Thursday, May 22, 2008

The Magic of Fenway

Reading Ted's posts (see the link to the right on the "Red Sox Dad") has taken me back a year to my first game at Fenway Park. I can't technically say that it was my first visit to Fenway, because way back in the year of the Subway Series (was that 2000??), my wife and I were in Boston one day during our whirlwind tour of New England, and we finally found Fenway. There were no tours at the time because of renovations or something, and it was October, so season was over. After I carressed the bricks on the outside, we walked up one of the sidewalks (I can't even remember what street) and one of the gates was up. There were a couple of old guys chatting inside, at least one of whom obviously worked there. After one walked away, the other guy looked at me standing there with my mouth hanging open and said, "Well, say something!" I just said, "Wow." He laughed and my wife explained that we were from Fort Worth, Texas and were up there for our anniversary, etc. He pointed up a ramp and said, "Just don't go on the field." I said, "Yes, Sir!!" and trotted up the ramp to the infield seats. I cried then, too. Took some pics of the stadium (Green Monster first, of course) and marvelled at how small the place looked in real life.

Anyway, so last year wasn't my first visit to Fenway, but I say it is my first official one, because we got to go to games there. Reading about Ted's first trip really brought back the height of emotion that I felt when I walked in there for the game last year. I had the pleasure of having my wife and kids with me. It's indescribable. And as I commented on Ted's blog, I did cry, and I'm not ashamed of it.

I wonder what it is about that place that causes that in people? Some would say that it's "just a baseball field." I would disagree. Maybe there's some magic there. Bill Simmons, the sports guy on ESPN, who wrote the book, Now I Can Die Happy after the '04 series, says Fenway is haunted. I haven't done any research on that theory. But, for cryin' out loud, look at the record! I was just looking at the standings while ago, verifying that our beloved Red Sox are, in fact, once again, the best team in the Major Leagues (Woot!!) and the only team, as of today, with over .600 percentage. I was astonished to see that their home record is 21-5! Geez! The only other major league team with that kind of home record is the Braves, with 20-5. What a lopsided home record, and, unfortunately, the Sox are losing on the road. But, with this 7 game winning streak going, maybe they can fix that on this West Coast trip. Anyway. There is definitely something spooky about Fenway Park. Wonderfully spooky, I might add. I love it. Ted loves it. Grown men cry over it. They will probably break the record for consecutive sellouts this year.

I could go on and on, but I won't. Mainly because you're probably tired of reading by now. Fenway is Magic. 'nuf said, as McGreevey would have said.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Way To Go, Jon Lester!!!


Jon Lester throws a no-no and I missed the whole thing. I was on my way to work, listening to the Rangers blow a game with the Twins, when Eric Nadel announced it. I almost lost control of the van. Good on Lester, and great catch by Ellsbury.

It was a great weekend, too, with the Sox sweeping the Beer People, and the Rangers taking 2-3 from the Astros.

Ted, did you SEE Josh Hamilton on Friday night?? The boy went 5-5 and was a double away from hitting the cycle! It was amazing! Of course, tonight, he misplayed the ball that wound up being the losing play. I hope he's not too hard on himself, because losing this game was definitely a group effort. C.J. Wilson blew the save in the bottom of the ninth when they were ahead 6-5, and Michael Young struck out with the bases loaded in one of the extra innings. So...they all contributed. But Friday night...the Rangers hit 6 home runs as they whipped the 'stros 16-8.

So the Sox are on a nice streak, and the Yankees remain in last place by 6.5 games. I will enjoy that while it continues.

That's it for now...TTFN, y'all!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Celebrate! Celebrate! Dance To the Music...



The Yankees are in last place!!

We all know that won't last. But it's fun while it's happening, isn't it?

And I also noticed that the Rangers and the Yankees have exactly the same record. I don't know when the last time that happened was (besides the day before the season started). That's also fun, especially since the Rangers are NOT in last place. Heh.

Hopefully, this day off will help the Sox get focused again. Been a dismal week.

But...curse Bud Selig and his interleague play. I hate it. Even though I'm going to the Rangers/Astros game Friday night.

TTFN, y'all!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

May I Present the Play of the Year?

I don't know what's wrong with our Sox right now, but I trust that they will come out of this slide and eventually retake first place from the TB Sunbeams (puppies and butterflies notwithstanding).

In the meantime, THIS play that Manny made yesterday has got to be the most amazingly awesome thing I have EVER seen! Manny makes the grab, facing the wrong way, running full speed, WALKS up the wall, high-fives a fan, and makes the relay throw in to double up the guy at first base. HAHAHAHAAAAA!!! Oh, and the batter was Millar, wasn't it? Heh.

And that, my friends, is why we love Manny being Manny!

And just for kicks, HERE is Asdrubal Cabrerra's unassisted double play from a couple days ago. (Thanks to Dawn for catching that mistake...I won't change it so her comment will still make sense...that should have read triple play, not double play.) It's only been done 14 times in MLB history. It's kind of confusing, but if you watch closely at the beginning, the two runners were going at the pitch (hit and run?). By the time Cabrerra had the ball, the runners were at second and third. He made the diving catch, jumped up, tagged second base, then tagged Scutaro, who had already rounded second. It was glorious.

TTFN, y'all!

Friday, May 9, 2008

The Century Mark

I just realized that my "Stunned Silence" post was number 100 for me. That may not seem like a lot, but hey. I've stuck with something for a while, so that's significant. Especially when you consider that I have three different blogs going at the same time.

Anyway, the Rangers held on and shut out Richie "The Bully" Sexson and the Mariners, 5-0. Great game except for the stupid fight. I really hope Gabbard didn't get hurt in there. If you watch the video, which I should have on this post, he gets totally buried under the melee.

Here's the video

You can judge for yourself. The pitch was head-high, yeah. But it was over the plate. Sexson just went ape-...oops. I can't say that here. Heh.

Ok. I'll be watching the out-of-town scoreboard tonight at the Rangers game to see how the Sox fare agains the Twinks. I'm hoping the Rangers can continue their recent winning ways against Oakland tonight.

TTFN, y'all!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Benches Clear in Seattle

Richie Sexson showed very bad form tonight, when Kason Gabbard threw a head-high pitch in the bottom of the fourth. Sexson took off his helmet, charged Gabbard, threw his helmet at him and jumped on him. Gerald Laird was right behind Sexson, though and tackled him.

The stupid thing is that the pitch was nowhere close to Sexson. It was over the plate, if not slightly outside. Hernandez had hit Kinsler in the last inning, after Kinsler hit a big fly off of him on the previous at bat. Sexson needs to grow up. I'm sorry the Mariners are in last place. Too bad. The pitch wasn't retaliatory. It wasn't even a "brush-back." The idiot Seattle tv announcers said "There's no doubt it was on purpose..." What? I guess Gabbard is such a bad aim that he can't throw a brush-back pitch??

The umps were fair, though. Sexson was apparently the only player ejected. After that display of childishness, Sexson should be suspended for a few games. Sexson, go sit in the corner and THINK ABOUT WHAT YOU DID!!! Bahahahaha!!!

I'm going to try to link the video. Oh, yeah...the Rangers are ahead 4-0 in the top of the fifth.

Ok...the link I had didn't just linked to the "gameday" page for the game. I'll find it and get it in here later, when it gets posted on the website.

In other news, we celebrate as Beckett and Co. were back to normal tonight, soundly handling the Tigers 5-1 to win the series 3-1. Have I mentioned that S.I. picked the Tigers to win the World Series this year?? I know, I know...I just can't let it go, you know. I even saved the issue that has the predictions in it so I can look at it at the end of the season and laugh.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Stunned Silence


(Papelbon blew a save...)

Red Sox Continue To Roll Over Motor City

Wow. What fun that was! Wakey was hothothot! Papi and Manny hit back-to-backs, Manny's being number 497 (can you smell it Manny??)! 5-0 shut out over S.I.'s World Series pick. Heh. I'm still laughing over that. The sad thing is, statistically, Detroit should be winning games. Except for the fact that they really don't have any pitching. But they have some killer bats. Who just don't happen to be killing right now.

And it's only the unfairness of scheduling that keeps our Sox from being the "best team in baseball" right now. Arizona has played, what? two or three games less than we have? So they have a higher percentage. Pft!! Pftpft!! It'll catch up with them.

Dawn, didja see that homer that your Lowell hit t'other night? That was sweet. BTW, my wife has adopted Lowell as her "older" brother. He's not really older than her, but he looks older than he is, so she calls him that. Last year during the W.S., she got caught up in it with me and Steph, and really grew fond of Lowell and Jacoby. She calls him her "son." I call him Runs Like Heck. (I can't say the other word...I think some of my church members read this.) Heh.

And tonight, the Rangers woke up for a minute. Or at least three innings. They scored 10 runs in three innings, which was enough. 10 runs should be enough in any game. Among those three was a Mammoth homer by our friend Josh Hamilton. Officially scored at 425 by the Safeco Field scorers, Victor Rojas and Eric Nadel of KRLD radio (Rangers home station) said that was crazy, it was way longer than that. It went into the upper deck at Safeco. I'm waiting for the video to be posted online so I can watch it. From the broadcast, there was never a doubt from the moment it left the bat. Rangers win 10-1 over Seattle, regaining a tie for last place in the AL West. *sob* But, on the positive side, they have been playing at least .500 ball for the past week or so.

Tonight, the Sox should complete a sweep, oops, no...they have two more games with the Tiggers. Then it's on to play the Twinks.

Steph and I will be going to see the Rangers play the A's this Friday night, then the Astros next Friday night. Then I'm pretty sure I have tickets to see the A's again on the 30th. Normally, I wouldn't have done that, but the one for this weekend was added in later. Marshall, the one with the "Marshall in Peru" blog on my list, is in town this weekend, so we are taking him to a game. He keeps winding up in places where the Braves are playing and texting me pictures of Mark Teixeira batting, because Tex was Stephanie's favorite player when he was with the Rangers. I've accused Marshall of using all of our support money to travel around and watch the Braves play baseball. Matter of fact, he hasn't actually denied that accusation...Hmmm... Seriously, he is leaving for Peru again in a few weeks. May be the last time we see him for about four years.

Ok. That's enough for now. We shall cheer on tonight at 7-ish. Go, Manny!!!

Monday, May 5, 2008

A Brief Poll

Raise your hands if you think Roger's lying.

Yeah. I thought so. Look at all those hands.

Poor, poor, Roger. He's finally found out he's not indestructible. You can see the panic in his eyes. It gets more pathetic every day.

It's really sad when a true legend goes down like this. Why couldn't he have been more sensible like Nolan? You know...retire at the perfect time and go raise beef for a few years, then come back and be the president of your old team.

No, not Roger. Instead, he has to be completely delusional and lie and squirm. Sounds like much more fun, doesn't it? I think I agree with the S.I. columnist (I think that's where I read this) who said that he believes that Roger has actually convinced himself that he really is telling the truth. That's even more pathetic.

On to more positive things!

Tonight, our beloved Sox begin a series with the team that S.I. predicted would win the Whirl Serious this year. (Raise you hand if you get that reference! I'll give you a gold star!) *snort* *snicker* *falls out of chair* The *snort* Detroit *guffaw* TIGERS! BAHAHAHAHAHAHA.......

Go, Sports Illustrated!! Any more predictions?? Huh? Like maybe, you know, putting the Red Sox in SECOND PLACE?? Behind the *snicker* YANKEES??

Seriously, does anybody give Joe Girardi till the end of May?

Ok, all joking aside, I will never take lightly the threat that is the Evil Empire. Who can forget last season, when we were 15 games ahead of them at one point, and then suddenly battling for our first first place finish in 12 years? No lead is ever safe with the Yanks. I just don't think Girardi has what it takes to coach a team the caliper of the Yankees. Maybe they need Ron Washington.


Ow. I think I hurt myself.

Speaking of Washington, the Rangers take on the Mariners tonight in the battle for last place in the AL West. Should be, um, interesting. No, wait. Wrong word. I think I meant boring. Sigh.

If I didn't love the Red Sox, I might give up on baseball altogether. But, no...I'm a true fan. I'll keep going to Rangers games, no matter how bad it gets. But thank God for the Red Sox.

Hey. That could be a song! I'll get to work on it...


TTFN, y'all!

Life Is Good

What a wonderful weekend! The Red Sox actually swept their nemesis, the "Sunbeams." (Thanks, Dawn for that one...) Oh, and Dawn, were you at the games? I bet they were just awesome! I was sooooo happy.

And the Rangers actually took 2 out of 3 from Oakland. It's weird, but they are actually playing over .500 ball right now. And I'm actually going to see how many times I can actually use the word "actually."

In non-baseball news, Stephanie is feeling wonderful! It's a miracle! (And it very well may be, as we still have no clue what was wrong with her.) Well, we have a clue, just no official confirmation. She has been feeling better ever since about last Tuesday.

We all went to Scarborough Faire on Saturday. That's the local Renaissance Festival that is held about an hour from where we live. It was a blast. I dressed up as a friar, with a simple brown flannel hooded robe that my wonderful wife sewed for me, along with a gold rope belt and some sandals. I had a staff that I have had since the last time we went there. Really, it was tremendous. They have a beautiful setting with lots of trees and some rather permanent, old timey buildings. There are lots of crafts (very expensive, I might add) and lots of people dress in period constumes. Some dress in not-so-period costumes, such as the samurai that I saw and several "anime" type characters...oh, and a few who must have been modeling as the Sex Pistols. All good fun, though. There were swordfights, lusty wenches, lords, ladies, and I had my first glass of mead. It tasted suspiciously like White Zinfandel. I should be able to post some pictures soon. The best part, to us, is Zilch, the "torysteller." He's there every year, and tells tales, mostly Shakespeare, in "spoonerisms." For example, the one we heard was "Jomeo and Ruliet." It's rolling-on-the-floor funny, too!

Welp. Back to work with me...see you soon.

TTFN, Y'all!!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Close Games

Wow. The last two games have been very good games, especially for the "baseball purist." Absolute pitching battles. Lester against Halladay...Halladay pitched a complete game (and, Lester pitched 8 scoreless innings and they brought in Papelbon to shut 'em down. Thanks to Youk (well, he doesn't get all the credit does he? Papi walked and Manny singled to set him up), we win in the bottom of the ninth.

Then last night, we do it again, only with a 1-1 tie in the ninth. Papi hit a sweet big fly into the right field stands. But Tek gets to be the hero in this game, with an RBI single in the bottom of the ninth.

Meanwhile, the Rangers continue to struggle, so far winning one and losing one to the equally bad Royals. In last night's game, they got ahead early and stayed ahead, despite all efforts to lose. 11-9 final score, as the Rangers hit at least 5 home runs (all of their runs were caused by big flies), and Ted, you will be very pleased to know that our good friend Josh Hamilton hit his first Grand Salami last night, and I just happened to be watching when it happened.

They also have this new guy named Brandon Boggs? OMG, for his first four at bats with the Rangers, he was 4-4. He went 2-4 tonight, with one crushing home run that almost made upper home run porch, and now has a .667 batting average! Daniels will probably trade him next week. For a "big bat."

Things are progressively getting better at our house. We were all sick over the weekend. It started with Stephanie, who started "calling Earl" at around 2am Saturday morning. She was sick all day Saturday, and we actually attributed it to what we thought was (and still think might be) rheumatic fever, which sometimes comes on the heels of a strep infection. Well, this is not contagious. And my wife and I both started hugging the porcelain throne Sunday night. I left work early Sunday night and missed Monday night, she missed Monday and Tuesday. Stephanie finally went back to school Tuesday and after today, will have made three days in a row!! (Hear the angels singing??) She will miss Friday, though, because we have an appointment with a rheumatologist. We want to confirm (or unconfirm) that she had rheumatic fever. If she did, she will likely need to be on low dosages of antibiotics for a long time, in order to prevent another strep infection. We shall see.

Now the Sox have to play the dreaded Rays again. DEVIL RAYS!! Bring back the DEVIL!! Tam-pa Bay De-vil Rays. It just works better.

TTFN, y'all!