July 24th - A Penny saved is a win earned !!
FINALLY the boys returned to friendly Fenway last night on the brink of disaster. In a HUGE start for the team (and himself) Brad Penny took the hill in an effort to extinguish the team's longest losing streak ever (well ok, not EVER - but it has felt like it).
The Sox starter had the shine of a Bra(n)d new Penny !! Penny pitched a powerful 6-1/3 frames, giving up 1 run on only 5 hits - with NO walks and 4 Ks. It's "funny" tho, the fewer strikeouts that Brad has, the better he pitches... HMMMMMMMM. But did I see the "gun" register 99 mph ???? Now THAT's "MOSS" baby !!!!!!!!!!! Nuf Ced
I'd like to see Brad make it through a complete 7 innings but Melvin Mora's 12 pitch (ETERNAL) at-bat surely was a big reason it didn't happen last night. But the "pen" did it's job with Manny (no, NOT ManRam) Delcarmen and "Ut Oh" Oki pitching 1-2/3 innings of "no-no" ball.
BUT PAPS !!!!! You're gonna make me gray kid (too late) !!!!!!! Jigman "decided" it would be better to load the bases and THEN start to actually pitch..... and remember my thoughts here. WHEW !!!! Thank God he was able to bear down and strike out the final 2 batters to earn his 25th save !!!
Offensively, the Bombers didn't set the Fens on fire. But Pedey and Jacoby had 2 hits each with Papi, JBay, Cpt Tek, Mikey and even JD Drew chipping in with timely hits. Yes, even JD showed signs of snapping his streak (0-24), squaring up a couple of fa(s)tballs, one of which found it's way to the gap in left. That's it JD - go with the pitch man !!!! Nuf Ced
Ah Jacoby and Pedey.... never NUF CED about these kids. What a 1-2 punch !!! (remember the '07 post season???) As mentioned, each had another 2 hits and have been the most consistent bats over the last week. And the thief snatched another bag !!! And they continue to do it in the field too - each turning in highlight reel defensive plays AGAIN last night - Jacoby with that diving catch to end the 3rd (and save runs) and Pedey... ah Pedey... how the hell do you make those plays when the ball is already past you ?!?!?! Way to go "big" guy !!! Can you believe they list this kid at 5'9" and 180 pounds ???? Nuf Ced
I'm still on the Fens about Jacoby in the lead-off spot though - although it seems to work well. But I did like Tito's thought of putting Ellsbury's consistent stick in the 7-spot in an effort to boost the bottom of the batting order. Think about it.... you're only a LEAD-off hitter once a game, right? Obviously, with Drew and the crew's slumping ways of late, Tito needed to mix things up a bit. PREDICTION ????? Nah !!!!!!!!!!!! But look more more "shaking up" in the near future... Nuf Ced
Mark Kotsay finds himself as the odd man out, being "designated for assignment" (apparently a polite way of saying "you're fired" !!!!) after they picked up JBay's buddy, Adam LaRoche, from the Pirates (and for "peanuts", at that). "La La" (you know I name EVERYONE) is a hard-hitting lefty first baseman - and only 29 years old. Good move THEO !!!!!!!! This guy's a 30(homer)/100(rbi) bat waiting to happen (uh, oh yeah, he had 32 dingers in 2006) and should add some punch to the line-up spelling Youk at 1st... or possibly even Papi at DH. Hmmmm, it would be nice to have La La's bat in the line-up on a daily basis...... something to think about... GREAT MOVE THEO !!! Nuf Ced
Johnny Lester toes the rubber tonight in an effort to bounce back from his last outing and continue the boys' winning "streak" !!!!!
As always, it's been real, it's been fun.... And it really has been a lot of fun!
I will close with a prediction... I predict I will post multiple blogs today so come early and come often. I absolutely MUST write about Jim Ed on the day before his induction (into the Hall of Fame) - and 3 days before the Sox retire his number !!!!! Ever wonder why NO ONE has donned number 14 since Jim Rice retired???? The Sox have been planning this for 20 years - NOW is the time.... what class !!! I bet Big Jim cries.... I bet I do too !!!!