Thursday, June 02, 2005

Game 52: Inconsistency

Final Score:

Boston Red Sox 3, Baltimore Orioles 9

I guess I kinda brought on last night's effort with my "black and blue" comments yesterday. Darn those jinxes.

In all seriousness, things were bad from the start. I missed the first twenty minutes of the game and by that point, it was already clear that the knuckleball wasn't knuckling: a three run homerun had been given up to Geronimo Gil. Very quickly it was 5 - 0 after a Tejada solo shot and Sosa's first homerun in about a month. Meanwhile, the Pontoon was unhittable enough that the Sox could not mount an effective rally. By the seventh inning, when the Sox got three runs, I was just hoping that they wouldn't be shut out and end the streak from last September. Varitek came out in the sixth in place of Kelly Shoppach, who killed a rally by grounding to second. Originally, I was surprised by this decision,* but come to find out there's a game today at 1:05 and Francona wanted to rest up his starting catcher. If the Sox were winning, we'd all be ok with V-Tek getting some rest and Tito was making the best of a bad situation. Also, it's not like the rest of the offense was being particularly effective either - taking out one guy shouldn't be life or death for this team.

Boston is becoming about as inconsistent as last year, although I disagree with Surviving Grady about losing confidence in particular starters (except maybe David Wells). I trust Wakefield when he says he's got some issues to work out and he'll take the time to find them before his next start. I will take the time to lay some of the blame at the feet of Kevin "Sunshine" Millar, who did his fair share of rally killing last night.** An interesting statistic: of the four games that John Olerud has played for the Sox so far, Boston has won three of them...and the fourth was against Rodrigo Lopez, so it shouldn't count. I think we all know who our regular first baseman should be. Millar should be hired as team cheerleader until he finally gets out of his slump...and even then, Olerud is a better fielder.

Some possible good news from last night: Bronson Arroyo came on in relief of Wakefield in the sixth and retired all four batters he faced on 18 pitches, eliminating the need for a side session that he would have done today. Arroyo's supposed to make his next start on Saturday; maybe he's gotten his head around his problems too. Another piece of good news is that both Toronto and New York lost last night, so although the Red Sox are now four games back, they're still in second place.

1:05 game today, so I don't have to miss any action tonight (w00t!): Clement goes for win number seven against rookie Hayden Penn, who gave up three runs on five hits in four and two thirds his first start. Let's see what Boston can do against him to try and get the series split. GO SOX!!!

* - I was thinking about this entry ALL last night: I even had a dream where I asked Tito why he took out Dave Roberts. He got upset until I told him that I was asking him a straight up question, not second guessing him. No, I don't understand what I was thinking either.
** - What I'd really love would be an online scoring card, all filled out after every game, so I can remember exactly how certain plays went instead of trying to scrounge through the game summary on or some other news site. Some day, I will be granted this wish.