… and Pedroia volunteered to be secondary catcher. I almost want to see that.
In the meantime, I’m wondering how bad shape Beckett is in terms of health. It hasn’t been a good start for him this season.
Another aside: On my drive back north yesterday, I stopped by NYC to have dinner with a high school classmate and his wife. I miraculously found street parking in the Village, ignored a brief thought about a possible break in with my car bulging at the seams with personal belongings for my move. But I circled and backtracked my steps back to my car… just to take the Red Sox magnet of the side of my car in hide it in the trunk to avoid attracting any attention. Just. In. Case.
Wow. Didn’t think I would be able to still watch the game. Am currently on the Left Coast for business. Came on in time to see Pedroia tag Cabrera.
Exciting moments of the game that I was lucky enough to catch:
– Double-play by Pedroia in the 8th
– Coco and Pedroia in the 8th.
– Lopez almost force Abreu to a face surgery. (damn. I’m not sure I’d be all the calm if I were Abreu.
– Casey saving Lugo of another error with a fantastic base catch and out on Abreu.
– A-Rod striking out (apparently the second of the night!)
– Delcarmen closing, effectively.
– Wow. Coco and Ellsbury on the same line-up. Two of the Sox’s fastest runners and most effective base stealers. Must be quite a show.
Have thoughts about the Yankee-Red Sox rivalry. Will probably post it in time for the next match up later this week.
Congratulations, Pedroia, for a very well-deserved Rookie of the Year award! There never was a question that you were the winner, but it was awfully nice to see you prove it beyond doubt in your performance last month.
How can one not chuckle when looking at this picture. Look! At the difference in height between the two!
On the same token, the team teases him with “low five”!
I didn’t forget the already awarded awards:
– Sad news. No agreement reached between Lowell and the Sox. We just may be saying goodbye when the other teams start contacting him.
– Next: Cy Young!!
How wrong I was! I thought Pedroia was overeager with swinging the bat at the play-offs, especially in the ALDS and ALCS. He seemed to be going through a mini-slump of sorts. He wasn’t hitting as well and swinging widely. I attributed it to rookie nerves and inexperience although his performance in the regular season demonstrated that he is capable of patience and control. There may have been some of both, but this offers a better picture as a whole.
A broken bone. Ouch.*****. What a tough guy. Reminds me of some of the ambitious recent college grad employees we see around the office. I can understand Pedroia’s motivation and drive. And a World Series possibility? Yes, he stuck to it and did fantastic. Congrats and hope he gets a the Rookie of the Year. He better. He deserves it.
I’m clapping like a gleeful 4-year-old with the news of the clubhouse exercising the option for Wakefield. Yes, he is injured. Yes, he had not had a good postseason. Yes, he had not had a good end of the regular season. But 17 wins in a season? It counts for something. It counts for a lot. Then there is also the intangible.
I alluded often to the “Red Sox identity.” The postseason really emphasizes on how professional baseball is different from school teams. It’s business. I don’t say it in a demeaning way, just factually. But, given all that, once the player is on a team, he plays for the team. I didn’t see a single person on that team being half-hearted about the World Series win, even if he was bound for free agency. All this, after all, is a team sport.
But some players got deeper into the sense of team and seem to adopt the team as his home team. Those players identify themselves as a member of that specific team, regardless of pay, and regardless of team’s hardware or lack thereof. Of course, this sense of is limited to some common sense factors like decent treatment from the clubhouse, some level of loyalty to the coaching staff and nucleus team composition.
Some players I feel had developed a true sense of Red Sox identity:
- Varitek (obviously, the captain)
- and Wakefield (for whose return I truly celebrate)
Some, I hope, will develop as they go deeper into their budding careers, and some of whom are starting to show it, but are really too rookie to tell:
Finally, some who want to, providing the club demonstrates some reciprocal treatment:
- Schilling, to some degree
And I’ll dare to say it: sometimes I feel Manny is Red Sox, other times I wonder if he plays more for himself. He certainly has helped define the Red Sox with his seemingly carefree and loose attitude. But who has his loyalty? We may technically hold the contract but what is his heart saying? I can’t tell.
Also, I have no idea where to place Crisp and Beckett. I hope Beckett joins the club in more ways than a contractual agreement. Being the ace certainly made him more appealing but how red does he bleed? How red is he capable of bleeding?
a whooping 13-1 game.. but, Sox fans, before you start gloating too much, let me remind you the last time we thought the Sox were going to steamroll over the other team was the Indians in the ALCS. 10-3, c’mon, how bad can it get, right? Yeah, don’t you start protesting that you never flinched.
On the other hand, what a long long game. We ended up packing up early so I can drop some of my friends off at their respective homes so they don’t have to walk in the late hour and in the rain. I didn’t miss much. The score was what we left it as. And apparently leaving the just-right conditions for Gagne to pitch another clean closer.
Why did Clint Hurdle keep Speier in as long? I had to look up the play-by-play account to double check me facts. I didn’t realise they switched out Morales (I was otherwise distracted by my friends) but that was one long long inning. I’m not complaining at all as a Sox fan. But as a spectator I was baffled by how Speier stayed. It was only for three batters, but it felt like a lot more. I know I have the benefit of hindsight; he should have been yanked after the second walk. Not that one run would have made a difference but it was surreal watching the walking runs.
The run by Pedroia was, with lack of better vocabulary, awesome. Talk about fueling momentum of a team, especially after an 1-2-3 first half by Beckett. Keep it up, guys! But stay focused. Do what you’ve been telling the press: that the Rockies have an awesome thing going and you need to take them seriously. Then we’ll have a good series.
An image for the game:
From Boston.com. Look at the caption. I want to bluster “Yes, he DID! Look at the pitcture itself!!!” No, I’m not blaming the umpire. Watching it live, I can imagine it being called a tie.
I have many more thoughts about the Sox, the roster, and the game.. but will have to wait until after I get some sleep. I already begged pardons preemptively for my behaviour at work for this month, but I don’t want to push the envelop on my colleagues’ patience. Not yet.
… that Beckett may have a shot for #21 as well?
Instead of dwelling on that, I figured it’s time I list out some of my favourite Red Sox players, in no particular order:
- Ellsbury: What a sensation! And a joy to watch! I hope this is the beginning of a long and great career. He certainly has much in store for him. He runs like lightening, hits remarkably well, and dares to take risks defensively and offensively. For some reason he makes me think of a younger (and more clean-shaven) and outfielder version of Garciaparra.
- Pedroia: Size doesn’t matter for this guy. Quick on his feet and in his mind. He has saved many pitchers from possible earned hits with his good reaction times and great defense. The fact that he has one of the highest batting averages known to rookies and veterans doesn’t hurt, either. Although he has been overshadowed by Ellsbury lately, I haven’t forgotten how much he has done and continues to do.
- Beckett: 20 wins. Need I say more?
- Lowell: He considers himself a lowkey player in this team. Yeah, right. That attitude makes me only like him more.
- Hinske: He is entertaining!! Every time I see him, I think he belongs on a football field, not in the baseball diamond.
- Varitek: His batting has been pretty bad lately but I will always respect him for his leadership. He has guided many pitchers, young and old, through many wins. Buchholz’s no-hitter against Baltimore was a sensation; I think Varitek had far more influence in that win than the media credited. Here’s to hoping that he will bring his slugging self back to form for the play-offs.