Saturday, April 26, 2008

Frustration Mounts for the Red Sox

Hey, I'm back from a bought with the Red Sox flu. Hope my old pal Marty entertained you in the meantime. He'll make occassional appearances for me as the season goes on.

My first thought after last night's game was, "man, I'd hate to be David Ortiz' cat tonight", after Big Papi went 0-6 including hitting into a double play in the 11th inning (for all us animal lovers out there - it is just an expression). All-in-all it was not a bad game, and the Red Sox bullpen held their own, which was nice to see. I cringed when Brian Corey came into the game, but he battled well and held down the fort.

The real frustrating part was having two men on with one out TWICE in extra innings and BOTH TIMES ending those opportunities with double play ground balls, in the 10th by Julio Lugo, and in the 11th by Big Papi himself. You have to tip your hat to Papi for trying, as he dove headfirst into first base in a desperate effort to keep the inning alive. The grounds crew for Tampa Bay will have some work to do to repair the damage that dive left behind, I'm sure.

Another frustrating moment was when Sean Casey had to leave the game with a strained muscle in his hip. He will not be available tonight. Now, unless the Sox make a move, that leaves them with four infielders tonight, Youkilis, Lugo, Pedroia, and Lowrie (who is getting a lot more playing time than we all expected). If one of those guys gets hurt, who plays infield? Ellsbury, Drew, Crisp? That would be interesting. Mike Lowell is doing well in his rehab with Pawtucket, but won't be available until later in the week. The Sox are also carrying 13 pitchers on the roster right now, which has been necessary. I would guess they'd have to send a pitcher back to Pawtucket (Corey?) and bring up an infielder for tonight, just in case. We'll see.

Bonehead play of the night was made by Rays' second baseman, Akinori Iwamura. In the ninth inning, with Kevin Cash on first and one out, Dustin Pedroia hit a grounder to Iwamura which looked like an easy inning-ending double play. But Cash was running towards Iwamura who, rather than fire to second for the force, thought about tagging Cash and throwing to first. When Cash put on the brakes, Iwamura suddenly realized he was in trouble of even getting one out, and fired to first, but it was too late as Pedroia beat the throw. Cash had taken off for second and beat the throw from first too. Safe on both bases. Unfortunately, the inning ended after Papi popped out and Manny struck out.

Tonight Clay Buchholz tries to show his last start was not a fluke. What we need from Clay is 6 or 7 strong innings, leave with a lead, and let Okajima and Papelbon take the last innings tonight. Give the rest of the bullpen a rest. The Rays are starting their own promising youngster, 24 year old Edwin Jackson, who was born in Germany, interestingly enough. Jackson sounds similar to the Sox' young pitchers, in that when he has his good stuff, he looks terrific, but when he's a little off he gets clobbered. Boston fans are hoping for the latter tonight.

Lastly, isn't there anything in the rule book to prevent an idiotic, 8 foot tall, blue monstrosity from standing right behind home plate intentionally trying to distract the pitcher? This is not the NBA you know. How about a little class?

(Photos courtesy of Yahoo Sports)


redsox.njdevils said...

As for the eight-foot tall blue monstrosity, that sounds exactly like what Sean Avery (NY Rangers) was doing to Marty Brodeur (Devil's goalie) all last week. He was waving his hands and jumping up and down in front of his face and knocking him was absolutely disgraceful.

redsox.njdevils said...

Now back to the Sox...

Yeah, that game and Saturday's were really, really frustrating. As if all of these injuries/illness weren't enough, we seemed to have lost the concept of scoring runs.

Josh should change all of this tommorow, though. If anyone can, it's him. He did it in last year's ALCS, and he's gonna do it tommorow...(I hope!)

Rooster said...

I am looking for Beckett to have a great game, but let's see some offense! Clay pitched great but we BARELY scored one run! Even Beckett can't win if we can't score.

But, I am confident the losing streak ends here!