Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Red Sox 2008 Game 80 Recap


Press PassBox Score Play - by - PlayGame Recap

W: C. Smith (1-0) L: C. Qualls (1-6) S: J. Papelbon (22)
HR ➢ Ari: C. Tracy (4) Bos: D. Pedroia (7)

✫ 1st star - C. Smith - Two innings of no hit ball and gets his first career win.
✫✫ 2nd star - J. Varitek - His two out single scored Lowell for the winning run.
✫✫✫ 3rd star - D. Pedroia and M. Lowell - Two RBI's for each of them.

⋔ Pitchfork - C. Qualls - Thanks for pouring the gas on the fire baby.

Game thoughts!

After Masterson set down the Diamondbacks in order in the first it looked like the Sox would start this game off strong with Pedroia homering over the wall and two other singles in the inning. However, Varitek ended the inning stranding both runners so the Sox were only able to get the one run.

Masterson struggled right away in the second as he gave up a single to Jackson who stole second and Tracy immediately drove him home. After a fly out by Young a walk was issued to Ojeda but Salazar and Snyder got retired without any further damage. Game was now tied, so the offense needed to do some damage, but they could not get the job done as Moss struck out, Crisp singled and then Lugo and Ellsbury grounded out to the middle infielders.

The top of the third started off good for Masterson when he retired the first two batters on a ground out and a strike out. Orlando Hudson though decided to make it interesting by singling to left followed by Masterson walking Jackson on four straight pitches. On the second pitch to Tracy the young pitcher left a pitch up in the zone and Tracy deposited it in the Sox bull pen. The game shifted from tight to uh oh territory right there.

Davis continued to be good. From the third inning to the seventh he only faced 16 batters while allowing only a walk to Lowell in the third and a single by Ramirez in the sixth. Lowell was erased on a Varitek double play ball, so not one Sox even reached second during those five innings.

I was really thinking that the Sox were out of this game the way that Davis was just making the batters look bad when the Sox got the rally rolling in the eighth. It is hard to blame Davis for the meltdown since he had thrown 92 pitches and isn't really back from his thyroid cancer at 100%. So you have to question sending him out for the eighth.

The late inning comeback Sox decided to show up in the eighth in a big way. Lugo singled, Ellsbury singled and it was good night to Davis who was replaced by Qualls. Pedroia singled on the seventh pitch (after four foul balls) and the Sox trailed 4-2. Drew though continued his struggles as he struck out on seven pitches and it looked like Qualls might quell the rally when Ramirez grounded out to third on the second pitch.

The ground out was lucky for the Sox though as the ball short hopped the third baseman which made first base his only play. With two runners in scoring position on a 2-0 pitch Mike Lowell smoked a two run double off the wall and the Sox had tied up the game at four all. This brought up Varitek who was batting .083 (at the start of the game) on the homestand. On a 0-1 pitch he hit a looping single to right field that scored Lowell and the Sox were finally back in the lead and Qualls was gone from the game.

As soon as the Sox tied up the game, Papelbon was up and throwing and sure enough he was brought in to face the number nine, one and two batters. Snyder struck out on four pitches, Byrnes drew a walk after fouling off four strikes and then Drew struck out swinging. This left Hudson to keep the inning going but he quickly grounded out to Lowell and the game was finally in the books.

Factoid - In the first five games of this home stand the Sox are batting .251 with a .321 OBA. Hence a 2-3 record.

♊ - Then don't strain your brain trying. Might break something.

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