So we can start with the trade deadline. All the talk in the world and no movement of Roy Halladay. JP Ricciardi decided that he didn’t want his job anymore. How else do you not move Halladay and build up your young arms? Yup, he’ll be canned after this season. See you later.
Another GM that will probably be looking for employment this offseason is Padres GM Kevin Towers. The Sox attempted to trade for Adrian Gonzalez and apparently Towers asking price for Gonzalez was “three times Halladay’s asking price” according to ESPN’s Jayson Stark. Well you know what the Sox made a couple deals.
One that they tried to get that they were shot down was Felix Hernandez. It would take at least the farm plus one or two guys on the current roster to pry King Felix from Seattle. The Seattle GM would have to be high on peyote in order to trade him. So never.
Around 2:30 rumors started circulating that the Sox had acquired Victor Martinez from the Indians. Well, the Sox had just made a deal the week before for a first baseman. So what do you do with Adam LaRoche? You dump him back to Atlanta for Casey Kotchman. Kotchman was part of the Teixeira last season. He can play outfield, first base and in two seasons in Atlanta has zero errors at first.
A little while later the Victor Martinez trade became official. The Sox dealt Justin Masterson off the current roster along with minor leaguers Nick Hagadone and Bryan Price. Martinez was immediately inserted into the #3 spot in the line up and did nothing but power the offense. 1-5 in the debut but then 5-6 in an 18-10 rout on Sunday. Glad to have this guy on board.
The funny thing with all the trades is that the Sox have Brian Anderson (acquired for Kotsay) and Chris Duncan (acquire for Julio Lugo) in Pawtucket and instead of bringing them up, they brought up Josh Reddick. Reddick decided to go 4 for 11 over the weekend while DL Drew hurt himself yet again.
Sox sweep the O’s in a wonderful weekend in Baltimore. That’s more like it. Off to Tampa only a half game behind New York for first in the division. Good thing New York did nothing at the trade deadline.
So after Brad Penny put in five innings of work the game was turned over to the bullpen. A day after I ripped the closer, it didn’t get any better last night with the rest of the pen.
Manny Delcarmen comes in the game and gives up a deep double. After getting the next two guys out he serves up another double and the Sox lead is cut to one. Enter Justin Masterson.
Masterson gives up a single to the first guy he faces and all of a sudden the game is tied. Awesome. Way to hold the lead. Well after that he gave up a bomb to the next hitter. Now the Sox have gone from a two run lead to down by two.
It just wasn’t the bullpen’s night as Ramon Ramirez came in the eighth. Walked the second batter he faced and then gave up a triple that made it 8-5. Sox lose and the pullpen sucked. Final line, 4 innings, 5 hits, 5 runs, 1 walk and 7 strikeouts. The lone highlight was Daniel Bard who worked a clean four outs striking out three of the batters he faced. Can’t wait for the future when he’s closing games like that.
The bottom line on this whole thing is that it’s the fucking Royals! Eleven games under .500 Royals. The Sox shouldn’t have problems with a team like this. What the fuck? They best right the ship and win the next three. Especially Saturday when I’m at the game.
Being stuck at work on Opening Day sucks. I know I wasn’t the only one either. There was a time at previous jobs that you would schedule your break for late in the afternoon so you could go into the employee lounge and catch a decent chunk of the game. Well, at the new job, there’s no TV, so that wasn’t an option. I don’t miss enough games to opt for the MLB TV computer thing so I’m left clicking refresh on Boston.com and ESPN.com.
Well, the game flew by. By the time I got in the car it was already the bottom of the fourth and the Sox were up 4-1 thanks to Little Dusty’s home run and some timely hits from Mike Lowell and Jason Bay. When I got home, Beckett was cruising. Ending the day striking out 10 in seven innings. He looked really good spotting his fastball like throwing darts.
Oh, and in the bottom of the sixth Jason Varitek hit a home run. Yeah, that Jason Varitek. Oh, and he did it from the left side of the plate for all of those saying he should only bat righty. In fact everyone in the lineup had a hit except Ellsbury. You can’t steal first. His at bats look the same, every time. Watch the first pitch, foul off the second, and dribble out or weak pop/line out. Isn’t the point of the lead-off hitter to work the count, not go down on three pitches? Just saying.
Okajima was the only other negative for the Sox hitting a man and walking another. I’m sure you could put in on Masterson who actually gave up the hit that allowed them to score, but had Okie never put them on base, they wouldn’t have been there to score.
Paps then came on in the ninth and continued what Beckett had started throwing some serious gas. After a pop out he struck out the final two batters for his first save of the season. You just know the game is over when he takes the hill in the ninth. Red Sox win 5-3 and start the season on a very good note.
Look for Rocco to get a start tonight for the Sox. Let’s keep the home cooking going. Baseball’s back and more importantly, the Sox are back.
So the game starts with a double off the big wall in right for Jacoby. Then the team left him stranded at third. Then in the bottom of the inning Lester loads the sacks and you could sense doom. But like Dice-K has done so well Lester pitched himself out of the jam.
This is why they play nine.
After 700 plus games without a playoff appearance Jason Bay welcomed himself to the playoffs with a two run homer in the fifth. It turned out that was all the runs the Sox would need as Lester found his groove and gave a big EF-U to the Angels. Seven very strong innings, no earned runs, and seven strikeouts including the side in the sixth.
Jacoby robbed Teixeira to start the eighth using his face to break his fall. Of course the Angels didn’t help themselves with a bone headed, base running gaffe. After a bloop single Vlad tried to get to third and Youk showed him that his third baseman arm was alive and well. Youk tossed to Lowell who tagged Vlad out at third.
And for all the people that doubted Papelbon after his pretty bad September, he came out and struck out the side in the ninth despite a single sprinkled in.
Sox win. Going back to 1986 that’s 10 straight playoff games against the Angels.
If anything it’s going to be exciting. All you ask as the road team in this kind of series is to win one of the first two, then come home and take care of business. The Sox have done what they need to do. Should Dice-K win Friday, you have to feel very confident throwing Beckett Sunday in a clinching game.
Waking up Thursday you had to feel good. The Sox were getting ready to sweep the Yankees and the Patriots were playing their final tune up of the preseason against the Giants. Instead of the Celtics “Beat L.A.” most fans were thinking “Beat N.Y.”
Then they played the games.
After getting praise from me earlier in the week for finally rediscovering his form and becoming the pitcher the Sox will need down the stretch Hideki Okajima came in and shit his pants. Not literally as funny as that would be (especially in hi-def) but he may as well have. Greasy, steroid-head Jason Giambi steps up and ties the game. Why Francona took Lester out at that point (I don’t care if the pitch count was 119) is ridiculous. Obviously Giambi can’t hit Lester (0-3, 2 strikeouts) and that’s why he wasn’t in the lineup.
And speaking of getting praise in the blog and shitting his pants, the control that Justin Masterson showed earlier this week left him and he too had a monster turd in his pants. How you walk Pudge Rodriguez who’s batting like .170 with tha Yankees is beyond me. Maybe Masterson thought he was playing MVP Baseball 2000 or something. Then Papelbon gave up a single to the greasy, ‘roid head to end the game.
Sox lose 3-2. Well only a few hours till I can watch the Pats beat up the Giants. With the likes of Matt Cassel and his band of merry men, it’s not likely considering the Pats have yet to win this preseason, but let’s see.
Well, I was wrong on that front too.
The Pats managed to score zero first half touchdowns the entire preseason. I know Touchdown Tommy didn’t play in any of these games, but Maroney was in there what the heck was he doing? The lone highlight on the night was the play of Kevin O’Connell who threw and ran for scores. Hopefully this spells the release of Cassel who shall from now on be referred to as “The Failed Experiment.”
The last time the Pats went winless in the preseason was 1990. They went 1-15 that season in case you forgot. But that team had guys named Marc Wilson and Tom Hodson taking snaps under center. The lone win was with Steve Grogan at the helm.
Am I worried? A little.
At least the Pats get one last preseason tilt before the season starts next Sunday when they welcome the Chiefs to Gillette. That’s not a preseason game? Well, it should be. KC sucks and it’ll be all the tune up Tom needs for the rest of the season.
At least the C’s didn’t lose to the Knicks. That would be the worst.