New York rebounded 3-1 in a game they desperately needed, but I remain upbeat (as do the Red Sox). (And since Steinbrenner said winning one of three would suit him, he must be happy, too.) Boston outscored New York 21-6, Suppan pitched a hell of a game, and Seattle and Oakland both lost, so Boston's wild card lead is 1½ games. One Red Sox fan at the game noted the Yankee fans "were much more sedate and much less aggressive in putting down the huge number of Sox fans at this game. They know how good we are. They are scared shitless at the prospect of facing us in the playoffs. We must get there and make this fear a reality."
Did Grady leave Suppan in too long? Suppan recorded the first 2 outs in the 7th before nibbling and walking Posada on 4 pitches. Williams then pounded a fastball at his belt for a 2-run home run. Matsui followed with a double over Damon's head. Did Suppan - having thrown 97 pitches - come out at this point? No, because Gump was just getting the bullpen up at this point! He's had that problem all year, but to fall alseep in a game like this is *&%^$# unforgivable.
Another frustration was the inability to score despite golden chances in the 5th and 7th innings. Millar doubled to start the 5th and took third on a groundout. Kapler grounded to third (Millar had to hold) and Jackson struck out to end the threat. In the 7th, Manny opened with a double and, after Ortiz fanned and Millar walked, he went to third on a force play. But Kapler (again) grounded to third for the final out. New York broke the scoreless tie in the bottom half of that inning.
Blog Watch: Musings has a "Rivalry Wrap-up," Edward Cossette offers parking lot etiquette, and the Sheriff wonders if he has pharyngitis. More links at left. ... Yankees Media: Times ... Post ... Daily News ... Newsday ... Star-Ledger ... Bergen Record.
MC Haxby writes: "On August 10th, the Red Sox embarked on a 25-game stretch that many believed would make or break the season. From the 10th until today, they have played no one but .500+ teams, and all but two of the games were against a team competing for a playoff spot. That gauntlet is run. Here's looking back." ... Playoffs odds looking better. ... If you collect Manny-bashing articles, here's another one for your collection.
On to Baltimore. It's no time for a letdown. Burkett/Lopez in Camden Yards at 7:05.