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.

Tuesday, August 31, 2004

It must be true love! Posted by Hello
Today is our second wedding anniversary. I posted a picture of my anniversary presents from Mike - two fun sets of baseball cards, a bag of Funyuns and a Manny Ramírez rookie card. My husband is the coolest ever!! We spent a good hour of quality time together looking through all the cards and found some real gems - a 1991 John Burkett card, a '96 Pedro card which unfortunately was post-mullet, and PumpFist's rookie card which, if it were softer and more pliable, I would gladly use as toilet paper.
And we both got a really cool present from the Red Sox tonight - a big. fat. W. Last year they lost to the MFYs on our anniversary, so I was kind of afraid that we were jinxed, but Manny wasted no time at all proving me wrong, blasting a three-run homer in the first inning and a single home run in the second in what ended up to be a 10-7 victory. Now mind you, it should have been a 10-3 victory, but Mike "Wheelhouse" Myers gave up three consecutive basehits followed by a grand slam in the ninth inning. Shout-outs to my boy Cabby, who was 2-4 with a run scored, and Bill Mueller, who played some fucking pristine defense. Oh, and Dave Roberts, who hit a three-run homer in the seventh. Who knew??
Meanwhile, the Yankees fell asleep at the wheel and did a 75 mile-an-hour waltz with the oncoming traffic that was the Cleveland Indians, getting shut-out to the tune of 22-0. For those of you keeping score at home, that brings the Sox within 3.5 games of first place in the AL East. Fuck the Wild Card. I want the goddamn division.
Sidenote - I hate hate hate Harold Reynolds. Is it like against his religion to say something - anything - nice about the Red Sox?? What an asshole. The Sox could have scored 35 runs, stolen 12 bases and cured cancer and that douchebag Harold Reynolds would still find something negative to say about them.

Monday, August 30, 2004

Just thought I'd share. Posted by Hello
And yes. That is Dale Sveum's rookie card.
Not worth the cardboard it's printed on.

I called it. Posted by Hello

Only I was a day premature. On Saturday I told Frakes that Bellhorn was going to hit a two-run homer during the game that night. "He's totally due," I said. So I was a day early - big whoop.
I wasn't able to watch all of yesterday's game (unless you count checking the score every twenty minutes on my cellphone "watching") because I spent the day with my parents. My dad and I had to take their waverunners from my mom and dad's boat slip to a boat launch about a mile and half upriver. It was around seven o'clock in the evening, under a beautiful, clear, late summer sky. The heat of the day had finally broken. The river was almost completely empty, and we were able to open the waverunners all the way up and just cruise right down the middle of the river like it belonged to us, skipping effortlessly over the smooth water. It might get hot again in September, and knowing southern Ohio we'll still have a couple more weeks of humid 80+ degree days, but for me, that moment yesterday was the end of the summer. Here comes autumn. America, I love you.
Oh, and um, did I mention that the Sox have pulled within 4.5 games of the MFYs and starting tomorrow will embark on the most important part of their whole season? Nothing - I mean NOTHING - beats September baseball. Except for October baseball, hehe.
Here comes autumn!!!

Sunday, August 29, 2004

The Broom is out, and it means business. Posted by Hello

Saturday, August 28, 2004

So Mike calls me last night right after I got off of work. I'm on the toilet in the bathroom of the bar, and from deep inside my left pocket I hear "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" start up, so I dig around, pull out my phone and say "Hi, baby!" all excited like. "How was your day, blah blah blah, did the Sox win?" and Mike says "Ya, they won, but I think Manny got hurt." I'm trying to pull up my pants and talk on the phone at the same time. I'm like "Ya right, what did he do, slip on a greasy french fry on the way out of McDonalds and fall on his Happy Meal? Seriously. Did they really win?" "No, I really think Manny got hurt," Mike says.
Fast forward four hours, 6 beers and four or five shots later, I'm at home on the computer literally almost in tears, more or less having this conversation with a non-existant God: "Why? Why?? WHYYYYY?????"
I know it's supposedly not serious. But goddamn this shit is getting old.

Friday, August 27, 2004

Another secret handshake. More hip thrusting. Posted by Hello
Pedro sort of reminds me of my station partner, Jonathan, who up until four months ago was on a year-long sexual drought, or what I call being a member of Club None. During that year he would stand around and hump the air a lot, like he was just instinctively driven to do it, even if he had no physical entity to be a willing participant. Every little handshake that Pedro has with other players involves him thrusting his hips around...and who could forget the little red bat incident? Surely a guy who makes 17.5 million a year isn't in Club None, but that's just what it made me think of. Incidentally, Jonathan and I have a fish station secret handshake but it involves no humping.
Anyway, the Sox beat the Tigers 4-1 last night. I was unable to watch the game as I was out on a very long, very emotional drinking binge with my aforementioned station partner, who just came back to work after taking a week off to grieve the loss of his brother. How about Bronson Arroyo though? That guy is en fuego. I feel much more confident with him on the mound than I do with Derek Lowe or even Tim Wakefield. It sucks that Bronson still has a losing record, since I think he is a much better pitcher than that.
So, the Sox start the season off with a smoking-hot April/May, then go into a horrible, mind-numbing, rage-inducing slump through June/July, and then get hotter than a two-dollar pistol through the month of August. What is hidden factor in this strange season? Nomar. Think about it: they start the season with Nomar on the DL and are playing like Drago from Rocky IV. Nomar comes back and all of the sudden the team looks turns into Apollo Creed - face down and twitching on the canvas. Now that he's been traded the Sox have turned into some sort of winning machine. Not to go all Shaughnessy about it. It's just something I noticed.

Thursday, August 26, 2004

A slug-fest followed by a hug-fest - Sox whoop up on Blue Jays 11-4. Posted by Hello
The Red Sox are the Cadillac of major league baseball. Powerful. Built for steady cruising. Larger than life. Stylish, with pimp undertones. An offensive machine, driven by the two powerhouses that are Manny Ramírez and David Ortiz. And would you listen to that motor purr! The Sox combined for four home runs last night - two by Ortiz and one each by Manny and my boy Cabrera - along with nearly 20 hits and oh yeah - 9 strikeouts from Curt Schilling. It's a beautiful thing.
The Rangers lost again last night, dropping them 2 games behind the Sox in the WC standings, but now here comes Anaheim. They worry me much more than the Rangers. They're a great team and the Sox don't play them well. And they're only a half a game behind. Fortunately all those west coast teams will be beating each other's asses over the next month in between visits to and from Boston. Elsewhere, the Yanks lost to the Indians, cutting their lead back down to 5.5. In my opinion, the Orioles are the most important team for the Sox to beat in the upcoming month. The Sox still have six games left to play against Baltimore, and we can't keep bending over and taking the lid off of the Vaseline jar for these guys. There will be a lot of tough series with the MFYs, the Rangers and the A's - the Sox will need to make hay while the sun shines.
On a sidenote - I was disappointed to read this article in the Herald this morning. Ortiz is crying like a little bitch about hitting clean-up because it's affecting his numbers. Way to be a team player. Kind of leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

Oh, and you should get yourself a free Live365 account so that you can make use of the Rallycuff Radio link to the right. Player's batting songs, other Sox related songs, and some random shit that I just like to listen to can be heard while you read. It's still a work in progress, but if you use it, let me know what you think!! (And the other stations on Live365 are worth checking out as well - there's lots of cool shit from all over the world there that you probably wouldn't get to hear otherwise. I'm currently hooked on all the reggaeton and merengue stations!)

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

Hey, I'm pretty geeked about this. For anyone who has an account at (and it's absolutely free so you should get one ::wink wink::) you can now click on the "Rallycuff Radio" link to the right and listen to my radio station feed while you read this blog. I tried to put a lot of batting songs and shit on there so that most of it is Sox related, but some of it is just what I like to listen to.
It's still a work in progress, but please try it out and let me know what you think. I spent a lot of time on it and I think it's pretty neat-o. Hope you like it! :)

The weirdest (and most painful) burn I've ever gotten in my professional career. Posted by Hello
Unfortunately you can't see all the gory details in this picture, but trust me - it's gross. So I was super busy and had to fire five Dover sole all at once. I have three pans in front of me full of smoking hot (i.e. 400+ degree) oil. Two sole in one pan, shake and turn down the flame....two sole in another pan, shake and turn down the flame...stretching my arm to drop the final sole in the third pan, leaning slightly over, and bam - hot grease on my fucking ear. Nope, it's not too big. But holy mary mother of god did it hurt. And then tonight I popped the blister trying to get sweat off of my face by swiping it against my shoulder, so the rest of the night sweat was running into the open wound. What a fucked up way to make a living.
[Dave - tell me that karma doesn't exist!!! (I know you're enjoying this you sick motherfucker. I documented it just for you.)]
This is the second Sox game in a row I have been unable to watch. This time because I forgot to set the VCR before I left for work. (Guess who's sleeping on the proverbial couch! No sugar tonight in my coffee, no sugar tonight in my tea!) I was really hoping and praying that they would come back and get a W tonight - in my secret heart I was fearful of a slide after the miraculous past week and a half. I'll admit it. After Pedro's surprising L last night, I knew fear. Thank God Tim Wakefield didn't.
And how about my boy Cabby with a nine-game hitting streak. Not to mention Mike "Iron Eagle" Timlin. And what in the nightmare is up with Ortiz? My God. I'm starting to think Tito should switch him and Manny back now that Manny has remembered what he was supposed to be doing standing in the dirt with the funny-shaped stick in his hand once again.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Pedro and Sox get a loss, but hey - you can't win 'em all. Posted by Hello

I'm not really qualified to write about this game because I didn't watch a single inning. I had a really, really frustrating night at work which included, among other things, my station being very busy with only a first-day intern to help me and burning my fucking ear with smoking hot oil. Don't ask. But let's just say that it hurt like a motherfucker. At 9:00 when I finally got a chance to take a breather I called Mike to tell him that the last table is already a half an hour late and I'm not sure what time I'll be home, and he's like "Well, don't hurry because the Sox are getting their ass beat." (Incidentally the table arrived a full HOUR late and then ordered a 7-course tasting menu, which fit perfectly into how my night was progressing.)
Anyhow, the Rangers lost as well, so no ground was lost in the WC standings. For those keeping an eye on the divisional race as well, and I am one, the Sox dropped one game back to 6.5.
Elsewhere, I - being the huge nerd that I am - have made a cd that I've been rocking the last few days comprised totally of songs that I associate with baseball and especially with the Red Sox - like songs I remember hearing over the PA, my favorite hitter's at-bat songs, that type of shit. Wanna see the playlist?
1. "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" by some old-ass barber shop quartet
2. "Yeah!" - Usher and Lil' Jon (Manny's batting song from the beginning of this year)
3. "Through the Wire" - Kanye West (just cause I like the sentiment.)
4. "What Da Hook Gon Be" - Murphey Lee (Pokey's song)
5. "Get Busy" - Sean Paul (Ortiz's from last year when I first started to notice what a sick hitter he was.)
6. "Jump Around" - House of Pain (Ortiz's song through the last part of 2003)
7. "Dirt Off Your Shoulder" - Jay-Z (cause the Sox are always brushing each other's shoulders off after homeruns.)
8. "Black Betty" - RamJam (Always played between innings at baseball games everywhere.)
9. "Crazy Train" - Ozzy Osbourne (Bottom of the seventh, 2 outs, bases loaded, Pedro on the mound, September 2003, Jacob's Field --- Grady approaches the mound to talk and "Crazy Train" starts playing, we're all going wild in the stands, Sox fans and Indians fans alike, glorious early autumn day with nary a cloud in the sky, and Pedro strikes out the last guy swinging. Sox win 2-0.)
10. "All Falls Down" - Kanye West (Cabby's song)
11. "Good Times" - Styles P. (you may remember this as the song that Manny got fined for playing over the PA on family day, all about guns and weed. Good choice.)
12. "Sweet Caroline" - Neil Diamond (well duh.)
13. "Boys of Summer" - Ataris
This isn't a comprehensive list of batting songs, obviously - I made the cd out of songs already in my cd collection/iTunes library, so I didn't include any of the redneck/metal shit that Trot and Millar always play. It's just the music that I like to hear, with the exception of RamJam and Ozzy.
So ya, in summary, I'm a huge nerd.

p.s. that pic at the top is my pedro baseball card that is stuck behind a sheet of plexiglass on my station at work. it is impossible to retrieve and will by my legacy after i quit.
p.p.s. the picture of manny eating a bigmac from today's globe is going to be my desktop background until i die.

Monday, August 23, 2004

Urrrrbody on the team get tipsy! Posted by Hello

What a fucking amazing game. What a fucking amazing team. What a wonderful time to be alive. Just like that, the Sox have cut the MFY's lead in HALF in a week's time and have pulled themselves one game ahead of the Rangers in the wild card standings. Just like that I went from praying the Sox could eke out another wild card spot in the playoffs to gnashing my teeth in expectation of tasting Yankee flesh. Oh, that I had the faith of Timlin. "The Yankees have always been in my sights...The whole goal is to get to the playoffs, but what we want to do is win the AL East."
But, one game at a time.
Derek "Almost-Dependable-Again" Lowe took the mound last night against Freddy Garcia, the Sox going for a sweep of the ChiSox. The Sox came out early with three runs in the first thanks to a leadoff single by JD and back-to-back-to-back hits by Pebbles, BamBam and Tek. (My boy Cabby got a single in there, too, but was out later on a fielder's choice. Gotta give him his props.) Second inning - Mientkiewicz makes it 4-0 with his first homerun as a Boston Red Sox after making a terrific stop to save Lowe's ass in the bottom of the first. Then the bats go silent. Five innings and six strikeouts by Freddy Garcia go by, and meanwhile Derek Lowe's internal Doomsday Clock is ticking away. It's only a matter of time with this guy. A three-run homer in the fifth brings the score to 4-3. A two-run homer in the seventh takes Derek Lowe out of the game, having squandered the lead. The score, at the top of the eighth, is now 5-4, ChiSox.
My husband gets up to get a beer and notices what he thinks to be a leak in the ceiling over our kitchen sink. "I don't think it's a leak," I say. "Here, look-" Mike reaches for the Broom propped up against the closet door. "Don't touch the broom!!!!" I yell like a maniac. Mike looks at me like I've finally lost it for good this time. "The last time the broom was here the Sox swept the Jays, we can't move the broom now, you'll wreck the mojo." Mike shrugs and understands, and while he's getting a beer out of the fridge I say "They're going to score at least one run in this inning."
And sure enough, BamBam and Pebbles come to the Sox's rescue with their fourth set of back-to-back homeruns on the season. Sox lead 6-5. It's a beautiful thing. Not only are the Sox ahead, but I get to gloat. Yet it just wouldn't be the Red Sox if they didn't make it interesting. In the bottom of the eigth, Manny decided to do the left field cha-cha with an impromptu mud-mask at the end on a routine fly-out, allowing I think Carl Everett to get to second. And Timlin is on the mound now. Oh God, I can see what's going to happen. I can't watch. But this isn't the June/July version of the Sox. This is the new, improved team and Timlin didn't let us (or Manny, who looked like he wanted to crawl into a hole, cover up and die,) down. The Iron Eagle induced two fly-outs to end the inning and preserve the lead. Keith Foulke picked up an easy save and we went to bed happy.
Isn't life great?
Here's some pics of our Sunday pre-game activities - test driving our new baseball bat in the park. Dude, there's nothing like drinking beers and shagging flies in the sunshine.

Trip takes a hack with our brand new bat. Posted by Hello

Marquez, the next Manny Ramirez, takes some BP in the playground. Posted by Hello

My husband takes a beer break. :) I love this picture. Posted by Hello

Oh, and by the way - it was a leak in the ceiling. Ooops.

Sunday, August 22, 2004

The Broom wants a sweep. The Broom needs a sweep. The Broom cannot be denied. Posted by Hello

Saturday, August 21, 2004

Manny and Cabby lead the way for a 10-1 Red Sox victory. Posted by Hello

The Bosox bashed the ever-loving shit out of Buerhle and the ChiSox yesterday, embarrassing them in front of friends and family and probably causing their wives to go sleep with other men.
Manny's second-inning grand slam (16th of his career which tied him with the likes of Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron for sixth most grannies of all time) put the game away early. Cabby's sixth inning three-run homer was icing on the cake, blowing the game open for good before he delivered the money shot - an RBI double in the ninth (that's right, his fourth RBI of the night,) to score the Sox's tenth and final run.
Schilling pitched an absolutely ridiculous game, giving up three hits over seven innings with six strikeouts and only throwing just over 80 pitches. Why my husband keeps dogging this guy is beyond me...
Other notable performances came from Ricky Gutierrez, with two hits and two runs scored, and Johnny Damon, with 3 hits and four runs scored.

Could it be? Is it April again? As of now the Sox have the same record as they did a year ago, and have gained four games on the faltering Yanks in a week. They trail the MFYs by 7.5 games, with six games left to be played against them. The Sox also remain in a tie for first in the wildcard standings with the Texas Rangers, who I predict will be unable to keep up this pace for too much longer. But can the Sox keep it up as well? I like to think they're just getting started!

And somebody PLEASE tell me that I dreamt this:

sweet sassy molassy! Posted by Hello

Friday, August 20, 2004

"Life is what happens when you're busy making other plans." - John Lennon

My appetite for the frivolous has been stymied lately by the death of my station partner's older brother on Wednesday. I only met Simon once, around Christmas-time of last year. He was 29, vibrant, very animated, very happy. It's sad to think of someone so young and talented passing away so tragically early, but as I barely knew him the actual fact of his passing isn't what has made me depressed. It's the effect it's had on Jonathan that has me all torn up.

It's in a time like this that you realize the full worth of someone's friendship, just by your reaction to their need. From the first moment that I was told by chef over the phone that there had been an emergency at work and I needed to come in because Jonathan's brother died I have been thinking of little else but Jonathan. My first instinct was to call him as I was hurrying to work, but I knew that the news was so fresh and so devastating that he would need to be alone, that he was probably in shock and would be incapable of comprehending an offer of support. Since then we've talked a bit on the phone, left voice mail messages for each other, told each other how much we mean to one another. I've been racking by brains wondering what I can do for him - does he need to be left alone? Does he need to talk? He's been off of work, naturally, so we're apart and I feel helpless to do anything for him. But in the face of the enormity of losing his older brother, what can I really do? Right now I'm just keeping my cell phone on me all the time to be there when he finally decides to reach out for more than a quick chat, but it's a bit agonizing to know how much pain he is in and to know that there isn't much I can do to help.

So, my thoughts being with him much of the day, it's been a little hard to get excited about baseball. Suddenly everything seems so inconsequential. It's hard for me to take it all very seriously right now. All I can say is that we're all very lucky to be able to afford to get so pissed off at Dale Sveum or so heart-broken over a Sox could be the least of our worries.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Yesterday was sort of a bad, sad, messed up day for me, so I didn't really watch much of the game. I'll make a real post soon, maybe after tomorrow night's game.

Two good things did happen, however - the Sox defeated the Jays 6-4, completing their fifth sweep of the year, and we invented a new shot at the bar last night called "Oriental Massage with a Hand Release" in honor of our good friend Kevin, who can quote you prices on at-home "masseuse" services.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

the Broom is out. Let's get it on. Posted by Hello

Get your O Face on. Posted by Hello
I did all this research yesterday about Orlando Cabrera's stats and contract because I was planning on making a post all about how much I liked him (-my official outing as a Cabrera fan, I've been in the closet for a couple weeks now-) but all that seems frivolous this morning because his game winning wall-ball double last night can speak for itself.

After Dave Roberts broke up a potential double-play that left Johnny Damon on first with one out in the ninth inning I sort of cringed - Cabrera's due up, and I made mental note of his previous performances in just such a situation...not too encouraging. I saw myself very shortly bending over to write "6-4-3- GDP" across his square of my scorecard. I looked at Cabrera at the plate, looking all of 5'6", his body crouched and tense like a little spring, full of potential energy which so often releases itself in the form of a grounder to shortstop but which appears possible of so much more. I braced myself for the worst. But fatalistic resignation turned into shock and awe as Cabrera lifted the second pitch high into the air...omg it's headed over the wait it looks a little short...just hit the wall just hit the wall - BANG! the ball hits the top of the scoreboard and caroms off straight up into the air, gets fielded cleanly by the centerfielder, relayed to second base, relayed home, and gets there about a half-second after Johnny Damon does. Cabby's got himself a walk-off double, and the Sox win 5-4.

One thing to keep in mind, however, is that the Sox were playing the Toronto Blue Jays, not the Yanks or Anaheim, and that one could argue that perhaps this game shouldn't have been this fraught with peril, but hell - a win is a win, right? Pedro didn't look especially sharp last night, giving up eight hits over seven innings (including two homers,) although he did have six strikeouts. But his counterpart gave up two homers of his own, one to Damon and one to Varitek, and both starters left the game with the score tied at 4. Timlin and Myers combined for a perfect eighth inning, Foulke handled the ninth, and, well, you know the rest.

Two things I'm questioning about the line-up last night: 1) why DH Ortiz when he's dreadful against lefties? Why not DH Mirabelli instead - he's been killing lefthanders this year. And 2) why in the world would you put Cabrera in the two slot? I said I liked the guy, but that doesn't mean I've abandoned reason for madness - he belongs batting seventh, tops.

And some more bad injury news - Youkilis was moved to the 15-day DL yesterday with the deep bone bruise he got the other day thanks to Dale Sveum. Dave McCarty was put on the DL with a cyst on his wrist. And Scott Williamson was put on the 60-day DL and will most likely be getting his second Tommy John's surgery, which sort of makes me wonder if he'll be back ever. However, we can all thank our lucky stars that Leskanic is back (sarcasm intended,) Pokey will begin swinging a bat on the next road trip, and the best news of all: Bellhorn could begin his rehab assignment any day now. He was able to take BP with a minimal amount of pain, his thumb having healed better and faster than anyone expected because Mark Bellhorn is a fucking Man with a capital "M" who has fucking ice water running through his veins! Ya!

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Unfortunately I got too drunk to coherently watch the game last night. I wish I had a scanner, I'd post a picture of my illegible, incomplete and erratic scorecard - apparently I tried to watch. Looks like I made it to the bottom of the fourth.
But hey, I understand the Sox won.

Monday, August 16, 2004

I miss Mark Bellhorn. Posted by Hello

Terry Francona, I want some answers.

1. Why in the fuck would someone rest Bill Mueller (in favor of Ricky Gutierrez) against a team that is competetive for the AL Wild Card spot - the same spot the Sox are trying to win - when Mueller could just wait and rest tomorrow, when the Sox are playing the ridiculously awful Toronto Blue Jays? For that matter, why sit Kevin Millar, who has been smoking hot at the plate, for Gaybe Krapler? Or Doug Mientoaewradgn, for that matter.

2. Let's talk some third base. Millar is on first base. Manny Ramirez is on third in one of those motorized shopping carts he stole from a Safeway, lit up on prescription painkillers and wearing Lynn Jones's glasses. There are no outs. Cabrera taps a grounder right back to the pitcher. Sveum sends the runner around. What in the fuck is wrong with him?

3. The game is tied. You pull _____(insert name-of-starter-just-cresting-100-pitches here) and bring in _______(insert name or names of tired, old, used up relief pitchers that have given up a shit ton of home runs this season here.) Everyone in the entire fucking world knows what's going to happen except for you. How is this possible?

4. The Sox are down three runs in the eighth, two men on base, and you pinch hit Kevin Millar for Doug Mienasdlkagaz. What in the fuck were you thinking? (This is a trick question, as it was actually the right thing to do.)

5. Kevin Millar makes it on to load the bases and you pinch-hit Dave Fucking Roberts for Gaybe Krapler, while Dave McCarty (who has already proved himself to be clutch in these situations) stays on the bench. Did any of your mother's children live? True or false: "If I wanted to put Dave Roberts in the game that badly, I could have had him pinch run (not hit, RUN,) for David Ortiz at third."

6. True or False: "I am a complete and utter fucking idiot with sheepshit for brains who probably deserves to lose his job and wind up sleeping in a refridgerator box under a pier on a cold and windy beach."

Sidenote: Good for Cabrera for going 3-5. Too bad you couldn't have gotten another hit in the ninth inning, but as they say, you can't squeeze blood from a turnip. Nice effort.
Sidenote#2: Until further notice, Manny is the most unclutch player on the team. I'm tired of seeing this guy fucking whiff all the time with men in scoring position. "RBIMachine" my ass. He didn't even look like he was making decent swings yesterday, much less decent contact. Ya, I know he hit a homerun the day before, but by and large he's been stinking it up since after the All-Star Break and my patience has finally snapped. I actually feel guilty being mad at Manny, but I'm pretty much mad at everyone right now.

Sunday, August 15, 2004

Bam Bam and Pebbles go back to back and the Red Sox win it 4-3. Posted by Hello

Dude. What a game. I mean, what a game.

For one thing, I had pride on the line, due to the aforementioned arguement over the merits of Curt Schilling which I had with my husband last night. Second of all, I can't remember the last time the Sox won a game this close, nor can I remember being on the edge of my seat like this any time in my recent memory. But the Sox won. The Sox won!!! Back-to-back homers from Manny "See-I-Told-You-The-Slump-Was-Over" Ramirez and David "Holy-Shit-That-One's-Outta-There" Ortiz and an RBI single from Tek were the only runs scored until the eighth inning, when Ortiz hit another home run to break the tie and pull the Sox ahead 4-3. Then came the nail-biting ninth inning, during which I was secretly convinced that Foulke would blow another save - and the walk he gave up to the first batter didn't help my mindset any, to be sure. I actually hid in the bathroom through one batter because I couldn't bear to watch, but my concern was completely unfounded as Foulke K'ed the last two batters and earned his 15th save of the season. I can't speak for anyone else, but for me personally, I was loving this game. And I was completely geeked about the win.

However...Pedro seemed intent on turning the dugout into some sort of gay rodeo. Example 1 : Pedro and Manny's little homerun handshake (fist-fist-knuckle-kiss-swoop-fucky-fucky-fucky,) and example 2: Pedro's incessant hip-thrusting during the third inning, during which he appeared to be air-humping his little red foam bat. I really don't know what to say about it. It was definitely disturbing. Normally, if you walked up to me and said that I would have the opportunity to watch Pedro thrust and gyrate his hips while standing in a semi-squat with no supporting undergarments on I would sign up immediately. (I'm the same girl that has let off construction-worker-type whistles at players being stretched out by their trainers.) But it made me feel...I don't know...dirty...and I'm the biggest pervert I know.


Saturday, August 14, 2004

Most of the time it's really, really cool that my husband and I are both big Sox fans. We get to spend a lot of quality time together watching games, we can wear each other's shirts and jerseys, and it's created some very sweet moments between us. Like when Ortiz hit that two-run double in game 4 of the ALDS, Mike and I jumped into each other's arms and we were so happy and relieved that we both were laughing and crying at the same time. And when we got home from the bar after game 7, I had to comfort Mike in the kitchen because he was even more angry and heartbroken and distraught than I was.

But on very few occassions it can be a bad thing. When we disagree on something Sox related it's seldom very pretty. I'm saying this because last night Mike started in on his Schilling-bashing again. "Fuck Schilling, he's got a bigger mouth than he can back up with actions," Mike said. "Well, Schilling carried the team for much of the first half, so why don't you show a little respect?" I answer. And it picks up from there. I told Mike that if he was going to be mad at Schilling for going into a slump and letting the team down, then he should be equally as mad at Manny who has also been Prison Bitch to the Baseball World lately. Which caused Mike to think that I was - God forbid! - Manny-bashing. So suddenly we're arguing about Manny's slump vs. Schilling's slump. And all of this after a taxing evening of arguing with my station partner at work! Finally I had to tell Mike that I wasn't going to talk about it anymore. "Whatever," Mike says. A few minutes of blissful silence. Then "I just want to make one more point about Schilling," Mike says. "I'm not talking about it anymore," I answer. He made his point anyway, but I forced myself not to listen. (A very hard thing for me since, as you can probably tell, I'm one of those people who love to argue.)

So ya, now I feel better.

Oh, and speaking of Schilling, it's not the Face tonight, it's Curt. Anyone else starting to get worried about Schilling's health, though? This came up in our arguement last night. What if he's headed for the DL? Who knows.

Friday, August 13, 2004

The suck stops here. Posted by Hello
For Manny, anway. He went 2-5 with his first homer in 29 at-bats a hard, wall-ball single, and an RBI. Ya, I know it's not that big of a deal, but considering that this is his second multi-hit game in a row, I'm calling the slump officially OVER. (Even though Manny did strike out twice, causing me to have a "momentary lapse of patience" i.e. hurling a few choice and vituperative comments at the tv screen, aiming at targets including but not limited to Manny's choice of career,personal hygiene, mother and sexual preference. I've been reminding myself how he and Ortiz carried the team for the entire first half and how I should cut him a little slack, but a woman can only take so much, you know?)

Unfortunately the game tonight was a losing effort. It was kind of a whack game, honestly. It pissed down rain for about two innings, and Wakefield failed to get the memo about trying to keep balls hit by the other team from flying out of the ballpark...again. Contreras had one of his patented MeltDowns in the second inning, (walked a run in,) but then came back to give the Sox a glimpse of that "nasty stuff" he supposedly has. Down 8-5 in the ninth inning, Kevin Millar hit a two-run homer into the monster seats with one out. Bill Mueller grounds out for the second out, and suddenly the fate of the team is up to....Orlando Cabrera.

Now, I have a little encouragement technique for Cabrera that is surprisingly successful. I just say very earnestly to the tv screen: "I'm not asking, Orlando, I'm begging. Get a hit. Please." And I will sometimes bargain, like "Just a single - it doesn't have to be for extra bases - hell, it can go right into an outfielder's glove as long as he's deep enough to allow someone to score." And it's worked. Twice. I only use it under duress. Cabrera is still kind of new on the team and I don't really feel comfortable laying into him with the heavy-duty swearing yet (and I'm secretly starting to kind of like him,) so I just beg. I begged tonight, and when the ball flew off of Cabrera's bat I thought my prayers had been answered....but alas, it was the wrong prayer - you know, the one about the ball going right into the outfielder's glove instead of over the big green metal wall behind him. And the Sox lost 8-7.
The Face goes tomorrow.

It's a three-peat Petey Party! Posted by Hello
Salud! Pedro breezes through his third consecutive double-digit-strikeout game, and his first complete game shutout in four years.
Talk about torture, though - the game came on at one o'clock today, the time at which I normally leave for work! Aaaaaaah! Having to leave the house in the middle of a game is definitely worse than working through the entire game. Especially when it's my boy on the mound!
Sox offense was clicking right along once again - even Manny got (gasp!) two hits today. When all was said and done, the Sox defeated the D-Rays 6-0 and Pedro ended up with 10 strikeouts.
This post is lame, but I've been working on this stupid blog a little (as you can probably see) and it has been nothing short of nightmarish and I can't bear to sit in front of the computer screen any longer, so apologies about the crappy post, apologies about the half-ass looking blog, it will all be righted soon.
And (goddamnit they did it to me again) Go Sox!

Thursday, August 12, 2004

HAIRBALL. Posted by Hello
Okay, this is my last ditch rally effort. Fuck the rally cuff, that sort of went out last year with the "Cowboy Up" head-shaving thing, and I'm just clinging onto the name due to sentimentality. (Plus, the only person that can really wear the rally cuff with a positive result is John Frakes. My luck has run out, apparently.) My new thing: the Rally Videotape. Yup, it's as sad and desperate as it sounds.
See, my husband and I work second shift and are very rarely around to watch games as they actually unfold live, so we set the VCR and then come home and watch them from like 11-1 or so at night. And if something spectacular happens during a game we officially retire the videotape and label it and save it for that cold, January tuesday night when we're both bored and fiending for some baseball. For example, we have from last year (just off the top of my head) the game we attended in Cleveland in September when Pedro pitched, game 5 of the ALDS, and a tape simply labeled "Sox v. Mariners 8/03." (There are more but listing them all is boring and too nerdy even for me.) Anyhow, ya, the Sox/Mariners tape. It's a Sunday Night Baseball game, during that four-game sweep the Sox pulled off. It's nothing too spectacular, but Mike and I saved it because it just had this sort of......magic to it. It was like the first time that we really felt like things were going the Sox's way, that they were nearly untouchable. Everything seemed to come so easy. We smiled and laughed and high-fived during that game (which we got to watch live cause it was on a Sunday) and it was, well, magical.
So tonight we started watching the game WAY late, around 2:30 because we had friends over for chess and beer, and HOLY SHIT were the Sox hitting the cover off the ball way early. And during the game Millar happened to mention that very same series in August - and it was funny because I had been thinking that this game had a similar feel. Quite frankly, it was a blast to watch. Three runs in the first, five in the second and five in the third, not to mention Pedro looking gayer than ever with a red foam bat, Manny giving Dougie Alphabet a wet-willy, and the guest commentating by Lenny Clarke and Dennis Leary. (Normally Dennis Leary gets on my nerves, but just seeing Remy and Orsillo geek out so hard made it positively hilarious.) So, in that vein, I'm saving this tape. This one, magical moment out of two or so months when we haven't saved a single game, I'm going to save. Because it's really now or never.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Remy and Orsillo shocked me tonight by revealing that the Sox are actually only four games off of their 2003 pace. That fact was almost inconceivable to me, and made me feel like a real Chicken Little, (Oooooh, I said the L-name!) yet it was appropriate that it was brought to my attention during tonight's 2003-esque performance. The Sox followed up a three-run fifth inning with a five-run sixth, all five runs coming with 2 outs and all 8 RBIs coming from the bottom two-thirds of the batting order. The first three in the line-up (Damon, Mientkiewicz and Manny) were a nauseating 0-12, but no matter - Varitek, Mueller, Youkilis and Cabrera all had 2 ribbies apiece.
Incidentally, I'm developing a sort of soft spot for Orlando Cabrera. It's completely irrational and unfounded, I know, but I find myself kind of inwardly rooting for his success. I need to give him a nickname, and I don't think "Treasure Troll" will cut it. Too cumbersome. I was thinking tonight that he kind of looks like Richard Seymour's Mini Me...maybe I could call him "Little Dick?" Yikes, no. I guess it will just come to me when the time is right.
Anyhow, it was nice to see Bronson Arroyo finally get the run support that he deserves. He had a perfectly reasonable game tonight, pitching 6 and 2/3 innings with seven hits, three earned runs and six strikeouts. This was more of the type of baseball that I was expecting to see on this homestand. I'd like to hope that the positive energy will carry over into tomorrow night, but the Face is taking the mound and we all know what a crapshoot that is.
Six Degrees of Seperation: I used to work with this crazy (but nice) drunk named Dan who was a college buddy of Kevin Youkilis. Neato. I guess.
Completely off topic: I get a happy, geeked-out feeling when Manny wears his socks up. I felt sure that a home run was on order tonight, especially during that nine or ten-pitch at bat in the sixth, but alas, Manny was 0-4 with 3 strikeouts. Ay ay ay. Is he ever gonna get his stroke back??

Monday, August 09, 2004

What, me worry?
What a discouraging game. I mean really, really discouraging. I am, in fact, having an extremely negative moment right now. And in the midst of all the anger and the agony I am forced to hear - over and over and over again -
Take a chance, make it happen,
Pop the cork, finger-snappin,
Spin the wheel
Round and round we gooooooooo!
Life is good, life is sweet,
Grab yourself a front row seat,
Let's meet and have a ball!
YAAAAAAAAAAAH Let's live...for the wondeeerrrrrrrrrr-of it all!
Meet me at Foxwoods! (Foxwoods!)
Who is the scrawny little piece of shit who lipsynchs that fucking tune? I mean, how old is that guy? When you see him at a three quarters view he looks like fucking Skeletor. I'd like to find that guy and work him over with a serrated aluminum baseball bat. The last thing I want to hear when the Sox are losing in yet another heart-wrenching, open-your-belly-and-strew-your-guts-around-like-christmas-tree-garland way is this little simp's impossibly upbeat garbage when what I'd really like is to have a 14 hour standoff with the Boston police department on top of the roof of Fenway armed with a harpoon gun while wearing a yellow raincoat and an Alfred E. Neuman mask.
I blame Terry Francona. I want his job. I want to be Terry Francona just for one week - one lousy fucking week. Someone give me a clipboard, break my nose, bust up my knees, shave my head, give me the worst case of hypertension and heart disease this side of a third world country and let me get down there in the dugout. I'd make Lou Pinella look like a suicide hotline counselor. If this lousy team can't win a goddamn game then at least they can be as miserable as I am.
All except Mark Bellhorn. He is exempt from all punishment. Bellhorn will be the "Snowball" to my "Napoleon."
But am I going to watch tomorrow? Of course I am! Wouldn't miss it for the world.

What a whacky game yesterday afternoon. The Tigers and Sox combined for 10 home runs - Wakefield gave up six of them, something that hasn't been done by a winning pitcher for forty-some-odd years. It wasn't the prettiest of games, but it was a win and I'll take it. (The Treasure Troll even had three hits! Holy Shit!)
The Sox are now in a three-way tie for the Wild Card, and are about to play 30 of the remaining 50-something games at home, where their record is 33-18. Could this be the mythical corner that they have been supposed to turn since June? Schilling kicks it off tonight against the D-Bags.

Sunday, August 08, 2004

Let's throw a Petey Party! (Hey Raul, this picture is for you!) Posted by Hello

Brugal might not be the only fine Dominican product to get better with age - last night Pedro retired NINE out of the first ten Tigers he faced, SEVEN by way of the K. Sweet P. had eleven strikeouts in all through seven innings, with four hits, two earned runs, one wild pitch and one hit batter (Dmitri Young, but don't worry - Pedro hit him right on the spare tire, so no harm done, I'm sure.)
As for the offense --- Bam Bam is back (2 RBI!) but Pebbles is down with "flu-like symptoms" which probably include red, swollen eyes, dizziness, loss of concentration, coughing, and a strong urge to sit in front of an "I Love the 90s" marathon with a bag of Doritos and a liter of Moutain Dew Code Red. Elsewhere, Dave Roberts had a big night, showing up clutch with two ribbies of his own on a double and a sac-fly, and with his walk in the seventh and his basehit in the ninth he was able to get on base in every at-bat. Who would have thunk it? Kevin Millar was on base three times, scoring a run in the kind of weird seventh inning: Ennis gives up a walk to Roberts, then balks during Damon's at-bat. Ennis walks Damon, too and gets pulled out of the game for Al Levine who gives up three consecutive basehits. The last one is to David Ortiz, who, while trying to stretch a single into a double, gets caught in what I scored as a "Sac-Pickle" for lack of a better term, allowing Krapler to score from third while Ortiz tries to evade a rundown. Boom, a four-run inning, and any momentum the Tigers might have had completely disappeared. It was very nice to see the Sox playing a little small ball. And with Oakland and the Rangers both losing, the Sox are now one game back in the wild card standings. Whoop-la!
One bitch though, and I think I've read this many times in many other places, but for God's sweet sake, Tito AREN'T THERE ANY OTHER PITCHERS IN YOUR BULLPEN BESIDES TIMLIN AND EMBREE???? I'm starting to HATE those two guys. I mean what about Mendoza?? Remember when he was lights out for us a couple weeks ago? What about Terry Adams? What about Mike Myers? Just because Williamson is out (not for much longer, by the way) doesn't mean that there are NO other options. What's the deal? - it's like since Grady Little failed to put Timlin or Embree in during game 7, Tito's going to make sure he puts them in every opportunity he gets. What a pendejo.
And finally, I think that this story deserves to be told, in the event that the Sox should - gulp - lose today: my buddy Kevin at work is from Detroit and told me an amusing tidbit of information last night. He has a friend who is a sports whore - she goes to all the bars where all the baseball/hockey/football players hang out, depending on the season, and tries to sleep with them. Apparently she slept with a member of the Tigers rotation last year whose name she won't divulge and said that the guy like to have not one but TWO fingers stuck up his ass during sex. I mean, one isn't really all that unheard of - a little freaky, yes, but nothing beyond the pale. But two. Wow. No comment. Except that I'm going to say it's probably Bonderman.

Saturday, August 07, 2004

Wow, this game was a real snoozer. The Sox dropped the first game of a three-game series in Detroit 4-3, Derek Lowe's record dropped below .500, and the Sox dropped to double digits behind the MFYs for the first time this season. The good news is that Dave McCarty and Jason Varitek each got three hits apiece. The bad news is that everyone else more or less sucked, especially the Treasure Troll (0-5.) As usual, the Sox line-up was like bullpen Viagra to teams with usually underachieving relief pitchers. The Tigers bullpen can't hold it together against teams like, say, the Blue Jays, but when it comes to pitching to the Red Sox they suddenly turn into a whole team of Dennis Eckersleys. Roberto Novoa (4 consecutive strikeouts, nevermind walking in the tying run) and Jaime Walker had the Red Sox wearing panties and hooker boots before they brought in Ugie to seal the deal.
D. Lowe didn't do too bad by his own pathetic standards, but still got charged with the loss. And I still don't like him. Sweet P. tomorrow, though! Whoooopeeeee!

Thursday, August 05, 2004

I miss St. Louis. It's weird how you can be away from a city for years and years and drive down streets and boulevards that have been vastly overdeveloped since you quit living there at age 9 but still somehow recognize things - still somehow know that you're home.
The low, hazy skies of St. Louis and the Gateway Arch.Posted by Hello

The field at Busch Stadium. There was an hour long rain delay due to a passing thunderstorm. Posted by Hello

Left field with the Arch looming in the distance. Posted by Hello

Tarp finally off, skies clear, people seated - not a bad ballpark, huh? I saw my first game here when I was about 5. This is the view from our seats in the right field bleachers. Posted by Hello

Busch Stadium at night as we were leaving. Cards won 4-3 (I think. Or maybe it was 5-4.) In any case, Pujols hit a walk-off homer that we didn't see because we had to leave early. And I had to watch Suppan pitch AGAIN (2nd time this season.) I think it's some sort of pennance for having bitched about him so much last year. Posted by Hello

Sox took 2 out of 3 from the D-Bags, but I don't have any specifics since we were away all week. This Nomar thing is getting a little bit ridiculous...I wish everyone would just let it die. Stop picking the scabs.
And my man Bellhorn is on the DL with a broken thumb! This is just untenable. I just sort of get the sense that the season is on some sort of long, slow Trail of Tears at the end of which is a very early exit from the playoffs. But I will still watch. There will still be Ortiz blasting home runs, Pedro striking out chumps, Johnny Damon making diving catches, and Manny Ramirez sitting in the dugout looking like he slept in his uniform on a dirty mattress under a highway overpass next to a cozy, crackling campfire lit in a metal garbage can. Unfortunately there will be no more post-error closeups of Bellhorn's sweaty face looking like Martin Sheen in the closing scenes of "Apocalypse Now." Incidentally, can't you picture Bellhorn getting totally shitfaced and doing karate moves on the mirror in his hotel room in his briefs and then sleeping with a gun on his nightstand a la "Apocalypse Now" as well? Go ahead, imagine it. It's funny.