Tuesday, May 29, 2007


The injury to Josh Beckett was the first major injury to a key player on the Sox. The Sox got along without him, and he came back in style on Tuesday night.

Beckett went 7 innings against the Indians. Now, you wouldn't be able to tell it from the past two games, but Cleveland has one of the best offenses in baseball. But both Schilling and Beckett have pretty much shut them down.

Beckett allowed 2 runs off 3 hits, and one walk. He struck out 7. His finger appeared to be a non-factor.

Beckett improves to 8-0. The last time a Sox pitcher started their season 8-0 was Rich Garces (yeah, weird) in 2000. Of course, all of those wins were in relief, and some of them were blown saves that turned into wins, or tied games in which he entered then the Sox scored.

Kevin Youkilis continues to be a monster. Another game with a hit, another game with multiple hits, and both hits were big. An RBI double in the 1st to put the Sox up 1-0, and a homer in the 5th to put us up 2-0.

Who would have predicted that before May was out, Hideki Okajima would have 4 saves and a lower ERA than Papelbon? I really like the decision to bring him in to pitch the 9th. There were several left handed hitters due up, and Papelbon wasn't too sharp last night. Good call to give Paps the night off and let Okajima go and get some lefties.

By the way, Ortiz has missed the last three games, and we've won all three. This speaks to the strength of this team, top to bottom.

The Red Sox are 5-0 against the other two division leading teams. They've also gone 11-4 against 2nd place teams (Detroit, Seattle, Atlanta, and Baltimore).

The Man of the Game is Kevin Youkilis. He went 2 for 4 with an RBI double, and a solo homerun. Youk is tied for 2nd in hitting in the AL with Magglio Ordonoez, only .002 behind Posada.

Honorable Mentions:
Josh Beckett: 7 IP, 2 ER, 7 K
Jason Varitek: 1/3, HR, BB

Funny side note. Mister April a.k.a. Alex Rodriguez, is hitting .242 in May with 5 homers and 10 RBI. He, and the Yankees SUCK! They lost their 5th straight, falling 3-2 to Toronto.

When does it get to the point when we start rooting for Baltimore and Toronto when they're playing the Yankees? I think we're at that point right now.


The body of Patriots defensive lineman Marquise Hill was found yesterday in Lake Pontchartrain, north of Louisiana. The 24 year old LSU alumnus was jet skiing with a female acquaintance in choppy waters a few days ago. After an accident, his acquaintance was able to grab hold of a pylon and wait for rescuers to come, but Marquise was unable to do so. As he drifted away, he tried to keep her calm. He was missing for a day until his body was found.

Marquise played in 13 games for the Patriots over 3 seasons, backing up Vince Wilfork in the interior of the D-Line. He received a Super Bowl ring in 2004, his rookie season.

"We have suffered a stunning and tragic loss. Marquise will be remembered as a thoughtful and caring young man who established himself as one of the year-round daily fixtures of our team. I send my deepest condolences to the Hill family."
-Bill Belichick


This game had the feel of a playoff game. It was close between two very good teams, and there was A LOT of drama.

After struggling in his recent starts, Schilling has done some tinkering with pitching coach John Farrell and it looks like the tinkering worked. He racked up a season high in strikeouts with 10, walked no one, and allowed only one run.

The bullpen was less than sharp. Romero couldn't get an out and was charged with an earned run. Donnelly threw a perfect 8th, but Papelbon was way off. It seems like Jonathan's been struggling just a bit in his recent outings. He gave up a few hits to Atlanta, allowed a run to New York, and very nearly blew the save last night. I know that with Papelbon, if he doesn't strike out the side in 12 pitches, he looks off. Nevertheless, I'm a bit concerned.

Kevin Youkilis is a man on fire. Twenty straight games with a hit, eight straight games with multiple hits. He went 2 for 5 with a double and an inside the park homerun. The last Sox player to hit an inside the parker was Trot Nixon in 2005.

Speaking of Christopher T. Nixon, good to see him greeted very warmly by the Fenway Faithful. I'm glad that with him, unlike some players (Shane Hildabrand), there wasn't much drama when he left town.

His helmet looks far too clean, though.

Crisp and Lugo each stole a base. They've combined for 25 steals. The rest of the team has 6. Lugo has yet to be caught stealing this season.

Dustin "By the way" Pedroia raised his average to .298 with a 3 for 3 performance, including a pair of doubles.

Five different hitters had RBI: Manny, Youkilis, Drew, Lugo, and Lowell.

David Ortiz missed the game due to tightness in his hamstring. Ortiz blames his recent bout with the flu for the tightness. Francona asserts that he's just being careful with Ortiz for "the long haul." It's unclear whether or not Ortiz will play in tonight's game.

The Man of the Game is Curt Schilling who went 7 innings, allowing 6 hits (only one for extra bases), no walks, one earned run, and struck out 10 men.

Honorable Mentions:
Dustin Pedroia: 3/3, 2 2Bs, BB, Run
Kevin Youkilis: 2/5, 2B, HR, RBI, 2 Runs
Brendan Donnelly: IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 BB

The win gave the Sox a 35-15 record through 50 games, which is tied for the second best start in team history. In 1986, the Sox started 35-16. In 1946, they went 41-9 (.820!)in their first 50 games.

Baltimore beat the Royals, Toronto beat the Yankees.

Beckett comes off the DL to face the Indians tonight. Beckett actually has had some struggles against Cleveland with an 0-2 lifetime record. He'll be up against Jeremy Sowers, who struggled to start the season but has recently pitched well.