Saturday, September 08, 2007

30 UP! 20 TO GO!!

The Boston Red Sox and Jon Lester defeated the Baltimore Orioles 4-0 Friday night, and now they are 30 games over the .500 mark for the first time in three years. And it was a breakthrough start for the young and healthy lefthander. He went seven innings, giving up no runs and only 4 hits while walking just 2. He wasn't just pitching well, he was IN COMMAND! But the victory did not come without controversy. Let's slide back to the 4th inning last night. BZZZZ....BEEP...BZZZZ (that's what it sounds like to slide back in time). Coco Crisp was on third base, dancing and prancing, and AL Rookie of the Year to be Dustin Pedroia was at the plate. As Coco inched toward home, stepping slowly away from the bag and towards the plate, Danial Cabrera, the O's pitcher, stopped.............just stopped...........in mid-windup. It was correctly called a balk, Coco scored to make it 3-0, and Cabrera took out all of his frustrations on the guy at the plate, OUR guy, Peds. In Coco's words, from the Hartford Courant...........

"Crisp had just sprinted a few steps toward home with Pedroia at the plate, his initial thrust down the line causing Cabrera to balk, which allowed the run to score. Then Cabrera threw his next pitch behind Pedroia's ear.
"I was looking at him like, what are you doing, man?" Crisp said. "Even if you decide for some reason that you are going to hit somebody, you can't hit them in the head, because you could kill somebody, man. A lot of people are going to be hurt.
"It goes beyond being embarrassed or whatever happens during in a game. You could go to court for something like that.
"He throws hard, 100 miles per hour. He was gifted with an arm. You can't use that to hurt somebody and change somebody's life. It's a game. You can't penalize Pedroia. Hit me, if you're mad at me."

The benches cleared, Cabrera was thrown out on his ear (should have been thrown out on his a**), and the game resumed. But the memories are there, and will remain right there in the players heads for the remainder of the season. But Jon Lester kept baffling the O's, and the 'pen, in the form of Javy Lopez and Manny Delcarmen, ended it and preserved the shutout. No, it wasn't a 30 run game, as Baltimore's pitching staff has given up once this year, but it was a thing of beauty. And Paps is well rested, Gagne has been throwing side sessions and will be ready this coming week, and Okie is getting a deserved rest. We'll need him in the playoffs, so I hope Tito will give him a week off. That week started yesterday. Just my opinion. Do it Tito!

The lead is still 6.5 games, as the Yankees pitched their way to a 3-2 victory over the KC Royals. George Brett was not in the lineup. He'll be back in the batting order for that Kansas City team tonight. Pine tar or not. And the magic number keeps dwindling as Manny keeps healing. Both are good things! Is that why I'm smiling? I think so!

Tonight it will be Daiske Matsuzaka, hoping to rebound after three disastous starts, versus the O's Leiscester. Fathy (my Baltimore Orioles good friend and a BRUCE FAN, who will be at the game on Sunday), forgive me for saying this, but if Daisuke cannot contribute a great performance against YOUR team, the O's, then something is wrong. His delivery? His mechanics? I don't know, but I'm hoping for the best. And the best is what we, members of RSN and RSI, have gotten so far from our guys. And that's sweet.

Please click on the title for Michael Silverman's Red Sox Wrap Up, including more info on the Cabrera fiasco. Enjoy your weekend, and be proud of our 2007 team. THE BOSTON RED SOX. I know I am.

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