Wednesday, August 13, 2008

19 thoughts for a 19-run Sox game. (Because I don't have 36 thoughts for a 36-run game.)

1. Wow. So, that happened.

2. The fun-packed first inning reminded me of a game my girlfriend of the time got to see. To this day, that she (a Yankee fan) got to see that game and I didn't remains high on my list of resentments. Er, totally dead resentments.

3. Charlie Zink looked a lot more okay than the box score might show, giving up a ton of singles, but only giving up the biggest hits when he let his fastball rip. If you read this excellent Globe profile on Zink, that makes sense. Unlike Wakefield, a converted infielder who never really had much pride in his fastball, Zink is a converted pitcher, who could throw in the high-80s before the knuckleball became his primary pitch, and even throws a decent cutter. Thing is, Charlie, a mid-80s fastball isn't impressive unless you diversify very well. Just ask the shoulda-been 2004 World Series MVP.

4. Manny Delcarmen was worse than his box score shows. Much worse. When Gary Sheffield went on the waiver wire, I thought of how badly he claims to want to play for Boston and immediately concocted this trade idea:

Gary Sheffield and a box of rusted razor blades (to be locked in a room with Manny Delcarmen)


Cash considerations, a large bucket of baseballs, and weaponry to be named later.

Just a thought. The pay per view here could be excellent, especially if Kimbo Slice gets the winner.

5. Irrelevant, but David Ortiz was robbed of a three home run game. You already knew that. What was interesting was that Don and Jerry continued to believe that it was fan interference. Wrong though they were, the "nerve" to take an opinion against the home team just...filled me with more desire to kill Hawk Harrelson. Seriously, I should never listen to White Sox commentary again. The innocent might end up paying for it.

6. Ye gods, I just noticed a connection between this Sox-Rangers slugfest and the Sox-Marlins bit of brutality from 2003. Rupe be its name! (And no, I have no proof that former Sox hurler Ryan and Ranger righty Josh are brothers. So I'll just assume it. How zany! Eat that, Jayson Stark!)

7. The Paul Byrd pickup and its timing in the wake of Zink's last major league start for awhile is amazing. Old man with the old windup style has the second-lowest ERA among starters since the All-Star break, so there is absolutely nothing negative about this pickup. First benefit: Clay's start on Friday is no longer Clay's start.

8. Ron Washington's expression throughout this game, even as Texas came back, never changed, and never ceased to be priceless. Basically, it nonchalantly stated, "What is this bullshit we're playing here?" but better. Love that guy. Best character in Moneyball.

9. Some people have told me to rescind my concession of the AL East in the wake of Carl Crawford and Evan Longoria's injuries. Fair enough, but Longoria's effect is more or less negated by the loss of Mike Lowell, who can't be that fast a healer at his age. But don't worry, the lost space in the infield will be filled with some flip-flopping and someone else coming off the DL. Are you ready for some Lugo?!?

10. No? Me neither.

11. If the Rangers had scratched (or thwacked) out one more run off of Papelbon in the 9th, we might have had a 19-18 game. Four years ago, you might've gave a shit about that number.

12. Boo hoo hoo, Hank. Your team was actually at its flattest before the injuries (unless losing Hughes qualifies as a major loss considering his '08 performance), showed signs of life after your best pitcher went down, started sucking again, lost Joba, started drinking again. Yankee fans can only be happy with your assessment because it means Cashman ain't getting axed as you sit this October out for the first non-strike time since 1993.

13. What will happen with Yankees unused to having October off with too much time on their hands? Predictions:

--Derek Jeter paternity case; Ford turns paternity as a new way to win Jeter's Ford Challenge!

--Mariano Rivera nearly drowned, trying to find where those footprints are coming from.

--Kyle Farnsworth returns to new Yankee GM office with heavy artillery; opening of New Yankee Stadium delayed until 2010.

--Alex Rodriguez divorce settlement turns ugly when, with charts and graphs, he attempts to prove himself the greatest father since Ted Williams. Staff of Baseball Prospectus disproves his argument as deeply dependent on opportunity-based statistics like RBIs, batting average, and sperm count.

--John Sterling paternity case (on a very special episode of Law and Order: Special Victims Unit, Suzy is the mommy, murdered by a jealous Melky Cabrera!)

14. Even though, very similar to the Red Sox in divisional situation (with nearly identical records) I still think the Brewers are going to the World Series, with a chance of surprising anyone who gets there. Then again, I thought there wasn't going to be a dry pair of pants in Milwaukee last year. There wasn't, but that was due to a city-wide relapse, not any playoffs.

15. The basic frame of the rumored Boston deal for Johan Santana--Jon Lester, Justin Masterson, and Jed Lowrie for the rights to negotiate a massive contact with Johan--sure looks like an easy pass now, doesn't it?

16. Jason Bay has been sluggish as of late. With Lowell gone, that gots to end soon.

17. I'm going to make it to 19. I'm going to make it to 19.

18. If anyone owns a copy of the book above and could part with it for less than $16, you're not like the rest of the Internet. Contact me. It really should have been made into a 4th Shaft movie, with Isaac Hayes and Itzhak Perlman doing a killer theme song.

19. Writing imitates life. This post, like last night's game, was excessively, ultimately fulfilling, and not something I want to ever repeat again. May Lester return us to sanity tonight.

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