Manny-less Red Sox Bow Meekly To The Yankees...NY 1 Boston 0
Manny Ramirez was a last minute scrub, SO last minute that the original lineup, featuring Big Papi David Ortiz in the three spot and Manny batting fourth, had already been officially posted. Needless to say, the teams owners, manager Tito Francona and GM Theo Epstein held a closed door meeting to discuss...discuss......well, I don't know. But with the trading deadline looming, ANYTHING is possible. It's always something with Manny, but this was a game he NEVER should have missed. The lineup was supposed to return to a semblance of normalty, but noooo. MRIs of BOTH knees, just in case Manny had forgotten which one was causing him so much discomfort, were completely normal. Some players think his move was the most unprofessional thing they had ever seen. I agree 100%. How could he decide to take a night off when the team, HIS team, was playing the Yankees, the red hot New York Yankees who, with the win, closed to within two games of Boston? I DO NOT KNOW THE ANSWER, but the club should (will?) have a sitdown with him and set him straight. They have to! Wait until you hear the boos later this afternoon. Tito Francona said this after the game, and he clearly was trying to hold it in, trying not to blow his top. Steam was virtually coming out of his ears, audibly and visually. His words...
"I think I've answered enough tonight," said Francona, who already had discussed in detail the sequence of events that had Ramírez first in, then out, of the lineup.
"It's five minutes after the game. I'd like to talk to the medical people a little more extensively. There's time to answer questions about anybody. For me right now, it wouldn't be . . . "
Peter here, and Tito's sentence remained unfinished...he clearly did not want to say the wrong thing. But I will. Hey Manny, you f*cking stink. Your team needed you. HOW COULD YOU? You could have wrapped your knees and help the Sox score two runs. You've had a great year so far, but...but.....
Joba Chamberlain proved to everyone at Fenway Park and those watching the telecast across the world that he is the real deal. Boy, can he fling that baseball! He outpitched Josh Beckett for seven innings with an array of dizzily dazzling fastballs, some that topped out near the century mark, and a display of lesser speed breaking stuff that was sometimes virtually unhittable. Paticularly vulnerable to Joba's mound expertise were Jacoby Ellsbury, who went hitless, and more importantly, Jason Varitek. Make NO mistake-he is in trouble right now when it comes to hitting a baseball. I've never seen him look so utterly helpless, even foolish, in my life. In his first at bat, he swung and missed at a curveball for strike three and his bat didn't come within a foot of the baseball. He would have been better off if he had his eyes closed. I was embarassed for him. It hurts me to say that, but I just did.
In all, the Yankees mustered one run, and that was good enough. After the game, Josh Beckett said that he was simply outpitched. I watched the game. I know that. We could have used Manny's bat but it might not have mattered. It's just SO disheartening when one of your best and most valuable sluggers pull that type of pure BS. Manny BS. But the page has been turned. The Tampa Bay (Devil) Rays were winners in their game with the KC Royals, so the Sox are one game back and the Yankees just three. That's too close. Beckett pitched great, but his teammate's bats were not there to support him. It happens. The MLB season schedule is a long and grueling one, but Manny's timing could not have been worse. Pitiful. Is he still mad at the team for some reason known only to him? Who the hell knows?? Again, the page has been turned, at least for me, but today expect to hear more about Manny and his latest "Manny move."
The Yankees improved their team yesterday by trading four minor league prospects to acquire outfielder Xavier Nady and left-hander Damaso Marte from the Pittsburgh Pirates. Both players will help the pinstriped ones. Mariano Rivera might not be available today because he threw 26 pitches, 20 of 'em strikes, but don't be surprised if he comes in if the Yankees are ahead late in the game. I'd rather he doesn't even have a chance to warm up. Period.
It's Fenway baseball time yet again with first pitch time scheduled for 3:55 pm EDT. Wakes versus Pettitte. Pettitte is tough when he pitches against us...he's a crafty lefty. But there's a bad taste in the mouths of the Red Sox starters from last night. I think (hope) the lumber creates a hellstorm of runs for the home team. May the Good Guys win...to do that, they MUST score a run or six. My fingers are crossed. Click on the title of this post for more Yankee/Sox stuff, again from the "other" side's point of view. Have a tremendous Saturday and as always, BE WELL. Click away!