October 18, 2008

ALCS 6: Red Sox 4, Rays 2

Red Sox - 011 002 000 - 4 10  0
Rays - 100 010 000 - 2 4 1
Sometime during the seventh inning on Thursday night, I made peace with the fact that the Red Sox 2008 season had come to an end.

But then Boston came back and actually won the game. So while more than a few game threaders were highly anxious throughout Game 6 tonight, I was totally (and surprisingly) calm the entire nine innings. This might as well have been a March 20 spring training game.

After Tampa Bay had tied the game at 2-2 in the fifth, the Red Sox struck back with two outs. Jason Varitek homered to right field (!) -- it was a good thing our young dog was outside at the time, as our sudden yelling in the last two games has freaked her out. Coco Crisp singled, "Small Game" Shields was yanked, Dustin Pedroia reached on an error and David Ortiz singled in Crisp to give the Sox a 4-2 lead.

After Beckett battled through five innings (5-4-2-1-3, 78), Hideki Okajima threw two scoreless innings (allowing only a two-out walk in the sixth), Justin Masterson took care of the eighth (a leadoff HBP was marooned at first) and Jonathan Papelbon needed only eight pitches to get rid of the Rays in the ninth.


It's Lester/Garza on Sunday night -- for the American League pennant.

***

BR Preview: Josh Beckett / James Shields

Fact: Tampa Bay is three two games away from elimination.

We tried to warn Joe Maddon that "when you have your target lined up in your sights, you fucking fire. You don't stop and check if your shoelaces are tied."

But Mr. 9=8 refused to listen. And now -- thanks to a clutch effort from nearly the entire Red Sox team -- his team has its back to the wall and assigned the task of facing Josh Beckett who must be burning to atone for his poor performance in Game 2.

Cliff Floyd:
We don't go up there and think, Now we've got to beat Beckett — no one cares about Beckett. Face him the same way you face everybody else. If anything, Beckett should be worried about us. We just beat him [in Game 2].
Yeah, that's right. Piss him off. Chap his ass real good.

David Ortiz, on Beckett:
This is a big game, dog. I've got the feeling that he's going to bring it.
And on the other side of the field?

The only kind of "Big Game" Shields will be is the kind Beckett and Timlin hunt in the off-season.

The Herald's Steve Buckley describes Ortiz "navigating the media throng that had assembled in front of his locker late yesterday afternoon at Tropicana Field, zigging and zagging to avoid a cameraman, bobbing and weaving to sidestep a guy with a microphone. ... 'I'll talk tomorrow with my bat.'"

According to Win Probability stats, when Justin Masterson got Carlos Pena to GIDP and end the top of the ninth, Boston's chances of winning the game increased 22% -- from 42% to 65%. It was the third most important play of the night. Ortiz's three-run bomb increased the team's chances of a win from 2% to only 9%. So even though it closed the gap from 7-1 to 7-4 -- which got everyone thinking a comeback was truly possible -- the chances of a team getting at least four more runs and winning the game was still highly unlikely.

Greg Agami of Cool Standings told the Globe that after trailing 7-0 after six inning of Game 5, the Red Sox had a 0.1 percent - 1 in 1,000 - chance to win the series. By comparison, in the middle of the ninth inning of 2004 ALCS 4, Boston had a 2.4%. That still seems high to me, but they trailed by only one run at that point -- not seven with a mere seven outs to go -- and had a 50% shot at winning each of Games 5, 6 and 7.

J.P. Howell, recalling the plane ride back to Tampa:
We started joking, "Don't be scared of Game 6." That's what we kept saying. We were bummed out. It was a terrible way to lose a game.
***

JimBoSox9m, SoSH, October 17, 2008, 12:47 AM:
I just don't understand baseball. I don't get it. I've spent my lifetime devoting considerable mental resources to understanding my favorite sport, and I have no fucking clue how they just did that. ... Speechless, thoughtless, struck blind and deaf. Exhilarated, exuberant, overjoyed. What it comes down to? As long as the Sox still have baseball to play, it is still summer in my soul.
Savin Hillbilly, SoSH, October 17, 2008, 1:12 AM:
Just got back from Fenway....Holy SHIT that was amazing. Like the best sex you've ever had, only a 35,000-way.

***

It worked in 2004. It worked in 2007. It'll work in 2008.
One. One game. One win. That's all.

Not two. One.

Tonight.

867 comments:

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s1c said...

TV here in central CT.

redsock said...

and so BGJ yaks up the lead right away!!!!!!

redsock said...

near dong for drew down the RF line up near ceiling

A Conformer said...

So fucking close

Ben said...

oh so truped on that one.

s1c said...

Frag, that was just foul.

efd said...

I was Drewped on that one.

SoSock said...

Woo Woo!!!
Sultan of Swety Dongs

DAMN, DAMN, DAMN.
Nealy BTB

L-girl said...

oh man did castig trupe us on that one. wow.

redsock said...

yeah fuck you BGJ

L-girl said...

a drewingle!

L-girl said...

heh, drewped, nice efd

Amy said...

I know several casual Yankees fans who are cheering for the Sox tonight.

I know one very passionate Yankee fan rooting for the Sox tonight. But he loves me, so it isn't about the Sox.

Shit. DP.

L-girl said...

Does anyone still need pbp? Please speak up for poor Allan.

A Conformer said...

Big Game James is not looking good early.

And you gotta to hand it to Longoria- good play.

efd said...

BGJ looks a little like a yak, too. A less hairy yak, but still...

Amy said...

THROUGH!

L-girl said...

yay harvey

ish said...

Gonna be another knock-down drag-out game.

papa sime said...

we are hitting the baseball HOLY SHIT!!!!

redsock said...

we are banging the ball every time

rays: u r fukt

Amy said...

Guess that was not a DP. I mis-heard the call.

efd said...

through!!

nice job getting back to 2nd, Bay.

s1c said...

Time for some force, c'mon Jedi!!!

Amy said...

Yay, Harvey---for sure. A better person than I am...

I LIKE our bats so far!

ish said...

22 combined dongs in this series... New ALCS record. Last record, I think was 21, during the Yankees/Red Sox ALCS of 2003.

redsock said...

oh good lord tek - do good here

heng brothers said...

TBS finally restored on the West Coast feed.

Amy said...

Tek has to catch fire eventually, I hope.

A Conformer said...

Lefty Tek= no hope.

SoSock said...

We have TV in NC.
(for what it's worth)

Amy said...

Josh, get mad and get over the pain. Pitch mean. Pitch hard. Pitch fast. NO SHIT.

s1c said...

Fragging varitek.

A Conformer said...

It's sad to say, but a foul ball on a full count and then an out is more than I expected out of Tek.

Amy said...

My dog just came over to me and nuzzled me. Is she sensing my tension? Or does she just have to go outside?

A Conformer said...

I put the TV on mute when they were showing the shitty sitcom, and have not brought back sound. I think I'm gonna stay with this. Blissful silence.

Amy said...

I was tempted to keep the radio on, but the time lag drives me crazy.

Amy said...

one pitch, one out = good.

A Conformer said...

I liked Big Game James' scouting report- one of them was "go deep". Double entendre, anyone? (Triple, even, but the third one is besides the point...)

And Beckett's: hold the lead. First of all, there is no lead to hold yet. And besides that, wtf? Who are all these dumb baseball fans these "reports" are written for, where the key to a win is "not giving up runs" or "holding a lead"?

s1c said...

K!!!

phil said...

Nice to tune in late and not see them up by five.

Amy said...

OTT

L-girl said...

Who are all these dumb baseball fans these "reports" are written for, where the key to a win is "not giving up runs" or "holding a lead"?

Does make you wonder.

efd said...

OTT!

s1c said...

HOF!!!

Now the top of the order needs to come through and knock big game james out of this game.

L-girl said...

A, if you're reading, I'm on my way home.

Amy said...

So what do you all think so far of Beckett's control and speed? He seems to be throwing few fastballs, but his control seems pretty damn good, no?

efd said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Amy said...

L, we are reading. Get home safely!

redsock said...

6-pitch 2nd for beckett, bitches.

A Conformer said...

So what do you all think so far of Beckett's control and speed? He seems to be throwing few fastballs, but his control seems pretty damn good, no?

Curve looks good. Location seems good. Of course, we didn't get to see the pitch on which Fuckton donged... but he looks better to me.

Amy said...

Top of the order. Cool.

Amy said...

I agree, Ofer.

redsock said...

fuckton got a high fb looked like - pounded the bejeesus out of it.

the floyd K outside looked like a gift.

Amy said...

BB. BRING HIM HOME, Damn it.

A Conformer said...

Go Papi Go

redsock said...

gotta let a flo be a flo

let's mash!!!

Amy said...

Papi!

ish said...

FUCK YOU SHIFT.

ish said...

Although without the shift Pena would have been playing there.

A Conformer said...

I can't believe that one went through. GET HIM HOME

SoSock said...

Papi is BAAAAAAaaaaaaaack!

Amy said...

Time for Youk to sweat some more.

redsock said...

news flash - gross sucks

efd said...

Gross isn't a very good defensive outfielder, is he.

efd said...

LEAD!!!!

ish said...

Red Sox fan with a big poster that says "Mojo Risin"

!!!!

Amy said...

We get a run in!

SoSock said...

THE LEAD!

Amy said...

Drew...be ON FIRE.

A Conformer said...

There's a MOJO RISING sign in the crowd.

OK, now the key to the game is holding the lead...

redsock said...

yeah - break his fucking back

Amy said...

Heh, when was the last time WE had the lead in the ALCS before the ninth in game 5? I am stoked. Scared, but stoked.

phil said...

On base-a.

s1c said...

Time for some bay magic.

lay off that low curve ball Bay man, lay off the low curve ball Bay.

A Conformer said...

Drewalk. And now, a 2Bay.

phil said...

Big Game Shields's pitch count is rapidly rising.

A Conformer said...

Heh, when was the last time WE had the lead in the ALCS before the ninth in game 5? I am stoked. Scared, but stoked.

5th inning, game 2. Almost certain.

redsock said...

good eye j=bay

Amy said...

Where did TB find fans all of a sudden? Seems to me all season there were more Sox fans there than Ray fans. Talk about fair weather fans.

redsock said...

62 pc after that bay foul

phil said...

Woulk.

Amy said...

All bases are filled. Kotsay, do NOT let us down.

redsock said...

shields sweatin' a bit too!!!

loaded fot kotsay!

s1c said...

I can do without a Lobotomy here, Mr. Kotsay, make your way into red sox lore.

SoSock said...

Walk one in?

redsock said...

bases loaded - dont let us down shields.

ish said...

Everyone in the Sox dugout are on their feet clapping!

redsock said...

rays noobs in the crowd confused.

s1c said...

Frag, lobotomy.

efd said...

nuts.

phil said...

Bah. Still up one, though.

SoSock said...

LOBotomy - damit

Amy said...

Damn damn. But we ARE ahead. And we are getting to "Big Game" James.

phil said...

69/39 through three, at least.

redsock said...

shields knows he dodged a big fucking bullet there -- and he has nothing -- sox have his #
69 PC

s1c said...

He just got under that one.

Ok, the Brooke Shield VW commercials are sickening.

Amy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
redsock said...

BGJ PC: 17-21-39 = 69

beckett: 19-6 = 25

s1c said...

we need another OTT inning here Joshie.

(whole family sitting on the edge of the seats here in CT. Dog doesn't know what to do).

s1c said...

Another K!!!

SoSock said...

No doubt about it!

Amy said...

I am afraid to say it, but I think Josh is looking good.

redsock said...

hellof a fucking K!!!!!!!!

s1c said...

Joshies curve looking great tonight.

efd said...

jeez, he didn't even move!

ish said...

Except for that curve.

redsock said...

theyhack and make outs
they take and strikes drop in

LEANS INTO THE BALL

fucking a ump - enforce ALL the rules

redsock said...

dp pls

SoSock said...

Beckett is locating the curve very well. (as he hits a batter)
Shouldn't have gotten the base - no effort at all to move.

I hope the use of the deuce is not due to no confidence in the fastball.

Amy said...

Come on, Josh, don't make me regret saying that.

redsock said...

no, not shying away from the fb, though it is at best 92-93

SoSock said...

Babe Ruth my ass

s1c said...

SoSock, I think the use of the duece is to set up that below par 91 mph FB.

s1c said...

2 down, should be three down.

Amy said...

Pop up!

SoSock said...

You, sir, are no Babe Ruth.

redsock said...

i know babe ruth, etc....

chris said...

the dude had 9 HR's in the reg season. i just don't get it

Amy said...

SoSock, who is the Babe reference about? I didn't hear it. Ignoring the anncrs best I can.

redsock said...

nice cut jackass

Dr. Jeff said...

Upton needs to cool off, and Tek needs to join the party tonight.

ish said...

Tek's been looking into the dugout more than usual, it seems. Maybe Tito's calling the pitches? Or some?

Amy said...

K, please.

Amy said...

Nice!

ish said...

Beckett has a little chat with the HP ump

s1c said...

He fragging held, he held. Oh, yeah, on these small things we build.

Amy said...

Dr Jeff, you aren't the same Dr Jeff who skis at Mt Snow and lives in CT, are you?

phil said...

Three innings in, it looks like 2007 Beckett may have checked himself out of the Betty Ford clinic and finally shown up.

Ben said...

Liking the way Josh is looking so far tonight.

Runs!

s1c said...

Ish - Tek might be looking for pitch outs. I can't imagine that Tito is calling pitches.

redsock said...

babe never tapped back to the pitcher!

jedi
tek
ococ

Jere said...

got the parents over, we're all here goin' nuts, so not posting much. Hey, TBS is showing it at least now, whatta ya know....

Big coupla outs by Josh there. Now pull away! Shields up to 2000 pitches I believe.

ish said...

The strike zone has gotten bigger. Cousins has left the game. home plate ump.

Amy said...

Hey, Jere, great posts on your blog. Wish you were down in Tampa!

Amy said...

Is that good or bad, Ish?

ish said...

Ish - Tek might be looking for pitch outs. I can't imagine that Tito is calling pitches.

It wouldn't totally surprise me if he did call pitches tonight, but what you said makes TONS more sense.

redsock said...

bigger zone has to help beckett

sox should still be patient and not swing at junk (except for tek!)

L-girl said...

Hey all, I'm home now. Had the radio on the way home, barely missed a pitch.

ish said...

Is that good or bad, Ish?

Good, but bad. McClelland is taking over behind the plate, which means it's going to be four seconds before you get the call. But the strike zone should expand a little bit. It should be equal both sides. Should help both pitchers, you'd think.

Amy said...

I am superstitious about changes when we are ahead. But I will accept what you say, Allan, that this will help Beckett.

Do they have backup umps hanging around?

Amy said...

Hi, Laura, glad you made it home safely!

redsock said...

x-minute delay for shields!!!!

DRINK

efd said...

welcome back, L-girl!

s1c said...

Well, might as well use this time to get ready to go to work.

efd said...

kind of a freaky game so far, between the no TV at the start and now the ump getting injured and this delay.

redsock said...

what will they do? have one less ump in the infield (like 3 during the season) so they still have umps down each line?

ish said...

Castig says McClelland has a pretty small zone that might get bigger as the game goes on.

L-girl said...

Amy, should I put through your errant wmtc posts? :) I can reject them if you prefer.

efd said...

Craig Sager having a quick chat (not on mic) with Maddon picked up on one of the Hot Corner cameras.

L-girl said...

thank you efd and amy :)

9casey said...

Jesus, It takes this long, someone strap on the gear and lets go....Aren't these the same guys who are supposed to speed up the game.....what are they pullin straws....

ish said...

Too bad this delay couldn't have happened during the TBS outage. Miss less game.

Dr. Jeff said...

Guess I should introduce myself. Long time lurker, usually I pester Allan by email. 40 year old university professor in New Mexico. Former Massachusetts resident (Holliston for you locals), but grew up in the California bay area following the Giants/A's. I became a hard core Red Sox fan in 1986, my freshman year of college, when I came back to baseball after a few years of other interests. Basically picked the Red Sox for that ALCS (because of my previous Boston area residency) over the Angels and agonized over every pitch during that amazing post-season. Went to a bunch of the A's-Red Sox playoff games in the late '80s in Oakland and rooted for Boston. To answer your question, not the Jeff you are thinking of.

efd said...

yeah, it seems like they should have already had some sort of contigency for this, right?

kkh said...

bigger zone has to help beckett

maybe, but from what I've seen so far, I think it'll help BGJ more :-(

efd said...

unless maybe Cousins might be able to come back and that's what they're trying to figure out?

Amy said...

Thanks, Jeff! Funny that there is a guy at Mt Snow who posts as Dr Jeff also.

Glad to have you come out of lurking!

L-girl said...

Hi Dr Jeff, nice to meet you. Who is the Jeff we were thinking of?

Amy said...

Feel free, Laura. Always funny to post a comment in the "wrong" place!

9casey said...

kkh said...
bigger zone has to help beckett

maybe, but from what I've seen so far, I think it'll help BGJ more :-(



It doesn't make a difference they are both using the same ump...James Shields should never be referred to as "BGJ" here...ever....

Dr. Jeff said...

there's a quote: "I'm a doctor, but not the kind that helps people"

redsock said...

how about sgj?

L-girl said...

Let's not worry about who the ump change helps or hurts. We're not relying on that to win this baby.

9casey said...

redsock said...
how about sgj?



I'm fired up.....

Amy said...

Play ball already.

L-girl said...

Amy, I've done it many times myself! I once posted some crazy DONG!!!! post on my own blog, back before I had moderation. Very silly.

Amy said...

Hey, Jeff, professors help people. Perhaps more than many MDs! (I teach also.)

L-girl said...

Amy, I just put them through. :)

redsock said...

so now this game will turn on a botched call because of a missing ump?

Amy said...

Well, luckily my error was relevant to your wmtc post about the Sox and about Canada!

Dr. Jeff said...

botched call meaning the HBP?

Dr. Jeff said...

Oh you mean a future, hypothetical botched call.

Amy said...

Tek...could you PLEASE do something positive?

efd said...

so now this game will turn on a botched call because of a missing ump?

To quote your partner: We're not relying on that to win this baby.

Later in this game I want Bay to hit a dong over that Sweetbay Grocery sign in CF.

redsock said...

overheard

A: if tek fouls one off mccelland, they may eject him

L: and that would be bad because .........

Amy said...

Nah, not a chance. Testing my devotion for sure.

L-girl said...

Funixingle!

Dr. Jeff said...

If Tek is getting pitch calls from the dugout, then why leave him in? It's not because of his offense, obviously.

s1c said...

ocoC!!!

time for fy to go deep!!!

Amy said...

Coco sure is proving something, isn't he?

Come on, Pedroia.

ish said...

Doesn't Shields normally throw harder than 88? That didn't look like a change to me. His change is 82.

efd said...

maybe that was hemlock that they just showed Varitek swigging in the dugout.

SoSock said...

Laser show time - NOW!

redsock said...

88 fb in gdgd

redsock said...

change at 80 and 83

A Conformer said...

Even with two out and only one on, Shields look rattled. I like it.

Amy said...

Ech.

OK, Josh, hold the line.

efd said...

HOLD IT, BECKETT!!

s1c said...

Ok, Joshie had a chance to catch his breath and get a wrap on his obliques, time for some OCTOBER Joshie.

redsock said...

panty shields at 87 -- likely will only go 5.

ish said...

Lopez warming already.

redsock said...

lopez up?

Dr. Jeff said...

Allan thx for finding that Earl Weaver quote, what was exactly the one I was thinking of. What was the source?

redsock said...

i saw it at sosh - i assume it's from his book -- which i should track down and read

A Conformer said...

As cheap as shit, that one.

SoSock said...

Pissy little blooper - dammit

Amy said...

Tek's arm definitely not what it once was.

efd said...

time for K.

Amy said...

Strike him out.

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