Saturday, July 08, 2006

Battle of the Soxes

Round 1 in this much-anticipated series against the White Sox goes to the good guys last night, 7-2. It wasn't as easy as the final score might indicate, however.

The Sox (Red, that is) jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the first thanks to a Papi home run off White Sox starter Mark Buehrle. Remember when Papi had trouble with lefties? A long-forgotten memory. The homer was Ortiz' 30th - the first Sox hitter to ever clout that many before the All-Star break. The ChiSox fought back and tied it at 2, but the Red Sox added single runs in the 4th, 5th, and 7th innings and then iced it with two solo bombs from Mike Lowell and Coco Crisp in the 9th.

Lowell had a terrific game with both the bat and the glove. So nice to be listening to the radio, bases loaded with White Sox, one out, score tied at 2, ground ball to Lowell - and you just know it's an automatic double play. The other offensive star - besides Papi - was Alex Gonzalez, who raised his batting average above .280 by going 4 for 4. Gonzo has been awesome at the plate the last few weeks. Jon Lester labored again - 95 pitches through six innings - but his performance was very impressive considering he was going up against the World Champs in their ballpark. The kid is cool out there, and knows how to pitch his way out of jams.

All in all, a very nice start to this series between two AL powerhouses. Yanks won last night 1-0 behind Jaret Wright's 10 K's so the lead stays at 3. Josh Beckett vs. Freddy Garcia today at 1 on Fox. Something tells me a few balls might leave the yard.

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