Tagged: playoffs

The not-the-final-game game

Rays 2, Red Sox 4.

Watched from the 5th. Highlights:
– Beckett, looking a bit more like his old self.
– The broadcasters scanning the Tampa Bay crowd during a pitcher switch at score of Boston 4, Tampa 2, showing very sober and depressed looking Rays fans, and one yawner.
– Varitek’s homerun. Yes, the come back score was nice, but it was nice to see that Varitek, whose offense has falls the past two years, be able to clutch.
– Bradford’s underhand pitch still throws me off. Especially when he was pitching Ortiz’s intentional walk.
– As much as it stung, I had to admire the calculated risk the Rays made to walk Ortiz and hope for a double play out of Youk in the 8th. Because I still thought that was a risky bet.
– Upton’s ungraceful foul.
– Youk’s catching the final out.

General comments:
– I watched without sound. The audio was getting chopped up.
– After a game like this, one has to wonder if the World Series would be this exciting. ALCS does it again.
– The core 2007 WS team may still be around, but it’s not the same team.
– Some of those 1-2-3 innings flew by in a flash. This multi-tasker has
been busted for missing out a lot. But, I caught the last two scoring
runs, so I don’t feel so bad 🙂
– I’m still amazed everytime I watch Masterson pitch. Remember, this kid was in the double As just this spring.
– I don’t think I can watch in the Rays’ stadium. Those cow bells will drive me crazy. I get irate enough just dealing with my coworker’s whistling as it is.
– Series count: Boston 3, Tampa 3. This is beginning to look like a regular pattern. 

Finally, unrelated, but just as important:
I voted in the 2008 Presidential Election. You should as well.  

Ignorance is a bliss

MLB had some planning behind the scheduling of game times. When games run long in an already long-run game, spectators are unlikely to say “Oh, damn. I have lunch plans for folks. I need to go, even though they just scored the tying run in the 8th.”

Yep. That’s exactly what happened.

No technical glitches this time around. Just sleeping in on a lazy Sunday morning. And having the unfortunately lunch plans with a very otherwise sweet local family in an excellent restaurant. OK, so the fact that we were treated to the lunch made it all the sweeter.

In a way, it was nice. Nice to walk away bummed that we couldn’t stick around the exciting, nerve-wrecking ending of a tied game. But walk away know the Sox still had a chance. Not having to live in the misery to knowing about a loss.

Observations, from the 3rd through the 8th.
– Wow. Homerun slug fest. Both pitchers clearly struggling.
– I worry about Beckett sometimes. What happened to the ace we had last year? Every now and then, I see a flash of his original brilliance in a pitch here and there and a strike out or two. But he has become so much more hit-able.
– Funniest moment: Ellsbury’s bunt foul… that knocked off his helmet and dignity. Someone needs to play that to him every now and then to make him squirm. I’d do something like that to a coworker if I had the ammo.
– Most enjoyable: Youk’s apparent relief when his blown at-bat opportunity was justified by enabling Pedroia to run home on a wild pitch.

So, series is now at Tampa Bay 1, Red Sox 1.

Tampa Bay has been persistent and stubborn. Characteristics I can appreciate and respect as a Red Sox fan. May the best team win. I just hope it’s Red Sox.

Game 1

I started the morning off at the verge of throwing a temper tantrum.

ESPN wasn’t broadcasting anything. Dad had logged onto slingbox, but was using his tiny laptop screen and hovering over it himself. My Internet was being hogged by him. I couldn’t assemble the right cables to plug his laptop into the tv. Mum was being overly placating. And this was one of the few times I actually have time to watch a full game. If I had access.

After calling up the front desk in desperation to ask them to call the cable company, I continued sulking until I was surprised about 20 minutes later to see the game suddenly pop up on my formerly blank screen.

Highlights, from the 6th:
– Most gasp inducing moment: watching Drew be beaned very close under his head by a wild pitch.
– Most pleasing moment: Youk’s long hit to get the second rbi.
– Most disappointing moment: Having bases loaded, and left stranded.
– Most unbelievable: Dice-K’s endurance in this start.

Observations:
– Masterson has improved immensely from his spring training performances.
– This is the first time I’ve seen Papelbon pitch in a long time. I’m still boggled out of my mind how low his pay is in comparison to the other pitchers.
– Tampa Bay demonstrated a lot of composure and perseverance for a young team.

My star of the day: In spite of myself, I concded that it is Dice-K.

Red Sox 2, Tampa Bay 0. 

A century and counting

It was frustrating watching the Cubs-Dodgers match-up this morning. To the point I happily dozed off after the 5th.

I
have a hard time correlating the Cubs I watched this morning with the
Cubs that had the best record towards the end of the season.

I’ve
been spoilt, with the Red Sox. Even when they are down, the team still
gives it its best. I didn’t see that with the Cubs. The swinging, so
half-hearted. Someone remind me, is this the post-season?

It’s
too bad. I had high hopes. Enough to place a bet that the Cubs will
make it to the World Series. Now, I’ll just have to frame that ticket,
and caption it with “just short, for the 100th consecutive year.”

It’s still a Big Boys’ game

The younguns make it fun to watch, but the big guys remind us every now and then that they are as much a part of the team too. This game around it was Jason Bay and JD Drew taking the limelight.

Angels 5, Red Sox 7

   
We are one game closer to clinching the series. It’s not done yet, but the odds certainly seem to be on the Sox’s favour, don’t they?

Remember last year? Remember what a downright hostile environment the fans made it for JD Drew? Remember how he got booed more than any opposing team player in his own home field? His grandslam endeared him to the Red Sox Nation, but pity it took that.

His clinching homerun wasn’t quite as grand an event, but just as critical to the win. What I thought was a highlight was his catch of a homerun that almost was.

Lucky for Bay, he hit off well right away, no pun intended. This may be his first postseason, amongst a team of many returns even within the rookie ranks, but he doesn’t act it. At the rate he’s going, he’s got a good chance to get my vote as a series MVP.

Highlights- I had class this morning so caught only the first six innings:
– This was an offensive game. Up and down performance from two stellar pitchers.
– Watching Ortiz really husle an extra base to score. How often does that happen?
– Jason Bay’s homerun. No doubt about that one.
– Hunter’s semi-tantrum for a close call, resulting with hurting himself.
– JD Drew’s catch of a long flyball just at the fence’s edge.
– Dice-K’s messy 5th. He got lucky.
 

Manny Who?

That expression is probably going to stick around for a while!

Game 1: Angels 1, Red Sox 4.

I suppose more than anything, this is a confidence builder. A confidence builder for a team whose reaction upon hearing about Beckett’s delayed start was “oh, sh**”. An assurance that while having Beckett would be nice, they have it in themselves to believe in their own skill as well as in their team as a whole.

Or maybe they didn’t want to be the one to muck it up for the pitcher, no matter who it was. And probably least of all for their most solid lefthander, however young he is.

Regardless, this was a win that this fan is grateful for, to kick start the postseason. And a pleasing reminder that our homegrown kids have it in them to pull it off, with or without the star players. Finally, that they are the ones who make watching ball fun.

Oh, by the way, Bay, thank you.