Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Dice Takes The Ball...And Wins The Game For The Boston Red Sox

Daisuke Matsuzaka only surrendered two hits and one run during Monday night's game in LA going into the seventh inning. He was tremendous and the faithful duo of Bard and Papelbon nailed down game one of this this west coast trip. Boston manager Terry Francona had these glowing words about his pitcher with a checkered health past...

“He looked to me real sharp right from the beginning, I think that was real obvious. That was real crisp. There was a lot of power to his pitches and he was down when he wanted to be. He misfired a couple of times but that was pretty good stuff. He was tremendous. First-pitch strikes, 19 of 24. Power to his pitches, slider, cutter. Two walks. He made a mistake to Davis, other than that, he was really good.’’

Matsuzaka gave up only two hits, the second knocking him out of the game with two outs in the seventh. Bard and Paps made sure this game was in the victory column for the team from New England, USA. Here's our third baaseman...

“Huge win for us to start this trip,’’ Adrian Beltre said. “This whole West Coast trip is big for us. We haven’t played the best we can the last 10 to 15 games, so it’s better to start the road trip in a good way.’’

If you took a glance at the box score, remember that Matsuzaka has had more than his share of first inning troubles. It was a sticking point for his pitching coach, John Farrell...

“Three starts ago, recognizing that there was some first-inning struggles, felt like it might be worth changing up how much throwing he did at 6:15 basically for a 7:15 game with about a 12- or 14-minute cool-down period. At that time it seemed like it took him a full inning to really kind of get into the rhythm of the game. So he went back to a pregame routine that was reminiscent of 2007, and it’s allowed him to throw early in the day, not as many throws in total long-toss and bullpen work leading up to the start of the game. His warm-ups end about seven or eight minutes prior to the game, so it’s allowed him to maintain a rhythm that he develops in the bullpen warming up and carries into the game. He’s had some very good results of late.’’

Daisuke sure looked great on the mound. He was down in the zone, walking only two, and was in complete control until he started to tire in the seventh. It was still a very close game at 2-1 because the Red Sox still can't hit themselves out of a paper bag. I hate to say it, I know their lineup is decimated BUT IT'S TRUE! This was a great start to the road trip.

You can click on this post's title for more on the game. It's more late night action tonight with Wakefield facing Braden, two hurlers with losing records. Timmy want to flush that last hideous start out of his and everyone's mind. I hope he can do it. AThanks for stopping in, don't be a stranger and as always, BE WELL.

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