Saturday, April 21, 2007

A-Rod And Mo Comin' Through

Perfect. This is what I really love about last night. That Yankee fans had the 6-2 lead late, and probably remembered the one they overcame the previous day but thought, Well, that can't happen to us, we've got Mo. And Mo then pulled his usual choke job against us. But then they thought, with A-Rod up as the potential go-ahead run, We've got it now--this is the new and improved A-Rod. And then he chokes it, too. Just too perfect. Like I've said before, the post-2004 era has shown that most Yankee fans weren't arrogant because of the 86 years thing, they were just arrogant anyway.

I love how they've just kind of forgotten that pitching wins, no matter what kind of lineup you've got. Also, a lot of people seem to think that the Sox lineup just isn't that great. Sure, it doesn't look like the best thing in the world compared to the Yanks', but I don't worry about it at all. Do Yankee fans think that Papi, Manny, and Drew alone can't handle Karstens and Ratso and Rizzo, or whoever they're throwing out there? They seem to. I don't get it. And with our pitching, we are looking great.

I think Torre is doing what he can with his pitchers, but throwing every reliever every day is gonna burn you eventually. And they better hope Wang is what he was last year.

I'm so happy for Coco, too. Should be a nice hand for him today. And gutsy job by Okajima. And Cora was definitely the better of the two guys who look like Jorge Posada last night. (I also love how his hit was the cheapest possible kind off Mo--that's what it feels like, Yankees!)

I'll be at Fenway today and tomorrow night. Look for pics and stuff later. Yankee fans have to hope for them to bash Beckett today, and then hope their guy somehow hold us in check. But Josh is looking great this year. We'll see how he does against the Yanks.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

(But Still No Championships This Century)

I got to watch the sweet Sox game at my parents' in New Haven today. (I've been going back and forth bewteen NYC and Boston, with the moving and what have you.) As we got the win, after the game was looking grim until the eighth, we switched over to the Yanks' game and, like our game, it turned on its ear, turning a shitty Indian performance into what looked like a sure win. In fact, I almost wrote a blog entry about how things worked out the opposite way from two days ago, with everything going, this time, from bad to good. I even planned on saying, "I'm off to NYC now, so if the Indians blow this, you can blame me for jinxing it," or something like that. Maybe I should've done it after all--an anti-jinx may have been just what I needed.

I listened in the car as the Tribe were an out away from salvaging one game of their series, with a four-run lead, and no one on. Then they give up a homer. Then a hit. Then a walk. The sixth grade me would've been using semi-colons here. I'm goin', "where's the bullpen?" Then another hit. All with two outs. Still, no sign of a reliever. Eric Wedge was aslee--uh, going with his guy. Finally, a wild pitch put the tying run at third, wining run at second. At that point, anyone would be getting a hit off this guy. They chose to pitch to Aprod and he won the game. Wedge should be immediately fired. That pitcher--well, let's just say I have a new favorite reason for going to the first Indians game at Fenway this season. Unless the guy's washing cars for a living by then.

I watched the Indians pull a classic choke job for two games, and then cap it off with one of the all-time great ones today. Fitting, in a way. Talk about ruining what had been a fine day.

And it doesn't matter who got the winning hit--that was just Aprod being Aprod, soon to be MayRod. I'll worry about him when he becomes SepRod or OctRod. But as you can see, there's just no ring to either of those.

So both teams go into the weekend series on a high, which, in baseball, doesn't make much difference, but we're set up for a fun series. The Yanks are gonna run into a non-Minor League team one day, and that day is tomorrow.

Some notes on the Sox: Fine job by HeadCase McGee today, keeping us in the game. I now find myself doing the "Tavarez points" in my car at intersections. "Cars from right, green, go! Go! Cars from left, go also! Okay, now people facing me, green arrow! Pedestrians, go!"

Is it just me or does Manny have Tinker Toys at the knob of his bat? Whatever is on there, it's huge! Is that legal? In all my years, much like Costanza's view of toilet paper, I haven't seen bat knobs change much. It figures Manny would be the one to offer some variation...

My pictures from Toronto, which are really Allan's pictures, as I'm clearly nowhere near Toronto right now, got linked in ProJo. Sweet!

One note on the ridiculousness at Virginia Tech: People keep talking about how "grieving is now done online," as if this is a good thing. If your friends dying doesn't inspire you to actually get together with loved ones instead of sitting by yourself talking to them on the internet, I don't know what will. I thought maybe one good thing to come from this would be people realizing, Oh my god, I've been spending too much time at a computer. Instead, they say, "Oh, this is how we grieve now." Really? More power to you, but your computer isn't going to hug you. And then some friends of victims are saying how reporters are "snooping" on their facebooks and myspaces to get info. No, you chose to live in a world where you put all your personal info out in the open. That's one of the reasons I don't like those sites. I don't want personal messages from my friends to be public, sitting there for all to see. I definitely don't want my personal info, or MyMy MyPersonal MyInfo, or whatever the MyGestapo calls it, to be public. That's why it's called "personal." Yeah, I say I live in New York City on my blog. But I sure as hell won't give out my address or phone number. Anyway, I'm not mad at these kids, I want them to be able to grieve over their loss. But doing it electronically isn't gonna do shit for them. Your friends can never smell the grass or sit in the sun ever again. Honor them by doing that, at least a little bit, instead of staying cooped up all day and night. Their families want a visit from you, not an e-mail.

Wednesday Night At The Dome

Hinske signs autographs in Toronto, earlier tonight. All pics taken by Allan, the man behind the fine Sox blog Joy of Sox. (Thanks!) Click each to enlarge.

These folks seem to be waving at Doug Mirabelli as he trots away. I like Allan's take on their food choice: family with pizza, possibly for throwing at relievers.

People scrambling for an errant Mirabelli long toss. I love the perspective on this one.

View from the right field foul pole.

Pap fan with hat signed by Cervasio, who wrote "NESN" under her name.

"Ace," the Jays' mascot. (Why "Ace"? I'd have called him "Jayson.")

Criso, Lugo, Manny, Papi on ground.

I'll let Allan give you the caption on this one: kid scoring game sitting across the aisle from me. mom eyeing me, wondering why i'm taking pix of her son. tina cervasio hat guy also in this shot.

Papelbon on the hill.

Red Sox win!

For Allan's pics from game one of this series, click here.

About this game: I got to hear it all on radio, until the bottom of the ninth, when I got to see Pap get the save. This was my first time listening to Glen Geffner for a long period of time. He definitely reminds me of the announcer from The Natural. Kind of a train-of-thought style. Low-key--just what Castig was looking for in a partner, I think. He jinxed Mirabelli, though, and I know that everyone listening, including Joe, knew it was coming. He went into this speech about how Doug hadn't allowed a passed ball yet this season, and how much better you fell having him back there with Wake on the mound. I'm goin,' "Come on, kid, at leat do this when he's at bat so there's no chance of an immediate passed ball..." Sure enough, next pitch: "And it's off Mirabelli's glove and rolling to the backstop!" The wise-man Castiglione chimes in with "It never fails, does it?"

Wake is on fire. I love our staff. Tavarez actually gets a shot tomorrow afternoon. More pics from Allan then, too.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007


Click this to enlarge. I wrote this five months after the '86 Series, while I was in sixth grade.

Two French Toast And A Beer: Sox At Jays, 4/17/07

Above: Dice's first pitch in Canada! These were all taken tonight at Rogers Centre by Allan aka redsock aka Joy of Sox. He and Laura aka L-girl aka We Move To Canada are attending this entire Sox-Jays series. (Thanks for these!) (click 4 bigger)

The view from their seats during BP.

Papi signing autographs down in a secret tunnel.

The scoreboard Wily Mo almost broke tonight.

Pena and Manny doing sprints, while Pedroia...practices his golf swing?

Papi at the plate against "Bartolo Cologne."

Watch for more pics from up north over the next few days....

Correspondent update: I still need would-be photographers for the following places: Atlanta, Tampa, Detroit, LA, and Arizona. For details, click here. Thanks.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Right Here

The few Yankee games shown on network TV lead off with, and I swear I'm not making this up, "My Yankees on My 9." It has to end sometime. Has to. You can bet your mylife.

Baseball's funny like this. You can start a day on cloud 80, and end it in a gutter making rats into your pets. The Yanks, three of their starters on the DL, sent out a double-A pitcher to the mound, while we had Dice-K going up in the land of better comedy and fewer guns. I was thinking 10 straight championships. Or something like that.

But poor Dice had a borderline call go the other way, leading to a fake-grass-aided hit, and a minor blow-up. For him that means two runs--and he recovered nicely. But we only scored one for him. I think it will take umps a while, but they'll discover how easy it is to call a Matsuzaka game: don't give up on a pitch, and realize it's almost always a strike. When they figure out he's got incredible control, they'll start giving him the calls he deserves.

And the Yankee kid looked shaky, but Jake Westbrook was no match for the Yankee bats, unfortunately. Aprod is getting cocky, too. Same old crap from him--really good until the games matter. But I love that he thinks he's somehow cured of his "issues." Makes it even easier to root against him, and will make his inevitable choke that much more fun.

8 Pics From Saturday

The Angels were in their alternate reds. Click these to biggenate.

Another carom played perfectly by a fine left fielder.

Pedroia stabilizes for the catch.

Schill on the hill.

The bleachers at Fenway.

They had some mascots there, including the Padres' Padre. If you're gonna get a San Diego mascot, get the Chicken!

Really cool sky on that fairly comfortable but still chilly day.

Papi touches the plate after homering to center in the 8-0 win.

Red Sox Pizza Fenway Park Paris Hilton

That pizza thing was pretty damn funny:

Other items of note: Jeter falling apart. And Manny in the New Yorker (via Joy of Sox).

Friday The 13th Of April, 2007

These are pics from Friday at Fenway. Click to enlarge all.

I started by getting some Dice shots. Here he is with Wily Mo.

At one point, 'zaka went after a fly ball, but had to duck out of the way due to the sun being in his eyes. He then turned and looked up at fans 18 feet above him in the center field bleachers, and laughingly imitated himself having to shy away from the ball.

Papi with Vlad in the background.

My seat was right next to the center field cameras, in the third row of the bleachers. I was psyched to get this location, and was able to score another seat nearby. Cyn, aka Red Sox Chick, went with me, and since no one sat in the seats next to me, we got to sit together after a few innings.

Another view from the center field camera area.

In the bleachers, looking toward right.

The city from the back of the bleachers.

Under the center field message board.

Then I started walking all around the park. I took this same shot the day before in the rain. Here's what it looks like in the non-rain.

It was dry, but freezing cold. Until this point, when the clouds rolled away, leaving the sun to hit the Pru. From then on, it was actually not all that uncomfortable.

Vlad and Garret Anderson.

Manny and Lugo, just before the game.

Cabrera, Manny, Lugo, Youk.

This was my view of Coco from my seat. I really liked the perspective from there.

It's like watching at home on TV...except you can look left or right as needed.

The new #7 makes a catch in right field.

My view, again.

Plane flies over Fenway.

The center field camera, and Manny.

Classic Manny.

I almost got a ball. Manny made an inning-ending catch over toward center. He flipped it up to the crowd, and the guy in the seat in front of me ended up with it. (Note: I was, naturally, prepared for this possibility, unlike all the surprised people around me, but, still, I never had a chance--the front row doofuses knocked into each other, allowing the second row guy to get it.) So the people to our left borrowed the ball to take a pic to fool their friends at home into thinking they'd gotten the ball. I secretly snapped this, and it came out pretty good.

Mirabelli's HR lands in the bullpen.

Pap enters the game. That is one confident mofo. We've really got something special. He saved (not "saved") the game in the eighth, when it was still close.

Papi on second after a key double in the eighth.

Anderson digs Lowell's double out of the corner. This capped off the scoring in a 10-1 win.

Looking from center toward the triangle, after the game.

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