A Rainy Win For The Boston Red Sox Over The Yankees, Beckett And Paps Style
It was a two time rain delay that stopped the game in its tracks in the 8th inning. The score was 4-3 Red Sox and Alex Rodriguez was waiting for the tarp to be removed. And it was a long wait indeed, just about 2 1/2 hours. Papelbon, ready to enter the game in relief of Josh Beckett, knew the game was on the line. Beckett had pitched a super solid 6 2/3 innings, and the bullpen duo of Manny Delcarmen and Hideki Okajima had stymied the Yankees up until the heavens opened and shed its tears. Only a smattering of people remained to watch the high drama to come. 2 outs in the bottom of the 8th, a one run game, and one of the best relievers in all of baseball primed, stoked and just plain old READY. When finally the ump shouted "PLAY BALL," Papelbon delivered. He said this afterwards, from the Boston Globe...
"I said to myself, 'This is the ballgame right here,'" Papelbon said Saturday after picking up his fourth save in four tries. "Everybody, top to bottom, worked their butts off to put us in a position to win. I wasn't going to let that go to waste."
Peter here, and no, he did not waste a thing except for AROD, who whiffed on three straight wicked unhittable strikes. The 8th inning was over and the home club clung to a slim one run advantage. Manny remained white hot, hitting a solo home run in the 4th inning and a two run double in the 6th. Papi remained mired in his slump, but that will end, and it will end SOON. DO NOT BOO THE GUY! My goodness!! Youk also chipped in with two hits as his team combined for nine base hits. Ok, OK, back the the ninth. 4-3 good guys. Paps had already dispensed AROD via the K, and he proceeded with two more straight strikeouts in the ninth. It was domination of the 96-97 MPH variety, with a splitter mixed in here and there. And then there was only Robinson Cano who stood between the Red Sox and a victory. It was a long, neverending duel between pitcher and hitter, and I was standing up the entire time, pacing back and forth, silently muttering words of hope. Cano is one of the primiere second baseman in all of baseball, and he was up to the task, fouling off pitch after pitch after pitch. But in the end, after eleven excruciating offerings, Papelbon and his Boston Red Sox prevailed, winning by that score of 4-3. It was his 4th save in as many trys. He won't be available today after throwing 26 pitches, 19 of them for strikes.
Lasting impressions? Oh yes. The return to form of Josh Beckett comes first to my mind. He's still in his late spring training phase. If he had had more work and had built up his stamina, he would have easily gone eight innings. He threw only 88 pitches. But because of his injury and time off, right now he's just where we would expect him to be. Each of his starts will be better, with less hits, more innings and less runs scored. And that's a great thing. ANY win over the New York Yankees is a good one. I hung in there through the rain delay, listening to SoxTalk on the Red Sox radio network because FOX never returned to the game. And that's understandable. They had racing on the schedule for 7pm EDT, so I understand. To me, car racing is just another way to waste one of the nation's valuable but overpriced resources. Gasoline. But I veered from the subject at hand...I do that sometimes. That's just me, I guess. Bottom line...SOX WIN!!!
Please click on the title for many Boston Globe articles, not just about the final innings of the game, but much more. I hope every one of you has a great Sunday. We take on the Bombers again tonight. In fact, the WHOLE nation does...8pm EDT tonight on ESPN and ESPNHD. Take care and as always, BE WELL. You're very important to me. Yes, you! Click on the title for many great articles on the Boston Globe home page. This is a site that you should bookmark, so click away. Click away! AND GO SOX!!! Forever.