Thursday, August 11, 2005

Game 113: Bad Odds For The Gambler

Final Score:

Boston Red Sox 16, Texas Rangers 5

"And now after all this pumpitude, after an absolute piledriver of a game, we get... an off day. I guess they deserve a bit of rest. They're only human. Except, of course, for Mike Timlin, who we all know is a fully functional werewolf who, after the games, slips off his human costume and goes back to haunting the hills and back alleys of Chelsea."
- Surviving Grady

"People are just plain stupid, man. They've been walking me to pitch to [Manny]. Hang with it.''
- David Ortiz on Manny's monster RBI total


It took four innings, but the Sox broke open the game on Kenny Rogers, thanks mainly to Manny's three run blast. Guns and Corn was on fire (seven and 1/3rd innings, seven hits, four runs, four strike outs, one walk), running into real trouble only in the eighth after he gave up back to back doubles for the second time in the game and hit
Teixeira. The Boston starter also made the return to the cornrows of years past, causing my girlfriend to wonder if he thought that hairstyle looked attractive. I have a feeling it might have more to do with superstition (where's the stat on pitching with a certain haircut?) than anything else. Apparently August 10th is a good day for Arroyo to pitch: a perfect game for Pawtucket in 2003 and his fifth win of the season against Tampa Bay in 2004 to go with yesterday's victory.

The bullpen had a meltdown for the second night in a row, with Myers being mainly responsible for a four run Rangers eighth, but Texas was unable to tie things up this time around and the Sox more than made up for the difference with an offensive explosion in their half of the ninth, getting nine runs off of a combination of Karsay, Shouse, Gryboski and some defensive miscues by the Rangers. Manny Delcarmen came on to finish the night, giving up a single and striking out two. Full game recap at The Joy of Sox. Johnny Damon's hit streak is now at fourteen games and Tony Graffanino (I LIKE him) continued his hot hitting after returning to the lineup last night. going two for five with two runs and three RBI. Manny continues to be Manny; he's now on pace to knock in more runs than any Red Sox in the past 56 years.

In today's atrocious piece of umpiring, Gabe Kapler managed to hit a home run that hit off the top of the wall, but still had it called as inside the park. Trot Nixon was so incensed by the rediculous call (it was very, very obviously off the top of the wall and thus out of the park, the Sox were down one to nothing at the time and the umpires chose not to reverse their decision) that he did what every Sox fan wanted to do, but couldn't: he walked up and down the length of the dugout, taunting third base umpire Derryl Cousins (who made the call) until first base umpire Bill Miller ejected him. About as good revenge as you're going to get, really - the guy who can't play takes all the licks. Not that I don't doubt for a second that he'd be doing the exact same thing if he was healthy and in the lineup...but that's how we like 'em in Boston. Half-crazy.

Keith Foulke had his second throwing session off the mound yesterday, going 35 pitches in the latest part of his rehab. The closer said he was much happier with today's session than the one he had on Monday:

"After my bullpen [session] on Monday, I wasn't real happy. I wasn't real happy with how I felt or how I threw, but today I go out there and pretty much from my first pitch off the mound, I had a little crispness on the ball. Breaking balls were good, and I'm starting to mess with the forkball again. And I'm happy."

Foulke, who was originally against the idea of doing a minor-league rehab assignment, says he's now open to the idea. Foulke was originally scheduled to do another session off the mound tomorrow, but will do a flat-ground session instead and do another mound session on Saturday. The implication is that he's stretching himself a bit too much, but if he's going to do back to back sessions, maybe he's regaining strength quicker than expected. There is still no timetable on his return - nor should there be; Schilling's doing just fine as the closer (two wins and six saves since July 26) and it looks like Wade Miller's stint on the DL may not last longer than the required fifteen days, fixing the starter issue with minimal need for outside coverage. It's starting to look like a rested Miller, a rejuvanted Schilling as starter and, God willing, an effective Keith Foulke will all be back in action by September as the Sox, now 5.5 games up on first place, prepare for the final stretch drive.

Off day today; tomorrow night The Golden Buddha faces off against Mark Buerhle in the White Sox only regular season trip to Fenway this year. GO SOX!!!

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