Saturday, June 14, 2008

Red Sox 2008 Game 71 Recap


Press PassBox Score Play - by - PlayGame Recap

W: J. Papelbon (3-2) L: M. Lincoln (0-2) S: C. Hansen (1)
HR ➢ ➢ ➢ Bos: K. Youkilis (11), C. Crisp (3) Cin: A. Dunn (18), B. Phillips(13), E. Encarnacion (11)

☼ Sun - Youkilis and Coco - Their wins this game.

☁ Cloud - The bullpen or Francona - The pen for coughing up the lead in the ninth (after Okajima sucked in the eighth), Francona for pulling Wakefield who was stifling the bats in the eighth at 89 pitches.

Game thoughts!

Lots of highs and lows in this game. A run on a single, wild pitch, stolen base and an error started this game. Ellsbury is so destructive. Another wild pitch scored Drew in the 4th after his one out triple.

It was good to see the bats do some damage, especially those back to backs by Youkilis and Crisp. It would also help if the Sox decided to quit giving up the Home Runs as the Reds have now hit five in these two games. Luckily they have all been solo shots, though bad (?) base running helped in the second as Phillips was thrown out at third with Wakefield covering the bag.

Unlike some people, I'm not going to say that was bad base running as we have seen the Sox make that play in the last two years (shift on steal second and go to third). I like to think it was heads up from the old geezer on the mound to cover third base. Still, after Youkilis singled home Pedroia in the sixth I was starting to breathe easier, especially with the way that Timmy was throwing the ball.

The eighth inning looked like it would come back to haunt the Sox though. After Drew led off with a double (the ball was hit to almost the same spot as his triple) and Lowell hit a single to center (who should have been out as the throw to home was cut off but nobody covered first allowing him to get back to the bag) we had another run and Youkilis striding to the plate. This is when things got crazy.

Youkilis doubled to center over J. Bruce's head but for some reason, Demarlo Hale sent Lowell home and he was out by a mile. Instead of 2nd and 3rd with nobody out it was only a man on 2nd with Crisp, Cora and Cash due up. Not sure what Hale was thinking there, but the result sucked. Of course, neither of the afore mentioned batters got the run home, but it was a 4-2 lead going into the bottom of the eighth. Automatic win time, right?

Well, once again Okajima struggled as he was only able to get one out and after Bruce walked, Francona brought in Delcarmen to face Valentin. On the first pitch he singled to right and the game was in big time jeopardy. Thankfully, Griffey hit into a double play on a 3-0 pitch. Sometimes, living a clean life pays off!

4-3 going into the bottom of the ninth and the Papel-bot striding to the mound made everything look good. Forget about the runner thrown out at home, forget about the struggles of Okajima, just bring in the bot and the hand shake line can begin. Well, usually that is the way things play out, but not today. After two quick ground outs fragging E. Encarnacion smoked a 2-2 pitch into the left field stands and the Bot had blown his third save of the year (all on the road). Two batters later and the inning was over with the score still tied.

The back to backs came in the 10th inning but Hansen, looking for his first career save made things interesting as he also struggled after getting two outs. Still, even with the winning run at the plate, he finally ended this game (after a visit to the mound by Farrel) by getting Phillips to fly out to Drew. I don't know what Farrel said on his visit, but he needs to bottle it up and pull it out in the future.

Factoid - Craig Hansen got his first career save, here's hoping there are more to come in the future.

♊ - Morbid and creepifing I can handle as long as we do it quiet like.

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