Sunday, May 06, 2007


On one of my family trips, my brother and I were playing tennis and a British couple came along and, after talking to us for a few minutes, challenged us (in a nice way) to a game of doubles. Despite the fact that they weren't playing very hard, they crushed us. But losing wasn't the worst part. The worst part was, after every point they drilled past us, after every serve we couldn't return, they called out in their overly-polite accents, "Unlucky!" It was their way of being polite, but it was humiliating.

Last night's game in which the Red Sox lost 2-1 seemed the definition of unlucky. The Sox had a million men on base (I counted) and were only able to bring one of them in. They hit the ball on the screws constantly, and it always went right at one of the Twins fielders. Case in point, David Ortiz's at-bat in the ninth with Kevin Youkilis, the tying run, on first. Ortiz crushed a 3-2 fastball on a line about 390 feet to dead center. Torii Hunter was playing about eight feet from where the ball would have landed and he barely made it there in time. But he did, Manny struck out on a high fastball in a full count. and that was the game.

Despite the specifics, the outcome was somewhat expected. When Johan "Two Cy Young Awards" Santana is pitching against you and you are countering with His Craziness, Julian Tavarez, things tend to get a bit 'unlucky'. However, the Sox probably should have won this game. They had Santana and the myriad of Twins relievers on the ropes the whole game, but just never got it done. Just chalk it up to one of the 50 losses ever team gets every season and move on.

One important point is the Red Sox organization shouldn't get too infatuated with His Craziness, Julian Tavarez. He seems like an interesting guy, and he's been pitching alright recently, and yesterday he did a great job, but he is still not the long-term (meaning this season) answer to the Sox 5th starter role. The fact that he is pitching well buys Jon Lester has some more time to get totally healthy, which is good.

AL East: The Yankees, Orioles and Rays won yesterday while the Sox and Blue Jays lost. The Red Sox lead everyone in the division by 5.5 games except the Blue Jays, whom they lead by 6.5. Milwaukee moved ahead of Boston by a 1/2 game for the best record in baseball.

Today (Sunday): The Red Sox play the rubber match of their three game series with the Twins. The Twins send ex-Oriole, Giant, Oriole, Cardinal, and Yankee Sidney Ponson to the mound. The Red Sox counter with Curt Schilling. Game time 2:10pm EST.

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