Saturday, April 21, 2007

Liveblogging today's Sox game...

Top First-Missed the first two batters. Beckett struggling. With Captain Baseball on first, walks Abreu, looking bad in the process.
Strikes out ARod, freezing him with a 2 strike 96 mph heater inside. Nice pitch. ARod is hotter than...something that’s very hot.
Giambi, on a 2-2 pitch, flares one between Crisp and Drew. 1-0 Yankees. Damn.
Beck better get Cano, or this inning could get very bad. Now 0-2, working heat up, but Cano is chasing. Slashed a foul that could have been called fair, for a double and another run. Still 0-2. Beckett is still throwing balls-moving fastballs, up high, but Cano is chasing them. Cano grounds one that Cora can’t contain for another run.
Well, they’re not getting good wood on the ball, but two runs are two runs. Now Minky pops up to end it. Ugh. This could be a long day.

Bottom First-Kid pitching for the Yankees (Karstens) has a nice little hook. Fox says he changes speeds well. Wears number 17. Lugo singles right back through the box for a base hit. Youk goes down the line, helping my roto team and putting the kid into some hot water.
Papi and Manny now. Papi seems to be getting his eye in. Pulled the first pitch foul, then check swing strike on a dipping slider. Another slider for a ball. Fastball way up for a ball. Papi hits the ball over Abreu’s head for a two bagger, right into the sun field.
Abreu just missed it-one step further back and its an out. Nice hook for a called strike on Manny. Fastball outside for a ball. Hook that JUST missed for a ball. Fastball down for another ball. Small zone today? Manny misses on a big rip. Misses on a 3-2 fastball, popping it up to right field. Ortiz to third.
Hook misses for a ball to Drew. This kid (Karstens) seems hittable. Fastball strike, then fouled off a change. Drew reaches, but Ortiz thrown out at the plate. Maybe a good decision-I tend to be of the opinion that you make them make the play sometimes. Even with Ortiz running, a close play. Hope that doesn’t haunt us. Lowell flies out to end the inning. Again, hope we don’t regret losing that run.

Top Second-Kevin Thompson, who made the last out last night, behind 1-2 on some hard fastballs. Ripped a hook off the Wall for a double. Hung the curve, no doubt.
Wil Nieves now-Posada is out for the series after bruising a thumb last night. Fouls off a bunt for a 1-1 count. Beckett is throwing hard, but not for strikes. Grounder to Lowell, who tries to cut down Thompson at second, but throws it into right field for an error. Second and third, none out. More misery.
Melky Cabrera now. Cabrera singles, scoring Thompson. What is it about Yankees and the basepaths? (see Knoblauch, Chuck and Jackson, Reggie) (Seriously, it wasnt interference-Thompson is entitled to the basepath. I’m just mad.) Jammed Jeter, who grounds into a 4-4-3 DP, but another run scores. Beckett gets Abreu swinging to end it. Argle bargle.

Bottom second-Questionable called strike on the hook to Tek. Ripped a foul. Called strike three, also a questionable pitch. Mumble.
Crisp bunts for a hit. Clever. Testing the kid catcher, I guess. If Coco can get rolling, that would help me in roto, too.
Cora bunts for a hit as well. I think it was a sacrifice, but it was perfectly placed. Wild pitch, runners advance. Nieves easily could have blocked it, but he didn’t get down low enough. 2nd and 3rd, one out. Parking one would be nice.
Lugo-Called strike on another low curve. 4-3 groundout, nice piece of situational work, getting the run home. Now 4-3 New York.
Youk singles, Cora scores, now 4-4. Hung a hook.
Ortiz now. Papi now ahead 2-0. Fastball, in essentially the same place, but now its a strike. Papi rips one, but Abreu runs it down in front of the bullpen.
Two innings, 8 runs. This game is gonna last for-freakin-ever.

Top three-Behind ARod 2 and 0, then a hook for a strike. Then ARod rips a double off the Wall. This guy is en fuego.
Now the Giambino. Fastball for a ball. Slider for a strike. Out in front of what might be a change for a foul. Called strike three. Nice. I can’t figure out the outside corner on this umpire. It seems like he is ringing people up at random.
Called strike on a hook to Cano. Fastball way inside for a 1-1 count. Fastball for a ball. Foul for a 2-2 count. Ground out to second. Nice piece of pitching. Get Minky and we should be out of this. 2-1? You should never throw Minky a ball, he can’t hit strikes. As soon as I type that, Minky rips a 97 mph heater, low, to the warning track in dead center for the third out. Phew. If that ball carried out, I would have to eat this laptop.

Today I listened to PRI’s Studio 360, which had some creative writing teachers talking about the Virginia Tech thing. Interesting program-since I used to be a creative writing student who wrote some dark, cynical stuff. Hard to draw the line between expression, though serious and perhaps violent, and a cry for help. I know I would have been marked as trouble if I were a teen today. Maybe I am trouble, who knows.

Bottom three-Manny rips another ball to deep center, but Cabrera runs it down. If this team is this good without Posada, Matsui, and Damon, they are going to kick ass if they ever get totally healthy.
JD Drew works a walk. Lowell pops up to left field. Tek lines out hard to Abreu.
I guess we cant score every inning, but still-if this kid goes seven, I’m going to throw up. He doesn’t have much.

Top Four- Two quick strikes on Thompson. Strike three. Nice. Groundout to the pitcher by Nieves.
It’s Francona’s birthday, and while they’re chattering, Beckett has to come off the mound to get the chopper and make a strong throw from the third base side to just get him.
Gorgeous diving stop and throw by Lowell to retire the side. Sweet, quick inning.

Bottom Four-Crisp flares a Wade Boggsish single to left. Boy, if he gets started, that will help my roto team. Crisp steals second.
Cora bunts Crisp to third, giving us a runner at third with one down and Lugo up. Not bad. Lugo gets jammed, but gets the ball out to Jeter slow enough to score the run.
Not usual Red Sox ball, but it worked. As Earl Weaver used to put it, if you play for one run, that will probably be what you get. This is the time to chase this kid.a If Youk gets on, then Papi and Manny can start something big, and maybe they have to pull him. Youk walks, now Papi is up.
Papi jacks one, way back into the right field grandstand. 7-4 Boston. Now Manny. Kid fed Ortiz a fastball down Broadway, and he crushed it. Manny flies out in front of the bullpens to end the inning.

Top Five- Now we have to face the top of their lineup again. Dammit. Never a safe lead against these guys. Now throw strikes, Beck. Jeter has hit safely in 51 of 53 games. Ouch. Grounds out to short, one down.
Abreu grounds out. Beckett seems to be grooving.
ARod fouls a ball off the other way, could have been trouble. If the Yankees let this guy go, they have lost their damn minds. ARod pops up on 97 mph heat. Another nice, crisp inning.

Bottom Five-Drew grounds out. Funny to hear Tim McCarver, the Voice of Conventional Wisdom, parroting the notion of using your highest quality reliever in the highest leverage situation, whether or not that happens to be the ninth inning. A Bill James idea from decades ago, though McCarver would never admit it.
Lowell singles, a soft little flare, and they pull the kid in favor of Brian Bruney, who I had in a tabletop league a couple of years ago. That’s about all I know about him. 89 pitches. Kid did the best he could. Single from Tek, Lowell to third.
Crisp now, who is 2 for 2. Popup. Alex Cora now. A hit would really break their back. Bruney wears the high socks. Love the high socks. Bruney throws pretty hard. Cora just barely missed it. McCarver says the 2001 World Series is the best ever. He may not be wrong-it was a humdinger. The only time I could be said to be halfway rooting for the Yanks, in the post 2001 haze we were all in.

BTW, just finished Richard Ford’s Bascombe trilogy, and it was outstanding. During the Slate book club discussion of “Independence Day”, Katie Roiphe (I think) pointed out that, when Bascombe imagines the enamel of his teeth being worn away by “angstroms”, it may have been a homage to Rabbit Angstrom, the hero of Updike’s Rabbit books. I have read those, and loved them, too. If it was a homage, it was a clever one.

Cora battles, but finally tops a comebacker to end the inning. Nice job.

Top Six-Struck out Giambi on a called strike three.
Cano doubles off the Wall. Beckett has retired 10 of the last eleven.
Minky grounds out softly, two out. Beck is still lighting up the gun, 98 mph to Thompson. Nice bender for strike two. This game is so easy when you throw strikes.
Beck just barely missed on the 0-2 pitch, then rings him up on the 1-2 hook. Nice.

Bottom Six-The Fenway fans gave Mariano a mocking round of applause as he came out to the bullpen. Classy of Rivera, to just as mockingly tip his cap to them. Is Rivera done? I’d like to think so. It’s at least possible, which so many commentators don’t want to even consider. Reputation doesnt get hitters out, stuff does. Right now Rivera doesn’t have it.
Single from Lugo. A nice rally here would be sweet.
Youk hits into an FC, 6-3, Lugo to second. Now Sean Henn to face Papi.
Ortiz is rung up on an outside slider by Henn. He beefs, but not much. I can’t figure out this guy’s zone today.
Henn is going to intentionally walk Manny to face Drew.
Drew flies out softly to left.

Top Seven-Boston is batting .393 in the series. Ouch. But this ain’t over.
Nieves first. Gentle grounder to second, on a 97 mph heater. Nasty.
Cabrera. Jam shot-popped up. Two Down.
Captain Amazing is up. Curve outside, fastball outside-2-0 count. 96 mph inside fastball, jamming him, but he still fights it off into right field for a hit. The dude may not be as good as some people say, but he’s still pretty damn good. A great player, just not as great as everyone says.
Abreu now. Another really good, patient hitter. Now bear down, Beck. Abreu, late on a fastball, fouls it off as Jeter is running. Come on, Beck. Abreu walks. ARod is next. Pull him or stick? McCarver says pull him. I...I say stick. Beckett will get ARod out. You don’t have any guts unless you first guess, so here we go.
Ball one, fastball low. Two on, two out. Come on, Beck.
Called strike, outside corner, 98mph.
Ball two, fastball low.
McCarver wins. 97 mph heater, ARod slashes it to right, Jeter scores. 7-5 Yankees. Tito comes to get him. Too late? We’ll see.
Okajima to face Giambi.
Ball one, low.
Check swing strike, 1-1.
Fastball very high, ball.
Hook, outside corner, called strike. 2-2.
Swinging strike three-YES!

Bottom seventh-Proctor against Lowell. Lowell flies out right in front of the Monster. One down.
Tek is on first, now Crisp. Crisp takes Thompson back to the scoreboard, but Thompson hangs on for the out. Missed Tek’s at bat-had to reheat some pasta for my son. I can’t eat yet-too nervous.
Cora works a walk. Proctor, who is usually pretty dependable, seems to be struggling.
Two called strikes to Lugo, again questionable, again outside. Jesus.
96 mph, and Lugo is just off it, fouling it off. 96 mph fast one, JUST outside. Ball four, bases loaded. At least both sides are getting squeezed.
Youk fouls out to Minky, on a nice running catch, diving into the seats. Left the bases loaded-hope THAT doesn’t haunt us.

Top Eight-Okajima against Cano. Cano grounds out to second.
Timlin on to face Phelps, hitting for Minky. Phelps pops up.
Four outs to go.
Thompson pops up, inning over.

Bottom Eight-Big Lumber coming up to face Kyle Farnsworth. Papi pops up to ARod. Didn’t miss it by much.
Farnsworth is throwing gas to Manny, and he finally slashes a wrong field single to right. Drew grounds into a 6-6-3 DP. Inning over.

Top Nine-Here we go. Pap against the nine spot, Cabrera, Jeter, and Abreu. Two run lead to protect.
Oh, great, Damon to pinch hit for Nieves.
Ball one, fastball high.
Called strike, 97 mph, outside corner.
95 mph, outside, fouled off.
97mph, inside, ball.
You CANT walk this guy.
97 mph, outside, ball. Very close pitch.
97 mph, in, fouled back.
97 mph, outside, grounder to short.
One down. Nice.
2-0 count to Melky. Fastball outside, 3-0.
Ball four.
Captain Superstar now.
Slider outside. Ball.
95mph heat, up, swinging strike.
Called strike two, outside corner. 96.
Splitter down, ball.
Fastball JUST BARELY off the outside corner. 97. Ball.
Fastball, up, 98. Swinging strike three.
OK, now.
Cabrera walked into second, no biggie.
Abreu now. If he hits one, he will own New York by Monday.
Check swing foul. Strike one.
ARod on deck. Oh hell.
Abreu takes it to center, hit very well, but Coco runs it down.
Game over. The Yankees lose. The-e-e-e-e-e Yankees lose.
Wow. I feel wrung out.
Whatta game.
Wow. Wowee wow wow wow.

After a crisp, clean win in the bracing Toronto dome, we come home to fall behind 6-2 to the Empire, only to come roaring back against Enter Sandman and pull out a death defying 7-6 win. Sweet Caroline, indeed.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

On a happier note, a nice 4-1 win tonight. Strong pitching from Wake and Pap, and home runs from Lowell and Mirabelli. Works for me.

Make no mistake, they're coming for you. If you are a woman who cares about reproductive rights, or if you love one, the ayatollahs of the right wing nut squad are coming to get you. They are out to destroy your ability to make decisions about what happens to you.

If you're pro choice, and you don't vote Democratic, you're out of your fucking mind.

Like you expected him to be any other fucking way? Saying a former member of the Bush Administration turns out to be corrupt is like saying water is wet. Jesus.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

2-1 loss to Toronto. Oh, poop.
Another cool (literally) win, although the battering of Santana screws my fantasy team pretty thoroughly. But I'll take it-if I have to finish last to ensure the Sox win, I can live with that.

Toronto tonight, with the Dice Man, then the Empire over the weekend.

Monday, April 16, 2007

In regards to today's weather, the only thing I can think of to say is, What The Fuck?