I’m watching the game—it’s just the bottom of the 4th now—and the Red Sox have coughed up yet another early lead to the Rays. Evan Longoria only hits home runs. So, too, B.J. Upton. Scott Kazmir has suddenly remembered how to pitch. Meanwhile, David Ortiz struck out on three pitches earlier and can’t hit the side of a barn. I think I heard some Fenway Faithful actually just boo him.
It’s pretty depressing. But here’s one thought: Daisuke Matsuzaka should win the Gold Glove. Seriously. We all know the Gold Glove for a pitcher is sort of a joke award, but he’s had two really spectacular (for a pitcher) plays tonight, and it’s not even that unusual—Dice-K always fields his position well.
Anyway, if the Red Sox can somehow pull this one out, I’ll be excited for them to head back to the Trop–where at least they played reasonably well in the first two games.
9:33: Here’s one thing. The game does seem to be progressing reasonably quickly for a nationally televised game—these Rays-Sox games have become like the Yanks-Sox games of yore, when it would be five hours of fouling off pitches. Of course, the reason the game is going faster tonight is that the Red Sox can’t score a run.
9:34: Here’s another sobering thought. This could be Varitek’s last game in a Red Sox uniform. That’s….just….crazy. I’m trying to think if there’s another player in my era that is even comparable, and I can’t think of one.
9:43: You know, it’s really lame having the Red Sox play such limp ball at home, in the Fens. It’s pretty hard for me just to sit here and listen to the crickets chirping in the stands—but no doubt it’s hard to be there in the Fens and watch these players just go through the motions. They look like they were beat the second Upton jacked that first inning homer.
9:46: I couldn’t help but think when this series went to 3-1 that last time this happened (last year, against the Indians) it was Manny Ramirez who stepped up and said, “Who cares?” Maybe if there were still a Manny in the clubhouse you wouldn’t see the Red Sox looking so constipated out there right now. Just sayin’…
9:52: I heard on the radio this morning that some scalpers had to sell tickets at face value—or below. I can’t believe this is true. What are we, Angels fans?
9:54: Rays have runners at the corners with two gone in the top of the 5th. It’s still 5-0. Should we talk about next year? I saw via this Rob Neyer post that Kevin Towers might entertain offers for Jake Peavy. I know he’d be mad expensive (in prospects), but the Red Sox might want to make a run at that. Especially if the Yankees are going to try and snag Sabathia.
10:07: Need a little levity? Here’s a slideshow of some great MIT hacks. The one where the weather balloon marked “MIT” rose out of the ground at the 1982 Harvard-Yale football game may be my all-time favorite. I believe the headline was “MIT WINS HARVARD-YALE GAME.” Yes, I am escaping from reality.
10:22: Enough is enough. If the Red Sox actually score a run, I will continue the half-assery that is this half-assed liveblog. But if they aren’t going to accomplish anything, I don’t see why I should.
11:01: Whoah. Announcerboy just said that the Sox haven’t been shut out at home in postseason play since 1918. I hope this doesn’t mean we’re in for another 86 years! (I came back online because Jed Lowrie got a leadoff double and I thought we might finally be in for a run on the board. But two deep flies to center later and it’s not looking good.)
11:06: Lowrie moved to third when Coco laced a single under the diving Longoria. Now Pedroia’s up with men at the corners!
11:09 Line drive! Run scores!
11:10: Men still at corners. Two still out. Papi at the plate—-DEEP DRIVE! GONE!
11:11: It’s 11:11. Make a wish, Red Sox Nation! You guys know what I’m wishing for!
11:12: Do I dare to dream? Do I dare to hope? Do I dare to eat a peach?
11:13: On the one hand: we’re only down by 3. On the other, time’s running out. Oh, I don’t know, I don’t know! <Nervous hand-flapping>
11:15: We seemed to start scoring right as I was checking my work email (I know, I know—it’s 11:15pm). Should I keep doing that? I think I should!
11:16: Youk’s fouling ‘em off. He’s so good at doing that.
11:17: Oh, poop. Youk lines out to right.
11:24: Pap came out again to start the 8th, and managed to get Aybar swinging after quite the battle. But he looked like an idiot striding off the mound afterwards. Dude, it might have felt like that was three outs, but it it was only one! Stay on that hill until Varitek tells you to come down or until Francona comes and gets you, fool!
11:28: Heh. Pap got a fly out and another strike out to end the inning, and then stormed off the mound again. Just barely managed to keep the fist-pump inside. Not seemly to celebrate when your team is down by 3 in an elimination game.
11:31: The Rays were laughing and joking around in their dugout earlier. Now the Fenway Faithful are standing and roaring, Jason Bay is at the plate, and the kids from Tampa aren’t laughing anymore.
11:32: Bay walks on four pitches!
11:33: GAAAAAAAAAAAAH ONE-RUN GAME! JD DREW HITS ANOTHER HOME RUN TO THE EXACT SPOT PAPI HIT HIS!
11:34: I WOULD LIKE TO POINT OUT THAT MY BOYFRIEND HAD A REALLY EARLY MEETING TOMORROW, AND MADE ME SWEAR I WOULDN’T SHOUT OR SCREAM NO MATTER WHAT HAPPENED (UNLESS WE WON, WHICH AT THE TIME SEEMED VERY UNLIKELY AND STILL DOES KNOCK ON WOOD DON’T WANT TO JINX ANYTHING) SO THE ALL-CAPS IS HOW I WILL CHANNEL MY ADRENALINE.
11:36: Ok, Lowrie flies out and now Sean Casey will pinch hit for Varitek. Go, mayor-man! (On the one hand, did we already see Varitek hit for the last time in a Sox uni? On the other, thank God he’s not hitting in this sitch…)
11:38: Casey goes down on strikes and I feel disloyal. Varitek could have done that just as easily as Casey. Mighty Casey has struck out! Oh hahahahah I’m so original.
11:39: Okay Mark Kotsay. Do this for Jamie. Do this for your hot wife! She WON’T LOVE YOU ANYMORE UNLESS YOU GET ON BASE. NO PRESSURE. DO IT.
11:40: Kotsay lofts one over Upton’s head. If Upton had more experience out there, I think he could’ve had it, with his speed. Took kind of a weird route. Anyway, double for Kotsay (whose wife still loves him) and here’s Crisp again.
11:42: Crisp is still batting. Full count now. Heart thumping in chest like Big Papi’s bat thumping on home plate.
11:43: Coco fouled another one off. Heart leapt out of chest and skipped across room. Had to grap it before puppy could chew it.
11:45: COME ONNNNNNNNNNNN COCO!!!!!!!!
11:46: YES!!!!!! <Kotsay scores on Crisp’s single>
11:47 NOOO!!!!! <Crisp tries to stretch it into a double and ends the inning>
11:48 YESSSSSS!!!! TIE GAME!
11:49: But NOOOOO. We can’t win a war of attrition with the Rays. We just don’t have the bullpen, and Dice-K left in the fifth while Kazmir stayed in through seven. Stupid Coco! You were out by a mile!!!!!
11:51: My battery is running out on my laptop and either I have to pee, or my body’s fight-or-flight response is merely telling my bladder to empty itself so as to conserve the maximum amount of resources for the battle to come. Either way, I can’t bear the thought that anything might tear me away from one pitch of this game!
11:52: Oh crap. Rays get their leadoff man on in Bartlett. I hate that guy. He is everything that Julio Lugo isn’t. Which, wait—actually means that I love him!
11:53: Oh how I would love to see Masterson pick off Bartlett here. (I guess Masterson would too, from the way he keeps throwing over there.)
11:55: Conveniently, Bartlett made a dash for second just as Iwamura flied out to center-left, so he had to go back to first. One down.
11:56: It’s Sox-killer BJ Upton. Masterson buzzes him, and he swings and misses at the next pitch. Masterson again throws back to first and falls behind the batter. I’m just thinking that he needs to focus on Upton and less on Bartlett, when the announcers say the same thing. What, announcers who say what I’m thinking a half-second after I think it??? Clearly we are not watching Fox.
11:57: Masterson fulfills the prophecy by walking Upton. Bartlett has taken off again, and Cash’s throw appears to be good, but the ump calls him safe and TBS doesn’t revisit it. C’mon TBS. Fox would do it. [Ed note: or would Bartlett be safe anyway, because it was ball four to Upton? Anyone out there feel like checking the rule book?]
11:59: Pena has apparently only hit into two DPs this year—but Masterson throws a great DP ball. AND THERE IT IS! 4-6-3!
Midnight: Pedroia will lead off the bottom of the ninth. Will he gut out a super-scrappy spunky little gritty walkoff homer filled with moxie and leadership??????
12:02: Here’s the widdle dirt dog himself. Infield hit!!!! Oh. No. He’s just out. Crap. Man I hate/love Bartlett.
12:03: Here’s Big Papi now. First pitch low and away. Like, really far away. Like I think pitch was actually in Quincy. Oh no. What a terrible at-bat—after a bunt attempt, he strikes out on a breaking ball!
12:05: Here’s Youkilis. Ball. Strike. Ball. Strike. Fouled. Fouled! Fouled. (Note: it’s now 12:09.) Fouled. Ball.
12:10: Hit weakly to third, great play by Longor—NO! ERROR! Off-balance throw and Pena can’t handle the high hop. Ball goes flying into the stands and Youk stands at second. They’re walking Jason Bay and going to pitch to Drew.
12:12: Will Drew make them pay with another key hit? Oh God I hope so!!!! Or will he ground weakly into the inning-ender? Entirely too likely for my own comfort.
12:14: So far, it’s 2-0 to Drew. I still really have to pee.
12:15: 3-0. Will he go? I say, no.
12:16: He doesn’t swing, but the ump does call it a strike.
12:17: DREW DRIVES IN THE WINNING RUN AND SUMMER LASTS ANOTHER DAY IN BOSTON! And I can finally go to the bathroom. And my bf is so annoyed at me for jumping off the couch and screaming like a little girl! In other words, YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYY! RALLYBLOG!
12:19: Whoah that is one sparkly-ass necktie.
12:22:04: We won! We won!
12:22:17: I can’t believe we just came back from a 7-0 deficit!
12:22:25: We won we won we won!
12:22:37: Omg but what if Beckett sucks again on Saturday?!?!!
12:22:45: WE WOOOOONNN! <operatic style>
12:22:57: How will I sleep? How can I possibly sleep????