Good news on an off day: the Kevin Millar lip-synching video is online. Well, at least 1:29; the entire tape is about 10 minutes long. Maybe the Red Sox will make it a bonus feature on the 2003 World Champions DVD.
More good news: Boston won and Seattle, Oakland and the Yankees lost. The Red Sox are now 3 behind New York and tied with the Mariners for the wild card. ... "How much fun is it to be David Ortiz?" At least as much fun as watching him. Gordon Edes has a very enjoyable article in today's Globe. When Ortiz was told his hitting helped his former teammates (Twins) move into a tie in the AL Central, he said: "I did? They should send me a check." ... Ortiz became the 12th Red Sox hitter to have 5 multi-homer games in one season. Jimmie Foxx holds the record with 10 in 1938 (Manny had 7 last year). Ortiz is hitting .522 (13-for-24) over his last 7 games and has 21 RBI over his last 13 games. Six of his last 11 HR have either tied the score or put Boston ahead.
Manny returned to the lineup and went 2-4. He notched his 10th assist of the season when Aaron Rowland was cut down 7-6-2 in the bottom of the 9th. ... Kim may not be the closer in New York this weekend. The he-can't-get-Yankees-out theory is bull, but he could definitely use some rest. He's pitched in the last 5 games, 7 of the last 8, and 11 of the last 14. His numbers in those 11 games: 11.1 IP, 15 H, 8 R, 1 BB, 14 K. ... In his MLB diary, Kevin Millar explains what it means to "cowboy up."
Finally, Ron Chimelis has lost his mind: "At this point, I'd almost rather miss the playoffs with Manny Ramirez on the bench than make them with him in there. ... That would be a lot better than being held hostage by the talent, or the contract, of a prima donna with a cushy deal. ... I'd have preferred to see him benched for the rest of the season, replaced by guys who actually care." Would any Red Sox fan truly agree with that -- "Yay, we missed the playoffs again, but we showed that Manny who's boss, so I'm happy!"?
Weekend matchups: Pedro/Pettitte; Wakefield/Clemens; Suppan/Wells. Meanwhile, Jeter may miss the entire series: "If I am pain free, I will play." He does not appear to be getting the media grilling Manny did.