Saturday, October 01, 2005

Closing In

"There's a lot of history between these teams. But history's been changing lately." --David Ortiz after tonight's win

People, you don't have to listen to me and my theories. But David has spoken. I hope you'll listen. This is what I've been saying. Anyone can win in any year. All right, some teams can win in any year. But the whole idea of counting the Red Sox out simply because they're the Red Sox is dead.

Still, I pick up the Daily News and read quotes--from Shaughnessy--about how the Sox were put here to make us suffer, and thoughts of all the old collapses are rushing back into our heads this weekend and how the curse is still alive.

There's just no reason for that. (Also from today's Daily News: They quoted a Fenway Park scalper, and the guy gave his name as "Richard Puller." And they let it get through.)

Great win tonight. I love it when Jeter makes the final out of a game. Jason almost hit the Avalon. Timlin was on. Wells came through like we knew he would. Giambi did a little dance step on his fine throw to home. Wang was hit fairly hard, and was bailed out by some baserunning miscues on our part.

Now it's down to two. CLeveland just lost in 13, so, with one more win or one Indians loss, we clinch at least an extra play-in game. With a win and a Cleveland loss tomorrow, we're in the playoffs, and we can't play a one-game playoff. Because a clinch over Cleveland tomorrow means that if we end up tied for the division, the yanks would get it based on better head-to-head against us. However, a win tomorrow and a Cleveland loss means that if we win the final game, and Cleveland wins theirs, the yanks would have to play them in a one-gamer for the Wild Card.

There will be a quiz at the end of this post. (And Question 1 will be "What's it called when someone uses that dumb 'There will be a quiz...' line after giving several slightly confusing facts?" And the answer will be "C. A terrible job.")

I had a game-long conversation with my dad tonight about all these playoff possibilities. It really is crazy. Because there's the "Do I root for Cleveland so there's pressure on the yanks, even though it would also put some on us?" question, and the Angels record issue, and the "Who would you rather play?" question, and the "Would it be better to be the Wild Card and get the crappy White Sox or get the division and have the yanks get the crappy White Sox?" question. It's neverending. That's why baseball is the best sport. That and all the club-wielding.

So, basically, the only way there can be a playoff with the Sox involved is if it's a three-way tie, in which case it would be the crazy dual-game playoff on Monday and Tuesday.

Here's what I think happens:

We win tomorrow, Randy cries in dugout. We win Sunday, 12-5. Division champs. Cleveland splits their next two. yanks play Cleveland in Cleveland in a one-game playoff for the Wild Card. yanks lose in 11th on Aaron Boone home run. yanks get minor food-poisoning on plane back to New York. Jeter somehow gets praised despite doing nothing good. Red Sox win World Series. I fly through winder, maw never knows. (And your chances of getting that reference are even slimmer than on the first one.)

Friday, September 30, 2005

Getting The Drinkwater Stuff Out Of The Way

Tonight was a dynamic night in Drinkwater history. Before the game, they showed a shot of Robert Redford on the field. I kind of brushed that aside to yell out "Drinkwater," since (the real) Drinkwater was on the field with him. It took me a while, but after I noticed that Redford was sitting behind home plate, it hit me that some folks call Drinkwater "Redford," due to his similar apearance to the man who played Roy Hobbs. It didn't hit me right away because I call Drinkwater "Springer."

And Kapstein had a dude who looked like Bobby Knight next to him, a man who could have been Kapstein's brother.

So there they were, in a row on my screen: Drinkwater, aka Springer, aka Redford, followed by Redford, followed by a Kapstein look-alike aka Bobby Knight, followed by Kapstein, aka Drinkwater before I knew who Drinkwater was, followed by Jamilla, who's got the cream soda. (And if you get that last reference, I think you're really cool.)

Of all the celebs for Drinkwater to be friends with and give his co-pilot's seat to, it happens to be one of the people who he's most mistaken for. Weird. I think Redford had a Ted Williams "9" hat on. Which would make sense, since Hobbs wore 9, and was, in a way, based on The Kid.

The C. Everett Koop guy was in the house as well. He's kind of a frontrunner, it seems, only showing up toward October. I saw several Flutie look-alikes, one of which had to be him. I thought I saw Moby and Martin Scorsese, too. And, of course, TLC (Tom, Larry, and CJohn) in the front row by the dugout.

So, yeah, Andrew, I did happen to notice.

This Is It, Ya Know

This is the meal. So stock up, buddy boy.

Today, I reached into the "ticket envelope" for the last time. Game 80 vs. New York (AL). I always just keep the FedEx envelope I get the 10-Game Plan tickets in, with all the tickets inside. You'll see I've written a note on there, so should Chan or some burglar see the envelope, they'll know NOT to discard it in the trash. At least not during the calendar year 2005. I still can't believe I didn't close those parentheses. Terrible job, me. But, nonetheless, the tickets survived. Some were traded away for my Opening Day ticket, and some rogue tickets for other stadiums were added to the envelope along the way. It's been a nice regular season. I think I must've broken my personal single-season record for most games witnessed, for the somethingth year in a row.

Hopefully the one other set of tickets I have, for the ALDS, will be used. I'll bring those with me to Boston this weekend, and should that game be played Wednesday, I'll just stay up there til then. (If we don't end up with home-field advantage, my game would be next Saturday, in which case I'd come back and go up again.) So how many pairs of socks should I pack today? Will it jinx it if I plan for a five-day stay instead of a two-day stay? Well, I'll figure something out.

Speaking of home-field, no one's talking about the Angels and how there's a race for that second-best division record. Look into that if you want.

Now we will attempt to cross the streams. Go for it all. A three-game sweep. Yes, there's a risk of total protonic reversal, but
it's a risk the World Champs will have to take.

"I love this plan, I'm excited to be a part of it. Let's do it!"

[Anti-climactic side note: Last time I was at Fenway, I heard the organist play Sedated by the Ramones. Seriously.]

It's Proverbially On

Tonight, especially when it went to 4-1 Toronto, I decided we didn't need to win that game. Since the O's looked like zombies, I figured that we'd be either 1 or 2 back going into the final series. Either way, we'd have to sweep to assure winning the division without a playoff. The one thing I did think of was that if we got a win in classic walk-off Ortiz-style fashion, we'd have that slight leeway where we can lose one and still get the bonus playoff game opportunity, AND we'd have mega-momentum.

And David gave us exactly that. Big AND Little Papi came through large-time. Love seeing that frenzied Fenway crowd. It made me forget all about Tejada absolutely dogging it down the first base line multiple times. And Bedard pitching with this look on his face like his dog just died. It was really pathetic. I can't believe they actually got back in the game, and forced the yanks to use Gordon. Torre was so pissed at Sturtze, Jeter gave him a massage on the mound. I'm not joking.

So now it all comes down to this. Friday, Wang against Wells. I feel confident. Saturday, Pat & I will be in the bleachers, for our final 10-Game Plan game. Wake against Unit. Should be a great time. Then, Sunday, well, you know.

I am psyched.

I think the magic number is somewhere around....

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Gracias, David

"When I came in you were acting like someone died, now you're humming a tune!" --my roommate, Chan, on living with a moody Red Sox fan.


Tonight determines whether a one-game playoff will even be possible. If the Sox and yanks both win or both lose tonight, it'll be a one-game difference going into a three-game series, meaning a playoff would be possible. If the teams do different things tonight, it will be a tie or a two-game difference, meaning the teams wouldn't be able to finish in a tie.

So, for you conspiracy theorists (who am I to talk?), tonight, your guaranteed one-game playoff prediction could get snuffed out. We will see.

We have Mike Stanton for the weekend. That doesn't excite me. But at least he's another warm body, and a left-handed pitcher.

Support Our Troops


(Even some Republicans will like this, because they'll miss the sarcasm.) (And that note that just tipped them off to it.)

Fenway Park, September 26-27, 2005

It was overcast, but not raining, when I got to Fenway Park on Monday. I didn't expect to be there for two games the following day at this point. Above is a new feature at Fenway. I'm guessing those are the names of the members of the Red Sox Hall of Fame. Click to enlarge any of these. (These are digital photos, not video stills.)

You won't believe me when I say that I didn't intend to get any shots of players arriving at the park. It's true. But, after getting one of six non-metered spots in Boston at around 2:30, there wasn't much else to do. Bill Mueller appears to be playing tag with this about-to-be-"it" guy:

Johnny arrives by Hummer, as is the MLB tradition. If I were rich, I'd get a crappy car, and then just replace the whole damn thing if anything broke. I don't know why these people need this stuff. Seriously, what would be better for people who lost their houses in a hurricane, these guys wearing the Red Cross symbol on their helmets, or donating their Hummers, each of which could house a family itself? I'm just sayin':

Bronson gets his proverbial shit out of the trunk:

Reb and I have this theory from when we see the Sox at their New York hotel. We think they run screens so that the shy Edgar Renteria can go in and out unbothered. I think I proved the theory here. Jason Varitek, who seems to be known as the non-autographing-type, suddenly was outside, a few garage doors over from where all the fans were waiting for the player cars to come in. Everyone rushed over there. After five minutes of signing and picture-taking (good job, Jason, even if my diversion theory is correct), he went inside. When I got back to where the cars come in, someone said, "Edgar just went in!" Diversionary tactics, I tell you. Here's Jason:

David Ortiz, as his shirt clearly indicates, is a PIMP:

Tonight's star, Lenny DiNardo. DiNardo's not just a pitcher in Boston, mind you:

There's a new low in player stalking. As we, uh, I mean, all the losers and me were standing around, I noticed some people looking up. I looked up to see the Sox training facility. Before a huge, mechanical shade rose to cover all the windows, I got this shot of Johnny. (Window on the far left, middle row. Look close for the face of Jesus):

Witch City met up with me, and we went in. The tarp was on the field. No BP. They played both anthems, but the tarp just never came off. We went over to 12-Eight to see Andrew. He was as cool as his blog, even when it's being negative. That's a nice view from 12-Eight. WC and I decided to go down to better seats, since it was drizzling, and a lot of good seats were open. There was no reason for us to go back out to 43-Thirty-One. Here's the view we had:

And then they called the game. So, the next day, I figured I'd buy tickets to the night game, so WC could go, since she couldn't make it to the make-up day game. I got there bright and early, and found a dude who was selling. He wanted $160 for two bleacher seats for the night game. I offered him 100 and one ticket to the day game. He bit. Of course, I'm probably the one who was suckered, and, in fact, the other guy berating my seller to make him seem like the "dumb" scalper was probably all part of the routine. But, whatever. I was getting two games, and I knew I'd get a good seat to game one, since there would be plenty of no-shows.

Tuesday was a much nicer day. Check out the blue sky:

Hanley was alone in the dugout when I first arrived:

Moon shot, per tradition:

Here was my view for the first pitch:

That Blue Jay dude thought he had a homer around Pesky's Pole. Everyone else knew it was foul. Except the manager, shown here, arguing the call: (I like the guy in the white shirt in the crowd calling it foul.)

The great Wakefield:


Edgar, with Johnny leading off first:

Papi, with Manny on deck:

Johnny scores:

I had a great view of Drinkwater and Kapstein. I like how Kapstein sticks out like a sore thumb:

Around the bottom of the fifth, the dude who had my seat finally showed. So I headed over to 12-Eight, where Andrew was sitting with his dad, whose yankee-hating I'd admired from afar in Andrew's comments section. From there I got some good shots of a hawk that was flying around Fenway. Here it is perched on the Volvo sign:

Here, the Sox have just won, thanks to great performances by Wake, Papelbon, and Timlin:

And here's that hawk-ish bird again, after the game:

Between games, the only action was when Doug Flutie backed his Trans Am out of the parking lot: (I swear it's him. Why do I keep getting shots of the back of Flutie's head?)

WC arrived, and this time we sat in our real seats, the ones I bought on the street. Row 6 behind the Jays' bullpen. We sat next to a man named Bob. He was cool. Very interested in the yanks' score. It was great seeing that O's number keep going up and up. The whole crowd would go nuts whenever Balty would tack one on. Also, Drinkwater was honored on the field before the game. We heard a man behind us explain to his Chicagoan friend that "you see this guy behind home plate on TV." Man, Chicagoans don't know crap about Drinkwater and Kapstein.

People who looked like this sat near us:

The bullpen dudes came out before the game, but Schill wasn't done warming up. So they all stood there and waited until he finished. Here they are, standing and waiting, as we all tried to communicate with them and take their picture:

And at that point, I'd filled up the whole camera. But shots from the bleachers don't really come out all that well, anyway. It was an exciting game, despite us missing a golden effing opportunity, and a fun couple of days.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Scatterbrain Munching

Freakin' Ted Lilly, man. If I ever see that guy I'm gonna strangle him and whatnot.

Speaking of guys who Steinbrenner pays, Luis Matos is in on the take. Watch him tomorrow night. And to prove I'm not crazy, the pitcher who was on the mound when Matos "forgot" to try on a bloop to center got pissed at him and was making motions out at him that said "How much is George paying you?" This was an inning after he got thrown out stealing by ten feet. Failed hit-and-run, my ass.

All that aside, terrible job all around tonight.

But if we win and they lose tomorrow, it'll be tied and we'll have the momentum going into the final three against those pig-porking, Oriole-bribing, shit-eating, steroid-taking (but praised and not penalized for it), Katrina-causing, baby duck-mangling, fake-ass, boring, butt-fugly, lactose-intolerant ball-less scrotums.

I was on the subway today, and a guy near me had a newspaper open. I saw a full-page ad saying "Another record broken," in front of a picture of yankee Stadium. Then it said "congratulations" to the yanks for breaking the all-time A.L. attendance mark. I figured it was from some corporation or something. Then I noticed that it was from MLB themselves! Complete with Bud's signature! They're probably so proud of themselves for limiting suspensions against yankee players, causing more fans to come out to yankee Stadium.

Earlier, I was on the Metro-North train, and I saw something that topped the parachuters I saw coming out of a chopper as I drove through Rhode Island before that. My train was pulling into a station. The track closest to the platform wasn't being used, so they had ramps leading from the platform, going over the unused track, to the spot where the train doors stop as the train reaches the station. A working-man-type came rapidly walking along the platform toward the train and Boom, Down Goes Roberto Duran. The dude dumped it right over the side, landing on the tracks five feet below. It had to hurt. Then he had to struggle to get back up, and was all embarrassed. The weird thing is that no one seemed to notice. I guess he was so used to the train pulling right up to the platform that he never thought there'd be a huge gap between him and the train to suddenly fall into.

Jeff Garland just did my routine! On the Daily Show, just now. I have this comedy routine I do about how pissed it makes me when they call little tiny candy bars "Fun Size." Garland just did it. I'm proud that at least it was someone I like who did it. And I liked him before Curb. When he used to be a stand-up and do an Adam West impression.

Also, they just showedthis page, from the FEMA site, showing how they're plan to fix everything leads, ironically, right back to disaster.

And now, (all right, after I get those promised pics up) I will watch my new DVD, Over The Edge. I had no idea they were releasing it on DVD, but there it was, in Newbury Comics this weekend. I'm psyched, since it's one of my all-time faves, but the cover art is ridiculous. They mustn't have had much of a budget for this thing. And the star of the movie isn't on the cover. They make it seem like a Matt Dillon movie. Dillon was in it--he was fourteen and in his first role--but this other kid was the focus of the movie. And they shut him out of the cover. They put Dillon, the love interest, the enemy, and the authority-figure on there, but leave out the star just because he was a nobody. Terrible job.

Speaking of Boston, that is one beautiful city. I was talking about this with Reb's "man" the one time I met him. It seems like it didn't used to be, but now is. And it seems to have grown. I used to think the skyline was the Pru and the Cock, but now I see it extends way over. Seeing it lit up at night is just incredible. I guess I'm always leaving it at night, and I always used to take Storrow Drive in, which doesn't give a city view. But lately I've been taking different routes, and going through and under the city at night. I even saw that purply bridge. Anyway, good job, Boston.

If you read this whole post, you get a special prize.

Another Mere (Picture-less) Update

Hey NY-area fans...Sox on ESPN right now. Which is doubly gold because I can work on getting my pics from yesterday up during commercials, since my laptop won't be taken up by

And I haven't forgotten about the yankee logo flushing down the toilet. Just didn't have my laptop with me this weekend. A weekend which ended today. So I'll get that going again later.

Uh-oh, Berman announcing. Once loved, later just liked, now pretty much despised by me.

Gotta stay even or gain in these next two games.

Look for my pics later on.


Went to many Sox games. Heard "Oh, Canada" three times in 24-hour span. Pictures to follow.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

My Photo
Location: Rhode Island, United States