May 18, 2010

G40: Red Sox 7, Yankees 6

Red Sox - 000 001 042 - 7 10  2
Yankees - 020 120 001 - 6 8 2
During the bottom of the ninth inning, as Jonathan Papelbon weaved and bobbed and seemed to be slipping on the high wire, an old Richard Thompson song popped into my head. It was back in 1983 and he was singing about something other than baseball, but the line has stayed with me: "My heart was beating like a song by the Clash".

You wouldn't think that a game on May 18 could make a fan of an underachieving team solidly in fourth place and coming off its most demoralizing loss of the year feel like it was actually October 18 with the pennant hanging in the balance.

But with Randy Winn in the box with two outs and the tying run at third and winning run at second, in a game that I had emotionally tossed the metaphorical white towel in on after seven innings and a 5-1 Yankees lead, only to be utterly delighted and reawakened by the sight of Joba Chamberlain flat-brimming his way to allowing four Boston runs before recording a second out (though both outs were gifts, as Victor hacked on 3-0 and Ortiz literally walked to first watching his fly ball not leave the park), and then having Daniel Bard slam the door on Hideki Okajima's little two-out mess in the eighth and preserve the tie, and then watch the Sox rally for two more runs against Mariano Rivera, a key play of which was Marcus Thames dropping Marco Scutaro's pop-up in short right and literally kicking it into right-center, then Jeremy Hermida (who had replaced a possibly injured J.D. Drew after Drew had hit a key double against Joba), clearly looking at strike three on a 1-2 pitch inside, which would have ended the inning with the game 5-5, but for some reason not having the plate umpire ring him up, whacking a two-run double far over Winn's head in left field, and then hoping Bard would return for the ninth, but no, it's Papelbon, yikes, and Slappy reaches as his ground ball lazily rolls past Scutaro's back-handed glove into left, Cano doubles, it's now 7-6, Cano is sac'd to third and Thames walks (but not before ball 2 is up and not really that far in, but Thames backs away quickly anyway and glares out at Bot; a fight - now? in the rain?) and Pena runs for Thames at first and goes to second as Miranda smacks a hard, low snake to Papelbon, who twists and turns (seemingly in panic, though that was probably a bit of projection by me) before throwing to first, and so now Winn is up and the count is 2-1 and here's where my heart is thumping like it's the ALCS, Winn fouls off a pitch, takes ball three, full count, and if he walks, the bases will be loaded for Jeter, who hasn't done a thing all night, but it's still not a situation I would willingly ask for, and Winn fouls off another 3-2 pitch, and then suddenly, he swings and misses. And immediately, everything stops. It's actually slightly disorienting. Winn is out, it's the third out, the inning is over, and that means the Sox win the game. Jesus, can I take a breath now?

And it turns out that the Thompson line in "Tear-Stained Letter" is: "My head was beating like a song by the Clash". ... I like what I remembered much better.

I'm not sure two other games, without the added intensity of extra innings, could offer as much drama and tension as this little mid-May series did. The remaining 122 games of the regular season will unfold however they do, but after tonight, you should neither need nor demand any additional evidence of this Red Sox team refusal to quit. They will claw and scrape and battle to the very last out. (And shame on me for assuming this one was over.)

An impartial observer watching these two games would come away thinking baseball is the most amazing, exhilarating, action-packed, heart-stopping, emotionally-draining game ever devised. And, of course, she'd be right.
Example
Start of game delayed by rain. 8 PM start expected.

Mike Lowell is very frustrated, says he has thought about asking for his release.
Example
Josh Beckett / CC Sabathia

It's raining in New York.
Scutaro, SS
Pedroia, 2B
Drew, RF
Youkilis, 1B
Martinez, C
Ortiz, DH
Beltre, 3B
Hall, LF
McDonald, CF
Lost amid the shitastic ending last night was some good hitting: Victor Martinez was 0-for-his-last-19 before he homered from both sides of the plate, the first time a Boston player has done that since Jason Varitek on August 16, 2005 (crazy linescore -- and it was the second start/game of Jonathan Papelbon's career).

David Ortiz, Kevin Youkilis, and J.D. Drew also went deep. Drew's dong was especially big, cutting New York's lead in the fifth from 6-2 to 6-5. That rally started after Phil Hughes retired the first two batters on only three pitches.

B-Ref: "Are The Red Sox Toast?"

If you need it: "Vent Thread: Where SoSH Proves It Can't Handle Mediocrity"

286 comments:

«Oldest   ‹Older   201 – 286 of 286
SoSock said...

Scoot-error-o

meunier said...

WTF is his glove broken?

redsock said...

afraid to get in front of the fucking thing?

Amy said...

I miss Seabass.

Mrs.GotRibe said...

Well, I'm back. I can't watch this half inning without y'all.

Noooooooo, what was that?

nick said...

I know this has been harped on a lot, but really. wasn't this supposed to be a big D team?

Amy said...

We were up by two last night....

Our seamless improved defense does it again. WTF?

meunier said...

"that was a pitchout dummy"

redsock said...

so what is the plan tonight?

fastball
fastball
fastball
fastball
fastball
fastball
fastball
fastball
fastball
fastball
fastball

???

redsock said...

i say get van every up.

Amy said...

I should have gone to bed....

Benjamin said...

Awww fuck.

SoSock said...

Why the hell did Bard not stay out there?

Benjamin said...

Maybe the plan is to have Bot's value destroyed before he hits the FA market so he'll be easier to re-sign.

Mrs.GotRibe said...

This can not be happening.

redsock said...

but that will hurt his value at the trade deadline in july ....

Mrs.GotRibe said...

I thought he had him. That was close.

SoSock said...

I would bunt myself.
CLOSE!

Mrs.GotRibe said...

How long before Bard is the closer?

Amy said...

Re-sign him. What a thought.

Mrs.GotRibe said...

One.

(Yes, I'm counting. Not counting didn't work too well last night.)

redsock said...

shut yer pie hole thames

Amy said...

Yeah, let's hit him because that worked well last night.

redsock said...

that was like manny's overreaction to tcm in 03

redsock said...

a K is fucking near essential

Amy said...

We need that second out. NOW.

SoSock said...

wow - tense

redsock said...

jeez, it's just a 2nd place team playing a 4th place team in mid-may ...

redsock said...

jeez, it's just a 2nd place team playing a 4th place team in mid-may ...

SoSock said...

Better than grooving one

Mrs.GotRibe said...

*#%!**&$!!

Amy said...

Not to be.

How many more times do we have to let this asshole be the closer?

redsock said...

d fucking p pls

Amy said...

Pray for the DP.

Ish said...

A splitter would be great here.

redsock said...

yeah but no vicballs pleas.e

redsock said...

vicballas

Mrs.GotRibe said...

That was a little too low.

SoSock said...

DP plz

Ish said...

Er, provided Miranda swings at it. Thinking of what could produce a grounder.

Benjamin said...

Maybe Campos can call a pitch in the dirt a double play.

mattymatty said...

looked like he took strike three for ball four.

redsock said...

shit - don't panic bot!!!!

Amy said...

Phew. Good play. Got to give him that.

Mrs.GotRibe said...

Two.

Mrs.GotRibe said...

Good play Pap.

Amy said...

Why does it feel that his first pitch is almost always a ball?

redsock said...

because it has been that way 4 of 6 batters?

Amy said...

Damn, this baseball thing is exhausting.

Amy said...

At least it's not just my imagination.

SoSock said...

That 2nd pitch looked way too much in the middle for me

Mrs.GotRibe said...

SoSock, I agree. I thought that was pretty fat.

SoSock said...

C'mon Bot, do it!

Amy said...

Too many full counts also.

redsock said...

this is only #2 3-2

redsock said...

jesus christ

is it october 18?

nick said...

lack of oxygen....

Amy said...

That's two too many,

nick said...

whoooosh!

meunier said...

WOOOOOOOOOO

Amy said...

Holy shit, we won!

Amy said...

K!

Yes!

redsock said...

The water is Muddy!!!

SoSock said...

DIRTY WATER IN NEW YORK!!!!!!!

Mrs.GotRibe said...

Three!!

redsock said...

could these two games have been any more intense, without extra innings?

i say no.

Amy said...

That felt good.

Good night, everyone.

Mrs.GotRibe said...

Dirty>>>Clean

nick said...

Mariano RiveraL

Benjamin said...

*cough* we had it all the way *cough*

Mrs.GotRibe said...

NESN went out for strike three, I had no idea what was happening!

Amy said...

OK, now I can get a good night's sleep.

Do I wake up Harv and tell him Mo blew it?

Ish said...

Phew. The water is dirty.

Mrs.GotRibe said...

A-I can't imagine sitting through the ninth inning last night with a Yankees fan.

I guess he'll wake up to a loss in the morning.

SoSock said...

Whate a freaking game!
Classic Sox-Yanks.
And it's under protest too.

Mrs.GotRibe said...

G'night all.

redsock said...

good night!

very good night!

redsock said...

we stay at 8.5
chokers drop to 3 GB

SoSock said...

Sure was nice to see Bot hold his shit together after last night. And if Scoot hadn't half-assed that 1st play, he would have practically cruised through the inning

redsock said...

i almost didn't hold my shit together.


which would have meant buying a new chair before tomorrow's game.

nick said...

g'night!

SoSock said...

RS - LOL :)
Nice to end a night with a smile.
Later!

SoSock said...

That's good RS :)
Nice to end a night with a smile.
Now for a couple of home wins!
Toodles

Zenslinger said...

*cough* we had it all the way *cough*

Oh, yeah. I'm with you.

I went back down to the Bar to watch the save. A little hairy.

.500 yee haaaaw!

L-girl said...

Great wrap-up. Thanks for that.

I must admit I am not at all sorry I missed this game. I was exhausted from a long day at the computer, which began at 6:00 a.m., and wanted sleep more than I wanted baseball. (Yes, I am old!)

But it's so great that it happened! And also great to read about.

Love that dirty water, even in 4th place.

Amy said...

This one was worth staying up for, for me. I had to get something to balance out the misery of the night before.

I still think Papelbon sucks. When one looks at his stats and saves, it is easy to forget how close to the edge he often gets before finally, finally getting a third out.

Great write-up, Allan. It is amazing how intense a game can be when in reality so little is truly at stake!

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