Thursday, August 03, 2006

Game 107: Live + Blog = Log?

It’s the last game of this crazy 4 game series with the Wahoos and I figured I’d do an inning by inning blog or “live blog” or “livog” or “log”… or whatever it’s called. Tonight we are looking at Beckett, Westbrook and this freaking heat wave that won’t seem to go away. The Yankees already beat the snot out of Toronto (remember those Canadians that kicked our ass… well they got swept) so it would be nice if Josh could grace us with a “Good Beckett” performance and keep the “HR Derby Beckett” persona trapped in Matt Clement’s locker. I’ll be here all night giving inning by inning updates so come check me out (or read it all tomorrow at work… lazy).
Here is Gary Thorne, Buck Martinez and the ESPN 2 crew in all their glory (I might switch to MLBtv with the NESN feed if these guys start to drive me crazy… which may be soon cause Thorne just said the word “satisfactraly”). They just flashed the lineups and it looks like Ken Huckaby is in there for the first time… and most likely the last time because everyone and their mother is reporting that the Sox just got Javy Lopez. Didn’t we already have him? Oh the OTHER Javy Lopez. He’s going to be getting most of the starts while Tek is hurt, but won’t be joining the team till they get to Tampa. I guess we only send the private jet and police escorts for backup catchers.

1st inning:
Beckett is ALL about the fastball (like always). He demolishes Sizemore (3 pitch K), but Hafner NAILS one into right on a 3-2 count. I am screaming at him to throw something off speed and he finally does to strike out Martinez. I am already wavering on this ESPN crew after the ball washing they just gave Hafner.

Yoooooooouk with the lead off double, Ortiz sac moves him over and Manny gets him home. Sweet 1-0! Jake Westbrook has that “I’m gonna get pounded tonight” look in his eye. And I am officially off the ESPN broadcast. Buck Martinez looks like he is going to sell me a used car after the game.

2nd inning:
The dulcet tones of Don and Jerry invite me to buy some of their online crap and watch a quick 5 pitch 1,2,3 inning for Beckett as he gets Shin-Soo Choo (bless you) to ground out. 25 pitches through 2 innings. Very happy to have you “Good Beckett”! Please feel free to stick around for a few innings.

Wily Mo goes down swinging for about the 300th time so far this year. He BETTER hit 15 homeruns before the season ends or the “Arroyo fan club” will eat him alive. Then it’s all offence: Coco singles, Gonzo doubles (love you Gonzo), Huckaby hits an infield out (weird throw to first) but it gets the run, Youk singles, Loretta doubles, and then a Papi IBB (hehe). So bases loaded for Manny and Westbrook looks like me after 4 shots of jager. Can Manny get his 21st granny!?!?!?.... nope. Pop up. Damn. But I’ll take the 3-0 lead.

3rd inning:
Hey it’s Aaron F’ing Boone! He gets booed very loudly and then hits a solo shot off the foul pole to left. I’m glad I’m not watching ESPN because I bet they’re going to show replays of the 2003 ALCS. I really really hate Boone. Meanwhile Beckett has given up 29 long balls so far this year. Yeah that’s not good. Boston goes down in order: 3-1 Sox.

4th inning:
Lead off double for Hafner (off the curve even) and I think I am sensing a trend. Settle down Josh. Martinez K’s, Blake gets an infield single (he has been killing us) and an AWSOME double play to get out of it. Whew… that could have been bad.

Huck gets his first hit as a Red Sox! Great, but Youk hits into a double play to end it. And because that went so fast, can somebody please tell me Tina Cervasio’s appeal? She only thing bigger than her huge mouth is her annoying accent. You can take the girl out of Jersey…

5th inning:
Another quick 1,2,3 for Beckett thanks to a diving catch by Coco. He makes plays like this every other game. I am still trying to decide if it’s because he gets late breaks or because he is really freaking good. Unsure.

Poor offensive inning for the Sox. Manny singles but he gets stranded. Maybe Westbrook wasn’t as finished as he looked in the 2nd. Update on Tek. He is now recovering from his knee surgery and looks to miss about a month according to Remy. Feel better Capitan.

6th inning:
Hafner up with a man on, 1 out and I‘m legitimately scared. I honestly think the best case scenario is that Beckett walks him. Oh no….much rather of had that then the 2 run BOMB he just arched around the Pesky pole. 30 HR from Beckett and a 3-3 tie game. Poopstick. 3 more singles (Martinez and Blake) and Beckett looks like he’s collapsing. Francona seems unconcerned… or asleep. Too late to wake him. Shoo (who??) just hit a grand slam and I threw up a bit in my mouth. Beckett is STILL in there and gives up another single. Kyle Snyder is now up, but Josh gets a DP to end it. That was just awful and it was happening so fast I barely had time to get upset. The commercial break is helping me absorb it all and allowing me to lose my composure. I CAN’T FREAKING BELEAVE IT!!!! DAMN IT ALL!!!!!!... 7-3.

Time for the Sox to step it up. They agree and hit 3 straight singles. Bases loaded for Huckaby. Come on you AAA bastard. You have a chance to make yourself a fan favorite before Lopez send you packing. Nuts… DP but they get a run. That bit HARD. Luckily it’s not over. Big single by Youk scores Coco from third but Loretta pops up on the next pitch. 7-5… that’s a bit better.

7th inning:
Snyder comes in to try to stop the bleeding. DC says he looks like Arroyo on steroids and I tend to agree. 1 on and 1 out for Hafner AGAIN but this time they take my advice and walk him. The Indians are weak enough that Hafner should have 3 IBB’s every game. He is just too scary. Now Snyder can’t find the plate and walks the bases loaded. This is just going from bad to worse. Coming back up is Craig Hansen and that frozen burrito I ate for dinner. YES!!! HUGE DP. Big props to Craig and Gonzo… now to clean up the mess on my floor.

Sox need to do SOEMTHING here to make that worth while. Papi tries but is juuuust a few feet short and he can’t believe it (me neither). Manny also goes down quick with a hot shot to 3rd. Lowell shows some signs of life and singles, but Wily Mo strands him. This how the hell is Westbrook doing this? I would say he has to be the luckiest pitcher in the world, but I think Jon “Houdini” Lester has that title wrapped up.

8th inning:
Hansen back in there and gets the Tribe in order with a pop up and 2 K. All his stuff was working and his slider was particularly sick. Probably the best outing of his major league carrier. I still don’t think he’s closing next year though.

Cleveland has absolutely NO bullpen. Coco lines one into center and Eric Wedge keeps Westbrook out there. Davis and Mota are warming up (didn’t we have Mota for a week?). Now Gonzo hits a flare and Westbrook is still out there. Cora is batting for Huckaby and they go straight sacrifice. I am not so sure I like this… but with Youk hot and now both runners in scoring position it’s the right move. Westbrook STILL out there with 110 pitches and gives up a sac fly. Westbrook pops Loretta up killing any chance of Papi ending it with one swing. Not exactly what we were looking for… but I like the one run game more than the alternative. I’m shocked that Westbrook isn’t removed by way of stretcher. Why is Wedge managing this game like it’s Game 7 of the World Series?

9th inning:
Francona is playing favorites and puts Timlin in the game with Belli catching and Cora now at third. After how shaky Timlin has been lately I KNOW I don’t like this move. Maybe it’s over use, age or an injury… but he doesn’t look in top form. He gets the Indians in order… what the hell do I know?

Westbrook is apparently dead because Jason Davis is pitching to Papi. Everybody (including me) is on their feet cause we need another miracle. Nope… another DEEP out for Ortiz. It’s funny Manny is coming up with only 1 out and a good chance (he’s taken Davis deep before) but Fenway still sounds 90% deflated. Nobody can believe Ortiz didn’t tie it up. Neither does Manny… another warning track out. Now it’s down to Mirabelli. He looks like a mouse compared to the giants that came before him (a very fat mouse). Aaaaaaand he unceremoniously pops out in foul ground to end it.

Final Score: Boston Red Sox 6, Cleveland Indians 7
Well that sucked. 2 of 4 from these losers is really not acceptable. The fact that it was 2 swings away from being a sweep is REALLY bad news. Something has to go right for this club and soon… because the Yankees are really getting hot and the wild card may be an even tougher fight. Tomorrow it is Schilling vs Shields in Tampa. Boston needs to do well in this stretch (Tampa, Kansas City, Baltimore) to really have a shot. Keep your fingers crossed. GO SOX.