Monday, February 27, 2006

Beckett Draws A Crowd, And Looks Good, Much Like Schill's Early Outings On The Mound.

Well, it seems so far that we're two for two when it comes to a starting pitcher drawing a crowd, and smiles on those faces in the crowd. Josh Beckett, our number three starter, (with Wakes in between, to change the mood and the delivery speed of pitches) also had the people roaring for more. Or, as the Herald put it this morning...... FORT MYERS -- "Like Curt Schilling one day earlier, Josh Beckett wowed observers during his first session throwing batting practice yesterday.
The 2003 World Series MVP overpowered hitters during the 10-minute, 32-pitch workout and only allowed two solidly hit balls.
"He had pretty filthy stuff," rookie Dustin Pedroia said. "He’s telling us where it’s going and it was still tough to hit. He looks like he’s in midseason form."
Josh Pressley, a nonroster invitee who hadn’t faced Beckett since summer league play as high schoolers in the late 1990s, was just as wowed.
"He’s got electric stuff, even this early," Pressley said. "With the cage around you, you feel you have no place to go."
Jonathan Papelbon, who was pitching BP on an adjacent field, also left a similar impression in his workout.
"It’s very obvious he really worked hard this winter," Sox managerTerry Francona said. "He came into camp very well prepared and ready to go. He’s not playing catch-up."
Peter here, and smiling a "cannot wait for the season to start" smile, goofy but great. To have a healthy and nasty Schill, then a deceptive and in the strike zone but not on an even plane Wakes, and then Josh Beckett with his variety of nastiness sounds just so good. And the potpourri of guys not yet slated for our numbers 4 and 5 starters, much like items on your favorite restaurant, where EVERYTHING is good and you can't lose, and I'm talking Papelbon, Wells, Clement and Arroyo, is looking good too. So I'm happy, high even, with the parts of the 2006 Red Sox, which will be skillfully and carefully melded together into a wire to wire first place team. Write it down. In ink. Indelible marker. Burn it into a tattoo on your body. No, don't, but sear it just as indelibly into your brain. We've got a good team! Now let injuries be minimized and get on with it!

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