what, I reply.


So keep it. And let's will a win out of Penny tomorrow.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

OK, now I'm just annoyed

We can't beat veterans, we can't beat rookies.... scoring more than two runs seems to take an act of God these days.

I know it's only July and we're only one game out, but I am NOT happy about this. We went into the All-Star Break with a three game lead in our division and one week later we're a game out.

Hey Red Sox, in case you've forgotten, we've got an extremely talented farm system. So you might want to stop sucking because you can ALL be replaced. So get your goddamned acts together, because between the weather and you, my summer has been less than fun. So cut the shit!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Four Days Off: Killing All Momentum

Welcome back from the hideously long and stupid All Star Break, everyone! What a way to completely zap the momentum we had going. We roar into the break, building up a three game lead in our division and winning our final series with one hell of a badass performance by our ace, and then we whimper our way out of Toronto, losing only our third series since, what, May? I can't be too annoyed about it. Jon Lester may not have been sharp, but he was good. Roy Halladay, well, he was just better. It didn't hurt that our guys looked like they had left their bats at home somewhere. Maybe the equipment manager will find them before the game tonight. Wait... is there a game tonight?! Oh my God, I forgot the schedule!

Yeah. There's a game tonight. Smoltz vs. Millwood. This makes me sad, because our guys have tremendous trouble with Millwood. Well, the former Red Sox did. I don't know how this specific collection of ballplayers will do against him. Hopefully better than they did against Halladay, which shouldn't be too hard because Millwood is not Halladay.

Unfortunately, I didn't see the game on Friday, and I didn't see the game on Saturday. I didn't enjoy the game yesterday, and I won't be seeing the game tonight. It's essentially eight days without any good, meaningful baseball. It's killing me. But I'll be seeing Green Day tonight, and well, sometimes you HAVE to prioritize other things over baseball or you spend your entire summer on the couch. Lucky for me, after July, 90% of my summer vacations will revolve around baseball. It'll be nice to get away for a while to see some good old baseball. Yay baseball!

I'm assuming Smoltz will do well, because I want him to. Isn't that enough incentive for these guys? Making ME happy? No? Hmm... that seems like a big problem for me.

I'm sure I could find positives out of last night's game if I wanted to, I just don't feel that it went so bad as to need the positive reinforcement. Though I am annoyed that we're only a game ahead of the Yankees again. That irks me. Stop giving them hope!

Friday, July 17, 2009

POS: There's The Door, Please Make Your Way To It

I make no secret of the fact that I've been waiting, basically since they signed him, to move POS's name from my list of current Red Sox players to my list of former/non players. He is essentially the reason I started this blog. I needed an outlet to vent my endless frustrations about him and the team. If he's gone, no, I won't end the blog. It'll just be a much happier place to live.

To clarify... we did not win the world series in '07 with Lugo. We won despite him. Do you know what Lugo did in 2007? He made 462 outs. 10th in the league. No one else from the Sox cracked the top ten. Only 8 of those outs were sacrifice hits. 570 AB, and he made 462 outs. Yes, I'm being hyper critical of him, as I'm sure there were some other ugly numbers on the team that year. Truth is, I really just don't care.

I wanted him to do well. I didn't cheer for him, but I most certainly didn't boo him. It's just not logical to cheer against someone on your own team. He wasn't as BAD as I give him credit for, but he came with high expectations because of the stupid contract Theo gave him. When is Theo going to learn to NOT give ridiculous contracts to shortstops? It does not work well for him!

Either way, if this is the end of the Lugo era in Boston... I wish him luck. Honestly. Sort of like Wily Mo, as soon as they're off my team, I hope they find themselves somewhere good. But I will absolutely not be sad, nor will I ever look back on Lugo's tenure with the Sox fondly. As a matter of fact, I'm pretty sure there's a party in the planning stages to celebrate this departure. We just have to wait until it's official.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Pedro: Now The 5th Phillie I Can Remember

I have issues remembering who plays on the Phillies. The thought process usually goes like this:

Me: Hmm... I can't seem to remember who plays for the Phillies. Weird.
Also Me: What do you care? You can't even watch Phillies games.
Me: Well I do love me some good baseball, and considering they're the current world series champions, you would think I could show them a tad bit of respect and, uh, know them.
Also Me: Knowing players names doesn't make the game any more or less enjoyable.
Me: That's a lie and you know it. It is way more fun to shout, for example "C'mon, Jay Bay! You got this!" than it is to scream "Alright, left fielder, you can do it!" And before you ask, yes, I scream enthusiastically at my TV.
Also Me: So knowing all this... knowing about your fanatical, obsessive need to know players' names, you're telling me you can't name anyone on the Phillies?
Me: No, I can name four of them. That still leaves 21 guys that continuously slip my mind!
Also Me: Which ones can you name?
Me: Ryan Howard!
Also Me: That's cheap. Everyone knows Howard. Who else you got?
Me: Jimmy Rollins.
Also Me: Former MVP Jimmy Rollins? Yeah, he's kind of a recognizable figure also. Keep 'em coming.
Me: .... Shane Victorino.
Also Me: It's because of the nickname, huh?
Me: (long pause) Yeah.
Also Me: Not everyone gets to be called the Flyin' Hawaiian. Last one?
Me: Uh... hmmm....
Also Me: Oh Come on, this is YOUR list of players YOU remember.
Me: Wait! Chase Utley.
Also Me: All star.
Me: What do you want from me, I'm trying!

And it sort of goes on and on like that. Now, they've got Pedro, and as soon as he joins the big club, I can brag that I know of five Phillies instead of just four. What an accomplishment.

In all honesty, I think this is a bad move for Pedro. I think he'd be better served to just go back under that mango tree and enjoy retirement, because that's far easier on us than having him struggle his way through baseball. His fastball isn't what it used to be, and though I can't vouch for his location, I bet that's not quite as crisp either. Pedro was/is a baseball God. He will be in the pantheon of the greatest pitchers of all time. The man was insanely good. He was good. These days, or at least his last days with the Mets (almost a year ago)... uh, not so good. Listen, I wish him the best of luck. Honestly, I do. I want to see him do well, but I have reservations about how effective he can really be. Lets hope the Pedro experiment works well.

Joe Maddon: Big Stupid Meanie.

Count me among the group that this morning is calling for the immediate deportation of Joe Maddon. I don't care where we deport him to, just get him the heck out. I don't even care if this post reeks of blatant homerism. Tim Wakefield should have been in the game. Would it REALLY have killed Maddon to put him in to face ONE DAMN BATTER? No, it wouldn't have. This game meant so much to Tim, just so he could find himself benched for the entire night. He sat on that bench, and you could see that despite everything, he was still enjoying himself. I'm happy for him, I am, I just really wanted to see him in that game last night. Tim just always seems to find himself as the team's resident sufferer no matter what team he's on. He's always the one that ends up getting let down. He does not let us down, the rest of the world lets him down. It makes me sad. But he'll show 'em. Next year, he'll be back, and maybe he'll even start. And win. He'll get the win because he'll be pitching so well that Francona (wishful thinking) will let him go five innings against the clueless NL lineups. It will be great.

I feel no shame in admitting that I was rooting for the NL to tie it back up so we could go into extra innings. Unfortunately, the NL ran into a string of very good pitching from our side and they just couldn't push across that extra run. I wanted the extra innings so badly. I resigned myself to not caring who won, as long as Tim got to pitch. He didn't. Strangely, I still find myself not caring who won. Woo. The AL beat the NL again. I'm so shocked.

Seriously, NL... you could help yourselves out. Take a few extra grounders before the game. Talk to your team mates. Do whatever you need to do in order to not look like a bunch of confused hobos roaming around the infield. That first inning was not pretty. Aside from the fact that Lincecum was possibly a tad nervous for whatever reason, the infield did not help matters.

Paps decided to treat MLB to a little taste of what he's been giving us most of the year... heart attacks. That's right, heart attack theater was in full force during the ASG. One pitch. His first pitch. It looked destined for the bullpen. Luckily, I suppose, Carl Crawford jumped or reached or whatever he did and hauled it back onto the field for the first out. That catch, which wasn't as spectacular as everyone would have you believe, won Crawford ASG MVP awards. You can thank Paps for that, Carl. You wouldn't have won it without him.

But what about my arch-nemesis Curtis Granderson? Didn't he deserve it for legging out that triple that essentially would put us back on top. Triples are rarer than catches, so I think Curtis should have gotten it. But what do I know? I'm ridiculously bias against players not on the Red Sox but still in the AL East, so yeah. Nice to see Paps get the win. Last two years, Red Sox players have played a large part in the All Star Game. It probably goes back further than that, but to be completely honest, my memory is useless, and I don't feel like looking it up. And not for nothing, but if Jeter could run, Kazerud would have gotten an RBI in the game. Thanks for nothing, Derek.

So now we have two more days until actual, meaningful baseball is back. What am I going to do with myself?! Oh my God! This is terrible! Meh, I'm sure I'll think of something...

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Home Run Derby: I Didn't Watch It 'Cause It's Stupid

After last year, I just don't have any respect for the Home Run Derby. Because of my irrational, uncontrollable, and completely unexplainable hatred for Justin Morneau... and honestly, I don't know why I hate him, I just get completely infuriated when I see him. I'm sure he's a lovely man and all, and he's obviously somewhat talented, but for chrissakes!.... anyway, my point.... because of my hatred for him, watching him win ANOTHER award that he didn't really earn (oh now I remember, AL MVP 2006.... that's why I hate him. Well one of the reasons anyway) just left a bitter taste in my mouth. Anyone who watched the home run derby last year knows that Josh Hamilton was the star of that show, and he SHOULD have won it. Who makes up the crazy, stupid rules anyway? I'm glaring angrily at YOU, Bud Selig....

So this year, Prince Fielder was victorious. Of course, I was rooting for our hometown boy, Carlos Pena, but I also like Prince Fielder, so I don't mind that he won. Actually... there wasn't a single guy in the competition this year that I would have been angry if they won. It was a nice group. Very uncontroversial, which is a good thing. So congratulations to Prince on your win. The win makes sense to me. You hit the most home runs over all, you win. He hit the most. He won. Brilliant. It's just too bad it also falls in with the silly rules that I was just complaining about. Whatever. Good job Prince!

This is my thought... people watch the home run derby for the home runs. Obviously. There's nothing else to watch during this event. There is no fielding. It's not really pitching. No baserunning.... you get the picture. It's all about the big blast over the wall that people go crazy for. However, due to the cutbacks in steroids, the home run derby is looking sadder and sadder and a lot of the big hitters don't want to participate in it any more. This is my thought. Make the people who get caught using steroids participate in the derby. Make it part of the punishment. That way, you're guaranteed hitters who have a little extra power. Just think of the home run derby this year. It would have had ARod and Manny! Think of the excitement and marketing possibilities, and the off-chance that ARod would break down in tears when he fails to deliver in the clutch... also known as the first round. Hey, there's a lot of competition and pressure in that first round! But of course, no one ever listens to my ideas...

So tonight is the All Star Game. I'll be watching, because as I've been told... this time, it counts. Or whatever. I don't pay very much attention so I might have gotten that wrong. But it counts! Home field advantage and what have you! Excitement around every corner!... or at least at home plate, I assume. After tomorrow, I won't have to write about the All Star Game for another year, so yay! Congratulations again to the Red Sox All-Stars: Timothy Wakefield, Joshua Beckett, Jonathan Patmybum, Munchkin Pedroia, Asshat Youkilis, and Kazerud Bay. Go git 'em, boys. (Except for you, Munchkin. You stay home with Kelli)

Me: Not Taking an All Star Break Like Those Lazy Players

Nope. No break for me. While the players are out cavorting and gallavanting and doing absolutely nothing of value, I am taking the break as an opportunity to update this here blog. I don't know if you've noticed, but I've been a tad... bad with the whole updating process. Once technology has advanced to the point where my thoughts are transmitted directly into my blog, therefore saving me hours worth of typing, I will update my frequently. Then again, with the random thoughts in my head all the time, that might be a horrible idea. OK, so technology or no, I'm pretty much going to continue to be lazy as long as you promise to stay out of the brainmeats.

Despite the entire first paragraph, this post is not about me. It is about something I enjoy tremedously (not Cheez-Its either, although I am currently enjoying those tremendously). No, this post is about Josh. Because I don't know if you're aware of this, kind readers, but Josh? He kicked some serious butt the other day. Yes, two days ago. I am two days late with this post. 9 innings, folks. Nine gorgeously stupid innings. Less than 100 pitches!... 94 to be exact, and only three hits. He didn't walk a single batter, but that's not surprising given how low that pitch count was. I hope our other starters were paying attention. THAT is how you're supposed to pitch to bad teams. None of this 'putting it in the hands of the bullpen' crap. Be efficient. Throw strikes. Swear a little. Be Josh Beckett.

Watching Josh pitch during odd years is fun. I adore Jon, but Josh is my favorite to watch. He is just beyond awesome. I love angry Beckett, but arrogant, self-assured Beckett is pretty fun, too. When he knows he's got the stuff to get anyone out, and he does, it's a joy to watch. There's paint, and cheese, and the cheese has hair, and sometimes it's right down Broadway, and sometimes it's not, but you GOTTA HAVE IT! You gotta have those corners!... ok, sorry for that moment of Ecksclamations. I got carried away....

Sox fans in general are pretty lucky these days, and we've got very little to complain about. Our pitching depth is incredible. Our homegrown talent has been making it to All-Star games in their first few big league years. We've got a great ballpark. I don't care what anyone says, there is something magical about walking up the ramp and seeing the green monster out in left field. Every year, my first game of the season, it gives me goosebumps. I truly love that old park, flaws and all. I love this team, even if I do forget that sometimes.

Beckett may not be homegrown talent, but we had to give up some damn good home grown talent to get him, and I think it was worth it. I wouldn't reverse that trade. Sure, it'd be nice to have Hanley, but we got the (should-be) 2007 Cy Young winner and the 2007 World Series MVP out of the deal. With Mikey making his return on Friday, the Marlin-twins will be reunited again for another post-season run. Actually... Penny was a Marlin. We already have the Marlin-twins. With Mikey, it will be the Marlin-triplets. We'll be unstoppable in the post season! Where the hell is the smell of toast coming from?! We don't have a toaster up here... sorry, easily distracted.

I don't know if people have noticed, but CRW is up to 40 SB's. Assuming that he doesn't go through another month long stretch without swiping a bag, he is on pace to finish with 80. Ok, that's a lie, and completely 100% made up. I didn't feel like calculating out his projected pace, so we're just going to assume that it's 80. I am happy with that number, and we're keeping it. I just hope little Jacoby lives up to my expectations.

Into the All-Star break with a 3 game lead over the Yankees. Sweet. Though, don't be surprised when we get stuck facing Halladay. But... um... Halladay's not so tough. Right? ..... yeah.

I'm sure you'll hear from me again soon. I've got more to update.

Monday, July 13, 2009

John Smoltz: Please Plan On Buttering Up the Bullpen

If anyone could explain to me what John Smoltz did to so deeply upset each member of our bullpen, I would much appreciate it. In his last two starts, at Baltimore and vs. Kansas City, the usually reliable bullpen has given up 18 runs. No, you didn't read that incorrectly. I did write 18. That would be 10 against the AL east cellar dwellers, and 9 against a Royals team that is 11.5 games out of 1st in a (currently) soft division. If it weren't for how awful the Indians have been this season, they'd also be cellar dwellers. Sad.

Smoltz, for what it's worth, did pitch well. Five innings isn't a long outing, I know, but I think that once he gets his stamina back up, we'll be seeing him go 7 or more. He's John Smoltz, after all. So he's making the 'pen work. Could that be what's gotten them all so uppity. Oh no, they have to cover four innings! GASP! I know, I'm being unusually mean to the pirates in the pen, but I still love them. They just really really REALLY need these next four days off to relax and put some ice on those swollen ERAs.

The game as a whole... just wow. I don't even know what to write that can cover it. First of all, the team lines were as follows: KC: 9 13 3, BOS 15 12 1. We got outhit. Again. By Kansas City. Really! I know, I didn't believe it either. Hey, a win is still a win, right? Strangely enough, just like Lester, Smoltz only allowed one hit. Our bullpen gave up 12 in 4 innings. Ouch. More ice, please.

JD Drew made a great throw from right to nail Miguel Olivo at home. Seriously, it was a gorgeous throw, right to Tek's waiting glove. Tek, for his part, stretched out like a first baseman for the force play. Had the ball gotten by JD, poor Smoltz would have been out of luck again. But he charged it, gloved it, and threw a perfect cannonball home. He has got an arm when he wants to. The only thing troubling about finding out how good these guys are is when they're not performing the way you know they can. Now that I've seen JD throw that well, I expect full effort every time. More outfield assists, David!

We had home runs from Tek and Papi, and a pair of dingers from Youk. Offense from all over the bloody place. Aaron Bates got his first major league hit and RBI.... the ball from which he sent straight to his mother. You can't tell me that isn't adorable. Ok, I'll admit, to this point I've only seen about three innings of this game, so I can't really comment. I was in Pawtucket watching poor Charlie Zink get a beating while the game was recording on my TiVo at home. I got home and watched a few innings, but the rest of my report is based on box scores.

Pawtucket did not fare well. They ended up losing 8-7. Charlie was hammered in the first few innings, giving up 3 in the 1st, 4 in the 2nd and 1 in the 3rd before settling down for a bit. Dusty Brown had a bad day at the plate. Jed Lowrie was looking pretty good though, and Chris Carter had a nice home run to cut Syracuse's lead a little. They came up just short. Thus is the magic of the knuckleball.... you just never know what it's going to do. So I guess I will have to wait until I finish watching the game to give my full opinion.

Who am I kidding? I know that's not going to happen. It was a win. It was an ugly win, but a win nonetheless. And the PawSox will get the next time!