Boston Bats Buoy Beckett...Red Sox 11 Miwaukee 7
Sunday was a stange start for Boston Red Sox ace Josh Beckett. He was not on his game, but the Red Sox lumber took care of that and took care of it quickly. It seems Josh has reverted a little to his 2006 form, giving up four home runs. In all, he was able to go seven full, giving up six runs (ouch) on six hits with nine (yep, nine!) strikeouts. This is what a trio of Red Sox guys had to say after Beckett's "what-could-have-been-painful" outing...
"A few balls wandered over the plate," Francona said. "He missed a lot of bats but left some good pitches over the plate to good hitters."
"He wasn't perfect," Varitek said.
"I made some good pitches," Beckett said. "I made some poor pitches."
Peter here, and perfect he was not. As Tito said, too many of his pitches were too hittable, and the Brewers, who do not hit for average but have good power to all fields, took advantage. But they tried to take advantage on the wrong afternoon, as the Sox had their hitting shoes on. They clubbed 15 hits and scored 11 runs. They also hit four home runs, taters by Pedroia, the always hot Kevin Youkilis and two by Big Papi David Ortiz, who Tito said is now swinging the bat better than he has all season. Delcarmen was needed to get through the eighth inning, and he did it with 22 interminable pitches, also giving up a run. But the score was out of reach, and with a four run lead going to the top of the ninth, Jonathon Papelbon came in and shut the doors on Milwaukee for good. Lock & key good! And he only needed nine pitches to do it! I hope you enjoyed your Fenway visit, Brew Crew. Come back soon (they won't).
So the Good guys are alone in first place as every AL East team but the TB Rays lost yesterday. And Kansas City, an improved club (where else could they go?), come in for a four game Fenway set. The pitching matchups are interesting, and they're right here..
Luke Hochevar (3-2, 3.94) vs. Jon Lester (2-2, 3.95) tonight
Gil Meche (3-5, 5.98) vs. Justin Masterson (0-0, 1.50) Tuesday
Brett Tomko (2-4, 5.32) vs. Bartolo Colon (0-0, 0.00) Wednesday
Brian Bannister (4-5, 4.29) vs. Daisuke Matsuzaka (7-0, 2.15) Thursday
Three of the four pitchers scheduled for KC do not have a better than .500 record, at least on the preceding list. That's nice. So there you have it. A great weekend followed by more Fenway fun. What could be better? Bartolo Colon makes his much anticipated start on Wednesday, and I wish him all the luck in this world. We certainly need him. About Beckett, remember that he missed a huge chunk of spring training and the first two regular season games of 2008. HE WILL BE FINE. Click on the title of this post for the Boston Globe Red Sox homepage, where you'll find all the up to date information of yesterday's sweep clinching victory, and MUCH more. As always, BE WELL and have a safe and wonderful week to come. Another Monday? Oh yeah.