Damn you, bullpen. Damn you, Theo.
Another impressive fight to win squandered by Papelbon and Oki last night in the Bronx killed whatever microscopic hope for making a wild card berth this year. Kalish and Hall steal a total of 4 bases on the best closer ever in the 9th and Mikey Lowell hits a sac fly to take the lead! That was awesome. But it was short lived.
Papelbon gives it right back. Oki walks in the winning run. UGH-mutha-freakin-UGH.
We had given up on the season a month ago, only to realize this weekend we were not mathematically eliminated yet. Hell, win out all the games and we had a shot, especially since the Sox had taken 2 of 3 in the Bronx and made Yankee pitchers look like minor league scrubs (and we had 3 more games at Fenway against them next weekend).
2010 was a very difficult year for this team, but they hung on just enough to tease us in this last week. I guess it's only fitting that I felt a twinge of what it's like again to have hope for this team. It's easy to blame the 19 DL injury moves for the demise of the team, but that is the most shallow of views. The starting pitching was only good from 2 of your 6 starters (if you count Wake in there which I do since he played enough). The bullpen was, well, we know it stunk up the joint. Management went cheap at the trade deadline and hopefully is banking on spending some cash and key trades in the offseason.
There are so many moving parts it's hard to know what this team will look like in 2011. But will it matter if 3 of the 5 starting pitchers gets knocked around weekly?
I sincerely hope Victor Martinez and Adrian Beltre are given good contracts to play for the Red Sox in 2011 and beyond. They had impressive years and showed a lot of heart and character, and really seem like they fit in with the Youkilis and Pedroia grinder mentality. And don't forget Scutaro's fine year getting on base and knocking singles and doubles. I really like everyone surrounding the pitchers mound immensely.
I also think Kalish has earned an outfield spot. Drew was consistent, but not worth the coin he is being paid (at least he played a ton this year, so thanks for being stable).
I thank Lester and Buchholz for carrying the pitching burden this year, but am disgusted by Josh Beckett and John Lackey and their awful contracts. The bullpen is a total engima.
I hope Mike Cameron is gone. Happy retirement to Mike Lowell and Tim Wakefield (if that happens). I actually hope the Sox exercise their option on Ortiz. I think he deserves another year.
And lastly, I hope the Sox go and get a better trainer.
Go Twins! Rangers!