The Boston Red Sox: Defenders of the 2004 World Championship!! "Whoever plunges into his experiences with the momentum of hope, will remember so that he cannot forget." - Soren Kierkegaard.

Saturday, July 31, 2004

A good start for the series - Sox take first game from the Twins 8-2, thanks in large part to an excellent outing by Bronson Arroyo. Over seven and a third innings Arroyo gave up two runs, six hits and no walks while striking out eight...and all that with the flu. Arroyo's curveball was simply filthy. Doug Mientkewicz was responsible for driving in both of Minnesota's runs.
Apparently Kyle Lohse is the Derek Lowe of the Twins starting rotation - last year he won 14 games, up until August this year his record is 4-7, and he gives up more hits than David Justice coming home to a dirty house after a long road trip. I know it's hard to be considered "lucky" when you get charged with six or seven runs, but Lohse is lucky that the Sox are batting a terrible .231 with the bases loaded since that schmuck loaded the bases three times. The Sox stranded nine players last night. Their July/August .231 average with the bases loaded is a lot better than the .189 average they had in May or June, but it still sucks. I mean, it's getting to the point where I don't even really expect them to score with the bases loaded unless it's Ortiz or (gulp) Millar at bat. Ricky Gutierrez ground into TWO double plays last night. And I don't want to get too bitch-heavy in a post after the Sox win a game...but what in the nightmare is wrong with Manny lately?? (And I'm not just talking about the awful dreads he's sporting now...yeeesh...I'm suspending his "Hottest Player on the Team" status until he loses that 'do.) I mean, except for two put-outs in left field last night, Manny could've just been replaced by a mannequin with a dead octopus on it's head and no one could tell by glancing at a scorecard. Two strikeouts (one looking,) a fly out to centerfield, a completely meaningless basehit, and a double play line-out to third. Logically I know that he'll pull out of it soon. But man is it frustrating.
Coming up big in last night's game was Gabe "Sarah Might Need to Find Me Another Nickname" Krapler, who was 3-5 with 2 RBI and a fantastic play from right to rob Twins rookie Morneau of a triple. Tek also had a great game: 3-4 with one walk, one homer, and two runs scored. My boy Mark Bellhorn did about exactly as I usually expect him to: 1-4 with a walk and two strikeouts.
This series with the Twins is about to get tougher. Lowe and Radke will be pitching tonight, and then on Sunday will be Pedro vs. Santana, which I'm really excited about watching.
I guess Jason Giambi has some sort of benign tumor in an undisclosed area, according to the Yankees and ESPN. Perhaps it involves the leg into which he's been shooting all his steroids the past few years, or possibly his balls which are probably literally and figuratively the size of pine nuts. Ya, I made fun of a sick man. He's not dying, so I figure that it's open season again.
Everyone is appealing their suspensions from last Saturdays game. I'm sort of tired of this subject, so I'm not going to dwell on it except for saying that Remy and Orsillo were really ripping on A-Rod during the game last night, saying that he tried to play a tough-guy routine that he really couldn't pull off. A-Rod is crying like a baby with a shitty diaper about the whole thing, I'm glad he got his ass beat and had a bruise the size of a grapefruit on his fucking temple after that game, and I hope he slips and falls on a sharp rock. Alex, you're far too pretty to be tough, and you really gave yourself no chance when you decided to provoke Thunder Thighs Tek, so sit down, shut up, and take it like a man. Typical Yankee whining...I guess he fits right in over there.

Friday, July 30, 2004

Arroyo (3-7, 4.20 ERA) vs. Lohse (4-7, 4.87 ERA) tonight in Minnesota.
Looking ahead to August, the Sox play seven games against the D-Rays, seven games against the Tigers and six games against the Blue Jays.  Time to make some hay while the sun is shining.  I want to say that the Sox should be able to come out of the month with a significant improvement in the WC standings - perhaps even the divisional standings, too.  But with the way this team has played since the middle of May (sloppy, half-heartedly, incosistently, underachievingly, whatever,) I can't quite convince myself that it will be so.  I mean, would it really surprise anybody if they went one or two games over .500 in August?  Depressing.
Yet I'm looking forward to tonight's game - I haven't watched a Sox game since Pedro pitched in Baltimore, and I'm experiencing withdrawal.  C'mon Sox!  Please prove me wrong, PLEASE!

A picture of the kitchen I work in. That's Dave the sous chef there on the right, and in the distance are Frakes and Nicole, the meat cooks. This is my home away from home. Posted by Hello

This is my deranged station partner, Jonathan, posing in what we refer to as our "office." It's actually one of the downstairs walk-ins, but we go in there to talk because it's nice and cold. Posted by Hello

It's an off day for the Sox, so I'm off topic. Work was boring tonight, but I love what I do. We got in fresh abalone today - it was the first time I've gotten an opportunity to work with it, and it was pretty neat. Abalone are gastropod mollusks, and they come in still alive so that when you touch the abductor muscle it moves and ripples underneath your fingers. They're sort of a bitch to clean, and I kept popping open their shit veins, but it was still exciting to play with something new. That's the really cool thing about working the fish station - we might not be as busy as the meat cooks during service, but we get way more interesting protein than they do. I'm waiting to get eel in one day. When those things are alive you have to bash their heads on the table, then nail their heads to the wall and peel their skins off straight down, or so I'm told...I've sliced and cut and boiled a lot of things to death, but I've never had to bash anything. And to think that I was a vegetarian for five years.
I watched John Kerry's acceptance speech tonight. It was alright. He's no Bill Clinton though, as far as speech-making goes, but he's also not an insane, fundamentalist war mongering murderer either. At least he has that going for him. Best part of the speech was when CNN accidentally aired the microphone of the guy who was in charge of releasing all the balloons and confetti at the end: "More balloons, I need more balloons to fall! Not enough balloons! Jesus! Where's the confetti? What the hell are you guys doing up there?" Priceless.
CD of the week: "Either/Or" by Elliott Smith. Soft, sensitive, indie-type songwriters aren't usually my thing, but I like Elliott Smith. A lot. And how soft and mushy can you be if you commit suicide by stabbing yourself in the heart? Yowza.
Sox take on the Twins tomorrow in Minnesota. I'm going to bed.

Thursday, July 29, 2004

The view from our seats yesterday, right behind first base. That's Pujols at bat again, I think. Posted by Hello

This is the kind of sophmoric photo you get after you do way too many Jag-bombs at the bar before the game. (By the way, that's my buddy Frakes.) Posted by Hello

My husband who, after a long night on the town, actually starts to kind of resemble Mark Bellhorn. Scary. (That's my Pats jersey he's wearing. Grrrrrrr.) Posted by Hello

I saw my first live grand slam last night off of the bat of pinch-hitter Barry Larkin.  That was really cool.  I also saw my boy Wily Mo Peña rob a home run out in centerfield - that was probably the best play I've ever seen in person.  (I wish that Wily Mo and Jose Acevedo were on the Sox, they're the only two Reds players I like and I feel sort of bad for them being stuck in this town on this team.)  I also got the opportunity to heckle that cheesy fraud Gabe White, who gave up a homerun, a double, and a basehit to the first three batters of his "relief" appearance.  All in all it was a good night, but I  just wish I didn't drink quite so much.
And the closest I got to watching the Sox game last night was watching the scoreboard at the Great American ballpark.  That game went FAST.  When the Reds game was in the third inning, the Sox/Orioles game was already in the sixth.  And what the fuck is up with Manny???  He burned me on Sunday night - my husband and I each picked a player who we thought would have a good game.  I'm like "Manny's definitely due."  He sucked.  Who did my husband pick?  Johnny "Three-Run Homer" Damon.  He picked it up a little in that first game against the Orioles, but then K'd three times LOOKING last night.  Goddamn.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Why I like Mark Bellhorn. Posted by Hello
Yes, I understand that he strikes out a lot of  the time - many times without even taking the bat off his shoulder.  And he sometimes makes errors that make you want to grab the nearest baby and shake it.  (Like whenever he wasted a perfectly good Manny throw to let whatever scumbag Yankee it was get on second base last Sunday.)  And I had to put my own wallet in my mouth to keep from strangling on my own tongue during that short span of time when he was playing third base.  But in spite of all that,  even though he'll probably never bat .300,  for some reason, humble little Mark Bellhorn is one of my favorite 2004 Red Sox.
For one thing, I have a soft spot in my heart for the regular guys that just put their heads down and play hard and with a lot of sincerity, you know - the Trot Nixons and Bill Muellers of the world.  They may not be the most talented ballplayers in the world, they may not be especially easy on the eyes, but they give you everything they've got.  I think Bellhorn definitely falls into this category.  I like the underdogs.
And hey, he leads the AL in walks.  (Unless he's been overtaken by Frank Thomas.)  He can hit for power.  He's shown flashes of being clutch.  And he just seems like a goddamn decent guy, even though he sometimes has a sort of glazed, heroin-nod sort of look on his face that kind of makes you think you might be able to bounce a brick off his cranium without really disturbing him too much.  I like how he wears his socks high.  I like his Fisher Price "My First Batting Gloves and Cleats" set he uses.  I like his designer beard stubble that gives you the temporary impression that he might be a scary Floridian meth addicted truck driver until you look closer and realize that it's just the way he grooms himself.  And I like how no matter what he does in the course of a ball game, you never see him change his facial expression.  Ever.  His entertainment value to me is quite high.
So Mr. Bellhorn, I don't care what everyone else says, you're alright with me, kiddo.  I'd party with Mark any day of the week.

In other news - while Pedro didn't exactly say that he was out of the woods on his hip injury thingy, he sounded sure that he will be making his next start, which would keep me from laying in bed staring up at the ceiling and imagining new and improved ways for Terry Francona to get hit by a bus for at least one night.   And while Pedro looks kind of cute in those baggy pants he's been pitching in lately - sort of like a little kid wearing pajamas or wearing one of his father's suits - I wish he'd go back to the skin tight ones.  I mean, that's just bonus - I get to watch Pedro pitch, AND I get to watch his wonderful, tight posterior in various acrobatic movements as captured by my friend the centerfield camera.
Sox game got rained out last night, which is actually kind of cool since they were losing 4-2.  Apparently Wakey is still bothered by that line drive that drilled him in the back of the shoulder a week and a half ago.  Deep bruising around the scapula.  Ugh.
Alright, I'm headed down to the ballpark for the 7:05 Cards/Reds game.  Adios.  Go Sox!

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Lots of good things.  Sox win their third game in a row, 12-5 against the dreaded Baltimore Orioles.   The Sox offense continues to roll on, with Manny finally waking up and going 3-4 with two singles, a double, and 2 RBI.  Ortiz had another good day (1-2 with two RBI, two walks and a hit-by-pitch,) and Varitek drove in three runs.  Pedro looked positively filthy in the first five innings - and I'm not just talking about the grease dripping off of his jerri-curl.  He gave up a two-run homer to Tejada in the sixth, then left in the seventh with a "tweaked hip," two men on base and a runner scored.  In the end, thanks to the less than stellar relief by Terry Adams, Pedro was charged with 5 earned runs over 6 and a third.   (By the way, who is Karim Garcia?  The dumbass who went 0-3 against Pedro last night, that's who.)
Mendoza looks pretty damn good as well.  I know that it might be a little too soon to get too excited about this guy as it seems that he can injure himself making waffles in the morning, but if he ends up maintaining this level of performance it could be huge for the Red Sox.
I noticed something really funny in the dugout last night.  At work we wear the same ballcaps all the time, and a pathetic amount of kitchen conversation has revolved around whose hat smells the worst.  Hats will be brandished and sniffed, or someone will run up and just shove their hat over your face - things like that.  At the end of the game last night I noticed Curt Shilling and some other player trading and smelling each other's hats.  Humans are weird animals, aren't we?
I was going to write more, but the Pedro Martínez Sports Century is on and then I have to go to work.  Go Wakey!  Go Sox!

Monday, July 26, 2004

MFYs get burned 9-6, Sox take best out of three. Posted by Hello

Wow, what a series.
Mike and I bought and downloaded Saturday's game off of and watched it in it's entirety yesterday afternoon --- I might have had a stroke had I watched that game live.  Best game of the season - not necessarily in terms of play, but definitely in terms of excitement.  Then Mike and I took our traditional Sunday nap (days off are wonderful and glorious things,) and woke up for the series finale on, ugh, Sunday Night Baseball.
The Yanks jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning, thanks largely to a temporarily lethargic Sox defense.  Lofton got all the way to second on what should have been a single had Damon not been asleep on his feet.  Jeter sacrificed Lofton to third on a bunt, Sheffield scored Lofton with a basehit, Rodriguez got a cheap infield single, Posada was hit by a pitch (good,) and Matsui scored Sheffield from third on a sac-fly to deep center.  The next batter, Bernie Williams, was retired on a fly-out to Manny and I'm thinking uh-oh, things don't look good for Lowe...bad defense and too many fly-balls do not a good sinkerball pitcher make.
But apparently I was underestimating the power of Contreras's suckitude.   The Sox came right back to score two of their own in the bottom of the first, with Bellhorn and Ortiz (both walked) scored on a single from none other than Kevin Millar.  For once this team was able to make a pitcher pay for issuing too many walks.
Sox had a four run fourth, with Damon and Bellhorn going deep back-to-back with three-run and single-run homers respectively, padding the lead to 6-2.  The score went to 7-2 in the fifth thanks to a homerun by....Kevin Millar.   Two more runs were scored in the  sixth inning - Bellhorn doubled and was driven in by Ortiz, who also doubled, and scored from third on an RBI single from....guess who!  Kevin Millar!!  The score was then 9-2....but it just wouldn't be the Red Sox if they let the game end that easily.
For ONCE Terry Francona pulled Derek Lowe at the first sign of trouble, not after he'd already given up four runs.  With two out and two men on base, Francona pulled Lowe and put in Mike Timlin, who promptly walked Posada and gave up a grand slam to Matsui.  Just terrific.  Score is now 9-6.  I believe it was the newly aquired Terry Adams who got the final out of that inning.  The Yanks threatened to score again in the eighth in the strangest play of the series:  Jeter hit a low line drive that bounced off of Keith Foulke's foot or shin right back to Mirabelli, who nailed Jeter in the back (good) as he tried to throw him out at first.  Enrique Wilson had come around to score from third, but was sent back after the homeplate umpire called Jeter out because he was inside the first base line.  Joe Torre said that "it's a silly rule because you have to come back on that side to touch the bag."  Well, maybe, but you don't have to run all the way down the frickin basepath on the inside and block a throw.  In any case, Keith Foulke got the five outs he needed to save the game and we all lived happily ever after.
Unfortunately,  Trot is back on the DL because of his quad - no relation to the brawl on Saturday night.  Sounds pretty serious.  Varitek also missed last night's game due to soreness in his wrist which he speculated was directly related to the brawl, but there is a good chance that he will be back in the lineup tonight in Baltimore.
I'd like to take this opportunity to publically apologize to Kevin Millar, about whom I have made several disparaging comments over the past month.  Your defense is still pretty dodgy, Kevin, but they couldn't have done it without you!

Sunday, July 25, 2004

I live for this. Posted by Hello 
 "Varitek took the first swat at Rodriguez, the highest-paid player in the game, then hit him flush in the middle of the face with an open hand..."  (from the Globe.)  I ask you, who hasn't dreamt of bitch-slapping that smug little prick? 
Of course, thanks to the Fox network, I missed the best game of the season thus-far, but we watched all the highlights about 4 times on ESPN.  Watching A-Rod get his silly little ass beat is nothing short of a dream come true.  And Bill Mueller's walk-off homer off of "Mr. Sandman" Rivera looked beautiful.  If I had been watching that game live I probably would have gotten teary.
And here all through work tonight I kept telling my buddy John Frakes that it was all over.  (Frakes and I have a beautiful partnership wherein he roots for the Red Sox and I root for the UK college basketball team.)  "Check the score," he tells me.  "I can't pull my cellphone out during the middle of service!" I squeal, "And besides, they were already losing during dinner break, face it, it's over."     "Check the goddamn score!"  Frakes insists.  So I mosey back on down to fish station and as secretly as possible, I get onto the internet on my cellphone and check the score...10-8 in the ninth inning.  I check the clock.  It's eight-something.  What the hell is taking this game so long??  I triumphantly march back down to meat station and tell Frakes "HA!  10-8 in the ninth!  See?  I TOLD you so!"  Frakes shakes his head.  "Cuff your pants up!" he tells me, brandishing his own rallycuff at me.  "No, the rally cuff is dead, this is between god and the Red Sox and god is pissed!"  I yell, attracting some unwanted attention from the sous chef.  We lower our voices.  Frakes looks sternly at me: "Look, you're the one that got me into this, now cuff up your fucking pants, I think Bellhorn's going to hit a dinger."  I walk off grumbling back down to fish station, but I do cuff my pants up, and lo and behold, next time I check my phone the score is written as follows:  NYY-10BOS-11F.  "Shame on me!"  I shout down to Frakes.  "Shame on me!"
Why does this team keep doing this to me?  I was all set the other day to watch the rest of the season in a stoic, emotionless bliss - sort of like the Boy in the Baseball Bubble.  Now I am being suckered in again.  It's like I want to keep on hating them but I just can't.  I should just be realistic and forget last night even happened and look forward to more errors, blown saves, and three strikeouts in a row with the bases loaded...but there is still a tiny kernel of hope inside me that believes that this could still be the year, that is secretly imagining things like "win streaks" and "offensive outbursts" and "momentum" and "shutout games," that is remembering all the heroics of late last season, even though I know full well that the 2004 Red Sox are an entirely different animal...
The Face vs. Jose Contreras tonight on Sunday night baseball.

Friday, July 23, 2004

Off work early on a Friday night, just in time to watch the game!!! Can you believe that??? Go Sox!!! Posted by Hello

6th inning:  I went home early for this???  Fucking Kevin Millar couldn't catch a goddamn cold, Schilling suddenly became the Yankees prison-bitch...Fuck this team.  This is why they're not getting anywhere near the post season.  What a bunch of assholes.
(later)...Okay, so Millar just hit his second homer of the game.  Big deal.  The 2003 Red Sox would make an amazing comeback...the 2004 Red Sox are dead in the water.  When they make their next cute little movie, that should be the title.  "Dead in the Water, the 2004 Red Sox." 

top of the 8th: hmmm....7-6 MFY now...goddamn Manny grounding into his millionth double play (13th, second in the league)... Leskanic up....

middle of the 8th:  crazy-ass Leskanic pitches 1-2-3 inning with Rivera warming up in the bullpen.  I'm torn between praying to a non-existant god or just drinking more beer to kill the pain...

top of the 9th:  Millar, I take it back.  Three homers in this game, the score tied at 7-7......Foulke blows another save.  Go-fucking-figure.  8-7 now, with the big bats due up against Rivera.  I'm glad I drank that beer.

Game summary:  Another inexcusable loss for the Sox.  Of all things, I didn't expect a complete and total breakdown from Schilling, but it happened.  (Whatever happened to "watching this team kick a lot of asses over the next few games," huh??)  The Sox battled back more than I expected, but to no avail.   In true 2004 Red Sox fashion they had back-to-back strikeouts to end the eighth inning with men on second and third and the score tied at 7.  In-ex-cusable.   I'm so goddamn tired of this.  It's getting to the point where I almost  don't want to watch anymore.  I just need to give up all hope, it will make it all so much easier....If I just never expect them to win then it won't bother me so much when they lose, right?
Manny in particular turned in another piss-poor performance, his third in a row - 2 strikeouts, one groundout into a double play and a fly-out.  Trot was 1-4 with a run scored, and the cringe-inducing offensive combination of Gutierrez and Bellhorn was 0-3, with Bellhorn managing to reach first base on a fielder's choice.
Ortiz hits two triples in a game?  Big deal.  Millar hits three homers on consecutive at-bats?  So fucking what.  None of that shit matters if this team can't manage to win.  Instead of that tired-ass baseball cliche of "finding ways to win," the Sox continue to find new and heart-breaking ways to lose.
The season ends here.

P.S.  Some things I forgot to mention: 
1) Posada was out.
2) I can't believe that Jason Giambi is trying to play everyone's heart strings with his mystery ailment...cancer tests, please.  Let's see....symptoms include fatigue, loss of bat speed, loss of power, weight loss..........sounds like good old steroid withdrawal to me!   Fuck you, Giambi.
3) I miss East Coast Agony!!! (Down for awhile due to technical difficulties.)  Big K, come back!  Pleeeeease!
4) Chances are that I won't be posting tomorrow since fricking FOX broadcasts the Cubs game in my particular region of the country, and even though we paid $150 for the MLB Extra Innings package I will still miss tomorrow night's game.  Curses.

One non-Sox related thing first:
I really appreciate those of you who leave comments on my blog (I know there's not many, but I still think it's cool) and I feel bad that I'm never around to respond to them.  I think that when most normal people are on the computer I'm at work (1-10 pm) and when I get home I watch the tape of that night's game and go to bed (around 2-3 am,) so I don't really keep normal hours.  So if you've left a comment on my blog and I haven't posted anything back, it's probably because I'm at work...maybe I don't even have to post a response, but I would like to be able to, and that's why I feel bad.  I know it's stupid and not a big deal, but whatever.  This is MY blog and if I want to waste a paragraph in useless apology and excuse-making then I'm allowed.
Okay, enough of that.  On to baseball.
First of all, I love my husband to death, he is the best, I'd do anything for him, but there is one thing he does that really irritates me.  He finds out the score of the game right when he gets home or gets off work, before he even has a chance to watch the tape of the game.  Personally, I like to just watch the game from the first pitch WITHOUT knowing the outcome.  I've even walked into the apartment and grabbed a towel from the bathroom, walked into the living room holding the towel in front of me so that I don't see the tv,  and then thrown the towel over the screen until the game is over.  I did this the other night and Mike was still trying to watch the game through the towel.  (Last laugh was on him, though, because when he went to peek at the screen he found out he was "watching" an A's game.)  So if I don't make it home before Mike, I'm going to learn the score of the game whether I want to or not, before I get to watch the game, and that's what happened with the first game of the double-header yesterday.  When I walked in the door I was told that they lost 8-3, and my motivation to watch the game was completely gone.  I was very excited about it, too, as it was Abe Alvarez's first major league appearance.
We did, however, watch the second game, which the Sox won 4-0.  Wakefield pitched a great game last night, going seven shut-out innings with five strikeouts, and I for one couldn't be happier.  Wakey is one of those players who give me a warm fuzzy, and I like to see him do well.
The top of the Sox's batting order completely sucked, going 0-for-one trillion, (worst offender:  Mark "Heroin" Bellhorn.  I hope everyone who was bitching on the Sox message boards about him never swinging at pitches is happy now, because last night he was swinging at EVERYTHING.)  The bottom of the batting order was hungry, however, and turned in a good performance - particularly Big Mac.  He had a great assist from left field, as well as going 2-3, while Kevin Youkilis had a two-run single and a homerun.  Even Ricky "I'm Hitting Below the Crespo Line" Gutierrez had a where the hell were BamBam and Pebbles last night??  Timlin and Embree closed the game out nicely, but the Sox still manage to lose the series, go figure.
BamBam Ortiz got a 5-game suspension for the bat incident, which is about what I was expecting.  He is appealing it, of course, so that he can play this weekend against the dirty pinstripers.
One more thing that pisses me off:  Why didn't Tito start Pedro Martínez on the first game after the All-Star break?????  I mean, it would have lined him up to then pitch to the Mariners, whom he absolutely owns, as well as the fricking Yankees.  Instead, The Face got all those starts.  What the hell is wrong with Tito?  What a fucking moron.

Thursday, July 22, 2004

Manny Ramírez stars in "The Cutoff Man." Sox lose to the Orioles least, that was the score when I stopped taking score and went to bed. Posted by Hello

I wasn't enraged by this loss.  I didn't scream at the television, I didn't tell my husband how much I hated ______ (insert name of offending player/manager/umpire here.)  I just filled in my score chart with nothing more than a mental shrug.  This disturbs me...I have a reputation (not just in the blogosphere) of being a somewhat vitriolic ranter, and I am a very passionate person -  apathy is death.  Yet I didn't even bat an eyelash last night when they took their usual flogging from Baltimore.  I don't even think I said anything about how much I hate Miguel Tejada and his sulking, pouting sidekick Melvin Mora.  I may have even laughed when Manny made that ridiculous cut-off.  It's worrisome, I tell you...In short, I'm having a hard time taking this team seriously anymore. 
But hey, what do you expect when you turn on the game and see that your infield is composed of Youkilis at third, Bellhorn at shortstop, Mueller at second, and Millar in any position other than ass-down on the bench.  Put this lineup behind Derek Lowe, cue up the calliope music and pass the Cheetos, cause that sounds like a party to me.  But fortunately Pedro was pitching (9 hits, eight earned runs) so actually the infield defense was passable last night.  And Millar went 3-4 with a homerun!!  As my husband said as Millar was rounding the bases: "It did something!"
It was the outfield that was cause for concern.  I would say that Johnny Damon was about as effective as a circus seal with a baseball glove balanced on its nose last night.  Then there was that one play - the one where Damon couldn't get to another ball, finally got to it, fired it toward Mark Bellhorn except that Manny intercepted the throw with a completely unneccesary yet Web Gem-like catch, and then he threw it to Bellhorn and ladies and gentlemen, you got yourself and inside-the-park homerun.  Manny was joking about getting a Bronze glove instead of a Gold about the Pewter Glove, or the Aluminum Foil in the Shape of a Glove.
Voltaire said "God is a comedian playing to an audience that is afraid to laugh."  Well I'm not afraid to laugh.  This shit is fricking hilarious, isn't it?  Absolutely side-splitting.  Unbelievable.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

BamBam and Pebbles take the Seattle Mariners back-to-back in 9-7 victory. Posted by Hello

The Sox managed to win the second and last game of this series, despite generally crappy pitching that allowed the Mariners to creep back into the game after being behind 8-1. 
Good news:  Wakey will be able to make his next scheduled start on Thursday vs. the Orioles.  Bad news: Pokey most likely headed for the disabled list.  No news:  Ortiz's suspension.  What's up??

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Red Sox offense rolls over and gleefully takes it in the ass from the Mariners to the tune of 8-4.    This game didn't have to be this bad.  Arroyo pitched a fabulous game with a career high 12 strikeouts.  At one point he had 11 consecutive put-outs by way of the K - the last time this was done was by Randy Johnson sometime in the late '90s.  Unfortunately, the offense decided to suck a great big black porno penis and turn this game into a pitchers duel between Arroyo and Mariner's pitcher Villone.   "Who?"  Exactly.  Worst offenders:  Kevin Millar (0-4,) Bill Mueller (0-4,) Gay-b Krapler (1-3 but got caught stealing, grounded into a double play, and layed down a bullshit bunt in extra innings,) and David Ortiz (0-3, two walks.)  I knew as soon as I saw Nomar ground into a double play to leave the bases loaded in the first inning that the offense was going to mail in their at-bats once again...Everyone except for Varitek, who was singly responsible for all 4 RBIs for the Sox, including a monster 3-run homer in the top of the eighth inning.  Keith Foulke took the mound in the ninth with the score at 4-2 and promptly surrendered back-to-back homeruns, securing his fifth blown save of the year.   And finally, in the bottom of the twelfth inning, after trying every way they knew how, the Sox finally managed to lose the game thanks to a walk off grand slam given up by Curtis Leskanic.
In other Sox related news, Pokey Reese was pulled from the game today after the second inning with a strained muscle in his right rib cage.  Unfortunate.  Manny finally decided that playing left field might be more entertaining than sitting on the bench and deflating beach balls, chewing tobacco and scratching himself.  Wakey is still feeling very stiff from that line-drive he took off his shoulder two days ago and may have to miss his next start against the Orioles, in which case the Sox will need to call someone up from Pawtucket to fill in.  Ugh.  If they throw Kim in there I might seriously refuse to watch the game.
This shit is just getting depressing.  How many .500 series' worth of baseball am I going to have to watch before I realize that the Sox are just a .500 team?  Why do I keep watching?  Why do I keep getting my hopes up?  Why won't they just let me go?
I hate this team.

Monday, July 19, 2004

Sox split series - Angels go down 6-2.  Box score.
Sox bats were effectively non-existent through the first five innings but came to life after a single by Damon, a walk by Bellhorn and a three-run homer from Ortiz in the sixth.  Curt Schilling pitched a great game, holding the Angels to only one run over eight innings.  Even more encouraging was the fact that Schill pitched without any Marcaine shots in his ankle yesterday, and that Tim Wakefield's CT scan came back negative, so that's two less players to worry about. 
Unfortunately, there are still two questions that remain unanswered:
1) When will Ortiz's suspension be handed down, and how fricking long will it be?  Milton Bradley got 4 games for throwing all those baseballs on the field, and none of them came close to an umpire.  They are also calling Ortiz shoving Francona into the umpires "contact," so the suspension could be a lengthy one.  If it is five games or less, the Sox are said to be encouraging Ortiz not to appeal and just serve the suspension since he would be back in time for the series vs. the Yanks.  He should get the news today or tomorrow.
2) Is Manny ever going to decide to play again?  I don't really understand this clusterfuck situation.  Terry says that he doesn't want to mess up his defensive game by having Manny DH and thereby having to put Ortiz at first base, and although Manny COULD perform in a DH role, Francona doesn't want him in the lineup until he can play left field.  Meanwhile, Manny is bopping along, talking about how he is a pinch hitting specialist, saying that he'll come back when he's ready, and refusing to answer "stupid questions."  What the fuck is going on here?  This shit is annoying as hell.  Could everyone just pull their shit together and start acting like a bunch of professionals??  
The Sox start a two-game series against the Mariners tonight, and if ever there was a team ripe for a sweep it's Seattle. 

Sunday, July 18, 2004

I know that it's only three games into the second half, and perhaps I shouldn't be so negative, but I'm quickly losing hope for this team.  I mean, even if they do manage to make the playoffs I have serious doubts about their ability to compete.  The mediocrity and half-assedness of this team is so inexplicable that I'm just casting about for a scapegoat and I have officially decided that all of this is Terry's Fault.  Maybe it is, maybe it isn't, but I don't give a shit - Tito is a piss-poor excuse for a fucking baseball manager, I have declared jihad on him, and henceforth all the disappointment and anger generated in me by the Boston Red Sox will be placed squarely on that moron's doorstep.
The Sox dropped last night's game to the Angels 8-3...the Blimp pitched a decent game, but he walked a shit-load of people and, as usual, the Sox were unable to make him pay for it.  The only three fucking runs the Sox scored were all on one-run homers (two by Damon, one by Ortiz.)  Tim Wakefield, God love him (if God existed), continued his streak of maddening inconsistency by essentially throwing batting practice for the Angels - how nice of him!  His outing was cut short when he took a line drive off of the back of his right shoulder.  Scary.  The ball appeared to be heading directly for his face.  Wakey will be getting a CT scan today to make sure that everything is okay.
The Angels are dangerously close to making onto my "Teams I Hate" list.  First of all, their dumb-ass fans booed for about ten minutes after Wakefield took that ball off the shoulder because they thought the runner should have been safe at first...A furry stuffed monkey would be able to tell you that the ball bounced off of Wakefield's shoulder and was caught by Nomar without touching the ground.  Maybe the rules are different in fucking California, but where I come from that's called an "out."  And then Donelly stared Pokey down for trying to bunt, which is so stupid and obnoxious that it defies comprehension.   One more incident and the Angels could find themselves nearly on par with the Oakland A's.  I said nearly.

Saturday, July 17, 2004

A trip to the Great American Ballpark. Posted by Hello

Pujols takes an at-bat. Posted by Hello

Me and Paulie in the beer line. Again. I'm incognito as a Cardinals fan. Posted by Hello

As you can see, Paulie and I went to the Reds/Cardinals game last night. It was a good time - go figure, the Reds bullpen blew a save. Danny Graves gave up a two or three run homer in the eighth...I don't remember exactly what it was because, as Paul said, we treated our bodies like amusement parks last night. But in any case, a good time was had by all, and we returned home happy and in time to catch the Sox game.
Petey was hot last night - he had great stuff and was routinely hitting 93/94 mph. Manny was completely out of the lineup last night due to his hammy...Is anyone else starting to get kinda nervous about this besides me? I mean, it was funny at first when it seemed like another one of his half-baked excuses to get out of the All-Star game, but now it's cause for concern. Especially since Ortiz did his best Milton Bradley impersonation and flipped out on the homeplate umpire, throwing a spectacular temper tantrum which started with Ortiz arguing balls and strikes, then getting ejected, then requiring three or four men to restrain him from beating the motherly shit out of the umpire, and finally ended with Ortiz throwing two bats out on the field and nearly hitting some game officials. This will surely result in a suspension, although how long remains to be seen. So...Manny and Ortiz BOTH out of the lineup? Yikes. Scary.
In any case, the Sox won 4-2 last night, with Foulke picking up another save. Wakefield vs. Colon tonight.

Friday, July 16, 2004

Terry Francona's Top 10 Ways to Create a Line-up
1. alphabetically
2. by shoe size
3. Pin the Tail on the Donkey, only with players names and a great big line-up card
4. dart board
5. puts player's faces on the dots on a Twister mat and then makes Dave Wallace and Euclides Rojas play a game.
6. Wild Turkey and percoset
7. Makes an extra-large bowl of Rice Krispies and listens to what Snap, Crackle and Pop suggest to him.
8. eye color
9. OPS....backwards
10. Counts the number of steps he must take from his car to the dugout, divides it by the time that he arrives, multiplies that by the jersey number of the first player he sees, and whatever the result is Tito embezzles a corresponding amount out of company funds and goes out and pays for a blowjob from a transvestite crack whore.  Tito then divides the number of head-bobs the shemale must make for him to blow a load by the number of times he had to drive around the block looking for just the right whore, and if any player has the resulting number in their birthdate they will be included in the line up.  Should there be less than nine players with that number in their birthdate, random people from the crowd will be chosen to stand in.

Rally cuffs fail - Sox drop first game of second half to the Anaheim Angels, 8-1. Posted by Hello
I am really fucking tired of Terry Francona. 
It's weird - I had such a positive feeling right before the All-Star Break when the Sox won 5 in a row and were playing like we all knew they could...And in the span of one game I somehow feel like it's June again.  The Sox looked pretty shoddy last night, a combination of that simp Washburn having a good night and a couple stupid fucking moves on the part of Kevin Millar.  Johnny Damon had his 16-game hitting streak come to a bullshit end on a bad call from the first base umpire.  For some stupid fucking reason Cap'n Tito had Derek Lowe pitching instead of Pedro and, as usual, the wheels fell off Gidget's wagon.  (Unless the Sox can manage to score 6 runs in the first couple of innings, they are not going to win when Derek Lowe is pitching.  It's a fact.)  Can the Red Sox catch ANYONE stealing?  I mean seriously - Bengie Molina could fucking steal second on Varitek.  And not having Pedro pitch last night means that he will miss the Yankees series next week.  Quite honestly, this makes me want to throw my fucking computer monitor across the living room.  Terry Francona couldn't manage his way out of a wet paper bag!!
But it was just one game, right?  The second half can't possibly be as half-assed as the first half, I refuse to believe it.  There is still good baseball to be played!!

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

So I lied about not making another post until after the All-Star Break.

All about Dave. Posted by Hello

This is my sous chef, Dave, also known as Big Pen, Manolo, Gigli, DP, and, after busy Saturday nights, Señor Pinga Roja ("Mr. Red Penis.") Dave is one of the best cooks I've ever known, which is probably how he got his job. (Well, that and a lot of blowjobs.) Dave took me from a little know-nothing punk and made me the semi-respectable cook that I am today, and I'm sure it hasn't been easy - he tries to strangle me to death at least once a week, and the backs of my upper arms are generally covered with bruises from Dave pinching me all the time. (If you've never been pinched there before, try it - it's a real blast.) Dave is a wonderful, knowledgable boss and an excellent friend. Never play him at chess, never talk to him about Sim City 4, never let him see your scallops searing on the side - if you can do those things then you should be able to get along fairly well with him. Dave also is a great big hater, as he suggested that perhaps 95% of people reading this blog did so because they were old, perverted men who were jacking off to my picture because they thought I was a thirteen year old boy. So this is my tribute to Dave - my favorite cook-turned-sous chef ever. Unfortunately, he's not single, so ladies - move along, nothing to see here. Dave rocks!
In some random Sox news, Ortiz wasn't that great in the Home Run Derby. He got three, but might have ended up with four or five if they had had the stupid roof opened for the first round. It was fun to see him and Manny messing around together, though, and Ortiz's pre-game get-up can be summed up in one word: Playalistic. I think Ortiz borrowed his sunglasses from J-Lo or something.
I agree with - R.J. is going to end up in pinstripes. I don't want him on the Sox, but I DEFINITELY don't want him on the Yankees. I wish he'd just stay the hell in Arizona, to be honest, but it's not looking that way. I hope that the Yankees stadium breaks off the fucking continent and drifts up to Nova Scotia with all of it's players and fans inside, and I hope that George Steinbrenner gets put in a metal barrel and rolled down 17 flights of concrete stairs.
While still in a vein of outright hatred, my husband and I were talking about steroid abusers in baseball and surprise, surprise, Jason Giambi's name came up. Has anyone ever thought about this: Jason Giambi hit two homers in game 7 of the ALCS...if he weren't juicing, maybe one of those wouldn't have gone out...and then who knows what would have happened. Fucking dirty, scumbag, pinstriping CHEATER!!! I don't believe in God, but if I did I would pray to him every night to let me find Giambi in the street somewhere so that I could scream right in his ugly fucking face.
The All-Star game should be entertaining tonight...and tomorrow our favorite Masshole in the world, Paulie, is coming to stay with us for a few days! And I get my first Friday off in probably....I don't know, years! Wooohooooooo!

Sunday, July 11, 2004

It's not the curse of the Bambino, it's the curse of Sarah and Mike. Whenever we're around to watch live feed of the game, the Sox always lose, never fail. They looked a little lackluster today, honestly, except for some seventh inning excitement that consisted of Mirabelli and J.D. going deep one after the other. JD extended his hitting streak to 16 games.
In other news, Manny's grandma died again - no wait, his mother fainted - oh no wait a minute, it was his hamstring. Ya, that's right, his hamstring - ya, that's the ticket! - Anyway, Manny was a late scratch from the lineup but did make an appearance as a pinch hitter late in the game. It looked like Schilling was reading him the riot act before the game. I'm sure that the media is going to blow this way out of proportion, but I really wish they wouldn't.
Congrats to David Ortiz and his wife for the birth of their son D'Angelo!
I don't think I'll be making any posts until after the All-Star Break, so ta-ta for now!

Saturday, July 10, 2004

Sox shut out Rangers 7-0 and Red Sox Nation goes to bed happy again! (Some of us might have even gone to bed too happy.) Posted by Hello

I had to pull out the Hangover Cup this morning - a huge, plastic Great American Ballpark 2003 Inaugural Season souvenir Reds cup that holds about a quart and a half of water. When I strike it rich I'm going to have a trough built on the side of my bed for mornings like this that I can just dunk my entire head into and gulp water like an animal.
But who cares about that when the Sox played such a fantastic game last night! Itemized list:
1. Invasion of the Body Snatchers You can't fool me - I know that wasn't Kevin Millar at first base! That was his brother Carl Millar. Carl Millar seems like he wants to win a Gold Glove, making several great defensive plays including but not limited to TWO line-outs into double plays. Kevin must have been out getting a new gun rack installed on his pick up or something. Won't the real Slim Shady please stand up??
2. Johnny Damon is on-freaking-fire! Can you believe this guy? Wow. That's all I have to say, just Wow.
3. Mark Bellhorn Personality Watch Everybody: I saw Mark Bellhorn smile last night. Apparently the lights are on AND somebody's home. While it did bring me some measure of satisfaction, (I actually cheered and clapped,) I was also left with a strange empty feeling. It's like you spend five years training with a Sherpa to climb Mount Everest and then you do it and the next day you're wondering what the hell you're going to do with the rest of your life. I'll just have to find something else to occupy my mind with during games...undressing Manny with my eyes is always good to fall back on when I'm in an imaginative slump. Speaking of Manny...
4. Manny's Bobblehead Boyfriend If Derek Lowe does nothing for the rest of the season (and let's face it, he probably won't,) at least he brought that ridiculous Bobblehead Pedro into the dugout, making me feel an emotion OTHER than anger and disgust for the first time since the '03 ALDS. Priceless.
5. I know it can't last forever, but aren't winning streaks just fucking wonderful?

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Oakland can't handle Billy Mueller's Shaolin Style as Boston brings tha mutha-fuckin ruckus! Posted by Hello

I didn't get home from work tonight until the bottom of the ninth, yet I was just in time to see the sweetest part of the action. With two outs in the bottom of the tenth inning, Johnny Damon scored from first on a double by Bill Mueller to win the game and complete the SWEEEEEEEEEP of the hated Oakland A's. Put that in your pipe and smoke it, assholes! (I'm still happily surfing a wave of vengefulness from seeing Oakland fans cheering when Damon and Jackson collided in the '03 ALDS.) The Sox are playing like it's April again!
The offense is officially en fuego, the defense has tightened up (except for Manny doing his worst Pele impersonation the other night,) and the man hugs are back. Obstacles still remain (Derek Lowe and Tito, not to name any names) but for now the Sox have their game faces on. And I'll admit it, I'm suckered in. I believe. I'm a hopeless, wobbling glob of emotional jello when it comes to the Red Sox. (And "Babe," I always cry at the end of that movie, but don't tell anybody.)
Next series is against the Texas Rangers, who are amazingly first in the AL West. The Face is pitching. Lowe is a train wreck of a human being. Hopefully he can keep the momentum going.
Trai la bullaaaaaaaaaaa!

Wow. Another drubbing of the Oakland A's, another 11 runs scored, and can anyone reading this believe that Kevin Millar is 4-7 in this series??
I'm not saying that the Red Sox are going to go out and score eleven runs every game from now on, but I don't think that these games are just a fluke. The Sox started to wake up and play decent baseball back during the series with the Yankees, and their efforts are finally coming together. I love the fact that the 22 runs the Sox scored the past two nights didn't all come as a result of homeruns - meaning that the Sox are starting to get timely hits with men on base. And would you believe that all this run production has come with Manny and Ortiz sitting on their thumbs both games? (Manny's GARGANTUAN homerun over the Coke bottle last night notwithstanding.)
Sweet P. put in a solid performance last night, pitching 7 with 7 strikeouts (if I remembered correctly,) and a nifty play at first base to catch an errant throw from Fatso. It hasn't been talked about too much, but Pedro is really doing quite a good job, despite a 3+ if only he'd get rid of that Jeri curl helmet he's got on...
The final game of the A's series tonight. I don't want to use the S-word, but it's Schill's turn, and you gotta feel pretty optimistic about that!
Mark Bellhorn Personality Watch: After hitting his tenth homerun of the season, we almost saw Bellhorn smile in the dugout, but it was a fake-out. Then later we got excited when he started to argue with the umpire, but were let down again when Tito came up and got in the middle of things and Bellhorn lapsed back into passivity just when it seemed as if we might have made a breakthrough.

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Rally cuffs for the Sox, July 6...Red Sox beat the A's 11-0. Posted by Hello

Photographic proof that the rally cuffs work!
I haven't made any posts this week because of the holiday and because our modem broke (again.) I've got a repair guy coming down here in about 15 minutes and guess what - the modem's working now. Ha! Not that I wanted to make a post after the game on Sunday, except maybe about how much I still hate Terry Francona and Derek Lowe. Mike and I were laying on the couch together on Monday watching the Reds/Cards game when my good friend Paulie calls and says "Dude, don't you think that the Sox could save money by just releasing Derek Lowe and buying a state of the art pitching machine?" Yes, I do. But that's all in the past.
Last night was a vintage 2003 performance - 11 runs scored (aome of which came with THE BASES LOADED!!! Have you ever heard of anything so crazy?? I mean, runs being scored with the bases loaded - that's cutting edge baseball, ladies and gentlemen!) Tim Wakefield 3-hit the A's over seven innings, while Mr. Lucky got his ass handed to him, including but not limited to 2 walks with the bases loaded. (That's called "pulling a Heredia" around our house.) Ortiz probably should have sat last night - he's pretty substandard against lefties and last night was a prime example - but that's the only real bitch I can come up with. For the first time in FOREVER my husband and I were actually able to have FUN watching a baseball game, another new concept.
I have to curtail this entry due to the imminent arrival of the repair man. Adios.

Friday, July 02, 2004

So, um, anyone heard any good jokes lately?

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Well...I had a feeling that the Sox were going to lose tonight, yet I let myself get suckered in by extra-inning heroics (Leskanic pitching himself out of a jam in the twelfth, Manny's go-ahead homer) and look where it got me. Depressed. Again. I hate that feeling, like someone just kicked you in the stomach and you want to puke. As much as I like to walk around and say that I don't care anymore and that I've given up on the Red Sox for this season, the truth of the matter is that I obviously haven't. I still hope. Somewhere deep inside me is a little grain of optimism that just won't leave me the hell alone.
And it's in an optimistic spirit that I write this: Yes, tonight's game was unfortunate because the Red Sox lost. Yes, it sucks that the Red Sox are 8.5 games back in the standings and are effectively out of contention to win the division. Yes, we all still hate Terry Francona. Yes, it's really annoying that the Sox were one pitch away from a win. That said, if you look at this game just as one game and not as the most recent game in a long, agonizing, frustrating series of really wasn't too bad. I mean, it was a decent game. The Sox managed to play some decent baseball. They didn't lose because they committed a country shit ton of errors, they didn't lose because their starting pitcher sucked so bad that the offense couldn't possibly make up the difference...they just lost a good baseball game in a (fairly) natural way. And I take a little bit of heart from that. (That and seeing Jeter's face look like it got bashed with a rusty rake.)
I would like to go even further in my insane, ridiculous, and completely unfounded optimistic blather and say that the reason that the Sox played so well (or not-bad, I should say,) today was because Tito put the best line-up possible on the field. Think about it. McCarty, Bellhorn, Youkilis and Pokey is the best infield that the Sox can put together right now, and that is precisely what Tito put out there...and guess what? The Sox managed to catch the damn ball for the first time since Christ left Chicago. Scores of people the world over are getting arrested every day for child pornography - why can't Tito be one of them? But even a blind squirrel finds a nut every now and then, and today Tito did a decent job. (Millar was still in the lineup, unfortunately, but that was only to give Trot's sore quad a rest.)
Okay, onto the negativity. C'mon guys, you knew it was coming!
Can you believe I kiss my mother with this mouth?

I've been so angry for so long that I just feel numb right now. When I walked into our apartment last night and saw Mike sitting at the computer in a deathly silent apartment, I knew right away what had happened. The Sox blew it again. We didn't watch last night's game, we didn't even watch ESPN - we watched a biography of John Wayne Gacy on A&E. It's like we were in post-2003 ALCS mode: for about three or four days after Oct. 16, 2003 my husband and I couldn't watch ESPN, couldn't look at Sports Illustrated or even at the sports section of the Cincinnati Enquirer, couldn't watch the World Series - everything was just too painful. Last night was like that. It was truly depressing. We were even talking about what moves they should make next year, like the season is already over.
I was asking myself (again while playing Grand Theft Auto - is it bad that I do most of my philosophizing and mulling over of life while controlling a man running through a city with an AK47 in his hands?) what was worse, losing in the 11th inning of the 7th game of the ALCS, or being out of contention before the All-Star break. I think that the Game 7 scenario is worse. So, um, at least we have that going for us...