Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Game 14: Hero By Committee

Final Score:

Boston Red Sox 7, Tampa Bay Devil Rays 4

This was one of those manic depressive games. The kind with lead changes and blunders and amazing plays and timely hitting and tight pitching situations and broken beer bottles and roommates saying “keep it down” and cops banging on the door and bail that’s set at the same amount that you won betting on the game. You know the kind right? Well it was like that. Clement pitched a hell of a game (7 innings, 3 R, 6 K) but didn’t get the win because Francona had him start the 8th (walked Travis Lee on 4 pitches) and then Timlin came in to do his “Oh no! Inherited runners!” routine than makes my eyes bleed and ties games up. So it was up to late inning heroics AGAIN. Sigh… they can’t make it easy.

It started with the heralded return of Manny Ramirez. Man-Ram was 2 for 4 with 3 RBI, a double (his first extra base hit of the season) and a timely hit that tied the game in the bottom of the 7th. Manny was the “Fuego Grande” that we all have come to love/put up with throughout the season. I want 20 more games like this from him in a row. Maybe some homeruns too? Is that too much to ask?

Following up their amazing performance from yesterday, we have Youlkilis and Loretta, who just may be the two secret ingredients that will make this team work as a delicious souffle. Youlkilis hit a 2 out, 2 run, go ahead double in the 8th that made me tip my chair over. Loretta immediately followed suit and did the AFLAC, All-State and Geico shuffle by brining Youlk home for the insurance run. These guys could put Papi out of a job, they’re so clutch.

So we head to the 9th with Papelbon as the Ultimate Warrior (my buddy DC claims that it was the Warrior's entrance music that Paps used as he came in from the pen). It started like all of his save situations: Paps just DOMINATING. The trouble came after two outs were recorded (both K’s) and Paps looked (gasp!) human. With Carl Crawford already on base, he walks the bases loaded and Damon Hollins comes to the plate representing the go ahead run. Nerve wracking! Hands were shaky, teeth clenched, pupils dilated, bowels loosened… I was on edge. Paps gives up a line drive to center, Adam Stern is there… has to dive… and… SNOW CONE!!! Game, set, match. Oh Canada!

This awesome win makes it 3 in a row. Tomorrow it’s Schilling and you know he’s ready to give the Devil (Rays) their due.
Go Sox!