Red Sox Chick/Toeing the Rubber

Because you always need a backup plan

Ready for the Weekend

Players petting puppies. Because sometimes we just need to not be so serious. (Nate Spears and Jason Place photo from Portland last year courtesy of Kelly O'Connor and used with permission)

The Seattle Mariners, the Chicago White Sox and the Minnesota Twins are the only teams in the American League with less wins and more losses than the Boston Red Sox.  These are not the halcyon days we dreamed of back in December when this team felt like it was going to be unstoppable.

Luckily for us, our team plays in the American League East.  Arguably the most competitive league in Major League Baseball, yes?  So even though the Red Sox are tied for last in the division and five games out of first, the lead the Tampa Bay Rays, New York Yankees and Baltimore Orioles have over them is not close to being insurmountable.  As we all are painfully aware, the team needs to get their act together and start playing consistently the way we know they can.  And I believe they will…I just hope it starts sooner rather than later.  More specifically, I hope it starts this damn weekend.

Because I can not lie…I’ve been all right with the way things have gone thus far.  Sure they aren’t where I want them to be but we’ve had some fun games and some exciting games to go along with the pain and I’m just enjoying watching baseball.  But if I have to watch this team struggle against the Yankees in the Bronx I might just end up tossing my television out the window.

This revelation doesn’t make me proud.  I know it’s stupid to put this series above any of the others we’ve watched this year.  I know this.  But, honestly, I couldn’t care less.  Listen, 2004 really did get all of the Yankees ghosts out of my life.  I don’t look at the Yankees with any kind of fear and I don’t ever think they’re unbeatable or that Mariano Rivera is indestructible…all that is gone.  BUT what isn’t gone is my extreme dislike for them and many in their fan base.  (Truth be told, I actually know some fine people who also happen to be Yankees fans so I don’t subscribe to the “all Yankees fans are <insert your own expletives here>” theory, but there are certainly large chunks of the fan base that make me want to see them cry.)  So I make no predictions for this weekend but I enter it full of hope.  Hope that the Sox can take the series (see Baseball Gods?  I’m not even asking for a sweep!), not be humiliated on national television and hope that this team can, once again, make 55,000 Yankees fans shut up.

Maybe of interest only to me:  The Kansas City Royals, who just took the series from the Yankees in New York, are currently 3.5 games out of first place in the AL Central, holding on to second place with a record of 20-17.  The Red Sox are 17-20 this morning.  The Yankees are 20-15 and in second place.

We live in strange days, my friends.

Advertisements

May 13, 2011 Posted by | 2011 | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

West Coast Cranking

Remember Jed?  He's back!  (Photo courtesy of Kelly O'Connor/sittingstill.net and used with permission)

Remember Jed? He's back! (Photo courtesy of Kelly O'Connor/sittingstill.net and used with permission)

Well I made it through six innings last night – that’s progress!

More interesting progress is that we are supposed to be getting Clay Buchholz and Jed Lowrie back today and Josh Beckett back at some point this weekend.  Yanks and Rays both lost last night as well so while the Sox didn’t gain ground, they at least didn’t lose any and maybe the bringing back of more pitchers who can pitch will help kickstart this second half.

Bummed that I won’t be able to live blog or chat the game today as I had hoped but real life calls.  I’ll hopefully be able to catch a few innings, though. Hoping Clay’s return is the beginning of a good run for the team.

If the 10pm games are too hard for you to stay up for this weekend, there are always the PawSox and SeaDogs to take in.  There’s a 12pm PawSox game today in Pawtucket and a 7pm SeaDogs game in New Hampshire.  Both teams are home on Thursday for 7pm games with the SeaDogs hosting “Adrian Gonzalez Bobblehead Night” and Mike Lowell rehabbing at Pawtucket. There’s enough local baseball to keep you happy if you miss the Red Sox.

Also today is the “Football at Fenway” soccer game which annoys me on many levels.  First off, Fenway is in America and in America football is not what’s being played at Fenway today.  What genuinely pisses me off about the soccer game is the destruction to the field.  This isn’t January.  Unlike when they had hockey at Fenway, the team wasn’t going to be playing any time soon.  The Sox will be back in Boston a week from Friday and I can only imagine how terrible the field will look.  For the record, I’m against concerts messing with the field during the season as well.  Who decided it was a good idea to screw with the field IN season?  If you’re so inclined, you can catch said soccer game on NESN tonight.  I’ll stick with the SeaDogs on the radio, thanks.

July 21, 2010 Posted by | 2010 | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Runs and Beer

Jim Lonborg threw out the first pitch to Luis Exposito (and Casey Kelly got his first win in Triple-A!). One of the very few photos I took this weekend.

Jim Lonborg threw out the first pitch to Luis Exposito (and Casey Kelly got his first win in Double-A!). One of the very few photos I took this weekend.

Because I, apparently, will never learn, I was genuinely surprised by the amount of bitching and moaning by some Red Sox fans online late yesterday after the Orioles got the walk off win.

The Sox won the series, in a pretty damn forceful way.  The O’s won the last game in extra innings.  There is no shame in the Sox losing a game to the Orioles, regardless of their standing in the league.  The team is still made up of professional players who, on occasion, will show signs of why they belong in the big leagues.  Being greedy or entitled is unappealing and annoying.  The Sox are playing great right now, why not just enjoy that?  I hate when the Sox lose too, but they had a great weekend and losing a game in extra innings will always be, to me, an indication that the winning team just had better luck.

I missed both weekend games, as I expected, but found myself in Portland for an unexpected trip to Hadlock Field to see the SeaDogs play in a double-header on Saturday (they split it).  Sunday was a group game in honor of  a friend I met online (at a Red Sox blog, no less!) who passed away this year.  There was a good group of people there to honor Andy’s memory but, sadly, the weather didn’t cooperate and the SeaDogs game got rained out.  All in all, not a terrible way to spend a couple of days.  God speed, Andy.

Sox work on the beginning of another winning streak tonight in Cleveland where they start a four-game series against the Indians.  Daisuke Matsuzaka is on the mound tonight against old friend Fausto Carmona.

Unless something really strange happens, like a storm that knocks my power out, we’ll be here tomorrow night for the Tuesday night live chat…with Tim Wakefield on the mound.

I have many friends traveling all over today…safe travels and much love to you all.

June 7, 2010 Posted by | 2010 | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Wins. Wins are nice.

Welcome back to the rotation, Wake!  (Photo taken by me in 2005)

Welcome back to the rotation, Wake. (Photo taken by me in 2005)

I really enjoy these mornings when watching “Breakfast with the Sox” is something I go out of my way to do.  (When the Sox lose, I don’t watch the replays, hell I usually don’t even watch the post-game show!)

As an aside before I start bragging on Clay, Based on feedback I’ve been receiving the past few weeks after each live chat, I’m banging around the idea of a message board connected to the blog as a place where folks can talk baseball (or just random daytime talk before games!) and have game day discussions (with a chat room attached as well).  Folks seem a little reticent to use the comments for chatting and some suggestions have come in about having a discussion board to visit.  Not sure what the response would be from the masses, though, so I thought I’d throw the idea out there and see what you all think.  Shoot me an email or leave a note in the comments section and let me know what  you think (emails would be great since then I’d have YOUR email address and could send out invites for the board if folks are so inclined).  What say you, folks?

Continue reading

May 20, 2010 Posted by | 2010 | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Yankees AGAIN?

Mike Cameron - coming soon to an outfield near you!  Photo courtesy of Kelly O'Connor/sittingstill.net and used with permission.

Mike Cameron - coming soon to an outfield near you! Photo courtesy of Kelly O'Connor/sittingstill.net and used with permission.

Weekend is over, no sense dwelling on it.  Now we are witness to one of the oddest things in MLB scheduling:  The two-day series.  Not only do the Sox play one in New York but then they play another one in Boston against the Twins.  I don’t normally like the two-day series but anything that gets the Sox out of the Bronx sooner rather than later is all right with me.

Daisuke Matsuzaka goes up against Phil Hughes tonight.  Hughes is 5-0 with an ERA of 1.38.  Would be nice if tonight they got his ERA up past four.  Daisuke is coming off a tremendous start and though having to follow it up against the Yankees doesn’t give me all kinds of warm feelings, at least I don’t feel the impending doom that I once might have felt.  Anything could happen tonight so I’m staying positive!

Genuine good news is that Mike Cameron will most likely be activated for the Yankees series either today or tomorrow and Jacoby Ellsbury is starting his rehab assignments this week – this afternoon at Pawtucket and starting tomorrow (because the PawSox go on the road) in Portland. I’m looking forward to the team getting all of it’s pieces back together (not that Darnell McDonald hasn’t been a little slice of heaven because he has) and making that big run.  The Sox are 5-5 in their last ten games.  Not stellar (they were 6-4 in the ten games previous) but also not as horrible as it feels.

So the fun begins at 7:05 tonight (on both NESN and ESPN).  Could be fun.

Tomorrow the Sox are, as of right now, putting TBA up against CC Sabathia for first Yankees live chat of the year.  The Sox are four for four when we live chat so join us!  Would be nice if we were live chatting a two game sweep!

Enjoy the day folks!  For, regardless of which way the score goes, the night will most likely be filled with much cursing and the reaching of the Tums.

May 17, 2010 Posted by | 2010 | , , , , , | 1 Comment

You’re only gonna see it if you leave

Matt Pender proving there is life after baseball!  (Photo lifted without permission from broadwayworld.com)

Matt Pender proving there is life after baseball! (Photo lifted without permission from broadwayworld.com)

The Portland Sea Dogs have their home opener tomorrow night against the Trenton Thunder.  Today?  They’re in New Britain playing the Rock Cats…at 10:35 this morning.  I absolutely adore the idea of morning baseball.  There’s something a bit self-indulgent about taking a morning off in the middle of the week just to watch a baseball game.  Living on the East Coast this doesn’t happen an awful lot for me.  I won’t be able to watch the game in person but I think I’ll be giving a listen this morning.  The SeaDogs have an exciting roster this season (Casey Kelly had his first start of the season yesterday – yay pitchers!) and should be a lot of fun to follow.

Back in Boston we also get afternoon baseball again.  1:10pm ET start time for the second Sox/Twins game today.  If you don’t have NESN or the Extra Innings package but get the MLB Network, you’re in luck.  Tomorrow’s game is at 1:10pm ET as well.  It seems a little crazy to me that this coming Monday is already Patriots’ Day.  Given my appreciation of morning baseball, yes, I’ll definitely be there!  But for now, we have to deal with John Lackey pitching against Kevin Slowey at Target Field.  So far, Lackey is on the path to quickly becoming a fan favorite.  Let’s hope he keeps it up today!

Last night I had a dream that Bronson Arroyo hired me to be his personal assistant and when he found out, Kyle Snyder, in a fit of jealousy (hey it was a dream!) burned down Great American Ballpark.  That will teach me to not stay up late alternating between watching baseball and “Backdraft”.

Yesterday, Blue Jay Ricky Romero was 6 outs away from a no-hitter when he gave up a home run to former Jay Alex Rios.  What I found fascinating is the Blue Jays fans and their booing of Rios every time he came up to bat (prior to the home run) since the White Sox have been in Toronto for this season.   The Jays put Rios on waivers last year (which is when the White Sox picked him up)…he didn’t sign there as a free agent.  Why all the hate (Jays fans, please feel free to enlighten me – I’m looking at you, Steve!)?  I recall that they treat Eric Hinske the same way and when I asked about it one told me it was because after his Rookie of the Year season and the big contract the Jays gave him, Hinske never performed up to expectations.  Tough crowd in Toronto.

And, finally, my favorite article today (thus far), courtesy of ESPN.com is about former MLB pitcher Matthew Pender.  (Here is a photo of Matt in a promotional shot for the Off-Broadway production he’s in.  2 things.  1 – It’s a little NSFW even though you don’t see anything and 2. You’re welcome, ladies…and some men too!).  After a shoulder-injury ended his career, the, now 28 year-old was convinced by his sister to pursue acting as a career and is starring in “When Joey Married Bobby” at the Times Square Arts Center’s Roy Arias Theatre.

I’ve had many discussions about the question of what do players who never make it long-term in baseball do with their lives.  Some have college educations, degrees and talents that will suit them well.  Others get thrust into sports at such a young age that it’s really all they know.  I’ve often wondered what the average player who has to leave baseball for whatever reasons ends up doing with his life – so reading this story and seeing how Matt has just picked up and moved on to something he finds equally satisfying is refreshing and a bit inspiring.  Baseball doesn’t have to be the end-all for you – especially if you can focus on picking yourself up and devote your time to something else.  Good luck to Matt.  The show he’s in sounds like it’ll be fun (and he’s already getting good reviews!).

More daytime baseball today than we can shake a stick at!  Hope you all get to enjoy some of it!

April 14, 2010 Posted by | 2010 | , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Baseball Overload!

Brandon Morrow Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

Brandon Morrow Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

The PawSox lost tonight.  This bummed me out much more than I expected.  Best I can figure, I’m subconsciously anticipating how I’ll feel when their season is over if Kyle Snyder doesn’t get a call-up.  Which, as the month goes on, becomes more possible than not.  And THAT truly bums me out.

So I’m going to try and not focus on that and focus on the awesomeness that is a Red Sox can of whoop ass and a Tampa Bay loss to boot.  Josh Beckett was, as they say, the balls.  Four hits and seven strike outs in five scoreless innings.  How’s that tingling working for you, JP?  8-1 was the final score (Okajima giving one up in the ninth…isn’t it nice when that doesn’t matter?) and the Jays took down the Rays 6-4.  This means the Sox are now 2.5 games out of first place.  Can you dig it?  I knew you could!

Speaking of seasons ending…Clay Buchholz’ just did, unless he gets bumped up.  Portland lost their third game in a row to the Trenton Thunder and got booted out of the playoffs.   I hate the slow death of baseball every year.  It’s completely depressing.  I need something to cheer me up…back to the Red Sox!

Mike Lowell came back from his mini-vacation to hit four rbi, including a home run, and hit a triple short of the cycle.  Maybe we should put more guys on the DL and have them come back gangbusters like Lowell and Beckett?

Coco Crisp also had 3 hits, and Jason Varitek had 2.  David Ortiz and Mark Kotsay were the only two in the Sox lineup to NOT get a hit.  Add to that, Manny Delcarmen and Justin Masterson pitching scoreless innings to get to the ninth and you have a really well-rounded, ass-kicking team!  I know at least 3 people who were there tonight and what a game they got to see!

Over in the National League, Bronson Arroyo got his 14th win by pitching almost seven innings and giving up only four hits and one run.  And Reds fans were worried about him at the beginning of the season!

And back to my favorite pitcher…Kyle got in the game tonight and faced six batters.  He gave up a walk and a single and he struck out Matt Carson (fly out, pop up, ground out,  were how he got his other outs).  So 1.1 scoreless innings tonight.  Kyle’s pitching well.  I’m working on which player is on the 40-man who I can put the whammy on to get Kyle a spot over there.  (I’m clueless about this, mind you.  Live in my own little world where I can mess with the 40-man roster whenever I want…)  I think it’s a toss up between Chris Carter and Marcus McBeth.   They need to have a Celebrity Deathmatch-like battle to see who gets the boot.

When I was in 8th grade, April Vigliotta wrote in my autograph book “Maybe someday you’ll own the Red Sox”.  I’ll settle for being the GM.  😆

Currently watching the Mariners and their rookie pitcher, thus far, kicking Yankee ass.  It’s a nice way to end the evening.  (In his first MLB game, Brandon Morrow just struck out his seventh batter – one Alex Rodriguez.  It’s the end of the seventh inning and, let’s just say, if you can watch this game…you’d really want to right now!)

Edited to add:  The Mariners announcers keep saying exactly what Morrow is doing and it’s making me crazy.  I didn’t realize I was as superstitious about this as I, apparently, am!

Second edit:  Brandon Morrow is out of the game.  Wilson Betemit hit an rbi double to break up the no-hitter with two outs in the 8th inning.  Kid kicked ass…good for him.  Now finish the game for him, Mariners, and get the kid the damn win!

September 5, 2008 Posted by | Players, Playoffs, That was sweet! | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Friday Night Baseball

Josh Beckett Photo by Brita Meng Outzen

Josh Beckett Photo by Brita Meng Outzen

Well there’s good and bad news on the minor league playoff front.  The good?  The PawSox won a heck of a game last night (Devern Hansack pitched 6 no-hit innings!).  The bad?  Clay Buchholz and the SeaDogs lost their second game to the Thunder (actually Clay didn’t lose.  He got a no-decision).

Oh well…today is a new day, right?  BoSox are in Texas, PawSox are in Pennsylvania and the SeaDogs are home tonight!  It’ll be a great night for baseball all around!

Yesterday was a long and weird day.  I’m hoping the weirdness ended last night.

Red Sox fans hit the trifecta tonight:  Sean Casey, Mike Lowell and Josh Beckett all back in action!  I’d love for Joshua Patrick to throw a no-hitter; hell a perfect game, that would be good too!  But I’ll settle for six solid innings and the lead when he leaves.

I don’t think that’s too much to ask.

September 5, 2008 Posted by | Players, Playoffs | , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Let’s talk baseball tonight

Kyle Snyder Head Shot from the PawSox Site

Kyle Snyder Head Shot from the PawSox Site

I went from thinking I was too tired to write, to writing my third of four new posts (I think four – as of now the fourth will be a post about last Friday for tomorrow…I might be inspired to write more though).  Postapalooza, as Ted says!

Both the PawSox and the SeaDogs lost the first of their playoff games tonight.  PawSox just got hammered by the Yankees and the SeaDogs lost a 2-1 game to the Thunder.  Meh…one game, right?  Just one game.  They have plenty of time left to come back.

Much to my delight, Kyle got into the game tonight.  He faced 8 batters, striking out three in a row (swinging) and giving up three hits.  One of his strike outs was Shelley Duncan.  Yeah, that pleased the hell out of me.

Thanks to an amazing, late-inning comeback, the Red Sox helped themselves pick up another game in the division.  The Yanks just beat the Rays (yep, I was rooting for the Yanks – go figure!) so it’s been quite the day for baseball.

We also saw history tonight on ESPN…first time “Instant Replay” was used in MLB.  And, what a surprise, eh Kenny Rogers, it was used during a Yankees game.  ARod gets his homer and his rbi and the Rays get their loss.  We’re coming to get you, Tampa Bay!  🙂

September 4, 2008 Posted by | Players, Playoffs, Randomness, Rants, That was sweet! | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

It’s September

Jacoby Ellsbury Photo taken by ME over the weekend.

Jacoby Ellsbury Photo taken by ME over the weekend.

Today, I was supposed to be on a bus (actually as I write this!) heading into town to take  a TRAIN with KellyO to Pawtucket to watch the final game of the regular season for the PawSox.  I can’t describe how much I wanted to do this.  I have a worry that it might have been the last time I see Kyle Snyder on the field in person.  But I had to make the “adult” decision to not go based on the events of last week.  No license, no credit cards or debit cards, no easy access to money on a holiday, jacked up train prices…it all equaled my having to bail on the trip to Rhode Island.  Last night the PawSox won their 84th game of the season – a new single-season record for the team (congrats!!!).   I hope there is plenty more baseball for Kyle to play and that the PawSox do well!

How blessed are we as baseball fans?  For the first time in the team’s history, the Lowell Spinners are in the playoffs this year.  The Portland SeaDogs?  In the playoffs for the fourth season in a row.  Pawtucket Red Sox?  Playoffs.  We need the BoSox to get there to finish it up for us – and I believe they will.

Honestly, what does this say about the talent this organization chooses?  Single, double and triple-A all going to the playoffs?  These kids are doing SOMETHING right!

Speaking of “kids”:  A year ago tonight was a Saturday I was with KellyO in Fenway Park watching Clay Buchholz throw his no-hitter.  (Ironically, this past Saturday, Clay was pitching in Portland.)  What a difference a year makes!

In spite of my purse being stolen from work on Thursday, the rest of the weekend turned out to be pretty amazing.  It seems that any time I feel like wallowing in self-pity, God puts something out there to remind me that things could always be worse. So prayers and pvs to everyone out there who needs them!

I always talk about how women can appreciate baseball on different levels.  And I argue that if men sports/baseball bloggers can be taken seriously even if some of their blogging involves drooling over attractive women, then women sports/baseball bloggers should be able to drool over the attractive men while still being taken seriously for their baseball and/or sports knowlege.  So imagine my immense pleasure when my 7 year-old niece was looking at some pictures I took over the weekend.  She kept talking about how “cute” Jacoby Ellsbury is.  She’s been asking me for a Jason Bay t-shirt since he joined the team.  So last night I asked her if she would rather have a Jacoby Ellsbury shirt than the Jason Bay one and she got very upset and told me “no”.  She went on to explain that she liked Jacoby mostly because he’s cute, but that she likes Jason Bay because he’s “good” and HIS shirt is the shirt she wants.

See?  Even a seven year-old gets what many, many others don’t.  Deadspin, Barstool Sports and the like can all eat it.

BoSox against Orioles for the next three days and first up is Paul Byrd.  I’m starting to get greedy…I want a sweep!  And I want the PawSox to make it 85 wins on the season and I want Kyle somehow moved to the 40-man roster and brought up for September call-ups.  I don’t ask for much, huh?

🙂

Have a great day, folks!

September 1, 2008 Posted by | Memories, Pawtucket Red Sox, Players | , , , , , , , | 8 Comments