September 1, 2009

G131: Red Sox 8, Rays 4

Red Sox - 010 311 011 - 8 12  1
Rays - 100 100 020 - 4 11 3
The calendar has turned over to September, the ball games are getting more important, and Terry Francona is getting into Playoff Assassin mode.

Boston led 7-2 as Hideki Okajima began the bottom of the eighth inning. He had a rough time, however. Evan Longoria dropped a first pitch bunt single towards third. Carlos Pena worked a nine-pitch walk. Pat Burrell singled to left and Willy Aybar and Dioner Navarro followed with identical bloop singles into short right field. The lead was cut to 7-4, the bases were loaded, and there was no one out.

Francona went to Jonathan Papelbon. It was the correct move. With the game on the line in the late innings, you don't give a damn about "the book" or "saves", you go with your best pitcher. And despite Daniel Bard's success, the top gun in the pen is still Bot.

Papelbon struck out B.J. Upton. Jason Bartlett lined a ball to short center, but Jacoby Ellsbury (who made an astounding diving catch in left center off Pat Burrell in the fourth) came sprinting in and snared this sinking liner with a sliding catch. Burrell was stutter-stepping off third like Jeff Suppan circa 2004 and could not advance. Bot got ahead of Carl Crawford 0-2, but the count went full and Crawford fouled off the 6th, 7th and 8th pitches of the at-bat before finally lofting a fly ball down the left field line that Jason Bay caught in foul territory. Three batters, three outs (on 18 pitches) and no runs scored! That was the save!

With two outs in the top of the ninth, Alex Gonzalez singled and Ellsbury tripled him in. Boston led 8-4 and Takashi Saito got up. However, after Dustin Pedroia made the final out, Papelbon came back out for the ninth, with Manny Delcarmen and Daniel Bard getting ready to back him up.

Papelbon snuffed the side in order. Ben Zobrist lined out to first, Longoria struck out looking, and Pena struck out swinging. In total, Papelbon threw 28 pitches for a six-out save -- the first one by a Boston reliever since Mike Timlin on September 5, 2006.

Lester (6-7-2-2-9, 97) had only one perfect inning, but it never seemed like he was in any trouble. After the first inning, he allowed only one Tampa runner past second (Pena's solo home run in the fourth). Lester struck out the side in the second and fanned two in each of the fourth and fifth.

Dong Watch: J.D. Drew hit a two-run homer in the fourth, Jason Bay began the fifth with his 30th home run of the season, and Kevin Youkilis homered in the eighth.

The Yankees beat the Orioles 9-6 so the Red Sox are still 6.5 GB in the East. Texas swept a doubleheader from the Blue Jays 5-2 and 5-2, so Texas is now 3.5 GB Boston in the wild card. With tonight's loss, Tampa drops 6 GB in the WC.
Example
Jon Lester (3.60, 132 ERA+) / Andy Sonnanstine (6.61, 69 ERA+)

MLB calls this three-game series "crucial" for the Red Sox in knocking the Rays out of the wild card race, but since I still have an eye on the AL East, every game from now until October 4 is crucial.

Boston leads the wild card race by 4 games over the Rangers and are 6.5 GB the Yankees. They have won 10 of their last 13 games -- hitting .302 with a .921 OPS and a staff ERA of 5.23 (though subtracting the gruesome 20-11 loss to New York drops that ERA all the way down to 4.08) -- yet they have gained only one game in the standings.

Lester has allowed three earned runs or fewer in 15 of his last 16 starts, dating back to May 31. ... Sonnanstine -- 4.40 ERA in nine starts for AAA Durham -- is being recalled to take Scott Kazmir's spot in the rotation.

And: Yankees/Orioles at 7 and Blue Jays/Rangers at 5 and 8.

287 comments:

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Kevin said...

I'd be willing to restrict Wagner's innings now to make sure he's up to full strength for October

Mrs.GotRibe said...

Plus we were up five runs. No need to tax him.

tim said...

LBJ!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Benjamin said...

Nice, Ellsbury.

Amy said...

LBJ does it again!

Mrs.GotRibe said...

LBJ!!! Unbelievable.

tim said...

omg heart attack special

Ish said...

SERIOUSLY!!!!!! FUCKING RIGHT!

Mrs.GotRibe said...

How does that stay in the glove?

redsock said...

he does NOT play it on a hop!!!!

redsock said...

pat "suppan" burrell

Kevin said...

Lyndon!

Iridescence said...

JACOBY!

redsock said...

don fully assuming it's 6 outs.
maybe so, but use your noggin, don.

Benjamin said...

How did he not swing if he fell down like that?

Amy said...

Bard in the 9th?

A Conformer said...

Orsillo and Roberts can't even fathom the idea that somebody else will pitch the ninth...

Amy said...

Someone here suggested that it depends on "intent," so if he fell, he did not intend to swing.

I still cannot believe that is the rule, but whatever.

Benjamin said...

We assume, Amy.

Mrs.GotRibe said...

Didn't the bat go through the zone?

redsock said...

it's just pure ignorance on their part to not even bring it up. james works for the fucking sox. COME ON!

Benjamin said...

Runs, please.

redsock said...

SNUFFED!!!

Amy said...

Phew. I hope Pap is done, but we shall see.

tim said...

god damn. that was more exciting than it needed to be.

now lets bury these fuckers alive.

Mrs.GotRibe said...

PA Tito!!

Nice pitching.

Edward Lee said...

Playoff Tito is awesome.

That is all.

Ish said...

Ah, company Yes Men.

It would be the dumbest move to keep Bot in there after one of the smartest moves to put him in.

s1c said...

derednauqS!!!

Bot, Bot, Bot!!!

Kevin said...

Yes!

I don't give a shit that he's at 18 pitches, he's earned the right to come back out for the 9th

A Conformer said...

Papelboner!!

Great move by Tito, great catch by Lyndon, and great relief for us all.

redsock said...

i don't mind bot starting the 9th, but tito should not be afraid to yank if if necessary.

and i know he isn't.

Iridescence said...

I wouldn't mind Bard pitching the 9th but would Pap be pissed off? Exhibit A of why the "save" stat is stupid.

Straddling the Border said...

OK, I get it regarding Wagner. Thanks to those who responded.

A Conformer said...

I agree Paps will start the ninth. But he shouldn't finish it if he has to go over 30 pitches to do it.

redsock said...

The Sox haven't said anything about this that I know of, but Wagner might have a pitch limit within an inning also.

Mrs.GotRibe said...

Doofus talking about how the Rays have made the Sox use their bullpen. Aren't the Rays on their 7th pitcher of the night?

redsock said...

now i'm thinking that baring anything crazy, bot goes the 9th and bard or whoever closes tomorrow.

9casey said...

They didn't mention it on TV and I looked quick , but I ddin't see anyone mention it here either....That play with the line shot to Longoria when he stepped on the bag...If Pena catches that ball that would have been out number 2 and Drew was stuck in between , Pena could have thrown to second, and with a a good tag that could have been a triple play..or did I miss that totally, because Don and Dave didn't metion it at all......

9casey said...

A Conformer said...
I agree Paps will start the ninth. But he shouldn't finish it if he has to go over 30 pitches to do it.



Why?

tim said...

we won't need a closer tomorrow. beckett goes 9 and we destroy garza.

redsock said...

8th tampa pitcher?????

Mrs.GotRibe said...

Rays announcers talked about it...ad nauseum

westcoastsox said...

Going into this game, I think I read that opposing players were 1 for 13 with the bases loaded with Bot pitching. He truly is our best player with the sacks full. Good move, Tito.

9casey said...

Mrs.GotRibe said...
Rays announcers talked about it...ad nauseum



Its amazing how Don and Dave never did.....

Kevin said...

"bot goes the 9th and bard or whoever closes tomorrow"

Considering we have a bullpen made up of basically 7 closers, I think that would work well

9casey said...

I mentioned it about a month ago, But LBJ deserves a gold glove...

Benjamin said...

Insurance triple!

tim said...

LBJ!!!!!!! FREAKIN LOVE THIS DUDE

Mrs.GotRibe said...

LBJ, oh what a night.

Amy said...

LBJ -- 3B and two great catches!

Benjamin said...

Now it isn't a save opportunity anymore, so Bard will definitely pitch.

Kevin said...

Lyndon!!!

redsock said...

who else you got out there, maddon?

9casey said...

Unbelievable the player he is growing into, it is fun to watch....

redsock said...

saito up

making this moot, perhaps

9casey said...

Mrs.GotRibe said...
LBJ, oh what a night.




Early September here in 2009

Iridescence said...

"Now it isn't a save opportunity "

No it still is for Pap. It's determined when the pitcher comes in.

Kevin said...

"Now it isn't a save opportunity anymore, so Bard will definitely pitch."

It's still a save since Bot started the 8th in a save situation, it doesn't matter how many runs score in the 9th for us

His last six out save was game 7 of the 2007 ALCS, and we won that game by 9 runs

Mrs.GotRibe said...

9casey, I was trying to make that work, but it just doesn't have the same ring.

Ish said...

MDC, Bard warming.

9casey said...

Mrs.GotRibe said...
9casey, I was trying to make that work, but it just doesn't have the same ring.




It did for me , I butcher the lyrics to most songs anyway....

Benjamin said...

Fair enough.

Kevin said...

"MDC, Bard warming"

Good move, Bard is great at getting right handers out, and Delcarmen is great at getting lefties out

Mrs.GotRibe said...

I have 8 minutes of juice left on my laptop. Will that get me to the end of the game?

9casey said...

Kevin said...
"MDC, Bard warming"

Good move, Bard is great at getting right handers out, and Delcarmen is great at getting lefties out




and the Bot can get them all out...

redsock said...

with 5 minutes to spare.

redsock said...

speedy botzalez!

Kevin said...

Well, it's a good move in case Bot spontaneously melts down

But he won't

Sit, Eva

tim said...

Has NESN been using this fucking shit camera view all game? The one thats like at the very top of the nosebleeds behind home where you cant see fucking ANYTHING.

They used it on the lineout to Yook and a couple other plays I noticed.

It's fucking awful and I hope that camera gets blown up so I never have to see it again.

Benjamin said...

WATER

redsock said...

The water is Muddy!!!

Iridescence said...

Those great Florida fans, 17K attendance when they're still sort of in the race.

tim said...

Fucking love papelbon. Sweet.

Dirty water in clearwater!

9casey said...

Welcome to September, beyotches......BOT fuckin impressive..........Tito, Hats off.

Amy said...

All right, Pap! How many did he throw?

Dirty water.

Kevin said...

SIT!

DIRTY FUCKING WATER!!!

Iridescence said...

WATER nice....

Mrs.GotRibe said...

Water. Dirty.

And I didn't have to get my charger. Nice call Allan, 5 minutes to spare.

redsock said...

28.

9casey said...

Amy said...
All right, Pap! How many did he throw?




Just enough......

9casey said...

Allan, has to be pitchin a tent in Canada, he loves the PA Tito....

Amy said...

28..guess he will not be available tomorrow.

Good thing we have all those closers.

9casey said...

Amy said...
28..guess he will not be available tomorrow.



If we need him he will be there....I would bet on it...

Ish said...

Bill Simmons, the latest to jump the Papelboner Bandwagon!

Tweet: "I just felt my Papelboner move for the first time in eons."

redsock said...

Yerp, clock turns to September and Tito turns it up a notch.
Gotta wear the extra-baggy shorts!

redsock said...

When we were in Boston, I got a new cap and wondered about a shirt. Didn't buy one, but should have got a Tito shirt!

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