Saturday, April 28, 2007

On a Roll

The Sox' charter should immediately depart for Las Vegas for a few hours before today's game against the Yankees, because everything they're touching right now turns to gold. Terry Francona is King Midas. Dice-K starts walking the most potent lineup in baseball and they still pull out a win. The bullpen is firing on all cylinders. Josh Beckett - who could have suffered whiplash last year from all the gopher balls he gave up - is 5-0 and looking like Cy Young timber. The beat goes on, and we still haven't seen the real Manny or the real Dice-K. As of this morning, Saturday, April 28, 2007, the Red Sox have the best record in baseball and Yankee fans - who will NEVER admit it - are worried.

Last night in the Bronx, we got a typical, slow, American League game. The Sox jumped out to a 2-0 lead, but then Dice-K got wild and the walks came back to kill. It should be noted that the home plate umpire last night absolutely sucked, for both teams. The guy had one of those strike calls that comes 20 seconds after the pitch. Unbearable. The Yanks took the lead 4-2, the Sox scrapped back to tie it up, and then they blew it open in the late innings to win 11-4 going away. At one point, and I want to emphasize this was only for a split second, I actually felt sorry for Joe Torre. He won my everlasting respect when he had all of his guys stand on the top step on Opening Day 2005, when the Sox raised their banner and gave out their World Series rings. Very classy move.

But back to the present. After Andy Pettite couldn't get it done last night, the Yanks now send someone named Jeff Karstens to the mound to tangle with Tim Wakefield. They got Chien Ming Wang back this week, and Mike Mussina's due back any day now. And all the talk is they'll go hard after 56-year old Roger Clemens. What's most surprising to me about the Yanks is that their offense is struggling in a big way right now. Like the old Soviet Union hockey teams, they just keep rolling all-stars over the boards, but they're not getting it done. They don't have a single extra-base hit over the last 20+ innings, and Bobby Abreu is mired in a 1 for 20-something funk. They'll get it going, no doubt, but it's awfully gratifying to see the Sox capitalizing right now.

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