Tagged: Ballgames

Magic Number = 161

Sox win season opener in 10th Okay I like day baseball, but this morning was a little rough.  I’m sure I am not alone in that thinking, but hey baseball is a product and I guess MLB has to market it, no matter what the local fans think, anyway on to the game.

  The Red Sox did their best to get our blood pumping early today.  Starting out with Dice-K, who looks like he has picked right up where he left off last year, wildly inconsistant.  It looked for awhile like Dice K was not going to make it out of the 2nd inning, spraying balls all over the plate.  Dice K took three batters to an 0-2 count in that inning, but only struck one of them out.  When it was all said and done his overall line was not as bad as his performance, only two earned runs in five innings, but throwing over 90 pitches to get to that point.  The bullpen was not bad today either, going five innings and giving up three runs, one of those came off Jonathan Papelbon, who looked real shakey and rusty to trying to close the door in the 10th.  Last season Papelbon’s  first blown save was against these A’s, and it looked like he was going to repeat the past giving up four hits and a run in the 10th.  However he was bailed out by a costly base-running error by the A’s.

  The real story of the game was Manny being Manny, and Moss being Moss.  Brandon Moss subbing for oft-injured Nancy Drew, made the most of his day with a pair of hits and two r.b.i’s, including a two out homer in the nineth to extend the game.

Sox bats wake up just in time

Manny Rameriz looked like a guy playing in a contract year today, getting two hits and four r.b.i.’s, including a bases clearing double in the 10th that put the Sox ahead.  The A’s made the mistake of not pitching to Big Papi, who was 0-4 today, instead they elected to pitch to Man-Ram.  It has been reported by ESPN’s Peter Gammons that Manny spent the off season dedicating himself to being in better shape this year, so far it looks like it may have paid off. 

  Overall, this game looked like a lot of opening day games, kinda-off slow and a little sloppy.  The good news for Red Sox Nation is a victory on opening day, something they usually do not do, not matter how crappy the other team is.  On tap for tommorrow is another bagel’s and cream cheese game, featuring Jon Lester versus Rich Harden, should be another good game.  If you are scoring at home, the Sox are now 8-0 in thier last eight games, that streak includes an ALCS and World Championship, as well an opening day victory!

Play Ball !!!!!!!!!

Far away, a title defense begins It seems like only yesterday that the Red Sox were dancing around celebrating thier second World Series title in four seasons.  How quickly the off-season moves in baseball.  We are now only mere hours away from the Red Sox title defense and the start of the 2008 MLB season. Dice-K gets the nod for the Sox in his native Japan, hopefully he has learned from his mistakes last year, and maybe he can maybe go six or seven innings without throwing 200 pitches.

BDD - Photo Illustration courtesy of SoxNation.net

It will be another interesting season again in the AL east, the game is the same and the players remain the same.  There is a rumor that the Jays will be more competitve this season, and that they could challange the Sox and the Yanks.  The Sox and Yanks pitching is the key to how both teams will fare in 2008.  Both teams have young unproven pitchers, they both have have a bona-fide ace, and they both have guys that are a little long in the tooth.  Either way starting tommorrow morning, the Sox will either move a 1/2 game ahead of the Yanks, or a 1/2 game back.

                                               PLAY BALL

Line-Ups….

No Julio Luggo for the third game in a row, as Terry Francona and co. have sent him to Barnes and Noble to buy the book Hitting for Dummies. 

BOSTON:

2B Dustin Pedroia
3B Kevin Youkilis
DH David Ortiz
LF Manny Ramirez
RF J.D. Drew
1B Eric Hinske
C Jason Varitek
SS Alex Cora
CF Jacoby Ellsbury
SP Julian Tavarez

Texas:
CF Kenny Lofton
2B Ramon Vazquez
SS Michael Young
DH Sammy Sosa
LF Frank Catalanotto
RF Marlon Byrd
1B Brad Wilkerson
C Adam Melhuse
3B Travis Metcalf
SP Kameron Loe

Heat Rocks…Sox Stink…

Good news and bad news, the good news for me is the Red Sox game ended in time for me to see the last hour of Heat, for my money the greatest movie ever made.  The bad news, the Sox took the last five innings off to make this happen.  Josh Beckett and company decided to play the first three innings, but they all decided to take off for the rest of the night.  Beckett cruised thru the first three innings, but gagged it up in the 4th, allowing four runs to score on what seemed like 7 or 8 hits in a row.  The rest of the Red Sox joined Beckett in his gag fest, and joined him in the tank the rest of the game, gather only two hits after the third inning, against one of the worst pitching teams in baseball.

  Is there anyone anymore worthless than Julio Luggo, who has been off the last few nights, due to the fact he is a mental mighty might.  Luggo was brought in during the 8th inning to pinch run for Dustin Pedroia.  Of course Luggo was picked off right away, killing the rally, and the Sox last best chance to make it a ball game.  Another quality free agent brought to you by the genius that is Theo Epstein.

  Jacoby Ellsbury made his debut tonight, going 1-4, but not striking out, which was nice to see.  Ellsbury looked good in center as well, although he is no Coco.  Yanks had already lost today, so the Sox blew a golden chance to move up a game.  Oh well I guess they did not lose any ground.

Seattle Sweep….

Daisuke Matsuzaka pitched eight innings of three-hit baseball, giving up just one run, but the Red Sox lost in 11 innings, 2-1, and get swept by the Mariners. The Sox looked like a team today with one eye on the ball, and the other on thier flight schedule.  The end result was they left a small village on the base path, and wasted a fantastic outing by Dice-K.  The loss completed a three game sweep for Seattle, a team that has played very well of late, and it showed in this series.  The Sox finish this nine game road trip 4-5, after taking the first two series against the Braves and Padres.

  There are are no morale victories, only wins, but if there was one, it would have been Dice-K’s dominate performance against Seattle today.  Dice-K went eight strong innings, throwing 114 pitches, allowing only one run, and three hits and a walk, while striking out eight.  It is now starting to look like Dice-K may morph into the front-line pitcher he was forcasted to be.

  As I have often ranted about on this site, leaving men on base will kill you more than anything.  Today was no different, as the Sox left them loaded twice, and stranded 13 baserunners overall, pathetic.  Julio Luggo continues his march towards a .150 batting average, and it is has now been two weeks since he has had a base hit.  It is a struggle to watch Luggo the last few weeks.  He is no prize at shortstop, and for a guy who was brought in for his bat, he has been a total disappointment for Red Sox management. 

  Next up for the Sox is a six game homestand against the Rangers and Devil Rays.  The home cooking will be well deserved for a team that has traveled over 7,000 miles in nine days.  I guess the good news is the Yanks have not gained much ground lately, and as of right now they trail the O’s by four going into the top of the nineth.  Clemens gave up the four runs, and he is on the hook for the loss as it stands now.

Line-ups….

Another long night for East Coast Red Sox Nation, as we have a 10:05 PST start time.  Here are the line-ups, do I hear three and 0 for Julian for the month of June?

. J.D. Drew, RF
2. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
3. David Ortiz, DH
4. Manny Ramirez, LF
5. Kevin Youkilis, 1B
6. Mike Lowell, 3B
7. Jason Varitek, C
8. Coco Crisp, CF
9. Julio Lugo, SS

SP – Julian Tavarez

Mariners

1. Ichiro Suzuki, CF
2. Jose Lopez, 2B
3. Jose Vidro, DH
4. Richie Sexson, 1B
5. Ben Broussard, RF
6. Kenji Johjima, C
7. Adrian Beltre, 3B
8. Yuniesky Betancourt, SS
9. Willie Bloomquist, LF

SP – Jeff Weaver

11th Heaven……

Beckett delivered a pitch in the first inning. In what was supposed to be the premiere match-up of this interleague weekend, Josh Beckett lived up to his end of the bargin.  Beckett was again dominating for the second time this week, going 2-0 against the Braves and the Padres, both road wins.  Beckett cruised through most of this game, with only a minor hiccup in the fifth inning.  Josh Beckett went 8 strong innings today, throwing 116 pitches, striking out 8, and allowing only two runs and six hits.  For Beckett it was his 11th win of the season, he also become the first pitcher in the majors to the 11 win mark, even after sitting for two weeks.
  The Red Sox offense was also in attendance today, pounding out ten hits and three runs against a very tough Jake Peavy, especially when he is pitching at Petco.  Both Manny Rameriz and David Ortiz got into the r.b.i act, both drove in a run.  Jason Varitek also knocked in his 8th homer of the year on a long flyball to centerfield.
  The bad news for the Sox is the hitting of Julio Luggo, who is now hitting at .193 for the season.  What is even worse and magnifies how bad Luggo is hitting, is the fact that Josh Beckett’s two hits in two games this week is ahead of Luggo.  At 36 million dollars this guy could be the worst signing for Theo yet.  Although you can never be to quick to retire the saying worst signing by Theo yet.
  The other good news for the Sox today was the New York Yankees losing thier second game in 24 hours to the hapless San Francisco Giants.  Thier co-ace Mike Mussina was very average today, and the bullpen again was tagged for someruns late that put the game out of reach for the Fort Knox Bombers.  The Fort Knox Bombers are again under the .500 mark for the season, and now trail Boston by 11.5 games in A.L. East.  Worse yet for the Yanks, the have fallen back 7 games in the wild-card race.  All in all a great weekend for the Sox as they take down another good team, and still put more distance betwwen themselves and the Yankees.