So the rending of garments, tearing of hair, beating of breasts etc has been in full swing in Boston today after last night’s 8-4 loss to the New York Yankees. It’s August and the Red Sox are 7.5 games out of first, and just barely clinging to a tenuous lead in the Wild Card race. Plus the two teams nipping at their heels — Tampa Bay and Texas — seem to be playing with newfound second-half vigor, whereas in Boston it feels like our local nine are staggering to the finish line with all the enthusiasm and verve of the Bataan Death Marchers.
The headlines today proclaim that Josh Beckett was “hammered,” “battered,” “knocked around,” etc. And true, he did give up 5 dingers. But — and this may sound slightly crazy, I know — I really don’t think he pitched that badly. After all, he gave up only 9 hits in 8 innings of work. He struck out 5, while walking 0. And, given the way the Red Sox were scoring runs this weekend, somehow the 4-run deficit never felt insurmountable. And indeed, it’s not as if Beckett labored through the outing — he threw 120 pitches, which is high, but not as high as you would have thought it would be if you’d known he was going to work 8 innings and allow 8 runs to score.
Suffice it to say, it was a curious outing. And I’m curious to know if I sound totally-nuts-suffering-from-Stockholm-Syndrome, or refreshingly sane amidst a sea of Sox fan sturm und drang.