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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redsock said...

You have to hand it to Mike Oldfield though. No one's milked a four measure strain for more.

if i had a dollar for every time i said that....

bot talking off jacket

(assassin!)

phil said...

PFX agrees it was a strike on Peña.

Amy said...

Isn't a bit early for Pap to be warming up? Coming in in the 7th??

Amy said...

I sure hate that rug at the Trop. I think about carpet burns every time I see it. And 1970s decor. Yuck.

redsock said...

Isn't a bit early for Pap to be warming up? Coming in in the 7th??

if tito thinks he needs him to crush a potential tying or worse rally in the 7th or 8th, then no.

best pitcher when the game is on the line.

phil said...

amy: these innings are pretty high leverage, I imagine. Especially if more baserunners had gotten on or another run had scored.

Amy said...

OK, I would love a few more runs. Never enough.

efd said...

phew!

get back on the field, Assrays.

phil said...

20 for Okajima.

Let's score twenty runs so we can use Timlin.

Amy said...

Yeah, but I want Pap there at the end. And I don't want him burned out for tomorrow night. But I get that we need to use him when we need to use him.

A Conformer said...

I think Okaji goes back out with a one baserunner leash.

s1c said...

Boy, S1C, you got to work FAST! Close by or were you going as fast as Josh's faster pitches?

Work is 7 miles, I would have been on sooner but listened in the car until youk k'ed.

Amy said...

HBP

A Conformer said...

HOLD!

Amy said...

My commute is 7 miles also, but all back roads. No speeding possible.

Compared to a NY commute, a piece of cake.

SCORE RUNS.

phil said...

Balfour in.

Amy said...

Oh, goodie, Ball Four coming in.

SoSock said...

Cork popped - glasses poured -
It's a rare occasion when Bob ignores his ritual bedtime and stays for another bottle.
But then momentous comeback ALCS wins are just once a year, aren't they? Comeback meaning Series type, not game type. We are holding this lead, for sure.

Amy said...

Cool video.

A Conformer said...

Keep the inning going! The mellotron comes in soon

s1c said...

Let the force be with you Jedi!!!

efd said...

about to live up to his name.

Amy said...

Ball four, please.

A Conformer said...

Ballfour

efd said...

done! Jedi BB

Amy said...

And he does.

phil said...

C'mon Heidi.

Amy said...

Tek going to be the NEW Tek?

s1c said...

can Tek do it again?

I say yeah boy!!!

A Conformer said...

Fucking Ballfour didn't give Jedi anything to hit, and the mellotron came and went quietly (well, quite loudly, but only here). Wasted chance.

A Conformer said...

Hey, isn't that a dong?!? Catwalk ball...

SoSock said...

Balfour - go back to making class rings please.

phil said...

Passfour.

A Conformer said...

Navarro needs a new glove

s1c said...

Now Tek has a chance to salt this baby away!!!

C'mon Jason!!!

Amy said...

TWO in scoring position. Come on, Tek, Heidi and I are begging you for more.

Amy said...

Works the count!

phil said...

Heh, that one was close.

phil said...

Or at least looked close with this camera angle.

phil said...

Bleh.

efd said...

old Tek. :(

Amy said...

Sheeeet.

redsock said...

Balfour - go back to making class rings please.

L and I approve of this crack.

ish said...

Speaking of driving, I am surprised I can stay up for this one. Drove up to the lakes region of central New Hampshire (Lake Winnipesaukee area) to see the fall foliage. On a whim, my father and I climbed Mt. Major, about 1,800 feet above sea level... Probably 1,100 ft. climb. It was very steep toward the top. I had never done something like that before. But the view was absolutely amazing. Drove close to 200 miles total. Got back just in time to er... LISTEN to the game. It was a beautiful day.

Never thought I'd like temperatures in the low 40s, but it's great for hiking.

s1c said...

bleh, more LOBs, bleh.

Jeemer, needs to continue to be Jeemer.

ish said...

So how did the name Mellotron come about? I must've missed something.

A Conformer said...

Never thought I'd like temperatures in the low 40s, but it's great for hiking.

There's nothing better than a sunny, light breeze, 10 celsius (I think that would be around 45-50F...) day for a hike.

SoSock said...

OTT coming up!

redsock said...

masterson up

this whole pen has neptune balls.


(not timlin though)

s1c said...

Memo to big game james, you have to earn a nickname like that and you failed. 5 1/3, 9 hits, 4 runs makes you small dick game james.

Amy said...

I am tired also, Ish, but with less of an excuse. I had my two drinks for good luck at dinner and walked the dog for an hours this morning, but no mountain climbing. Just having a hard time keeping my body where my head is.

A Conformer said...

So how did the name Mellotron come about? I must've missed something.

That was just me rambling about the psychic connections between the music I'm listening to and the Sox' dongs. No nickname there.

Oki looks fucking great.

efd said...

although if we can come up with a player for whom "Mellotron" would be a suitable nickname that would be awesome!

A Conformer said...

Even the Rays' ballboy looks flustered

Amy said...

Two outs, one more, Oki.

phil said...

Spamtron has some pretty good chiptunes.

phil said...

Done in 12 pitches.

Amy said...

Phew, we are off to the 8th.

Jere said...

4-2 effin us

efd said...

time to tack some on!
(I refuse to use the J-word)

s1c said...

Lets take the edge off here guys and get some insurance runs. A good sized crooked number sounds good for my blood pressure.

ish said...

this
and this are what greet you when you get to the summit of Mt. Major.

1.8 miles from the bottom to the summit.

SoSock said...

Question - if, no, WHEN the Red Sox win this game, will the announcers go back to being their unbridled ridiculously biased selves?
They've been almost objective ever since the Sox started their comeback Thursday. Probably because they know once this series is over they are once again insignificant regional cover guys.

efd said...

TB countering "Don't Stop Believin'" with "Any Way You Want It"
(the Journey song, not the Dave Clark Five [for you fellow p;d-timers])

A Conformer said...

Now listening to Inner Mounting Flame, Mahavishnu's version of Mojo Rising.

ish said...

Ofer, 10°C is 50°F... It was 42°F at the summit, 6°C.

BALLFOUR.

Amy said...

I've noticed a difference also, SoSock, though I still don't like them. I don't care what they do as long as we get Game 7 and then never have to hear from them again.

COCO on again!

efd said...

um, "p;d" = "old"; fingers must have gotten mis-aligned for a second there.

ocoC klaw!

Amy said...

p;d timers?? I do remember the Dave Clark Five, though that particular song escapes me at the time. Right now Glad All Over is running through my head.

I cannot listen to music during baseball. Way too distracting!

Amy said...

OK, old timers!! LOL!

A Conformer said...

I cannot listen to music during baseball. Way too distracting!

That's what I think... about Chip and Buck.

s1c said...

FY moves him over so big father can get another RBI.

Amy said...

Chip and Buck who?

(Yeah, being sarcastic again.)

Amy said...

ORtiz up. IBB. Time for Youk to show them that you don't walk Ortiz to pitch to Youk.

redsock said...

walk flo for the al mvp?

eeeeeeeeeeeeeexcellent

A Conformer said...

Come on, YOuk, let's make this a Timlin lead.

efd said...

shit!

Amy said...

SHITTTT.

s1c said...

Frag, you have to be kidding me.

Amy said...

SHITTTT.

A Conformer said...

Masterson with Pap ready for 4+ outs if he gets into trouble?

Amy said...

So who's in now? Not Oki again?

efd said...

looks like Masterson on the Hot Corner feed.

L-girl said...

this doesn't even feel like an elimination game anymore. i have to keep reminding myself. because tomorrow night feels...

Amy said...

Shh, Laura, don't make me nervous. I am taking it one pitch at a time.

L-girl said...

Nothing to be nervous about.

ish said...

this doesn't even feel like an elimination game anymore. i have to keep reminding myself. because tomorrow night feels...

I agree, but I still feel there being so little margin for error. Still living and dying on each pitch.

Amy said...

My heart now is really pounding hard. Come on, Masterson. No men allowed on base.

Amy said...

Ish and I---the official worriers.

redsock said...

tie game = live and die

2-run (even 1-run) lead = not l & d

for me, at least

L-girl said...

It's not like I don't feel the tension, I do. But I also feel very confident.

Amy said...

Damn. Almost had him and he hit him. Calm down, Justin. Please.

efd said...

note to Lester: that does not count as the retaliation HBP for Bartlett.

redsock said...

dp pls
fucking a - dp pls

A Conformer said...

I'm in the worried camp too. I expect to win this, but I'm not feeling infallible.

Amy said...

I refuse to be calm.

Arggh, 2-0.

ish said...

Ass clinching time!

SoSock said...

Damn it!
Do NOT hit anybody right now, PLEASE MF!
The LAST damn thing we need is free bases.

We need an assassin - NOW!

L-girl said...

K!

phil said...

Sit.

redsock said...

i wanna do andyesque things with that slider

Amy said...

OK, one away.

efd said...

nice bounceback!

A Conformer said...

Nice K there. Iwamura overanxious.

ish said...

Keep that ball low, Bat. Get that key grounder you need for a DP!

SoSock said...

HUGE!
FUCKING HUGE!!!

Amy said...

I sure would love a DP here. My heart can't pound like this for too long, can it?

A Conformer said...

OK, fuckton- you're younger than me. Stop being such a brat and hit a fucking ground ball to second.

redsock said...

it's only ass-clenching time for fkr.

we won fri
on house money now
this is a game on thursday in may
calm -- and win

SoSock said...

How's your package Upton?

efd said...

awesome!

L-girl said...

That's two! Beautiful.

Amy said...

YES! Two away.

SoSock said...

You sir........ :)

A Conformer said...

I'll take it. Does Tito let Masterson face Pena?

SoSock said...

Bob's counting down outs !

phil said...

Sit, assholes.

L-girl said...

And three! YEAH!!!!

ish said...

HAD 'EM ALL THE WAY.

SoSock said...

3

Amy said...

YES!!! Wow, Justin stayed calmer than I did, for sure!

efd said...

wow!! Bat-power!

L-girl said...

THREE OUTS TO GO

And YES I'm out-counting!

s1c said...

escaped, three runs here would make this so sweet.

Amy said...

I sure would like a couple more runs so I can breathe just a bit.

SoSock said...

Bob really wants me to cork the bottle.

I'm not :)

phil said...

I'm not sure about the wisdom of Budweiser's advertising campaign, which draws analogies to hose water.

A Conformer said...

Master

L-girl said...

Masterson's not nervous at all. When I was a kid they used to call that ice water in his veins.

L-girl said...

A little insurance would be nice. Not essential, but nice.

efd said...

knuckle-dragger back out for the 9th for TB

A Conformer said...

I'm not sure about the wisdom of Budweiser's advertising campaign, which draws analogies to hose water.

I think that exact same thing every time I see that: I'd rather drink hose water than fucking bud light.

efd said...

note to TBS: it's necessary.

s1c said...

A little insurance would be nice. Not essential, but nice.

Agreed, but I would like to be able to breathe in the 9th.

L-girl said...

I can't believe anybody drinks Bud anymore.

L-girl said...

oh yeah, breathing is nice too :)

Amy said...

OK, pitching change. Going to close the eyes, find the inner calm, and breathe a lot!

redsock said...

i was nervous from about 2 pm at work

but once the game started i have been as relaxed as a game in late april. i am somewhat amazed.

A Conformer said...

I can't believe anybody drinks Bud anymore.

Unless people buy for the pleasure of flushing it down the toilet, there must be some drinkers out there. It's the best selling beer in the world...

phil said...

But wouldn't you rather drink hose water than fire hose water? It's self evident.

phil said...

Sigh.

phil said...

Save this one, Paps.

Jere said...

Okay, Pap.

SoSock said...

Three!
That's all.

A Conformer said...

Very week ninth. Now, it's time for some Bot.

s1c said...

Snuffer time and we need the record setting snuffer tonight. No messing around bot.

L-girl said...

When we were in Ireland, all the kids were guzzling Bud. Unbelievable. The allure of all things American. Strange but true.

Amy said...

I drank Bud about 30 years ago. I haven't had a Bud in at least 20 years now. There are just so many more choices now than in my college days. No micro brews back then.

But I bet Joe Sixpack still is drinking Bud.

phil said...

Budweiser isn't good, but it's mostly just inoffensive. It's meant to appeal to as broad a spectrum of palates as possible, meaning it has no notable flavor or distinction.

L-girl said...

THREE

Amy said...

I have to say that I cannot wait for this game to be over. The tension is killing me. I should drink a Budweiser.

ish said...

MDC is warming as a precaution...

L-girl said...

That's what I meant by "anymore". There are so many more choices.

But yes, of course, it's a huge seller so ppl are drinking it. I mean, people are watching "reality TV". If they sell it, people will buy it.

phil said...

Daniel Davies wrote the definitive (trollish) defense of Budweiser.

L-girl said...

Amy, deep breaths.

Breathe.

A Conformer said...

But wouldn't you rather drink hose water than fire hose water? It's self evident.

Actually, i'd rather drink from the hot sauce bottle than a bud light. But that's because I like hot sauce.

A Conformer said...

Oh, hey, there's a game going on. Maybe I should pay attention.

Amy said...

If we get LongoriArod out, I think I will feel better.

L-girl said...

TWO

phil said...

1.

ish said...

Bud is one of those beers that you drink not for the taste, but for the end result, which is to get drunk and put your hands all over people and sing songs.

ONE.

SoSock said...

ONE!

Amy said...

OK, I feel better. But still holding the breath.

efd said...

1!!

SN...

Amy said...

If we get THIS guy out, I will really feel better.

phil said...

end result, which is to get drunk

It's far too weak for that, though.

ish said...

end result, which is to get drunk

It's far too weak for that, though.


Too weak for high school students?

L-girl said...

Some people are counting up and others are counting down. :)

All those "1"s confused me.

ish said...

TWO.

phil said...

2.

efd said...

2!!

SNUF...

Amy said...

KKKKK!!!!!

L-girl said...

Now: ONE

redsock said...

i have been totally relaxed and enjoying this game.

i made peace about 27 hours ago that the 2008 season was over -- but it wasn't! this is like free time. i like it.

it's weird to be totally calm, but ...

SoSock said...

TWO!

Amy said...

I am ALMOST smiling. ALMOST.

A Conformer said...

We're really gonna do this.

s1c said...

Old joke
Q: Whats the difference between Miller light and making love in a canoe.

A: Nothing, they both are fucking close to water.

1 more to go!!!

Amy said...

A strike!

L-girl said...

Here we go....

Amy said...

Cute, S1C!

efd said...

3!!

SNUFFED!!

[playing mp3 of "Dirty Water"]

phil said...

WATER

ish said...

FIRST ROUND OF DIRTY WATER IS ON ME!

GAME SEVEN COMING UP!

L-girl said...

WE WIN!!!!!

dirty dirty dirty dirty dirty water

s1c said...

Dirty fucking water!!!

Amy said...

OMG!!! THE WATER IS FILTHY!!

Jere said...

there's a win, that's a win

Ben said...

oh so awesome.

A Conformer said...

WE'RE STAYING IN TAMPA!!!

redsock said...

water.

fucking water.

SoSock said...

THREE!
And BOB called it!
He just said - "Last pitch of the game, right here."

s1c said...

No fucking way rays are winning tomorrow night.

L-girl said...

To be honest, I didn't have one heart-pounding moment in this game. It was just a fun game that I expected to win, and we did.

A Conformer said...

There is no way in hell we're losing tomorrow. Seriously.

s1c said...

Time for some NESN goodness!!!

Amy said...

And we are now ONE game away!

ish said...

My heart didn't pound either. I had an ass clinching time but not a heart pounding time.

Amy said...

Laura, I wish I had your equilibrium!

Amy said...

I think I just kept thinking that if WE came back from 7-0, they could score three runs.

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