Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Game 92: Les Is More

Final Score:

Boston Red Sox 1, Kansas City Royals 0

Two years ago, Jon Lester was too young to buy a beer in Fenway. Today, he won’t be able to buy a drink in all of New England. At 22 years old, Lester looks like the real deal. A lefty with a filthy array of pitches all of major league quality and a demeanor on the mound that backs it up. He is often wild (easily loses command of his off-speed stuff) and gives up a ton of walks, but he always seems to wiggle out of those tight spots. His era is barely over .200 with runners in scoring position. This usually leads to high pitch counts and an early exit, but the potential for greatness is there.

He certainly picked a good start to reach it.

Lester threw 8 dominating innings, only allowed 5 base runners (one single, 4 walks) and gave the Sox their second shutout of the week. Combined with Papelbon’s 28th save (do I even HAVE to talk about how much he rocks?) this was probably the best pitched game of the year. Yeah yeah yeah it was the Royals, but they still count as a major league team (last time I checked… not so sure) and the have some guys who can hit (maybe… still doing research on this). An amazing game that was one of the most thrilling of the year due to one insey winsey negative factor:

The offence sucks so hard right now that not even light cannot escape its gravitational pull.

What do Joe Blanton, Luke Hudson and Brandon Duckworth have in common? They all have 4.70+ ERA’s and they all pitched like Cy Young in Fenway this week. Who are these losers and why can’t we get any hits off them? Youk’s average has dropped like 30 points in the last few weeks, Loretta is in another big slump, Tek hasn’t looked good all year, Coco isn’t yet back to form and Ortiz and Manny can’t seem to get consecutive hits if their lives depended on it. Who the hell are these guys and what happened to the great offence that used to be here? When the difference between 2 wins and 2 losses is a pair of clutch hits by Doug Mirabelli and Alex Gonzalez… I think you can classify that as a slump.

Tomorrow its All-star pitcher Mark Redman (giggle) vs Josh “Long-ball” Beckett. The Sox need to shake the cobwebs off the bats and blast the Kansas City “Ace” back into the stone-age (which I think is the last time the Royals had a winning record). GO SOX