Smoltz Smoked By 6th Inning Home Run Barrage...Texas 6 Boston 3
The New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox are in a flat-footed tie with identical records of 55-37 after Boston lost for a third straight time, 6-3 to Texas. Starting pitcher John Smoltz was cruising until the sixth inning when he served up three taters and five runs. The balls were crushed and his demise was sudden, too sudden, brutally real. He ended up pitching five and two thirds innings and giving up six runs on nine hits. He whiffed five and walked three. The bullpen put up a string of goose eggs but it was far too late for the anemic Sox lumber. The thing that gets me was that everything was going SO well...so well until that fateful sixth. Here's what his catcher had to say, optimistic words, to say the least...
“He’s still playing catch-up quite a bit,” catcher Jason Varitek said of Smoltz, “not only with his health, but with the game. I firmly believe that. Everybody’s in their stride in the middle of the season and he’s not. Those days are ahead of him. He’s still continuing to get his baseball feel and his baseball strength.”
And the Boston pitching coach contributed this...
“I think it’s just a matter of consistent execution in certain spots,” pitching coach John Farrell said. “The know-how is there. Through consistent repetition, executing a game plan is going to continue to play itself out. It’s just so happened tonight that the sixth inning took on a life of its own.”
A Frankenstein-like life, that's for sure, ugly and demented. It wasn't pretty to watch and the Sox MUST win tonight or they might lose their fragile handhold on a share of first place in the American League East. But that's baseball...smiles mixed with frowns and sadness or euphoria...so much like life itself. I think it'll get better. Boston is a deep and talented club.
It's up to the Boston ace, Josh Beckett, to end this losing streak. HE WILL. I just KNOW it. Until tomorrow, BE WELL. Click on this post's title for more on the Red Sox. Have a great Tuesday and thanks for stopping in.
I'll leave you with this thought. The Yankees might have their eyes and Steinbrenners' (Hal and Hankie) wallets on Roy "Doc" Halladay. We'll see. Yes, we will. Your comments would be great.