Thursday, June 21, 2007
Doesn't a Georgia Slugfest sound like something that might actually exist? Every year on the third week of June, come on down to Savannah for the Georgia Slugfest. There'll be slug races, a slug petting zoo, slug eating contests, and so on.
The Sox belted 5 homeruns last night in Atlanta, which is saying something because Turner Field is not a homerun friendly ballpark. But Buddy Carlyle is a homerun friendly pitcher. At least, last night he was. He's allowed 6 homeruns this season, half of which were from last night's onslaught.
The Sox also hit 5 doubles, and 5 singles to go with their 5 homeruns. With the 4 walks they drew, they had 19 baserunners, and drove in 11 of them.
Just as impressive as the offense was the pitching. Julian "Air Traffic Control" Tavarez had one of his best starts of the season. He went 7 innings, allowing no earned runs off 3 hits and 1 walk. None of the hits were for extra bases.
This was the 3rd start that Julian has gone 7 innings. At the beginning of May, his ERA was at 6.48, now it's down to 4.50. In the month of June, he's got a 2.20 ERA in 4 starts. Right now, he might be the second best pitcher in the rotation.
JD Drew led off the game with a homer, and hit a double in the 2nd, but was removed from the game in the bottom of the inning due to tightness in his right quadriceps. The Sox say that it was merely a precautionary move, and considering it was a 7-0 game in the bottom of the 2nd, that's entirely possible. The Red Sox have a travel day today. We'll see what happens with Drew in San Diego.
The interleague schedule has allowed Francona to give Mike Lowell some time off. With Ortiz at first and Youkilis at third, Lowell has been sitting on the bench with an injured thumb, which might be affecting his swing. Lowell is definitely slumping as of late, hitting .203 in June.
Julio Lugo was once again hitless last night. He was robbed of a single when Jason Varitek went back to tag second on a line drive to left field. The line drive fell in, but Varitek was forced out at third, meaning that Lugo reached on a 9-5 fielder's choice. He is hitless in his last 16 at-bats, is hitting .201 this season and an appalling .109 in June.
Coco Crisp hit a 3 run shot in last night's game. Coco homered in every game of the series. He's hitting .300 this month. It would be great if he were finally coming around at the plate.
The Man of the Game is Julian Tavarez who went 7 innings, allowing no runs off 3 hits. He struck out 4 and directed all the traffic on the infield.
Manny Ramirez: 3/4, HR, 2B, 2 RBI, 2 Runs, BB
JD Drew: 2/2, HR, 2B, RBI, 2 Runs
Coco Crisp: 2/5, HR, 3 RBI
The Yankees lost to the Rockies, building the lead back up to 10 games in the AL East.
The Red Sox fly into San Diego, and will face some tough pitching. Matsuzaka against Chris Young on Friday night, Wakefield against Maddux on Saturday, and then a pitching deul that I'm really excited about: Beckett vs. Peavy on Sunday.