Rain or shine, let’s grill n chill
April 15th: Sox were 2-10
May 29th: Sox are 29-22, 1st in AL East, second only in AL to CLE
Big double header today, with the second game a rematch of Verlander Beckett. Let’s win 2 and put a buffer between us and the Yankees. After this we have the White Sox and Oakland at home, before embarking on a road trip through the division (NY-Tor-Rays). The team is clicking all around, and heating up at the right time.
I have been watching the ALCS dvds today from 2004, and I have to say it still makes my hair stand on edge. Nothing in Boston sports has ever topped this, and likely never will. How soon we forget that down 3 games to zero with the game on the line and Roberts on 1st base, the Red Sox had only held a lead in the series for about 20 minutes. Game 3 we nearly gave up 3 touchdowns, and by night’s end not a soul in Boston had a shred of hope left in them. The series brought us the bloody sock, the Bellhorn home run that almost wasn’t, and of course the glove slapping A-rod incident. As if Boston needed any more reason to despise A-rod, he winds up and slaps the ball AND glove off of the hand of Derek Lowe. Do you remember Rodriguez trying to show the ump how he hit the arm in a running motion? Or the look on his face when the ump signaled him out? PRICELESS!
If you lose your job, your wife, or your car, don’t write a country music song, put in the DVDs from 2004 and cook up some popcorn. It does not get any better. Everyone gave it their all, and without big performances from role players like Roberts, Wakefield, and Foulke, the performances by Ortiz, Schilling, and Damon would be for not.
Did anyone happen to notice Stan’s dad Randy Marsh was the home plate ump for the series clincher? Big advantage Boston.
Bucky Dent threw out the first pitch of game 7, but David Ortiz put out the first home run in game 7 off a washed up Kevin Brown. Damon crushed a few pitches, and changed a rough ALCS where he was batting .100 to a huge finish.
Today I would like to thank Dan Duquette, and the Seattle Mariners organization for one of the most lopsided trades in sports history, Heathcliff Slocumb to the Mariners for Derek Lowe and Jason Varitek. Without that trade, who knows what would have come of the Red Sox during that season.
I hope all of you will tune in and cheer on the Boston Bruins starting this Wednesday, even those of you who don’t follow the Bs or hockey. Truth is, that hockey playoff games are about as exciting as it gets in sports. The action is nonstop, and at a much higher level than the regular season.
To quote my brother-in-law:
I am directing this last statement at you, JD Drew. You need to step it up. Take some extra BP, do some yoga, heck hire a comedian to taunt you at the dish. You have 2 more RBIs than Scutaro man. I want you to be mr June for us. Go out in style this year!
HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY to all
Tampa won, Yanks are going to win. We need to keep pace because the schedule does not get easy. We have 3 starters, and 2 “other” starters. Aceves pitched well last night, before the bullpen put on a 3-ring circus with the help of some laughable errors by the Sox.
Wakefield faces Russell tonight, so we may see both bullpens by the 5th inning. If Wakes can pull off another game like he did recently against Seattle, we will be in great shape. If you remember, Wakefield pitched the only game Boston won against the Cubs in 2005. He even had a hit in that game.
On a side note, GO BULLS!
We all knew it was only a matter of time before the AL East heated up. Last night’s win over Balt was huge, and the momentum will hopefully carry us through against Dtown. Adrian Gonzalez is off the reservation. Youk is heating up. Tek found a bat. Lackey won’t be touching a round object for a few weeks, phew!
We have the Tigers and Cubs coming up. With the pitching matchups, we should take Dtown. I predict a sweep of Detroit and 2 out of 3 against the Cubs. That will be tough with Aceves and Wakes pitching Sat/Sun, but the last time we played the Cubs Wakefield had the only solid game (he even had a hit).
Plenty of baseball left, and the Red Sox are heating up at the right time. We really need JD Drew to pretend he can play baseball for a contract. 2 HR? 8 RBI? .243? HORRIBLE. 14 million? Lowrie is making only 4x my bank to put up 3, 18, .320. Come on JD, make us proud buddy.
By the way, Derek Jeter has no problem with Posada wanting to bench himself, and ask for a trade. He said if there was an issue he would have said something. HAHAHAHAAHA. TURMOIL in NY. LOVE IT.
The Red Sox were in need of a home series against Seattle, a big chance to gain ground in the East. But in two games against Seattle, we have had very little to cheer about. Friday night Dice-K left the game early, and the bullpen blew the game. Bobby Jenks has done nothing to impress, and we now see why things may not have worked out for him in Chicago. Mike Cameron beat the heck out of the ball to the tune of 2 home runs, but it was not enough.
Then yesterday the Red Sox couldn’t push a run across, despite 5 doubles. They were 0-11 with runners in scoring position. They had a decent outing from Lackey but came up empty at the dish.
Today they try to avoid the sweep. Tim Wakefield will take the mound and face one of the best in the game, Felix Hernandez. On paper the Sox can only hope King Felix is off his game, and Wakefield can throw 5 or 6 decent innings. Maybe then the Sox can get to the Seattle bullpen and salvage a game.
The Red Sox are in last place, 5 games out. If they don’t start winning, they could slip further and further out. Once it hits double digits, it’s tough to come back.
Let’s hope today they come up big! GO SOX!
The bad news is, we are last in the AL East. The good news is, we are only 4 games out with plenty of ball left to play. The great news is, we are 8-3 in our last 11 games despite dropping 2 in a row to Baltimore. It also turns out, to my dismay, that Jed Lowrie is actually human. How dare him get below the Ted Williams line?! Let’s talk about ten things from the month of April:
1. Daniel Bard - So much potential, but 0-3 thus far this year. Last night was tough to watch. Jenks is a lunatic, and has yet to prove he can be consistent. So let’s hope Bard can be the setup man we need him to be.
2. Beckett - SOLID year thus far, .85 whip. Last night he showed a bit of the old Long Ball Beckett we had to watch a few years back, but all in all he is showing he can be up there this year with Lester.
3. Lackey - It’s put up or shut up time for him. We are paying him well, and he needs to bring 13+ wins to the table minimum. Otherwise we could have Wakefield start and spend a fortune on somebody else.
4. ZERO (0) can you guess what stat I am talking about here? Anyone? The number of quality starts in 2011 for Clay Buchholz. He has given up 16 walks, and 34 hits. Time for him to turn his season around!
5. Youk - Very strange start for him. You would think with 66% of his hits being for extra bases and 33% for home runs that we would be talking MVP! But with only 15 hits and hitting .214, we really need him to just find his rhythm (note: can you name another word in the English language without an A-E-I-O-U?) Nice try :)
6. Catchers - Tek calls a great game, Salty has twice the batting average. That just means he is hitting my weight in middle school. Yep I was a bit chubby so what. 76AB, 11H, 3 for extra bases, 27Ks, and 6 RBIs. I understand that not every team can have a top catcher, but we need more production than this. If we had a top 3 pitching staff I think we could excuse the offensive production with “they call a great game”. After all, aren’t we talking about professional pitchers?
7. Crawford/Gonzalez - Gonzo is playing well, but would love to see him get the power numbers up. Crawford is showing signs of life at time, but we need to see the Crawford that killed us in a TB uniform. We need him to NOT be batting in the 7-9 slot, and to be producing runs with his bat AND legs. If it were not for Lowrie and a few others, how would we score runs?
8. Dice-K - 2 bad starts, 2 great starts. Which Dice-K will we get from here on out or will he be a 10-10 guy with a 4.75 ERA?
9. Schedule - we have Seattle, LAA, and Minn coming up at home. 7-4 is the LEAST the Sox should be for this stretch. 8-3 or better would be nice. These teams are soft, especially Sea/Min. One thing is for sure, Sunday Buchholz vs King Felix will be a tough game for us.
10. The X-factor. Somebody on this team has to surprise everyone and step up in May, like Jed Lowrie did in April. Who will be the key player in the month of May who turns 1 run losses into 1 run victories? Who will surprise us? Will it be Salty? Will it be Buchholz?
This season is young, but here we are in the bottom of the division. Come June 1, let’s hope we are on the flip side. Huge opportunities await us before we go up against NY again, let’s hope the team responds.
Ok so… we’re not gonna lie…that was stressful, but with 8 out of the last 9 games in our back pocket, we’re breathing a little easier. We had a super fun event on Saturday. There were pajamas and Dice-K one hitters and everyone was happy in Whoville. Thanks to everyone for coming out, next up the Mariners on Sunday!! Click the pic for details.