Hey, Look at that..

…I didn’t pull any hair out or kick any dogs last night!

Seriously; an all around “that’s the way it should be” performance. Timely hitting, good pen, there should be nothing to complain about. I’m sure some would whine about Millar not being in the lineup; but you can’t complain about Ortiz and Lil G last night (for once).

Courant Sox notes mentions Cloninger working with Mendoza, and no mention of any physical problems. Yes, he has been awful, but let’s not talk of eating his contract and letting him go just yet, eh?

Corsi on Mendoza:

”This is all about your head,” Corsi said. ”He’s throwing 90, 91 miles an hour, and you can’t do that if your arm is hurt. But where’s his head at? He knows he’s better than this. The people who signed him know he’s better than this. What you feel worst about in that situation are the guys that are battling with you. You don’t feel sorry for yourself, you feel sorry for them.

”I’ve been in the bullpen before and failed. That’s the worst thing. But a couple of 1-2-3 innings can turn it all around.”

Can’t say I don’t agree with those sentiments…

Also, a great quote from Lil G to help keep things in perspective:

“It’s a little more exploited when you struggle at the beginning of the season than when you go through it in the middle. When you go through a 2-for-20 slump in the middle, nobody recognizes it because you go from .300 to .280. But at the beginning, it’s a little more exploited.”

Whew…

And will the friggin Bruins get beat already???

Here I was; all excited for 2003 because I would get virtually every Sox game. Well, for the 3rd time this year, the Bruins screwed me last night. No game for me.

So I heard most of it on the radio; got home and had to ‘watch’ the rest via Gamecast. The worst part is that I was watching the Yankee game on YES; listening to smarmy Michael Kay make snide comments about the Sox bullpen as the scores came in.

Well; all’s well that ends well, right? The funny thing is; when Shea was up with the bases loaded; I didn’t even realize that it was the 9th inning. So when he knocked in a run, here I was sitting there on my laptop thinking “Why did only one run score? What the hell?”. Nice outing by Fossum, though. Guess he’s shown he can really handle the Devil Rays…

So on to less happy things….the bullpen is problematic. I’m officially moving out of my ‘give them a chance’ and into my ‘something needs to be done’ phase. Now I remember why I was usually happy when Mendoza was brought into a Yankee game. Nevermind the stats, I just never had a ‘Oh, shit, insert dominating reliever here vibe when he was brought in. Guess I still don’t.

Here’s the part where I actually read the recaps and comment…Globe title of game recap is definitely appropriate…”Hillenbrand gets save“. Guess he’s part of the committee now? Hey; excellent news! Howry is NOT part of the committee now! To me, that’s a great sign that they are trying to do something about the problem…

Does that count…

…as a good bullpen performance? Considering Wakes is in the rotation…not to mention he made the hearts a-flutter in the 9th.

Lowe pretty much breezed through the game. Guess he really did find a problem in his mechanics, as he said after his last start. Manny 0-fer again; really not performing since I picked him up in roto.

Tek’s RBI hit late in the game was interesting…starting pitcher had a 2-1 count on him (I believe) and Tek was batting lefty. Somehow, the O’s starter got hurt, and after a delay, they brought a lefty out of the pen. So Tek moved to the other side; and on the 2nd pitch as a righty hitter, he got the hit…

That was my first game of the year; and I’m a little bitter about my seats that I got in the Sunday Sox Pax. 2 rows from the back of section 7..can’t see the scoreboard, can’t see first base. Save Fenway my ass.

Well, THAT wasn’t fun.

I haven’t looked at the recaps, or the statistics, or anything. What a nightmare of a night. Pedro got spanked; Cubbage goes down (I guess he’s fine now), Ortiz finally hits the ball when it doesn’t matter.

What has gotten into Damon as of late? Another jack last night; and robbed of one later…maybe he is the strongest guy on the team??

Well, we are still going today. Looks like decent weather for mid-April anyway…here’s hoping Lowe has a good one…

EDIT: A poster over at SoSH made this observation:

Record after 11 games:

1998: 6-5
1986: 6-5
1975: 6-5
1967: 6-5

Rainout

I watched the opening ceremonies yesterday; man, did it look miserable there. And man, did Lou Rawls suck.

Day/Night doubleheader today; could be a long day for the local 9. Don’t think rain is supposed to stop until 3 or 4, last I checked.

Apparantly Embree is hurt, and a young lefty will take his place for a while. Guess Matt White isn’t ready. And the home crowd audibly booed most of the bullpen. Not the classiest of moves, in my opinion. Pedro on the reaction:

”I expect [the fans] to be demanding and if you don’t do your job, I guess they’re going to boo you,” said Martinez. ”And this was a pure example of that.” But Martinez was quick to add, ”Wow, it’s kind of early, isn’t it?”

Edes claims that the Sox are thinking of using Person as the primary closer. Also in those notes; something I found flabbergasting:

A lot close to Fenway was charging – and getting – $60 for parking

Holy cow; I’m getting there early tomorrow and parking on the street!

Off the road, rainouts, and political thoughts

Finally! The long road trip is over…I can’t comment much on the game, as I watched it out of the corner of my eye while playing cards last night. Althought I couldn’t believe when I looked up in the 7th and still saw a Sox starter in there.

Mike Timlin might become Mr. Quote for me this year:

Timlin overflows with optimism. He always looks at the bright side. His glass is never half empty.

“That’s what I’ve heard about a lot of Boston fans,” Timlin said. “They live and die with the team. Fine. Let me give you an example of positive energy. Look at the Chicago Cubs. A couple years ago, they had a four-game lead. What does everybody think about the Cubs? `Oh, they’re going to fold in September.’ What happened? They folded in September.

“Just the energy that everybody was putting into that team, they lost. If they had completely thought the other way, they would have pulled it out.”

Part of me is really hoping for rainouts today and tomorrow so I end up with Opening Day tickets on Sunday. But the other part hopes the rain holds off today as I work at home and would like to watch. (If the Weather Channel is right, looks like they should get today’s in)

I read this morning about the whole Tim Robbins/Cooperstown thing. Jeff Jacobs Courant column (the print edition has copies of the letters sent from each party) is a good summary of it. Personally, I’m not a very political person. I don’t agree with Robbins’/Sarandon’s view on the war; but to politicize something as carefree and fun as the 15th anniversary of ‘Bull Durham’ is pretty stupid in my opinion.

For crying out loud; give me some feedback, people! The bulletin boards are dying!

One little thing…

…that I forgot to mention…

Since I haven’t seen it brought up anywhere else…

It was noted during the game chat last night; and later verified (after the GS) that Mendoza was given basically 2 minutes to warm up. Would a couple of visits to the mound have hurt?

Early indications are…

That I don’t know what to think…

I’m not one to jump all over a baseball manager for his decisions; because I don’t pretend to know more than people whose whole career has been baseball. But I do think I know enough to have some valid questions (and start to see the point that some others have been making).

After last nights offensive (literally and figuratively) performance; a question that was brought up by another fan prior to the game was “Sunday’s lineup scored 12 runs; why change it?”. My initial reaction was that it isn’t that big of a deal…methinks I’m rethinking that opinion. Granted; the offense probably did enough at least for Lowe to leave with a win if he didn’t have such an off night; ultimately it wouldn’t have been enough to overcome yet another lovely bullpen performance…but why switch things around?

I guess Grady’s explanation (which I read after I started composing this) is that it is his ‘best defensive infield alingnment’. I suppose I can buy that for now; as you want good defense behind the sinkerballer. Just that last night they didn’t sink.

Oh, and as for Pedro…As you know, I’m happy then exercised his option; but after reading that article, I might be back to “Shut the hell up, Pedro” like I was when he first started demanding that the option be picked up. Read the article and see what I mean…