Hudson felt discomfort just below his rib cage on his last pitch of the first inning yesterday. "Something tightened up. I tweaked something." A Bay Area columnist wrote: "Hudson went down in such devastating fashion on Sunday, he spent a long time in the dugout cradling his head in his hands. If the rumors of his alleged bar altercation prove to be true, and the incident contributed to his injury, Hudson will spend many months examining his own stupidity." DirtDog adds that "WBZ-TV4 Sports reports that Oakland pitcher Tim Hudson was 'totally smashed' and got tossed out of Club Q." Hudson will have an MRI. More here and here. ... I can only imagine the media shit storm if this had happened to Pedro or Lowe.
From SoSH, late Monday morning: Harry Hooper: "A caller to WEEI who seemed legit was just on, the instigator at Q was with his group of folks there. The caller and a friend were hanging out with Zito and Hudson, buying each other rounds and chatting about Boston, playing in this town, etc. Drunk guy #3 comes over and gets in Hudson's face, yelling some shit. Hudson with several drinks in him clocks the guy, and a bit of a scrum ensued." ... Benzingers BeanBalls: "I think I have heard three different people on WEEI now claim to be the man who punched Tim Hudson. Several years from now I wonder if we will be hearing several thousands claiming to be the guy who started the fight with Tim Hudson. Just like all the millions who were their for Ted's last at-bat or Roger's 1st 20K game."
Ortiz on hitting Foulke in the afternoon shadows: "You can see the white on the ball by that time; you can see it because you've got a shadow behind the pitcher and everything looks dark. When you have a shadow in between the pitcher you just -- you can see when the ball comes out of the pitch, but when it hits the shadows, it goes dark again. I don't know." He added: "Don't give up on me, people. Come on."
Scott Williamson, with his family stress behind him, is emerging as the pitcher we expected from the Reds. The talk is that he should become the closer, with Kim moving into the rotation. ... Kim's shoulder was too sore to pitch on Sunday. Grady says he "felt some tightness in his shoulder [Saturday night]. That's why we got Williamson up right away and got him in the game." There are rumors that when the Red Sox advance to the ALCS, Kim would be left off the roster. ... Also, the Herald reports that some team officials are worried about Kim's emotional and psychological health. "According to one clubhouse source, Kim expressed to teammates a reluctance to pitch again" in the ALDS after being pulled from Game 1."
Globe: "Martinez did not speak on the record yesterday, but did chat with some of his favorite beat writers. His apparent message was that he wanted to win this one tonight for the fans of New England." Apparently, none of Martinez's favorite beat writers work for the Globe.
Kevin Millar: "Nothing comes easy for us and we don't want it to come easy for us. ... We knew we had to come back home and get this thing back there for Game 5, and we've got Pedro going in Game 5. ... It was a battle for sure, but what do you expect? It's the 2003 Sox. We don't make it easy ... We came in here today before Game 4 and packed for four days. We came in here wearing slacks and dress shirts to the yard, because that's what our dress code is for team flights. Supposedly, they didn't check out of their hotel because there was a chance they'd be going straight to New York (for the ALCS). Well, now they better go check out. ... We're gong to have some fun on the plane, have a ballgame tomorrow and it's going to be awesome. Zito threw a lot of curveballs against us for strikes last time. He might make some adjustments but I think we'll come out swinging the bats and try and get Pedro an early lead. Once Pedro gets going, it's going to be the game we want to see."
BlogWatch: Gregg Rosenthal: "The history of this star crossed franchise makes no difference to this team. The history of this season absolutely does. The Red Sox have played so many games like game 4 already. They absolutely expect to win each one of them. At this point, so do I." ... Ed Cossette says "We Live For This" and notes the "weight of expectation and ecstasy. ... I want to go on writing about this rare feeling, but I don't want to obsess on it either. Too much at stake tonight." ... And in the Log-Rolling In Our Time Dept., The Sheriff: "This team has been so entertaining to watch that right now I don't want this season to ever end."
Quote of the Day: Brian Cashman on George Steinbrenner: "He doesn't actually like having to play the games to decide the championship. If he could have his choice, he'd have that trophy just mailed to us."
Oakland Athletics (with possible clinching games in bold):
Red Sox fans are unanimous: It Is On.
Games 1 2 3 4 5
2000 v Yankees W L L W L
2001 v Yankees W W L L L
2002 v Minnesota L W W L L
2003 v Boston W W L L ?