And Thank You for visiting Sonoma Dave's Giant Red Sox Blog! This blog is an archive of most of my posts on Fenway West. Effective immediately, I will be be including posts about the San Francisco Giants, MLB, and on occasion, stuff that has nothing to do with baseball at all.

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Yankees Have a Bullpen?

Looks more like a COWpen to me!

ERA Pitcher

05.23 Albaladejo

43.20 Claggett (who?)

04.70 Coke

15.19 Marte

07.36 Ramirez

06.30 Veras


00.00 Swisher!

Yankee Panky

Random Sox-Yankee thoughts.....

The Yankees have allowed a total of 38 runs in the past two Saturday's.
A 2 run lead in a Sox-Yankee game, no matter what inning, is still a virtual tie. (Make that a 6 run lead.) A 5 run lead in the 9th should be called a save situation.

When Papi was at bat with the bases loaded, I'm sure I saw him wearing a red Youk shirt under his white uni. I know I saw Y-O-U- when I scrambled to see if there was a number, but he turned away before I could confirm it. Did anyone else notice that? Is that his version of Giambi's lucky thong?

Mike Lowell sure has been silencing his critics: .328 BA, .625 SLG, and 22 RBI's. Despite his .229 BA, Tek has a .542 SLG, and only 8 RBI's, but that's only because he has Lowell cleaning up in front of him. Lowell's 22 RBI's puts him in 1st place in the AL so far this season.

In the top of the 9th, Jeter hit a foul ball, to which a fan responded loud enough to be picked up by TV, "That would have been a home run in your stadium."

This is the first time since 1968 the Yankees have blown a 6 run lead to the Sox that late in the game.

Kansas City and Seattle are in 1st place in their divisions. (Huh?! Yes, it's true.)

Is Hank still around? Who got him to shut his trap? Bloggers everywhere must be chomping at the bit waiting for his next nugget, just as comedians are missing Bush.

Thanks to ESPN for the post title.

Web Gems! Where was Dustin?!

Anybody else watch the late edition of ESPN's Baseball Tonight? Mikey Lowell made the Web Gems, but where was Jason Bay and Dustin Pedroia? Bay made a great diving catch. After watching Pedroia make about a bazillion diving catches tonight, I was almost certain that the entire Web Gems would be nothing but Pedroia. Am I the only one who noticed this?

A Red Sox Fan & a Yankee Fan walk into a bar...

Can they watch the game without killing each other?

I've already written about my father being a Yankee fan. I've also written that the newest member of our band is a Yankee fan. Jimmy has been with us for about 5 months now. He's a great guitarist in another band that has three CD's out already, with a 4th due out this year (and I'm on it, but that's another post.) Besides being a great guitarist, we all just love havin' him around. We're all getting along great! The only thing wrong with him is that he's a Yankee fan. OK, so nobody's perfect.

I don't have any fancy MLB.com or cable TV packages, so I wasn't sure where or even if I was going to watch tonight's Red Sox-Yankees game. Jimmy and I had discussed going over to Tom's place on Saturday since he has a huge wide screen digital HD TV screen, and it would be on neutral ground since Tom is a Giants fan. Saturday's plans fell through as Tom had to suddenly move. During the course of discussing Plan B, I decided to watch tonight's game at Jimmy's place since he has a wide screen TV and the MLB TV station.

Well, I'm glad to report that we're both alive and well. Fortunately, it was one of the best games that either of us had ever watched. I don't have to recap the details, but we both agreed that a 2 run lead in a Sox-Yankee game means absolutely nothing. Nothing! And so it was proven, yet again!

Jimmy took the loss as graciously as anyone could expect. Of course, he would have liked to see the game end differently, but y'know what? There's another Sox-Yanks game tomorrow, and the day after that, and 15 more after that. No tellin' what the final tally will be at season's end, but we both agreed that baseball is the greatest game ever!

Dave & Jimmy take a break.

And Jimmy, if you're reading this, I still love ya even if you're not perfect!

When Joba Takes the Mound Tomorrow

When Joba Chamberlain takes the mound tomorrow, I would love to hear 37k Red Sox fans start to go BZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ!!!!!!!!!!!!! If you're lucky enough to get in to the game, don't forget about the headhunter's implosion while pitching against the Indians when he succumbed to the attack of the Lake Erie Midges.

Alternate chant 1: Midge! Midge! Midge! Midge! Midge! Midge! Midge!

Alternate chant 2: DUI! DUI! DUI! DUI! DUI! DUI! DUI! DUI! DUI! DUI!

Joba, the Mug Shot

A friend's dog: Joba the Mutt (Really!)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Chamberlain v. Youkilis

Anybody know the odds on Chamberlain throwing at Youkilis again? Personally, I wouldn't be surprised if Youk has a ripe maple bat ready for just this occasion.


Tim Wakefield started the first game of today's twin bill, which is now in a rain delay in the bottom of the 7th inning. I cannot say enough about this man! Total class act both on and off the field for starters, but he certainly still has his best stuff on the mound! After flirting with a perfect game for 5 innings and a no-no for almost 8 last week at Oakland, he follows that with another gem today: 7 IP, 5 H's, 1 ER, 1 BB, 4 K's. This leaves him with an ERA of 2.45!

Hopfully this performance will quiet all the Wake naysayers once and for all.

Now for bright spots on offense: 6 of the 9 starters today have at least 2 hits, with Drew and Lowell each getting 3 apiece so far. 3 hits for Lowell? That means he's raised his BA about 150 points or so in the past week, to a nice .315! Papi's bat has come to life as well with two hits today. He's raised his average a good 50 points this week. Winter question marks answered!

Nick Green is swinging a hot bat with a 2B and a HR today, but I think he may be using Lugo's old glove, as he has 2 errors today, too.

The game is in a rain delay at the moment, with another game scheduled for later today. Both the Sox and the Twins have Thursday off. The Sox will stay at home for a series with the Yankees starting on Friday. The Twins will be heading off to CLE for a series starting on Friday. Weather.com calls for showers and rain for the rest of the day in Boston, so it remains to be seen whether or not ball will resume today, or whether or not any games will be made up on Thursday.

UPDATE: The game was called after a 1:25 delay.


Quote of the Week

Nick Swisher pitched 1 inning last week during the Yank's 15-5 blow-out loss to the Ray's last week. This is what former Red Sox outfielder Gabe Kapler had to say after Nick Swisher struck him out:

"I've always been lost when a reporter asks me what my most embarassing moment was because I never know what to say. Now I have my most embarassing moment."

Nick Swisher leads the Yankee pitchers in ERA: 0.00

Where Are They Now: Wily Mo Pena

Wily Mo Pena has signed a minor league with the N
Y Mets. The Sox acquired Wily Mo in the trade that sent Bronson Arroyo to the Reds. In 2006, he hit .301 with a .489 SLG in 84 games. His BA sank like a rock in 2007 and the Sox traded him to the Nationals after 73 games and a .218 BA for prospect Chris Carter, who is now on the Sox roster.

You can't tell me Theo doesn't know what he's doing.

Hole in One

I spotted this truck in San Francisco last week after leaving the SOX @ OAK game. The photo was included in my post about that game, but I'm liking it so much, I decided to give it it's own post.

A-Rod diversifies his portfolio?

Baseball Tonight

I mean right now, ESPN's Baseball Tonight. Five games were washed out on a short schedule day to begin with, leaving only 4 games to report on in a full hour time slot. Since the Sox had the most impressive win of the day, the Sox got the most coverage. Besides extensive coverage of the game, there is more reporting on the Sox-Yankees rivalry, including a spot on the woe's of Wang. Also upcoming is a spot on the 70th anniversary of The Splinter's first hit. So if you see this in the few minutes after I post it, turn on your tube! And if you Tivo'd it, make a point to watch it.
Previously posted on FenwayWest.com

Yanks Too Scared to Send Wang Against Sox

With the former ace of the Yankees staff, Chien-Ming Wang struggling big time this season (his ERA may be higher than the grand total of Yankee runs scored so far*), manager Girardi, GM Cashman, and pitching coach Eiland have tweaked their rotation so that Wang won't have to face the surging Red Sox, who have now won 5 straight, including a 12-1 pummeling of the Orioles today.

His ERA approaches his number,
not an easy feat.

*Runs = 70, ERA = 34.50 (Hey, it was just a guess!)

The Alarm Clock Has Rung, The Sox Have Awoken!

Justin Masterson got the call to start today, as the Sox rotation was in a bit of flux with Dice-K on the DL, along with a pending 6 game suspension that was hovering over Beckett for a day or two before it was reduced. Masterson is looking like he could be another Julian Tavarez: short relief, long relief, starter; he's done it all so far this year. Masterson went 5.1 innings tossing 84 pitches. He allowed only 4 H's, 2 BB's, 1 ER, while notching 3 K's and his first W of the season.

The bullpen studs came through again, this time it was Delcarmen, Okajima, Lopez, and Hunter Jones (who?), allowing only 1 H and 1 BB in 3.2 innings.

Have you been wondering about the top of the line-up? Well, today Ellsbury, Pedroia, and Papi combined to go 9 for 16, scoring 7 times, and knocking in 6 runs.

Two of the big question marks over the winter were Lowell and Varitek. Both went 2 for 5 today, and combined for 3 R's and 3 RBI's.

Kevin Youkilis had only 1 H today. He also drew 3 BB's, 1 of which was an IBB. (No explanation necessary.) His BA stands at a FAT .469.

The Sox have now won 5 in a row, sweeping the O's and climbing into a tie for 2nd place after a 2-6 start that had them in the cellar (gasp!) for a couple of days.

When all was said and done, the SOX plated 12 men, beating the Orioles 12 - 1. BOX SCORE

Tim Wakefield gets the start tomorrow against the Twins.

On the Road Again

Fenway West is on his spring tour of 4 games and 1 Dead show in 5 days, while I was out all day playing at a show, so please accept our apologies for the lack of coverage today! Normal coverage will resume tomorrow.

Lester dominates Orioles as SOX win 2-1

Masterson gets the start tomorrow.

Previously posted on FenwayWest.com

Monday, April 20, 2009

Man On A Mission

Kevin Youkilis might just be the next man to finish the season with a BA over .400 if he keeps on hitting the way he has started this season. Youk was 4 for 5, (just a triple away from the cycle), scoring twice and knocking in 4 of the Sox's 6 runs today in their 6-4 win over the Orioles at Fenway Park. His BA is sitting at a fat .467 right now.

Josh Beckett was having a good day tossing 4 shutout innings before he hiccupped in the 5th allowing 4 runs, 3 earned in that one inning. He came back to toss one more scoreless inning (and also got a spot on ESPN/Baseball Tonight's 'That's Filthy' segment) before the bullpen studs came in and shut the O's down for the remainder of the game. Okajima, Saito, and Papelbon combined allowed 2 hits and whiffed them 4 times.

Big Papi and Mike Lowell had two hits each, while Jason Varitek had one with an RBI. Beckett was allowed to pitch despite receiving a 6 game suspension while waiting for his appeal to be heard.


Holy Lopsided Score Batman!

No, not football. Yes, baseball. The 2009 New York Yankees have set a new franchise low record by allowing 14, yes that's 1-4, fourteen Cleveland Indians to make a round trip around the diamond in one inning at the brand spanking new Yankee Stadium. Former ace of the Lowlanders, Chien-Ming Wang was chased off to the showers in the 2nd inning after allowing 8 runs. Anthony Claggett (who?) came in and promptly allowed another 6 runs in that inning, and another 2 runs before he got the hook as well. The Indians would not relent until they had scored a total of 22 runs by the end of the game. The Indians belted 6 home runs in the game, including a grand tater by Asdrubal Cabrera. The Yanks should have sent in Nick Swisher instead of Claggett (who?)

Now I'm wondering where the Red Sox can get a few cans of that whoop-ass that Cleveland found.
Now back to our regularly scheduled programming: BOS-5 BAL-0 heading into the 4th.

A Day at the Park

I got to see my beloved Red Sox yesterday for the first time this season. Things as they are, I don't get to nearly as many games a year as I would like to. One time I got a late start and then the local rapid transit broke down for 45 minutes. By the time I got to Oakland Stadium, the Sox were on the short end of a lop-sided score. I was walking along the concourse and was wondering why people were leaving so soon. I wasn't that late.

Well, things were different this time. This was the first game I had ever been to when my favorite Sox pitcher was on the mound. It was a beautiful, sunny day. I got there early with my friend and bandmate Tom. (It was his birthday.) We soaked up the sun while waiting for Nick to show up with our tix.

Nick's new shirt

Never did I imagine I would be watching history nearly being made that day! Wake just kept serving up goose-egg after goose-egg after goose-egg! I missed Lowell's E, but thought to myself, "Well, he still has a no...STOP! Don't even think it!" Whew! That was a close one! I found myself wondering if he had issued any free passes. Um...nope. "Don't even think about it, Dave!" Said nothing, thought nothing. The 000's kept racking up. Then that hit came! SOAB!

#42 takes a mighty swing!

Well.... Wake was still spinning a gem, and on Jackie Robinson day, too. Unfortunately, when the Sox bats come alive while Wake is pitching, he has to sit, and that is not good for a knuckleballer, thus the H's, BB's, and R's in the final innings. Still a fantastic, memorable game. Let's hope that momentum continues tomorrow.

Wake showed the utmost in class during the post game interview when asked about his performance. Instead of talking about his masterpiece, he immediately shifted the focus onto Robinson before he said anything about the game.

Somehow, we were able to find a few minutes to drill a few shots of the Sawxheads that were in attendance in Section 209 yesterday. Nick, aka CaliGrown was there, as well as the Emperor of RSN-CA who was there raising awareness for The Jimmy Fund, (as does Rocky Rhodes on his X-C trip in the Rolling Green Monster), and also a few other Sawxhead friends of Nick's whose names escape me at the moment. Fenway West was in the house on his spring tour (4 games and a Dead show in 4 days), but alas, he was on the other side of the stadium.

CaliGrown- 2nd from left
Emporer of RSN-CA middle
Red Sox Sonoma- far right

Sunshine, beer, $1 dogs, peanuts, friends, and Wake nearly tossing a no-no! What more could a Sox fan ask for?!

What more, you say? Well, we left Oakland heading for San Francisco, when I spotted a commercial truck with an interesting company name. I wondered, "Does A-Rod have a new side business?"

A-Rod diversifies his portfolio?

Monday, April 13, 2009

Not the 1st time (umpire) Davidson screwed up

Umpire Bob Davidson who was calling the balls and strikes during the TBY @ BOS game yesterday has been roundly criticized by ESPN commentators Rick Sutcliffe and Dave O'Brien during the game, as well as bloggers and their readers everywhere. This is not the first time Davidson has called a bad game or a bad play.


Last year during a game between the Mets and the Yankees in which the Mets pummeled the Yanks 11-2, (aamof, it was a game that I was watching, and enjoying, now that I think of it), home plate ump Davidson overruled the call by the third base umpire on a home run by Carlos Delgado. This botched call was more fuel for the instant replay debate, which was instituted last year for home runs only.

The Foul Pole and Randolph arguing with Davidson

The call belonged to the third base ump, but Davidson blew it, and admitted it in a post game interview in which he littered with several expletives that were deleted. Sign of a small mind? limited vocabulary? short on intelligence? poor vision?

Buckner Must Be Fair Game Again

I guess you only get one year of a break after throwing out the first pitch:

.... and your chicks are free!

One day after Sabfathia made his less than auspicious debut, the Yankees sent their former ace, Chien-Ming Wang, to the mound to try and right the ship, but to no avail. Wang was hammered, allowing 9 H's, 7 ER's, 3 BB's, and 1 HR in only 3.2 innings, leaving him with an astronomical 17.18 ERA after 1 game.

Money for nothing? Hey Steinbrenner! Got some chicks you can have for free! I can't wait for tomorrow's Daily News headline. ROTFLMAO!

From the Daily News:

The Yankees' rotation was supposed to be their strength in 2009, but Sabathia and Wang have looked more like Phil Hughes and Ian Kennedy circa 2008. The two pitchers have combined to throw eight innings in the two losses, allowing 13 runs on 17 hits and eight walks without zero strikeouts.

Opening Day Pre-Game Videos

Thanks to Sox and Dawgs for posting a couple of great Opening Day pre-game ceremonies, courtesy of NESN.

Videos include Ted Kennedy tossing out the first pitch to Jim Rice, and player introductions with the players entering the field after passing through the fans in the stands.

Here's another look from Politico:

Since The Sox Won Their Season Opener...

Red Sox in 1st place, Rays & Yanks? Cellar!

This is the way to start off the season!

Beckett spins a gem: 7 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 10 K's!

As previously posted, 8 of 9 starters had hits, including HR's by Pedroia (1st inning, his 2nd pitch) and Captain 'Tek. Mike Lowell had an RBI double, Youk went 2 for 4, Papelbon got the save.

Only 24 hours into the '09 season, Red Sox are tied for 1st place, with the Yankees and Rays tied for last place.

(-: GRIN :-)

Monkeys Are Off Their Backs!

Through 6 innings:

8 of 9 starters have hits already, including:

Ortiz- 1 for 3

Lowell- 1 for 3 (Double)

Varitek- 1 for 3 (Home Run!)

Josh Beckett is looking good! 7 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 3 BB's, 10 (ten!) K's, 93 pitches (61 strikes)

Recap coming after the game.

Something Phishy Goin' on at Phenway

And that Phishy something will be... Phish!

Phish just announced that on May 31st they will play a show at Fenway Park. Tickets available here.

April West Coast TV Schedule

Mon April 6 (11:00 AM) v. TBY- ESPN2
Weds April 8 (4:10 PM) v. TBY- ESPN2
Sat April 11 (1:10 PM) @ LAA- Fox
Mon April 13 (7:05 PM) @ OAK- CSNCA
Tues April 14 (7:05 PM) @ OAK- CSNCA
Weds April 15 (12:35 PM) @ OAK- CSNCA
Sat April 25 (1:10 PM) v. NYY- Fox
Sun April 26 (5:05 Pm) v. NYY- ESPN
All times PDT

More on LOST (Yankee abuse inside)

I've been watching the ABC television show LOST since shortly after it started in September of 2004. (I was busy watching a lot of baseball that October if memory serves me correctly.) I researched the Red Sox references in the show and posted my opinion in January.

I found this LOST parody on youtube today, but before you watch it, I must briefly explain something for those who have not been following the show. There has been a set of numbers that keep showing up in different episodes for different reasons. 'Hurley' played these numbers in the lottery and won bazillions of dollars. However, as soon as he won the jackpot, bad, really bad things started happening.

Warning! Serious Yankee abuse ahead!