Monday, July 14, 2008

At The All Star Break...Red Sox 2 Orioles 1

Sunday afternoon's 2-1 Boston win over the Baltimore Orioles might have been the longest 2-1 game I've ever seen. At least it seemed that way. The ninth inning alone seemed to take up the whole weekend! But the Sox won and took over first place by themselves, 1/2 game over the slumping Tampa Bay (Devil) Rays, who have lost their last seven. It's the fourth straight year Boston has been in first at the break, which I didn't realize until today. Great job guys!

Daisuke Matsuzaka was his normal self, having trouble with his control. He went six innings, giving up zero runs and only four hits. He walked five batters and hit one, however, which led to a huge six inning pitch count. Through only four innings he had thrown 76 pitches and ended up with 115 total. For 1/2 a dozen innings, that's WAY too many. Manager Terry "Tito" Francona had this to say about his 10-1 starter...

"That's the good news, is that he gets out of it," manager Terry Francona said. "There's some frustration at times, which I think he probably has too, because his stuff is so good and he has the ability to get outs. When he locates, he's as good as there is. He created some jams for himself - got walk, hit batsman, walk - but fortunately they didn't string together a couple hits. He did a better job in his last outing," Francona said of Matsuzaka's 7 1/3 scoreless innings against the Twins July 7. "When you start stringing starts together, that's a great sign for us, talk about consistency and things like that. The one thing he did do today was he stayed out through the sixth, 'cause it wasn't real easy for him all the time."

The bullpen came in to get the last nine outs and made it a true adventure. Hideki Okajima recorded the first two outs of the seventh but walked two. Manny Delcarmen, who is usually VERY good or VERY bad, was perfect. He ended the seventh frame and pitched the entire eighth, allowing no hits and striking out two. To me, he was the player of the game. Hands down! On came Jonathon Papelbon, gunning (and I mean that literally) for his 28th save. He got it, but not without too many thrills and unneeded chills. Three base hits, all singles, gave the Birdies their only run, but a sinking shallow popup to the surehanded Dustin "Pedey" Pedroia ended the first half of the season with a victory for the Good Guys from Boston. OUR Good Guys.

So the Red Sox enter the All Star break with a record of 57-40. That's good enough for first place and good enough for me. Click on the title of this post for everything you needed to know about yesterday's Fenway action, and as always, BE WELL. I'm sorry this post is up so late (late for me), but I had to go to the hospital for a routine CAT scan. No drama, but I get nervous with that type of thing. Needless to say, like it or not, I'm back. Enjoy the All Star game. Why not, home field advantage is up for grabs and almost half of the on-field players will be wearing a Red Sox uniform. What could be better? Only American League victory. Home field advantage certainly helped us in '04 and '07, and it will again. If only...


At 7/14/2008 3:01 PM, Blogger Soxlosophy said...

I know what Francona means by 'when he locates, he's as good as there is', but that doesn't really say much, as it's a bit of a gerrymandered sample- it's like saying 'if you just look at at bats when he gets a hit, he's leading the league in hitting'

At 7/14/2008 6:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 7/15/2008 5:05 AM, Blogger Peter N said...

The deleted comment was spam-P

At 7/15/2008 5:06 AM, Blogger Peter N said...

I agree, Soxlosophy...Daisuke can be so confusing to me sometimes. Enjoy the All Star game!!


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