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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Saturday, May 29, 2010

A sweep averted by a pitcher's duel

This game probably represents more of what the Front Office had in mind when they decided to build the Red Sox v.2010- good pitching, low scoring, and no Sox errors. Buchholz made it through 7 innings allowing only 4 hits and no runs. Bard and Papelbon worked the final 2 innings- 1 hit, 2 strikouts. The Sox could manage only 5 hits and 1 run off of Kansas City starter Zack Greinke.

Sox 1 Royals 0 BOX SCORE

Fenway West o5.29.10

Meanwhile, in the AL East...

... besides the Sox winning, Tampa Bay and Toronto also won, and the Orioles lost. Now who did I leave out? Oh, yeah! The Yankees.

The Yankees squandered leads of 3-0, 9-3, and 10-4 before Cleveland pounded Joba the Mutt in the 7th inning. Sabathia started the game, and had a performance of 6 IP, 7 hits, 1 WP, 5 runs. They then trotted out their own dog and pony show of 5 relievers. Their total: 3 IP, 6 hits, 8 runs, 3 walks. Joba Chamberlain was the day's biggest bust: 0.1 IP, 4 hits, 4 runs, leaving him with a 5.82 ERA. Sabathia's ERA is now almost as inflated as his paycheck: 4.16.

Only 2 games separate the Yankees, Blue Jays, and the Red Sox. The Rays have cooled off a bit, going 5-5 in their last 10 games. They're good, scary good almost, but as the Sox showed a few days ago, they are not bulletproof (nor invisible, if you like tequila.)

Final Score: CLE 13 NYY 11 Box Score

Trippin' the Bigs

We're almost 1/3 the way through the 2010 campaign, so I thougth I'd take a look at what's going on around the big leagues outside of the AL East.


Minnesota leads Detroit by 2.5 games, while Chicago, Kansas City and Cleveland are sliding south. The interesting thing is that the Royals are not in last place. Chicago and Detroit have won the AL Pennant and/or the World Series in the last couple of years. Maybe this year the Twins will win their division? The Twins have won their last 3 games, while the Tigers have lost their last 2 games.


The Angels are not in 1st place, and they're not even in 2nd place at the 1/3 mark of the season. Only 6.5 games separate the Rangers in 1st place and Seattle in last place. The A's are hot on the heels of the Rangers, only a half game back, and have won 3 in a row while the Rangers have lost their last 2 games.


Philadelphia was looking good up until interleague play came along and the Sox took 2 out of 3, including Wake's 8 IP gem. They're 3-7 in their last 10 games, while the Braves are surging and closing in as they have won 8 of their last 10 games. Only 4 games separate the Phillies from the last place Marlins. Washington is not in last place.


Houston is sinking into oblivion with the worst record in the NL, almost as bad as the Orioles. Two big surprises in this division are that the Pirates are not in last place and Cincinnati is in 1st place. Cincinatti?! Yes, the Reds are having a good season so far. They have won 6 of their last 10, and have a .592 winning percentage, 1 game ahead of the Cardinals. The Reds and the Cardinals are slowly pulling away from the rest of the division. Bronson Arroyo is still wearing red, as he is 5-2 with a 4.30 ERA. In 67 IP, he has allowed 60 hits and 22 walks. He has pitched 200 innings or more in each of his 4 full seasons with the Reds.


Another surprise lies in store in the NL West. San Diego had a hot streak not too long ago winning 9 out of 10 in that recent stretch, but still remain a half game ahead of the Dodgers, who also had a similar streak. San Francisco had been in 1st place and has slipped just a bit, yet they remain only 2.5 games behind the Padres. Colorado remains close, only a half game behind the Giants. This year it's looking like it's the D-Backs turn to occupy the basement. Intereseting note about the D-Backs, their starting pitcher today against the Giants is Billy Buckner. No relation the the Buckner that just popped into your mind. (I spent 5 years working for a company whose VP was Bill Buckner. Again, not the same Bucker, not related.)

With Oakland and San Francisco having half decent years in 2010, it reminds me of a newspaper headline (remember newspapers?) years ago- 1989?- that said something to the effect of "A's and Giants both in 1st place (clip and save)", suggesting that one might not ever see that happen again in a current lifetime. As a baseball fan living in their general vicinity, I would love to see them take their divisions, and I would especially love to see the Giants win the NL pennant. While the Sox have always been my number 1 team since growing up as a kid 60 miles south of Fenway, for some strange reason that I have never been able to figure out, the Giants were my NL team. Now I live in their back yard. I'll root for the A's, as long as they're not playing the Sox, though. And it goes without saying that I will be rooting for the Red Sox when they visit San Francisco at the end of June.

Are any of our readers back east coming out to the left coast for a Red Sox vacation next month?

And Happy Birthday to my Red Sox lovin' brother back east!

Fenway West o5.29.10

Friday, May 28, 2010

Live by the knuckleball, die by the knuckleball

Some days you can't hit Wake's knuckleball with a bat the size of a cricket bat. Last week, Wake thoroughly shut down one of the National League's best teams, the Philadelphia Phillies, as he went 8 innings, and allowed only 5 hits, 2 walks, and no runs.

Today, Wake was back up on the mound at Fenway pitching against the lowly Royals, and his performance was the complete opposite. He couldn't make it out of the 4th inning and his line for the day is ugly- 3.2 innings, 12 hits, 9 runs, all earned, 3 walks, and a home run. Sigh. Like I said, you live by the knuckleball, and you die by the knuckleball. This is typical of a knuckleballer's total performances. One day totally unhittable, the next he's serving up meatballs. Last year in Oakland, he had a no hitter going into the 8th inning. (It was a perfect game going into the 6th, and it was an error by a fielder that ended the perfect part.) Today's conga line of relievers- Atchinson, Ramirez, Okajima, Nelson, and Hall- wasn't too bad- 8 hits, 2 walks, and 3 more runs. Wait a minute! Hall? Yes, the outfielder Bill Hall. Jonathan Van Every had already been DFA'd and was not available. He actually fared well. In the 1 inning he pitched, it only took him 11 pitches to get the side out in order.

The offense put up 10 hits and 5 runs, but it just wasn't anywhere near enough. Scutaro, Beltre, and Cameron all had multi-hit days. Papi hit a run scoring double and scored once himself. Martinez is still wielding a hot bat as he went 2/4, 1 run and 4 RBI's.

Sox 5 Royals 12 BOX SCORE

UPDATE: Hall's 1-2-3 9th inning video

Fenway West 05.28.10

Ellsbury back on the DL

Jacoby Ellsbury's ribs never were completely right. Ellsbury was placed back on the 15 day Disabled List, retroactive to May 25, with no way of knowing exactly when he'll be 100% healthy again. Cameron and Hermida will work the outfield against right handed starting pitchers, while McDonald and Hall get the call against left handed starting pitchers.

Fenway West 05.28.10

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

ISO 'Tessie' for SF (CA) Jimmy Fund Benefit

Fenway West presents 'Rock & Sox~ A Benefit for the Jimmy Fund' on the night of Saturday, June 26th at The Connecticut Yankee, a Red Sox and Boston sports restaurant, bar and music venue less than 2 miles from the Giant's ATnT Park. 'The Cancer Sucks Band' will bring patrons on a musical journey from Fenway Park in Boston to San Francisco. All proceeds will go to The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and The Jimmy Fund. As part of the night's enjoyment, I will be having my hair cut to donate to Locks of Love. We're looking for a hair stylist who ideally somewhat resembles 'Tessie' in the Dropkick Murphys video of the song. If you have an outfit that somewhat resembles Tessie's in the video, that puts you up to the top of the list. If you're coming to San Francisco for the Red Sox @ Giants series, send an e-mail to RockAndSox@gmail.com with photo(s) and a brief summary of your hair styling background. Since it is a benefit, there is no pay, but it will get you a $20 ticket to the show, which has some very special guests who have been invited to appear and to perform. Red Sox merchandise will be given away in drawings over the course of the evening. Tickets are now on sale. Go to RockAndSox.com for ticket purchase information.

And if you're curious as to how a Red Sox bar got a name like Connecticut Yankee, just click here.

Tampa Bay suffers 3 'B' stings in a row!

The Red Sox thoroughly pummeled the Tampa Bay Rays by the score of 11-3 tonight at the Tropicana Yurt. Going into the 9th, the Sox were ahead by the score of 6-2, but they weren't done by any means, scoring 5 more runs in the top half of the inning. Adrian Beltre led the fishing expedition with a spectacular performance: 4/5 with 2 HR's, 3 R's, and 6 RBI's. Big Papi wasn't far behind going 2/4 , 1 HR, 2 R's and 2 RBI's. The offensive attack on the Rays was a well balanced night of hitting up and down the line-up as almost all who played got a hit, a run, or an RBI.

John Lackey made it into the 7th inning allowing only 2 of those bottom feeding flat fish to make it home. Okajima and Ramirez went 1.2 innings with no runs and only 1 hit allowed. Joe Nelson came in for the 9th and gave up a moot point HR.

This win, the 5th in a row for the Sox, brings them up to only 5.5 games behind the Rays in the standings. The Sox went 5-1 on most impressive road trip, especially when you consider that they did it against the best team in each league. Last month the Rays outscored the Sox 24-9 in 4 games. In these 3 games, the turnaround was complete with the Sox outscoring the Rays by a 19-3 margin.

Sox 11 Flat Fish 3 BOX SCORE

(Yeah, I know I've used 'flat fish' two days in a row, but I like it so much, I just couldn't resist!)

Fenway West o5.26.10

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Lester Reels in the Flat Fish

It seems like such a long time ago... was it this year or last year that the Rays took the Sox out to the woodshed? Those 4 games that Tampa Bay outscored the Red Sox by 15 runs, 24-9 to be exact, was indeed this year. What a difference a month makes, as the Red Sox are putting together a nice run since then. At the close of business on April 19, the Sox had put together a disappointing start to the 2010 campaign and had a 4-9 won-loss record. The Rays stood at 10-3 on that same date. Since then? The Rays have shown that they're for real as their 22-11 record indicates. The Sox have gone 22-12 in that same time span.

Our Sox are rising to the challenge of climbing out of the seemingly endless abyss that clubhouse turmoil can push a team into. The Rays were looking bulletproof up until 3 days ago. They rushed out of this season's gate to a 32-12 record for a .727 percentage. At that rate, they were on their way to winning 118 games. That is, until they ran into the rejuvenated Red Sox.

James Shields threw a pretty damn good game tonight going 8 innings and allowing only 4 Red Sox hits all night. Not much in the way of offense tonight, Papi went 1/3 spanking a 2 run double as that was all that was needed. Wheelin', dealin', and now reelin' Jon Lester and the bullpen crew of Delcarmen, Bard and Papelbon landed the Rays for the 2nd game in a row with solid pitching, allowing them only 1 hit all night, while collecting 12 strike outs, 9 of them from Lester.

The Red Sox have won this series, outscoring them 8-1 in the first two games. Let's hope that Lackey bounces back from his last lackluster start and shows us why Henry & Co. dropped 11-teen bazillion dollars on him.

Sox 2 Flat Fish 0 BOX SCORE

Fenway West 05.25.10

Monday, May 24, 2010

LOST no more

The series finale of Lost was on the tube last night. (No spoilers in this post.) I started watching it in November of 2004, as I had been busy watching historic events of epic proportions in October. The series debuted on September 22, 2004. Writing and shooting started before the Sox won the World Series that year, but producer and Red Sox fan Carlton Cuse and producer and Yankee fan Damon Lindelof took that event and worked it into the series. Once they put that angle in, I was completely hooked... for 6 years. On more than one occasion, the producers worked Red Sox and Yankee references into the show. Lindelof has described the use of the Red Sox win in Lost as 'therapeutic.' (I still haven't figured why the Sox spinning the Yankees around in a circle that year in the playoffs could possibly be 'therapeutic' to a Yankees fan.) Central character Jack and his father both used the same line at different times, "That's why the Red Sox will never win the World Series." Benjamin Linus shows Jack a video of the final out of the 2004 World Series. A couple of years into the show, and character Frank Lipidus enters the cast. Soon after that, we find out he was a Yankees fan. Aaron and Boone were the names of two of the characters. The numbers 4, 8, 15, 16, 23 and 42 showed up in many of the scenes of the show and also happen to be retired Yankees numbers. With all those Red Sox and Yankee references passing by, I looked into central character Jack's relationship with the Red Sox and have determined that he is most likely a Red Sox fan, but we never find out why. Some sick and twisted Lost fan came up with this very enjoyable Yankee abuse youtube:

I don't recall any more Red Sox or Yankees references in the last 2 or 3 seasons, although there could have been some red or pinstriped eater eggs somewhere in there. Well, I'm off to the LOST discussion boards, and then I need to order season 1 from Netflix.

Fenway West 05.24.10

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Flood of the Wake

Tim Wakefield makes his statement on the field.

We all know the turmoil that is astir in the Red Sox club house these days- Ortiz, Varitek, Lowell... and Wake. This turmoil has taken its toll on the Red Sox in the first 45 games of the season. What Theo will do with Mike Lowell is anyone's guess, but Mike is understandably upset, and rightfully so. Theo knows he has to resolve that situation soon. Big Papi has returned, at least for now. Ortiz has bought himself enough time to last to the end of the season. He did snap out of his slump earlier this year than last, but only his final 2010 numbers will reveal his future with the Sox. As for Jason Varitek, he is holding his head up and is quietly doing what is best for the team.

But Wake....
This situation will be difficult to resolve if all of the starters are healthy. Nobody wants a teammate to go down with an injury to gain a spot on the roster, Wake included. So what happens when all 6 starting pitchers are all healthy all at the same time?

Dice-K served some time on the DL, and now Beckett is off the field for a bit. There will come a time when they're all healthy. When that time does come, the options will be very difficult to choose from. They are all starters. None of them deserve to be sent to the 'pen, Wake included.

There's 6 headed elephant in the room that needs to be dealt with now (7 if you include Mike Lowell.) Although the starting rotation is only one of the 3 most difficult situations, it involves more players. I don't pretend to know what's going on inside Wake's head right now, but we do know that he is not happy working out of the bullpen. None of them would be happy working out of the bullpen. It may be time to revisit the 6 man rotation again.

It would be tricky, but it could be done. One of them might need an extra day off once in a while for a myriad of reasons. Francona needs to see who is hot and who is not. He will have to take closer looks at match ups with opposing teams furthur in advance than he already does and juggle the order they pitch accordingly. There is no law that mandates that the starting pitchers rotation maintain the same order throughout the whole season.

If they haven't already, Francona and Farrell would do best to sit down with each pitcher and explain the difficulty of this situation and ask them to do what's best for the team, and if it means that some of them get 2 or 3 fewer starts over the course of the whole season because of this, then so be it. I know starting pitchers are of a different mindset because they do not play every day and that deviation from their normal once every 5 game start is harder for them to process. I know this leaves the bullpen with one less arm, but if the starters have more rest, then theoretically, they should be able to go deeper into games.

A lot of fans take one look at his age and yell, "Stick a fork in him already!" what gets overlooked is that a knuckleball pitcher's arm lasts a hell of a lot longer than a 95 mph fastballer. Even so, the list of baseball's best fastball pitchers who lasted well into their 40's is impressive.

Tim Wakefield has earned his spot in the starting pitcher's rotation. He just throttled the best team in the National League last night, blanking them for 8 innings. He was an All Star last year. And if the 6 man rotation does become the answer, no one should ever say it was Tim Wakefield's fault.

What this team needs is cohesion to make it into October and if it means that the rest of the starters' routine is a little bit different for the remainder of the season then they should deal with it as best they can. This is not a situation that will happen again anytime soon. Really, most teams would kill to be in this position. Well, maybe that would be a bit extreme, but you get the point.

Fenway West 05.24.10

Friday, May 21, 2010

Lackluster Lackey

Lackey tossed 107 pitches in only 5 innings, giving up 6 hits including 2 round trips, walking 5 and striking out only 3 Phillies as they beat the Sox 5-1 tonight. Victor Martinez continues his Papi-like resurgence with a 2/4 performance which included his 6th HR of the season. Big Papi had a huge chance to shut his critics up for good tonight in the top of the 9th when he pinch hit for Hall with the bases full. He almost did it too, as he flied out to deep center field to end the game.

Phillies 5 Sox 1 BOX SCORE

Fenway West 05.21.10

Red Sox Nation- We Are Everywhere; plus A's & Giants game notes

I turned on the SFG @ OAK game on the local TV station after the Sox game was over. (I only have basic cable, and I mean it's really 'basic.') In the botttom of the 8th inning, the A's were leading the Giants 6-1. I had stepped away from the tube for a couple of minutes, but was still within listening distance, when I had to run back to it because I could not believe what I was hearing: "Yankees suck! Yankees suck! Yankees suck!" There was no mistake about it, it went on for about 20 or 30 seconds or so before the house PA started up with the trumpet fanfare to try and break it up! It almost started up again after the fanfare had ended. I started thinking about all the Sox fans that must be there, but then I recalled an A's shirt I saw last year at a SOX @ OAK game:
F&@# the Angels
F&@# the Rangers
F&@# the Mariners
F&@# the Red Sox
F&@# the Yankees
Maybe the A's fans don't care for them either? It was interesting and fun to hear it coming from other team's fans.

More interesting items from this game include A's announcer Ray Fosse working with his Giant's counterpart, Jon Miller, and seeing our old friend Coco Crisp going 2/3 with 2 RBI's in his first appearance of the season. (Maybe he can beat the crap out of some of the Ray's- JK!!!) Giant's starting pitcher Barry Zito finally has a season worthy of his paycheck, but this was only his 2nd loss of the year.

The post game show featured an interview with Crisp who was just gushing over his performance in his first game of the season and how much fun it is to be playing in front of a big crowd. I don't think he realized though, that most of those fans in Oakland Stadium tonight were Giant's fans. Last week when Dallas Braden threw his perfect game for the A's, there were barely 12k fans ther to watch that historic feat!

And speaking of Braden, it was Dallas Braden night at Oakland. His grandmother came out to toss the first pitch and it was revealed that she sports a '209' tattoo like her grandson. (The '209' refers to the area code of his hometown. As for his grandmother's tattoo, a little TMI. Y'think?)

We'll see what A-Rod has to say about Braden the next time they face each other. A couple of weeks ago, A-Rod was involved in another controversy when he crossed over the pitcher's mound with Braden pitching when he went from 3B to the Yankee's dugout. One of baseball's unwritten rules is that the mound is off limits to the opposing team. A-Rod dismissed Braden's outburst with a comment about some guy with a handful of MLB wins. Well A-Rod, one of those 'handfuls' of wins includes a perfect game. Whattya got to say about him now, Mr. Big Shot?
As I was writing this post, I searched for A's announcers before I posted this, and this is what I found on the Oakland A's web site:

Ray Fosse

Uh, Ray? You really should get a better photo of yourself. That 'do is pretty scary. Ted Koppel scary. Donald Trump scary!

Separated at birth, maybe?

Cancer Benefit band ISO keyboard player

'The Cancer Sucks Band' will be playing 1 night only on Saturday, June 26th at The Connecticut Yankee in San Francisco. This is a benefit sponsored by Fenway West for The Jimmy Fund and The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. This Benefit is scheduled to coincide with the Boston Red Sox 1st trip to San Francisco and ATnT Park in 6 years. We have secured official recognition of this event from Dana-Farber. The 1st set will consist of songs about the City of Boston, songs by bands from Boston, baseball songs, and songs that are played at Fenway Park. The 2nd set will have a distinct SF flavor- all Grateful Dead, as we bring patrons on a musical journey from Fenway Park in Boston to San Francisco. The house band for the night has been assembled and includes Dave Stein, Pat Nevins, Jeff Faust, and yours truly. We have invited some very special guests to sit in with us, including Stu Allen of Front Street, JGB, and Dark Star Orchestra. The Connecticut Yankee is a Red Sox and Boston sports bar less than 2 miles from ATnT Park. Tickets are available at Rock and Sox~ A Benefit for The Jimmy Fund. If you are interested, please send an e-mail to RockandSox@gmail.com with your contact info, web site, and samples of your playing. Rehearsals will begin soon. Charts, lyrics, chords, and links to download the covers are ready to go out. This is a benefit, so there will be no pay as we raise funds for 2 very worthwhile charitable organizations and have a lot of fun doing it. I'm even having my hair cut on stage for Locks of Love.

Now this is what I like to see when I come home

I come home late not knowing the outcome of tonight's game so I pull up RedSox.com and see that Jon Lester threw a complete game victory for the Sox. Not only was Lester a-wheelin' and a-dealin' again- 9 IP, 6 H, 9 K, 1 ER, 103-76 pitches-strikes- Victor Martinez seems to have found his bat- 3/4, 2 runs. Youk and Beltre homered. Recent call-up from Pawtucket, Angel Sanchez snagged 2 balls hit at him and turned 2 double plays with Pedey and Youk. Bummer of the box score was seeing Mike Lowell go 0/4 as Ortiz had the night off against Liriano. This makes 2 very satisfying pitching performances in a row for the Sox.

SOX 6 TWINS 2 Box Score

Fenway West 05.21.09

Saturday, May 15, 2010

For all the 'Chicken Littles' out there

On May 12, 2009, the New York Yankees had a won-loss record of 15-17 for a .469 winning percentage, and we all know where they ended up last year.

On May May 15, 2009, Big Papi was benched for 3 games at Seattle after going 0-7 the game before. His stats through May 15th in 2009 and 2010:

A little bit better than last year, no?

Fenway West 05.15.10

Friday, May 14, 2010

Come see the hippy get his hair cut!

My oldest brother was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer in November of 2008 and was given a year to live by his doctors. November of 2009 came and went and he continues to fight a valiant fight against his affliction. A friend and former band mate was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreas and liver cancer just before NYE. (He just passed away this week.) The 2010 MLB schedules were released and I saw that the Sox are returning to San Francisco for the first time in 6 years. A current band mate and friend recently lost his brother to cancer. Then I was reading about the 2010 Hot Stove Cool Music benefit when I felt the proverbial light bulb turn on over my head. I ran the idea of a West Coast benefit by Matt O'Donnell, owner of this distinguished blog (in the neighborhood of 10k hits/month these days), and he liked the idea. A lot. We ran with this and it has become official!

The Red Sox play the Giants in San Francisco on June 25, 26, and 27. Saturday night, the 1st Rock & Sox Benefit for The Jimmy Fund and The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute will take place. The game starts shortly after 4 and should be over by 8 PM or so, leaving plenty of time for fans, and hopefully players, to get to The Connecticut Yankee Red Sox and Boston sports bar, restaraunt, and music venue, which is less than 2 miles from the Giants' ATnT Park. (Odd name for a Red Sox bar, yes, I know. Click here if you would like to read how the bar got its name.)

Official recognition from The Dana-Farber Cancer Istitute has been received, the house band which consists of several of the Bay Area's best musicians will commence rehearsals soon. If you're going to any of these Giants games, please consider having dinner at The Connecticut Yankee and then stay for the music which will start no later than 10 PM. Don't wait to get your tickets, though! The house band, dubbed 'The Cancer Sucks Band' will take us on a musical journey starting in Boston and ending in San Francisco. The 1st set will be comprised of songs about the city of Boston, songs by bands from Boston, baseball songs, and songs that every good Sox fan should know by heart. The 2nd set will have a distinct San Francisco flavor to it.

Invitations to perform will be extended to Theo, Wake, and Peter Gammons, as well as Clay Buchholz, who is the 2010 Spokesman for Rally Against Cancer, and Jerry Remy. If any of them show up, I will have my hair cut on stage to be donated to Locks of Love! So come see the hippy get his hair cut! No one will ever believe a drummer put this thing to gether!

Little Johnny- Mom, when I grow up, I want to be a drummer.
Mother- Now, Johnny, you can't do both.

Q~ What do you call a drummer with no girlfriend?
A~ Homeless.

Visit the Rock & Sox site for advanced ticket sale information, which will be announced soon.
Click here for the Facebook group page.
Click here for the Facebook event page.
Only 100 tickets will be sold and we expect this event to sell out, so don't wait!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Lester was a-wheelin' and a-dealin'

It wasn't the Sox who scored only 3 runs tonight. Jon Lester continues to work like Sisyphus for the Sox going 7 innings deep tonight so that Jonathan Van Every won't be needed in relief in the near future. The Sox seemed to have gotten into a good groove winning 10 of 15 after the Rays left the house with their broomsticks. That is until the damn Yankees showed up again threatening to win 8 straight to match last year's feat. (I'd trade the 8 straight for a ring, though.) After pummeling the Sox in what must've seemed like return of The Massacre in the first 2 games of this series, the Sox turned things around again displaying the resiliency that will be needed if they think they want to skip golf in October.

Lester allowed only 4 hits, walked 2, letting only 2 sneak by to home, while striking out 7 pinstripers. The offense tagged Burnett for 9 runs before the 5th inning was over, causing Girardi to get his knickers in a twist and getting ejected. Manny came into the game in the 7th inning and let 1 more of those damn Yankees get by him. (Can I write that enough? Damn Yankees!) Wakefield finished them off with a 1/2/3 - 9th inning.

On again, (mostly, bummer) off again Papi was only 1 for 4, but it was a double that did knock in 1 (with 2 outs, no less) and scored 1 himself (1 K, 0 GIDP, 2 LOB.) Drew continues his welcomed resurgence going 2 for 3, scoring 1 and knocking 1 in. Beltre was 2 for 4, 2 RBI's, 2 runs; Hermida was 2 for 4, with 1 run scored and 3 RBI's.

Sox 9 Yankees 3 BOX SCORE

Fenway West 05.10.10

A's pitcher Dallas Braden throws a PERFECT GAME against the Rays!

Oakland A's pitcher Dallas Braden needed only 109 pitches, 77 of them strikes to retire the Tampa Bay Rays in order today. 27 up, 27 down, as the A's beat the Ray's 4-0 in Oakland. Braden struck out 6, and the A's got 12 hits, 11 of them off of Ray's starter James Shields.

The sad part is that only 12,228 showed up to watch it, as the weather was overcast and a cool 59 degrees. I'm sure a lot of A's fans are kicking theirselves in the collective behinds for ditching the game. Proctologists will be busy at the ER today.

Oakland 4, Tampa Bay 0 BOX SCORE

Fenway West 05.09.10

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Rock & Sox~ A Benefit for The Jimmy Fund

Rock & Sox - A Benefit for The Jimmy Fund,

with ‘The Cancer Sucks Band’

featuring Dave Stein, Pat Nevins, Jeff Faust and Sam Flot

and very special guests to be announced soon.

Fenway West’s California Cancer Benefit

will be held after the SOX @ SFG game on

Saturday, June 26th at

The Connecticut Yankee

Connecticut Avenue & 17th Street, San Francisco,

located less than 2 miles from The SF Giants' AT&T Park.

After the game is over, come on over to The Connecticut Yankee for a night of great food and great music as The Cancer Sucks Band features some of the best Bay Area musicians and will bring you on a musical journey from Boston to San Francisco. The Connecticut Yankee has a great menu, great food, great beer, wide screen TV, and regularly hosts nationally known bands as well as up and coming bands that have great potential for success.

Bookmark Rock & Sox for updates about this event.
Facebook group page, click here
Facebook event page, click here

Follow on Twitter, too:

And if you’re curious as to how a Red Sox bar came to have a name like 'The Connecticut Yankee', or as it is known locally, The Yankee, click here.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Lackey's Strong Start Brings Sox Up to .500

Lackey went 7 strong tonight as the Red Sox have won 10 of 15 ever since Tampa Bay left Fenway with their brooms. (Seems such a long time ago, doesn't it?) He allowed only 2 hits and 2 walks while letting only one of those Angels reach home plate. Bard gets the hold, while striking out two. Papelbon gets the save. No walks or hits allowed by either.

Former Red Sox pitcher Joel Pineiro went 6 innings, struck out 5, and held the Sox to two runs.

One other item of note- David Ortiz went 1/3, his only hit being a home run. What is noteworthy, however, is the fact that he did not strike out, leave any teammates stranded, and did not grind into any double plays.

SOX WIN 3-1 Box Score

Fenway West 05.05.10

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Sox Get More For Lester

Or rather I should say, more from Lester; I just couldn't help the play on words. But getting more from Lester is exactly what they got tonight. After 3 miserable starts in April, Lester has pitched brilliantly in 20.2 innings allowing only 10 hits and 1 run in his last 3 starts. (Perhaps he was motivated by the news of Dave Roberts and his similar diagnosis?) As I mentioned last night, the ship was listing and appears to be righting itself. Oh naysayers and doom seekers, be gone! And take all the Chicken Littles and Pinkhats with you! This season is far from over!

It was a total pitcher's duel through 7 innings as Ervin Santana and Jon Lester matched each other with very similar numbers:

Santana- 7 IP, 7 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 7 K, 4.02 ERA, 115/72 # pitches/strikes
Lester- 8 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, 3.93 ERA, 120/76 # pitches/strikes

Jepsen came in for the Angels in the 8th inning and promptly issued 2 free passes and then a single by J.D. Drew to load the bases. I was totally prepared to see Mike Lowell step up to the plate because up to that point Ortiz already had already struck out and had grounded into a double play. Tito decided to go with the Large Father, though. Bad move. It breaks my heart to see such revered sports heroes having so much difficulty as their careers start to wind down. (I'm still waiting for Mo to get on with his end of career slide.) Big Papi flailed again and ground into his second double play of the night, stranding a total of 7 teammates on the bases for the night. No matter, as Jeremey Hermida stepped up to the plate and whacked an opposite field bases clearing double that Juan Rivera may have gotten to had he not misjudged the incoming. The Sox were up 4-1 at that point with a man still on second base and Darnell McDonald due up. Finally Scioscia pulls Jepsen and sends in our old pal Scott Shields. Now Tito decides to send in Mike to pinch hit, and he delivered again, sending in Hermida to home with another double. Shields loaded up the bases again before he finally got Van Every to strike out, lest another slugfest break out.

I love seeing Big Papi playing for the Sox, but it also pains me to see numbers like 0/4, 2 Ks, 2 GIDPs, and 7 teammates LOB. Oh Papi, Big Papi, you test our loyalty! All those walk off HRs now seem so long ago! Your leash groweth short, I fear. What will be Papi's fate? One thing is for sure, and that is that Mike Lowell may become a very important part of this team for the whole season if Ortiz does not start producing on a regular basis, the 2 HRs in one game the other night notwithstanding.

Our old friend Joel Pineiro makes a return trip to the Fenway mound tomorrow, but this time wearing red for yet another team. Pineiro pitched for the Red Sox in 2007 before playing with the Cardinals up until this year.


Fenway West 05.04.10

Monday, May 3, 2010

"The report of my death was an exaggeration."*

Most of Red Sox Nation were fearing this match-up with the Angels. They were crying that the sky is falling! Dischord abounds in the clubhouse! The season is lost already!

Clay Buchholz would have none of that as he pitched admirably in 5.2 innings, leaving the game with a 7-4 lead. That's when the Sox bats exploded scoring 10 more runs in the 6th and 7th innings. Manny and Ram-1 shut down the Angels over 2.1 innings, not allowing a man on base, and doing it on only 24 pitches between the two of them. Schoeneweis got the call for mop up duty in inning number 9, and promptly coughed up 4 moot point runs.

All of the Sox starters had multi-hit games tonight except for Pedroia. That's OK as his one hit was a 3 run homer. JD Drew went 4/5, knocking in 3 and scoring 2. Mike Lowell had a 4/4 night, including 2 doubles as he knocked in 4 and scored 2 times.

While the ship may have been listing badly, it appears to be righting itself. File this one under morale and confidence boosters.

Red Sox- 17, Angels 8 BOX SCORE

*Mark Twain

Fenway West 05.03.10

Dave Roberts has cancer

Every Sox fan knows who Dave Roberts is. ABC News and ESPN are reporting today that Roberts has Hodgkin's lymphoma. Hodgkin's lymphoma is a type of cancer originating from white blood cells. He was diagnosed in March, it was detected early, and his prognosis is good.

Roberts arrived in Boston in 2004 and although his stay with the Red Sox was short, he will always be remembered for "The Steal of the Century." He was traded to the San Diego Padres to play center field in exchange for Jay Payton. Ironically, he was bumped from center field to left field when the Padres acquired Mike Cameron. Roberts played for the Padres in 2005 and 2006, and the San Francisco Giants in 2007 and 2008. He retired after the 2008 season and worked for NESN in 2009. In 2010 he started working as a special assistaant in the Padres organization.

He is scheduled to talk more about his health later today.

Besides Roberts, Jon Lester is a Hodgkin's lymphoma survivor. Former prospect Anthony Rizzo was diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma in 2008. Mike Lowell is a cancer survivor.

My oldest brother was diagnosed with cancer in 2008 and has been succesful so far in his battle with it. Very recently, a friend and former band mate was diagnosed with cancer and is going down fast. A current friend and band mate just lost his brother to cancer. I'm sure many of us know someone who has been stricken with this disease. For many years now, the Red Sox have been associated with The Jimmy Fund and The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and their quest to find a cure for this disease.

Cancer sucks.

Fenway West 05.03.10

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Sox are very offensive these days

But where's the pitching?!?! All winter long, all we heard was defense and pitching, defense and pitching, defense and pitching, (ad nauseum.) Dice-K made his heralded return to the bigs today and was expected to breeze through 7 against the lowly O's, but he couldn't make out of the 5th inning. He surrendered 7 hits, 6 earned runs, 3 walks, and 2 home runs. He threw 95 pitches in 4.2 innings. Is this the same guy who was on fire while at AAA Pawtucket? Wake came in after that and clearly he does not pitch well out of the bullpen as he was torched to the tune of 5 hits, 5 earned runs, and 3 home runs in 2.1 innings.

Besides the pitching and defense mantra that was preached all winter long, baseball pundits everywhere were expecting 3-2 and 2-1 scores with the departure of Jason Bay and the demise of Big Papi. So far, they're either hot, or not. They're averaging 4.5 runs per game. In 10 of those games they scored 6 or more runs, averaging 8.1 runs per game when they're hot. When they're not, they have scored 3 runs or less in 11 games so far, including being shut out twice.

Two of the lefties in the starting line-up have sent cardboard stand-up cut-outs of themselves up to the plate all of April. However, J.D. Drew had a break out day yesterday belting 2 home runs, and today, David Ortiz did the same as the Sox lost 12-9. Let's hope that continues for the both of them, otherwise we may not see them after July.

Commander Kick Donkey goes to the hill tomorrow as the Sox attempt to get at least one win from the Oriole's in this series, the team with the worst record in all of MLB. Beckett will get his former moniker back whenever he gets his Xsh...X act together, hopefully tomorrow.

While this season is getting off to an ugly, fugly start, I remain loyally devoted to the Sox, no matter where they end up in the standings come October.

If it's any consolation, Mark Teixeira's line is just as ugly as the Sox- .153/.314/.271/.585, with 19 strike outs and only 2 home runs in 81 at bats. Javier Vazquez was lit up like a Christmas tree today, surrendering 3 home runs, 5 earned runs, and 4 walks in 3 innings, as the White Sox beat the Yankees 7-6 today. Just sayin'.

Orioles 12 Red Sox 9 BOX SCORE
Fenway West 05.01.10