Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Chicago 7 Boston 3...Lester Off

It was a 3-3 game until the Chicago White Sox scored four runs in the sixth to go ahead for good. Jon Lester was trying to notch his eighth victory but Monday he just did't have "it." Lester was able to go 5 2/3 innings while trying to find his magic touch. It was the second loss in a row for the first place (almost) Red Sox. I was just getting used to winning three out of every five games so this one hurt. Here's Jon...

"It was one of those nights where I just battled myself. I couldn't get in a rhythm. When I actually did throw it over the plate, the ball was up. I just think it was one of those deals where I got a little ahead of myself working east to west instead of north to south."

Right to left instead of up to down means his mechanics were off big time. Usually when Jon Lester pitches, I just sit back and watch his mastery of the plate. He didn't have it Monday. The only one of his pitches that worked was his cutter, which Tito Francona said he's relying on too much. Here's the skipper...

“He’s gotten in a little bit of a mode where his cutter is so good he’s throwing a lot of them. We’ve got to get him back to establishing fastball, changeup, breaking ball, and using that cutter to put people away. It’s just getting to a point where it’s a little bit more and more. It is a great pitch, but he’s throwing a lot of them. Go back to the drawing board a little bit.”

I think Tito is right on target and I'm sure Lester would have used a more varied array of pitches had any of them but the cutter worked. I'll think Jon will figure it out and go on one of his June-July-August-September streaks. I certainly hope so. I want to include the pitching match ups for tonight's contest...

Tue. 31 CWS 7:10 PM ET** WCIU/NESN** A. Aceves (2-0) vs. P. Humber (3-3)

That's it for this Tuesday that seems like a Monday. Back to the grind for most. Please click on this post's title for more Sox stuff and as always, BE WELL.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Pinch Hit Papi HR Takes Game #1...Verlander's Arm Takes Game #2

It was the good and the not so good, the wonderful and the not so wonderful all day Sunday in Detroit, the Motor City. On the strength of a tie breaking tater hit by Big Papi David Ortiz, the Boston Red Sox took game one by a score of 4-3. Papi doesn't pinch hit often so it was a sweet sight to see that round ball soar over the right field fence. Here he is...

“It’s not like I have too many options coming off the bench to pinch hit. I just looked for one pitch. I just try and see the ball against anybody and make sure that when I get my pitch, try not to miss it."

Well, he didn't miss it, not by a long shot. That was the happy final score of game number one. A sweep was in sight but then came Justin Verlander. Game two featured a great pitching performance by Josh Beckett but a better one, a goose egged one, came from Detroit's Justin Verlander. He is one scary pitcher. Josh Beckett gave up a pair of runs in the very first inning and though we didn't know it then, we know it now. That was enough to do the job. A split and the team is now homeward bound for a three game set with the Chicago White Sox. The pitching match ups will be coming later.

Daniel Bard's friend was found safe and sound. Here's what Bard had to say...

“There’s still a lot of questions that need to be answered but we are just focusing on the fact that he’s OK, he’s alive. Hopefully some questions will be answered soon for those that care about him.”

I'm happy he's OK but Bard said his friend left under his own will. Questions remain but the major piece of news is that he's OK. I'll have those Sox/Sox pitching match ups ASAP. Enjoy your Memorial Day, a salute to all the soldiers around the world and as always, BE WELL.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Detroit-Red Sox Game #2 Starts at 7:55pm...Bard's Friend Found Safe And Unharmed.

It's 2-0 Tigers but the rain has started, harder than ever. I'll have more if I can. SOX won game one. Click on this post's title for more.

Game One...Boston Red Sox 4-3 Win!

The first place Boston Red Sox took the first game of Sunday's day/night doubleheader by the score of 4-3. The hot Big Papi tater sealed the victory and game two, after a brief ongoing rain delay, means that the game will start at 7:50pm EDT. Let's hope so. It was home run power that sealed it in the end. Tonight's matchup features our ace, Josh Beckett, going against the always tough and rough Justin Verlander. New first pitch time just released is 7:55pm EDT. That's a BIG IF. Go SOX...one more time today. Here is the AP brief summary of game one...

"DETROIT (AP) -- David Ortiz doesn't do a lot of pinch-hitting, so it's rare for him to hit a home run in that role.
So rare, in fact, that the last time was his first home run with the Red Sox.
Eight years later, Ortiz did it again, homering in the ninth inning off Jose Valverde to give Boston a 4-3 victory over the Detroit Tigers in the opener of Sunday's day-night doubleheader.
"I don't like pinch-hitting too much, but I did just what I do as a DH," he said. "I went to the cages, took some swings and got loose."
Ortiz, hitting for Jarrod Saltalamacchia , worked a full count against the Tigers' closer, then hit a line drive over the scoreboard in right-center."

Oh Papi, our Big Papi. Have fun with game two, whenever it starts in rainy Detroit. I'll be back first thing in the morning. Thanks. GO SOX.

Rain Does It's Job on Boston Again

I'm back feeling much butter. The second half of Wednesday, all of Thursday, Friday and the first half of yesterday were a little rough on me. But those days are yesterday and yesterday's gone. Pheww.

Rains came to Detroit and postponed last night's game. It will be made up as part of a doubleheader. Game one, featuring the starting pitching of Clay Buchholz and Andwrew Oliver, will commence at 7:01pm EDT. Game two, featuring Josh Beckett and Justin Verlande will start will begin at 7:10. Separate admissions. What else would the owners permit, but at least those with tickets will be able to see their respective games. And to make things better this Sunday morning, the Yankees were defeated by the Mariners last night 6-5. We're still safely tucked in first place. What could be better?

I hope your Sunday will be one to remember, please click on this post's title for the Red Sox homepage and as always, be well. GO SOX...TWICE!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Wakes And Red Sox Defeat The Tigers 6-3

The Boston Red Sox, backed by Tim Wakefield's second great start in row, defeated the Detroit Tigers by a score of 6-3. The two teams play again at 7:10 with Buchholz going up against Oliver as Boston starts their top three once again. THEY ARE ALONE IN FIRST PLACE. What a comeback! I'll try to be back later with more but again, I'm a little under the weather and I don't know exactly why. My Doctor appointment is coming up on Thursday. Very reassuring. Thanks for stopping in once again. GO SOX!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Boston Does It Again...14-1 Winners Over Detroit And A Share Of First Place

The Boston Red Sox bats boomed again on Thursday to forge a 14-1 victory over the Detroit Tigers. Boston is flying high and now they own a share of first place with the Yankees. Carl Crawford had another four hit game and it looks like he's found a new gear. Big Papi David Ortiz collected two hits and he spoke of it after the abbreviated game...

“Just going up there feeling a little bit more comfortable at the plate, trying to get my pitch to hit, and not missing it when I do get a chance. It feels real good just to be able to hit the ball and be yourself. I haven’t felt that way in a long time. To have that feeling back felt great.’’

When he feels this good opposing pitchers quiver in their cleats, and with good reason. What the Red Sox have done in the past 11 games or so proves their line up is ready to start bashing the baseball at will. Come one, come all! Aceves started the game and went six innings, giving up five hits and one lonely run. Francona pulled him after six because the rain had started and there was no way Boston was going to lose this game. Matt Albers had a clean final frame and the umpires put a halt to it all. So again, it's good defense, great pitching and phenomenal hitting that have carried the Sox all the way to the top.

Today it's back to night baseball with Wakefield ready to go against the always tough Justin Verlander.He scares the crap out of me with his awesome velocity and control. Hey, we beat him last time so we can do it again. Game time is shortly after 7pm EDT. Enjoy. And if you like Boston base hits, click on this post's title for all the highlights you'd ever want. Have fun and as always, BE WELL.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Boston 9 Detroit 1 After 6 Plus Innings

The Boston Red Sox are up 8-1 in Detroit. Aceves looks good! I'll be back later with a final wrap. That's how it stands after six full.
The Yankees have the day off so if Boston wins, the rivals will virtually be tied for first in the AL East. It's raining, too. Go bullpen! 9-1 Sox now. Crawford is white hot with his second triple of the game.

Boston Crushes Cleveland 14-2..Youk Scratched..Pedey OK

The Boston Red Sox delivered a body kick to where it hurts most and crushed the Cleveland Indians by a score of 14-2. They had 20 hits and scored seven runs right off the bat in the first inning. A five run sixth inning made the game an official rout. Carl Crawford was 4-4, Salty drove in three as did Pedey Pedroia. After the sixth, Red Sox manager Terry Francona gave Lester the rest of the day off. He wasn't needed and Tito wanted to give him a bit of a breather, the five day kind. The Sox took two of three from the team with the best record, especially at home, in baseball. Here's Tito...

“It’s fun to play teams like this. They were feeling really good about themselves, as they should. We came out and played pretty good baseball.’’

Or as Pedroia put it...

“Get on the elevator, it’s going to the top."

As John Lennon said when his band was struggling to get a record on vinyl, "we're going to the toppermost of the poppermost." Make room for the Boston Red Sox, John. So are we.

I wanted to share with you the latest on Kevin Youkilis, who was scratched from Wednesday's game because of a sore hand. Here's the announcement from the Boston Globe's EXTRA BASES...

"Terry Francona said Youkilis was hit on the hand by a pitch two nights ago and aggravated it when he made a diving stop in the seventh inning. It is just sore. No X-rays are planned and he's day-to-day."

I wouldn't be surprised if he's in there today. The Sox begin a four game set with the Detroit Tigers before they go home to the friendly confines of Fenway Park with yet another day game. Amazing! Home sweet home soon. Here you go...

Thu. 26 at Det** 1:05 PM ET NESN/FxDt** A. Aceves (1-0) vs. M. Scherzer (6-1)
Fri. 27 at Det** 7:05 PM ET NESN/FxDt** T. Wakefield (1-1) vs. R. Porcello (4-2)
Sat. 28 at Det** 7:10 PM ET FOX** Buchholz (4-3) vs. A. Oliver (0-0)
Sun. 29 at Det**1:05 PM ET TBS/FxDt** J. Beckett (4-1) vs. J. Verlander (4-3)

Beckett against Verlander should be amazing. Detroit's a good club. but we are, too. I hope your Thursday will be a terrific one. Click on this post's title for more on the Sox and enjoy (if you can) the afternoon baseball in the Motor City. Thanks for popping in...what would I do without you?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

7th Heaven...Red Sox 7-0 Over The Indians

That's right...seven runs in the top of the first in Cleveland. Lester is on the hill. More later.

Beckett Shines Again...Boston 4 Cleveland 2

The Boston Red Sox beat the Cleveland Indians by a score of 4-2. The keys to the win? Josh Beckett's pitching and Jason Varitek's offense and defense. Without an effective curveball, Josh modified his pitches with cut fastballs and change ups. Here he is...

“You have to deal with what you’ve got. You’re not going to go out there and have every pitch every time you pitch.’’

Beckett's ERA dropped to a tremendous 1.69 and he upped his record to 4-1. He is our ace again, with honorable mentions to Buchholz and Lester. Now if we could get a solid number 4/5 starter (Lackey), we'd be in great shape. Red Sox manager Terry Francona had this to say about his number one guy...

“He’s been so consistent, which is a great thing. I think he feels good about himself. He should.”

'Tek threw out two crucial runners and clubbed a two run tater off the fair pole. A great job from our two Js. It's afternoon baseball starting at 12:05pm EDT. Lester will try to make it two straight over the Indians. They're super tough playing at home so this would be SUCH a big win. Congrats go out to 'Tek and Beckett, our number one guys again. Click on this post's title for more and as always, BE WELL.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Cleveland 3 Boston 2

Clay Buchholz, who started the game for the Boston Red Sox, was great but his bullpen let him down. I don't have time to give you all the details and quotes as is the norm because I have a 6am hospital appointment. I'll make it up to you with my next post. The Sox cannot afford to play "win one lose one" baseball. Not now, not ever. Thanks for stopping by and as always, BE WELL.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Wakefield Stuns The Cubs With A 5-1 Boston Win

My goodness, Tim Wakefield was good last night at Fenway Park as his Boston Red Sox whupped the tar out of the Chicago Cubs 5-1. Wakes went 6 2/3 innings and gave up only one run on four hits, striking out 3 and WALKING NONE. For Wakes to go into the seventh inning without walking an opposing batter tells you just how good his knuckie was. He's the oldest player in MLB but it didn't show last night. For those who want to know, he's 44 years, 288 days young. Here's the Red Sox manager, Tito Francona...

"Boy, what a lift that gives us. Throw a guy in there when somebody gets hurt and he’s so professional. I guess it shouldn’t amaze us because he’s been doing it a long time, but I think maybe the better word is ‘appreciative.’ He was terrific. You go into a start where he’s not tremendously stretched out, but the first five innings the pitch count was so low, he threw so many strikes. He was a huge lift, because the first three innings we didn’t do much offensively. But because he was holding ’em down, it gave us a chance to get it going and score a few runs.’’

GREAT job, Timmy. We all know that Lackey will be back soon and he'll remain Boston's number four guy. But Matsuzaka? I don't see him coming back to the rotation until after the All Star game, IF AT ALL. So, fittingly, Tim Wakefield, the ancient one, will be our number five guy and I'm perfectly happy about that. On the offensive side, and I implore you to click on this post's title to see all the highlights, Youk drove in two with a deep double and the hitting machine himself, Adrian Gonzales, went 4 for 4. Youk's great but Gonzalez is AMAZING! Youk and Gonzalez, with their one-two punch, have thrived batting next to each other after semi-slow starts. Great acquisition, Theo. Great lineup, Tito.

Next up for the still hot Sox? Three games with the Cleveland Indians in Cleveland, who have an MLB best record of 29-15. Here are the series details...

Mon. 23 at Cle** 7:05 PM ET* ESP2/STOh** C. Buchholz (4-3) vs. J. Masterson (5-2)
Tue. 24 at Cle** 7:05 PM ET* NESN/STOh** J. Beckett (3-1) vs. F. Carmona (3-4)
Wed. 25 at Cle** 12:05 PM ET* NESN/STOh** J. Lester (6-1) vs. M. Talbot (1-0)

A sweep would be nice (aren't they all?) but taking two of three would be sweet, too. Boston is only one half game out of first place, as are the Yankees. Enjoy the games, click on this post's title for all the highlights from last night and as always, BE WELL. Thanks for stopping in and GO SOX!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Cubbies' Comeback...9-3 Chicago over Boston...Garza Scratched For Tonight's Game

It was 3-1 Boston and all was well through seven. I was listening to the game, from the beginning, on the Red Sox radio network. FOX televised the "other" game. That's when I fell asleep and all Cubbie batting hell broke loose. In mere minutes, the Chicago Cubs scored eight and beat the Boston Red Sox by a score of 9-3. Imagine my surprise when I found out a couple minutes ago (literally).

Matt Albers came on to preferably pitch the seventh and the eighth but it didn't work out that way. He didn't record an out and allowed five earned runs, six in all as the Cubs zoomed past Boston. Chicago took game two of the series 9-3. Here's a frustrated Matt Albers...

“Definitely frustrating, We get the lead, I come into the game and we want to shut the door and take the win. I have to put that one behind me.’’

I do too, Matt. Many of us do. Albers has been great so far this season. Everybody can have an off day once in a while and I think that's what happened. Game three is a 7:10pm EDT start tonight at Fenway. It'll be Timmy Wakefield (0-1) vs. Matt Garza (2-4). I can't even pick a winner because Garza is tough and Timmy is highly unpredictable. But at least the contest will be on NESN. No Fox shenanigans tonight. ** MATT GARZA HAS BEEN SCRATCHED because of elbow soreness. That's good for us. Lefty James Russell will start in his place. His record is 1-4 with an ERA of 6.26.

Thanks for stopping in to PRSF once again. I hope your Sunday will be a great one. If you want to see the ugly eighth inning Cubbie uprising, simply click on this post's title. You'll find 'em. As always, BE WELL.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Yes, Fox Has No Bananas, Or The Red Sox

I was looking forward to tonight's game with the Cubs at Fenway Park...Boston and Chicago in throwback uniforms. But nooo. Fox, in all their infinite wisdom, has decided to blackout the entire state and cover the Mets & Yankees instead of Boston & Chicago. I can see that for southwestern Connecticut. That's a strong Yankee based territory. But up here? No way! Red Sox Nation rules from Hartford north, west and east. Great job, Fox. I see yet again that you're still determined to make THE WRONG DECISION! The Red Sox game will be on the radio here on WTIC AM 1080. That's my only choice. GO SOX!

Boston Red Sox Claw The Chicago Cubbies 15-5 For Their 7th Win In A Row

My initial euphoric reaction as I watched the Boston Red Sox hits keep coming and coming last night at Fenway Park was a happy sight. I was screaming and yelling YES every time they scored. Believe me, that's a lot of screaming and yelling but a good time was guaranteed for all who were here.The Red Sox have won seven straight and will turn to their numbers four and five starters for the last two games of this series today and tomorrow. I hope they have some runs left in their ammo belts. Here's one of the Boston hitting stars, Adrian Gonzalez...

“I always have faith in my team. Look at our roster and the talent we have. I believe this is one of the best teams in the league. You can never lose your cool. You’ll never see me do that.’’

Adrian has reason to have faith in his team. They are 22-10 since April 16, the best record in baseball. They have won seven straight, 10 of 12 and 13 of their last 18 games. Tonight's 15-5 smackdown of the Cubs featured the most runs, hits (19) and doubles (six) of the season. Adrian Gonzalez had four more hits and four RBIs. He has driven in 41 runs in 44 games, a pace that would give him a ridiculous 151 on the season. He's amazing. Jon Lester wasn't his untouchable self, though. He was only able to go six innings and he gave up five runs on 12 (!!) hits, walking two and whiffing five. Atchison threw three innings of goose eggs to end it. Usually, he's very impressive and last night was no exception. Tonight, it'll be Aceves versus Zambrano as the Sox try for their eighth victory in a row. Right now they're 1/2 game in front of the Yankees and 1/2 game behind the Rays, firmly in second place. What a quick turnaround!

You can click on this post's title for more print and video about last night's lopsided shellacking. Give it a try if you like resounding base hits. Have a great Saturday and a terrific weekend as we come to the last week or so of May. Already! As always, BE WELL. GO SOX!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Crawford's Third May Walk-Off Hit Ends It...Boston 4 Detroit 3

Detroit starter Justin Verlander can really bring the heat and throw numerous nasty pitches but Thursday night he was out pitched by Boston's ace, Josh Beckett. It was the sixth win in a row for the red hot Red Sox. Here's the way the Boston Globe's Extra Bases described the bottom of the ninth...

"Carl Crawford's single to center scored pinch runner Darnell McDonald with the winning run in yet another dramatic walkoff victory for the Red Sox over the Tigers. The Sox loaded the bases with a Kevin Youkilis walk, a single to right by David Ortiz, and an intentional walk to J.D. Drew. After Jed Lowrie's blooper between third and left dropped in, pinch runner Jose Iglesias was forced at home. McDonald came on to pinch run for Ortiz at third setting the stage for Crawford's dramatic hit. It was the fourth walkoff victory for the Sox this year."

Big Papi David Ortiz, who is having a great year so far, collected three hits including a mammoth tater in the seventh inning that put Boston ahead by two. It was a much needed run indeed. A three game set with the Cubbies begins tonight. The details are below. After Lester tonight, it might get a little dicey but I want to concentrate on winning tonight. I like our chances.

In other Sox news, Boston has acquired a new reliever, the Rockies' Franklin Morales. Here is the release from the Globe...

"A Major League source said tonight the Red Sox were close to completing a trade for lefthanded reliever Franklin Morales of the Rockies. The 25-year-old has a 3.86 ERA in 14 appearances this season. Lefthanders have hit .185 against him in 135 career at-bats. Morales has walked 8 in 14 innings with 11 strikeouts. Morales is 7-11 with a 4.83 ERA over parts of five seasons with 10 saves. Morales has started 15 games in his career but none since 2009. UPDATE, 10:43 p.m.: The trade is done. The Rockies will receive a player to be named later or cash. Hideki Okajima has been designated for assignment."

It's been fun, Okie. Maybe we'll see you again soon, Darkman. I certainly hope so. Lastly, tonight marks the start of a three game Fenway set against the Chicago Cubs. Here are all the match-up details...

Fri. 20* ChC 7:10 PM ET WGN/NESN* J. Lester (5-1) vs. D. Davis (0-1)
Sat. 21* ChC 7:10 PM ET FOX* A. Aceves (1-0) vs. C. Zambrano (4-2)
Sun. 22* ChC 8:05 PM ET ESPN* T. Wakefield (0-1) vs. M. Garza (2-4)

Have a great Friday, enjoy the upcoming weekend, click on this post's title for all the details and video highlights of Thursday night's contest and as always, BE WELL.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Buchholz And The Rain Make A Winning Pair..Red Sox Win 1-0 Over Detroit...Matsuzaka Out At Least A Month, Maybe Many More

In the latest Daisuke news, it's not good. Here is the official Boston Red Sox post-examination statement...

"Daisuke experienced tightness in his elbow during his last start. His examination is consistent with a sprained ulnar collateral ligament, and strain to his common flexor mass. An MRI was obtained which confirmed these exam findings. He will be re-examined in two weeks."

Sometimes a sprained ulnar collateral ligament strain can lead to (gulp!) Tommy John surgery which would take him out of the picture for the rest of the season, maybe more. I wish Daisuke the best and I hope he can get back to and be in the kind of shape he was in when he threw those two consecutive 1-0 wins.

Last night at foggy soggy Fenway, Buchholz shut out the Tigers over seven innings, allowing only four hits. The Sox won the game by a score of 1-0 on the strength of a Salty wall ball base hit in the eighth, making a winner of Danny Bard, who pitched a clean eighth inning. Papelbon did the same and the Boston Red Sox had won their fifth straight. Here the manager, Tito Francona, on his starter...

“He went out to start the eighth inning with 100 pitches (he ended up throwing a career high 129 pitches). I would’ve kicked myself for not sending him back out until he gave up a run. That was his inning. He was terrific and he needed to be, because their guy was pretty good, too. High pitch count, but part of it was he threw a lot of strikes, but a lot of 3-2 counts, lot of swings and misses. The couple of times he got in a bind he pitched out of it. Good changeup, elevated his fastball when he wanted to. Really pitched well.”

Buchholz has really come into peak form just when we need him the most. So has Beckett, who's going tonight, and Lester, who's always there for more. I'm just happy the game didn't go into extra innings. Five straight...not bad, not bad at all!

Tonight in the second and last game of the Tiger series, Josh Beckett will face Justin Verlander, who is one tough cookie. But I have faith in the man named Josh. The game begins at 7:10pm EDT. No rain, please! Have a great Thursday, click on this post's title for all the details and video of the game and as always, BE WELL. Thanks for popping in.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Matsuzaka Placed On DL...Killebrew's Passing

One day after we learned that Boston Red Sox pitcher John Lackey would be sidelined for two weeks, another of the starting five is going down. Daisuke Matsuzaka has been placed on the DL with elbow discomfort. Here's the release from the Boston Globe...

Dice-K to DL; Aceves in Red Sox rotation. May 17, 2011 07:33 PM
By Peter Abraham, Globe Staff

Daisuke Matsuzaka will be placed on the 15-day disabled list with a sprained elbow tomorrow according to Terry Fracona. Righthander Michael Bowden was recalled from AAA Pawtucket
The new rotation:

Wednesday vs. Detroit: Clay Buchholz
Thursday vs. Detroit: Josh Beckett
Friday vs. Chicago: Jon Lester
Saturday vs. Chicago: Alfredo Aceves
Sunday vs. Chicago: Tim Wakefield

Sox manager Terry Francona had this to say...

“We’re going to sit and talk to him a little bit to try and figure out more what’s going on because it didn’t look completely right."

Both Aceves and Wakes have to carry their load until Lackey (and Daisuke?) get back. As you know, the Sox were rained out last night but the weather should (key word) be good enough to play ball tonight.

On a sad note, the great Twins slugger Harmon Killebrew lost his battle with cancer last night. He passed peacefully at his home. I was lucky enough to see him play at Fenway Part a handful of times and he could hit one over everything with a flick of his wrist, much like Frank Howard. His former teammate Kent Hrbek had this to say today about the amazingly talented man...

"It’s a sad day. We lost an icon. We lost Paul Bunyan."

I'll miss him. Rest in peace, Harmen. Ya did good. Please click on this post's title for a wonderful article all about "the big guy." Have a great Wednesday and as always, BE WELL.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Comeback Win For The Red Sox 8-7...John Lackey Lost For 15 Days

When you need to push a run across the plate, who would you turn to? That depends on your team but for the Boston Red Sox, it's Adrian Gonzalez, hands down. Boston came back from a 6-0 deficit, thanks to Daisuke Matsuzaka ((five runs on five hits and seven walks over 4 1/3 innings) and won it in the ninth. Baltimore closer, Kevin Gregg, staked to a one run lead, pitched the ninth for the Birds and walked Ellsbuy and then Pedey. YES, THE MAN was slowly walking to the plate with his team down by a run. Here's AGonz...

“He likes to get ahead on the outer half with certain pitches. He threw me a slider, one of those get-me-over sliders, and I was able to put a good swing on it.”

Watch the replay if you don't believe him. Just click on this post's title. Alfredo Aceves, who relieved Matsuzaka (thank goodness), pitched three innings and gave up only one run. Daisuke, get your sh*t together. Here's Double A...

“Adrian is one of the top guys in the league. I’m glad to be playing with him. I think every single guy on the team likes to be with him."

He's right. On a side note, John Lackey has been placed on the 15 day disabled list for elbow pain. Timmy Wakefield will start tonight. What's next with Lackey?? Here he is, optimistic as always...

“Everything in my life sucks right now, to be honest with you."

John, when you suck, the team sucks. But that's enough of that. I'd like you to click on this post's title and watch the walk off double. Once, maybe twice? Have a great Tuesday and as always, BE WELL. Remember, it's Wakes going tonight.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Boston Red Sox Sweep NY Yankees With A 7-5 Win...Finally .500

Grinder. That was exactly what Sunday Boston Red Sox starter Jon Lester called his outing. He battled the whole time. Here, read his words...

“As a starting pitcher, when you can go out there and not have your best stuff and still come out on top, that’s always a good thing. These are the games that you remember at the end of the year when you look back on things. The two-hit shutouts that you throw when you can basically throw your glove out there, those are the special nights that don’t come along very often. When it’s all said and done, these grinders are the more important ones.’’

Big Papi David Ortiz continued his torrid hitting with three hits, including a tater. With Papi, Youk, who also homered, and Gonzalez, not to mention Jeddy Lowrie, going strong (where are you, Pedey?), just a few more things must fall into place. Ya know what...they will. I wrote in an earlier post that once this complicated but lovable team gets to .500, the sky's the limit. Take us higher, Boston. Right now I have Sly and the Family Stone's I WANNA TAKE YOU HIGHER in my mind, the Woodstock version. Believe me, that's not a bad thing. Not at all. I'll leave you with the pitching match ups for the next two games with the Birdies...

Mon. 16 Bal* 7:10 PM ET** MASN/NESN** D. Matsuzaka (3-3) C. Tillman (2-3)
Tue. 17 Bal* 7:10 PM ET** MASN/NESN** J. Lackey (2-5) Z. Britton (5-2)

Please click on this post's title for an essential Boston Red Sox read and as always, BE WELL. Thanks.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Boston's Josh Beckett Shuts Down The Yankees...REMDOG Back Monday

Let's face it. The Boston Red Sox pitcher Josh Beckett is back, back with a vengeance. He shut out the NY Yankees over six innings, allowing only four hits. He whiffed nine and walked two and lowered his ERA to 1.75. Albers took care of the seventh and eighth and Hill completed the whitewash. Boston is now (and I'm frightened to say it) only one game below .500. Let's see if they can break their own trend and win tonight with Jon Lester going. Here's Red Sox manager Terry Francona on his Saturday starter...

“We had a lot of confidence in him. We always have. He worked hard. He said at the end of last year that he’d come back with a vengeance and I think he has.’’

Adrian Gonzalez’s three-run Ichiro style home run in the seventh inning helped secure the win for Beckett, who has not allowed a run in 14 innings against the Yankees this season. Jacoby Ellsbury, who had two hits to raise his average to .301, added a two-run double. Here the man himself, Josh Beckett...

“I’m making pitches when I need to and guys are playing great defense. That’s really it, there’s no secret to it."

Games like this are fun to watch. It was a great pitcher's duel that turned into a resounding Boston win. That's what I like, especially when we play the pinstripers. I have more good news for you. Our beloved Jerry Remy will be back in the booth on Monday. He was battling a stubborn form of pneumonia. It had nothing to do his cancer, thank God. Here he is...

"Well, I'm sure it (cancer) is in the back of a lot of people's minds. But, I mean, I would be honest if something was seriously wrong with me. I would be honest with people. It’s not the case, it's really not. It has just been a drawn out two-week battle with pneumonia."

We can't wait to see and hear you on NESN. We love you, Jerry. I hope everyone has a great Sunday and I thank you for stopping by. You can click on this post's title for more on the Sox and as always, BE WELL.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Boston Red Sox 5 NY Yankees 4

Finally, blogger is back. It was down most of Friday and without it, I was going a little nuts. Game one of the Boston/NY York series is history with the Boston Red Sox, behind Clay Buchholz, a shaky Bard and an almost steady Papelbon, besting the NY Yankees by a score of 5-4. Adrian Gonzalez clouted another home run, this time to right, as did Kevin Youk Youkilis. Yankee Stadium was sold out for the first time since opening day and the fifty thousand plus fans saw a great game. Buchholz was on top of his game, going seven innings and giving up two runs on five hits, walking one and whiffing seven. Here's the Sox manager Terry Francona talking about his starter...

"He threw hard and down with movement, and then he started using his changeup and breaking ball. His fastball had so much depth to it.”

I didn't have a chance with no blogger to post these yesterday so here are the pitching match ups for the next two games...

Sat. 14 at NYY** 7:10 PM ET** FOX* J. Beckett (2-1) vs. C. Sabathia (3-2)
Sun. 15 at NYY** 8:05 PM ET** ESPN* J. Lester (4-1) vs. F. Garcia (2-2)

I like those two pairings. We'll see what happens. I hope your Saturday will be a good one, click on this post's title for more on the game and as always, BE WELL.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

The Yankees' Bartolo Colon..

More than you wanted to know about Bartolo Colon's amazing recovery with all the semi-gory details are available when you click on this post's link. It's from the NY Times. Click away. Comments, anyone?

Lackey Gives It Up In Seventh...Toronto 9 Boston 3

John Lackey was clearly as upset with himself as Red Sox Nation is with him. Here he is after the Toronto Blue Jays defeated the Boston Red Sox by a score of 9-3...

“Everything in my life [expletive] right now, to be honest with you. I don’t know what the hell happened tonight. I threw the ball way better than I did the last start. I don’t know.’’

Clueless. Constant Readers, this is one of the only times that I don't know what the "expletive deleted" referred to. But his mound performance Wednesday night deserved a few expletives. He is the biggest let down of any of the Boston starters so far in 2010. So we go south after losing two straight to the Canadian team. There's a day off today, the only one of the month, and then the Red Sox travel to New York to play the Yankees, who also lost last night. I'll have all the series match ups first thing in the morning. It's nice to have Blogger back working. As always, BE WELL and click on this post's title for more on the game and the disastrous seventh frame.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Lester Has An Off Night..Toronto 7 Boston 6

Jon Lester had an off night and the Toronto Blue Jays defeated the Boston Red Sox by a score of 7-6. The elusive .500 mark remains JUST out of reach. When the Red Sox finally reach it, I think they will start to soar and these April/May troubles will become just a distant nightmarish memory. Here's Jon...

“I basically ruined a good night for the offense. If you take away that first inning, I made two bad pitches, but that first inning, I made a lot of bad pitches. The offense did a great job tonight of keeping us in the ballgame."

Yes, that bottom of the first was not easy to watch but Lester settled down and was able to go five and a third innings. It was not a quality start by any means. The first three hitters in the Red Sox lineup (Ellsbury, Pedey and Gonzalez) combined for eight hits alone but when the Jays scored single runs in the final two innings against Bard and Albers, they had enough runs on the scoreboard to win it. The same two teams go tonight in the final game of this quick two game series. It'll be Lackey (collective gasp) versus Litsch tonight at 7:07pm EDT. After a Thursday off day, Boston will invade the Bronx for a three game set with the first place Yankees. I want that .500 mark...and then more. Have a great Wednesday, click on this post's title for more on last night's loss and as always, BE WELL. When you click on that link, don't forget to vote for your favorite players for the All Star game. Thanks.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Walk-Off 2-1 Victory For Boston Red Sox

Carl Crawford hit a wall-ball double off Twins reliever Jim Hoey to drive in pinch-runner Jose Iglesias with the winning run in a 2-1 victory over the Twins in 11 innings tonight. It was Crawford's only hit of the night but it was a walk-off nevertheless and made a deserving winner out of Josh Beckett. Josh pitched seven full and gave up zero runs and six hits, whiffing five and walking one. Here's Boston Red Sox manager Tito Francona...

“He was tremendous, one walk. He really pitched well, and you kind of come to expect that, and that’s good for us. He feels about himself, he’s throwing a lot of strikes with all his pitches and been really effective.”

And here's the man himself, Josh Beckett...

“We get paid to win games, and a team win is way better than me getting a win or a loss. I’ll finish up 2-1 if we win the rest of my starts. I would be completely happy with that."

Now that's a team player! He would have won the game had not Jonathon Papelbon blown a 1-0 Sox lead in the eighth. The Red Sox have now won three in a row doing the basics and doing them right. Tonight they start a two game series with the Toronto Blue Jays up in Canada. Here are the series stats...

Tue. 10 at Tor 7:07 PM ET** NESN/RSN** J. Lester (4-1) vs. K. Drabek (2-2)
Wed. 11 at Tor 7:07 PM ET** NESN/RSN **J. Lackey (2-4) vs. J. Litsch (3-2)

I worry about Lackey whenever he gets NEAR the mound but that's not something to be concerned about right now. We have a Mr. Lester pitching tonight and he, like Beckett, has been pitching well. Enjoy the game, click on this post's title for more and as always, BE WELL.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Happy Birthday Adrian Gonzales...Boston 9 Minnesota 5

Sunday was Boston Red Sox first baseman Adrian Gonzalez' birthday and, lucky for us, he had his party at the plate. He collected three hits including a scorched tater (sounds like part of lunch). Lately, there's been a Gonzales offensive upswing. What took so long? Here's Adrian. Yo, Adrian...

“It’s got nothing to do with the park; it’s got to do with my swing. My swing’s getting better and I’m learning to stay behind balls and drive through them. You start backing it up and trusting it more. It’s one of those things I usually don’t do too much in April. Once the season goes on, I do it more and more.’’

Gonzalez is hitting .359 (32 of 92) in the last 22 games with 13 extra-base hits and 17 RBIs. Nice numbers. When this team starts COLLECTIVELY hitting, the sky's the limit. They have a chance to do exactly that when they again play the Twins at 7:10pm EDT. It'll be Lester versus Liriano and it should be a good one. But I'd like to remind you this. Game four of the Celtics/Heat playoff series continues tonight at the same time. Can you say picture in picture? My main focus will be on the green team because the Red Sox game will last far longer. It should be a fun night, though. Enjoy it.

You can click on this post's title for more on yesterday's game, including a link to vote for your favorites for the MLB All Star game. Let's have a ton of Boston players there to represent us. I've already voted. As always, BE WELL. I'll see you soon. GO SOX! Oh, I almost forgot. Here is my AL All Star list. I voted a few minutes ago...

1B - Gonzalez, Adrian
2B - Pedroia, Dustin
SS - Aybar, Erick
3B - Youkilis, Kevin
C - Avila, Alex
DH - Ortiz, David
OF - Crawford, Carl
OF - Ellsbury, Jacoby
OF - Hunter, Torii

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Matsuzaka Ends Up Going 6 Innings...Boston Red Sox 9-5 Winners Over Twins

After the first inning of the Boston Red Sox-Minnesota Twins game today, I didn't think Daisuke Matsuzaka would survive in a hail of self-destruction. He settled down and now in the bottom of the seventh inning at the Fens, it's 7-4 Red Sox. We're in good hands with the bullpen arms ready but...you never know. Boston is hitting the ball right now all over the place. I'll have an update when we get to the ninth.

It's the ninth with Boston up 9-5. One out...Bard pitching and Jose Iglesias is making his major league debut at short. TWO outs with Bard looking sharp. The count...1-0..1-1. GAME OVER. I'll have a full wrap first thing in the morning.

Boston's Buchholz Great Before And After Rain Delay...Red Sox Win 4-0...SCUTARO Injured

Boston Red Sox starter Clay Buchholz started the game yesterday against the Minnesota Twins and was outstanding. Then the rains came for a two hour and seven minute visit. Buchholz knew two things...all his pitches were working and the Boston Red Sox bullpen had been left for dead after overwork. So he went down to the batting cage throughout the delay and tried to keep his arm warm. Hey, it worked! Here he is explaining it all...

"I was down there probably three, four times. Threw 20 pitches each time to stay loose. My feeling was I had to go out there. I didn't want to tax the bullpen any more than it was. A little game of awareness. Just trying to help out. I knew the guys had a rough couple of days."

Thank you , Clay. Behind the bat of Jacoby Ellsbury, the Red Sox shut out the Twinkies 4-0. As usual, there was bad news mixed in. Red Sox shortstop Marco Scutaro is injured. He hurt his left rib cage. Rib cage injuries are notoriously hard to access. Here's the latest announcement from The Globe's EXTRA BASES...

"Marco Scutaro was pinch hit for in the eighth inning today and is dealing with an injury to his left rib cage. According to a report by Sports Illustrated's Melissa Segura on Twitter, the Red Sox are considering calling up 21-year-old Jose Iglesias tomorrow. A Major League source has since told the Globe that Iglesias was "likely" to be added to the roster tomorrow. Iglesias was 3 for 4 for Class AAA Pawtucket this afternoon in Scranton, Pa., and is en route to Boston in case Scutaro is placed on the disabled list. WEEI.com reported that Scutaro isn't sure what the injury is. Iglesias is hitting .253 with a .278 on-base percentage and no extra-base hits in 24 games for the PawSox. But he is advanced defensively."

Iglesias is a future star, folks, but he's young and needs more "seasoning." What better place than Fenway Park to be seasoned? I know we don't want to rush him or anyone but it is what it is...we need him now. He'll be just fine, too. Watch his quick bat lash out hits.

It's Matsuzaka versus Carl Pavano this afternoon shortly after 1pm EDT. Enjoy it and please click on this post's title for more on last night's win. Thanks for stopping in, go Sox and as always, BE WELL.

Saturday, May 07, 2011

Boston Red Sox Falter Again...Twins 9 Red Sox 2

Balks, errors and generally stinky play characterized the third loss in a row for the Boston Red Sox. The final score was 9-2 Twinkies. To make matters worse, Minnesota is a team crippled by injuries. They've only scored five or more runs in a game ONCE THIS YEAR yet against the Sox, they bash the ball around. I turned the game off in disgust after three innings, mad as hell with no way to vent that rage.

The carnage was as much the fault of Tim Wakefield as it was the brand of ball on display. He started for Matsuzaka and allowed eight runs, six of 'em earned. Aceves relieved him with one out in the fifth amid a chorus of boos (for Wakes). He pitched well (4.2 IP, 3 hits and just 1 run allowed) but it was too late for the Red Sox to delve and chip away at that lead. Wakes summed up the last place Red Sox and their situation. It's ain't pretty...

“You can’t look at our record; you have to look at where we are in the standings — in the East, we’re only five games out — and it’s May. It’s not like we’re 10 or 12 games out. We’re still in the thick of things, even though we’re in last place. Obviously we need to start firing on all cylinders, but I wouldn’t push the panic button just yet.”

To me, a fan and a proud member of Red Sox Nation, the fact that we're "only" five games out is far less important than the real problem. What's that? Boston is playing like pure crap. There's no other way to put it. They'll try to start a turnaround this afternoon as C. Buchholz (2-3) versus B. Duensing (2-1). As always, BE WELL. The page has been turned.

Friday, May 06, 2011

Jenks, Wheeler Sent Down By Red Sox...Angels Pulverize Boston 11-0

This is from WEEI sports, just in...

"The Red Sox will place relievers Dan Wheeler and Bobby Jenks on the disabled list prior to Thursday's game against the Angels in order to clear roster spots for right-hander Scott Atchison (recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket) and left-hander Rich Hill (selected from Pawtucket). The moves come at a time when the Sox bullpen is running on fumes after handling the final 8 2/3 innings of Wednesday's 5-3 loss to the Angels."

Neither relief pitcher has been effective and Atchison is a proven commodity. We'll see what happens but it has to be better than Thursday night at Fenway Park. This one is going to be tough to write about so I'll make it brief and semi-painless...

Rock bottom, at least for one game. It seems that every time this season Boston gets to within one game of .500 baseball, they start losing. Last night was no exception. It was more like an abomination. An abortion. A brutal murder full of blood on the body and the surrounding area. You see, the Angels, winners of two straight, blew out the Red Sox by a score of 11-0. It's wasn't even THAT close!

Two tired teams took the field Thursday afternoon and both were probably happy the game again didn't go into extra innings. But it was ugly, and the ugliness started with John Lackey, a guy I have nothing to say about right now. Final score? Yes, sadly it was 11-0. Here's Lackey...

“My lack of execution and my lack of pitching well definitely hurt that morale or whatever you want to call it.’’

Boston starts another four game set, this time with the Twinkies. Here's everything you need to know...

Fri. 6 Min 7:10 PM ET FxNo/NESN** T. Wakefield (0-0) vs. S. Baker (1-2)
Sat. 7 Min 1:10 PM ET FOX** C. Buchholz (2-3) vs. B. Duensing (2-1)
Sun. 8 Min 1:35 PM ET FxNo/NESN** D. Matsuzaka (2-3) vs. C. Pavano (2-3)
Mon. 9 Min 7:10 PM ET ESPN/NESN** J. Lester (4-1) vs. F. Liriano (2-4)

I'm not overly confident but I will always support the Boston Red Sox. Always. Have a great Friday and weekend, click on this post's title for a video with more on last night's debacle and as always, BE WELL. Thanks.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Tough 13 Inning Loss For Red Sox

The Boston Red Sox, in a marathon five hour game, fell short and lost to the LA Angels by a score of 5-3. This was a tough one for Red Sox Nation to watch because the Sox tied it in the ninth and had THREE men on base in the twelfth...to no avail. Matsuzaka came on to pitch the thirteenth and gave up two runs. That was all she wrote. The .500 mark remains exclusively elusive. Here is Boston manager Terry Francona talking about his call to Matsuzaka in the thirteenth....

"When I showed up today, I didn't think I'd be talking to you guys at 3 in the morning. It was a tough spot to put Daisuke in. But we had no other choice. The good news was today was his day to pitch.''

All the other news was bad, frustratingly bad. Josh Beckett started but was thwarted by a two and a half hour rain delay. Unfortunate, because he was on. But it is what it was. Que sera sera, whatever will be will be will be (don't worry, it's called Hitchcock on the brain). The two teams go at it again at 1pm, believe it or not. Have a great Thursday.

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Lester Bests Haren...Boston 7 LAA 3

Two of the best pitchers in all of MLB squared off Tuesday night at Fenway Park and one of them kept the Boston Red Sox' modest winning streak alive.

“It’s not losing 15 out of 16 to, no disrespect, like the Mariners or the Pirates. It’s the Boston Red Sox. They’re a good ballclub. In order to do 15 out of 16 you’ve got to have a little luck on your side. A lot of things have to happen, because it’s not that easy.”

Yes, the Sox have beaten the Angels 15 out of 16 times this year and last. That's pretty amazing. The final score was 7-3 good guys. A tight 1 run LA lead lasted until Boston scored two in the 6th. They never trailed after that and broke it open with four runs in the eighth. Lester was mesmerizingly tremendous. Here's the man himself on his club's improved play...

“We’ve all sat down in that clubhouse and said we’re better than what we’re playing. These past three games, I think we’ve done a really good job of not only taking advantage of situations when we need to and having good quality at-bats and also the pitching side of it, grinding out innings.’’

He's right, the Boston Red Sox have looked like they SHOULD look. They have the talent, they have the arms and they have the bats and the defense to go far in 2011. Make it so.

There's another Boston/LA game, one of two left, tonight. It'll be Beckett versus Santana at the normal 7:10pm start time. Click on this post's title to see Lester's brilliance through vivid video highlights and as always, BE WELL. See you soon.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Boston 9 LA Angels 5..REMDOG UPDATE

The Halos had the best pitcher in all of baseball going for them last night. It was Jared Weaver, who has a minuscule ERA of 0.99 ready to pitch against Clay Buchholz. Clay did well, pitching into the seventh and giving up two runs. But the most dramatic point of the game came on the strength of a tremendous at bat by Pedey Pedroia. In all, Pedroia fouled off nine pitches in a 13-pitch at-bat against previously unbeaten Jered Weaver before lining a go-ahead, two-run single that helped the Boston Red Sox beat the Los Angeles Angels 9-5 on Monday night. Here's Pedey...

“I faced him a lot in college and the first few years in the big leagues and it doesn’t get any better than him,” Pedroia said. “I haven’t won too many of those, but it was nice to drive in a couple and kind of get things going.”

Big Papi David Ortiz' tater put this contest out of reach even though Wheeler, the 'pen's weakest link, gave up multiple runs. Bard relieved Buchholz and pitched a clean inning. Then Wheeler tried to make the game close but was bailed out by Okajima to end it. I really am having my doubts about Mr. Wheeler.

THERE IS NO CANCER INSIDE JERRY REMY, thank God. This is from the Boston Globe's Extra Bases...

By Peter Abraham, Globe Staff

"NESN's Jerry Remy just wrote on Twitter that he will not be part of tonight's broadcast. Doctor just confirmed I have a bit of pneumonia. Suggested we get it under control before doing (the) Red Sox game. It's day by day I guess," he wrote.
Tonight would be the sixth game Remy has missed because of his illness. NESN has filled in with Peter Gammons and Dennis Eckersley and for one unfortunate night in Baltimore, Rick Dempsey."

I just have two words to say...thank God. We love you Jerry. Thanks for stopping in and as alway, BE WELL.

Monday, May 02, 2011


The came over the AP wire 43 minutes ago...

WASHINGTON – "Osama bin Laden, the glowering mastermind behind the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks that killed thousands of Americans, was slain in his luxury hideout in Pakistan early Monday in a firefight with U.S. forces, ending a manhunt that spanned a frustrating decade.
"Justice has been done," President Barack Obama said in a dramatic announcement at the White House.
A jubilant crowd of thousands gathered outside the White House as word spread of bin Laden's death. Hundreds more sang and waved American flags at Ground Zero in New York — where the twin towers that once stood as symbols of American economic power were brought down by bin Laden's hijackers 10 years ago."

Hooray. Oh Osama, go straight to hell. Feel the pain. FOREVER.

Click on this post's title for the video of Obama's announcement to the world. In lieu of the HUGE news, I don't feel that a Red Sox post fits. They were victorious over the Seattle Mariners on a walk-off hit by Carl Crawford.

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Daisuke Seems OK

From the wires, just now. Here's Red Sox manager Terry Francona...

"He was examined fairly extensively last night after he came out and actually he did very well, so that's good," Francona said. "He's going about his normal day one activities. Certainly we want to keep an eye on him, but hopefully we just overreacted. We talked about it last night -- it's a little bit hard not to, a guy says he's tight or stiff and you see his velocity go down [so] there's some concern. Hopefully that's what it was, just kind of a bad day and move on. That's what Daisuke thinks, and the trainers have said nothing different. They are actually very upbeat about this, so that's good."

And that's good. It's a scoreless game at the moment at Fenway Park.


I don't know what's wrong with this topsey-turvey team called the Boston Red Sox. Lackey and the bullpen held Seattle to two measly runs but the offense left eleven men in scoring position, time after time after time. After the game, Dustin Pedroia, the scrappiest guy out there, had these words of frustration...

“We can’t score, man. We’re fighting to get it going. It’s frustrating. I’m not even sure what to say. We’re being tested. We have to find a way.’’

Boy, he got that right. This was one of the most frustrating games I've seen in a very long time and reliving it by writing about it would be a very unpleasant experience. So I won't. But I will tell you that Clay Buchholz has been scratched from today's game because he's recovering from a stomach bug. Hey guys, get your butts out of last place!! GO TIM!