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Are we up for it?

Christ, it wasn't so much losing the final two games of that series so much as they way those two losses went down that erased any pleasure generated from the staht of the long weekend.


Yeah, it was all fluffah and no money shot.


Let's hope that doesn't turn out to be the case for the entiah season.


Are you kidding me? At this point the seeds haven't only been planted but have been planted in a nutrient rich hydro solution under an 18hrs of sodium halide grow cycle.


C'mon, you really think the Rays are going to play this way all season?


Absolutely not. But I don't think they'll collapse eithah.


And at 7 back in the loss column, the climb back to the top will be difficult. Doable but difficult.


Maybe we should just focus on making the postseason and not winning the Division?


Well, we could, but that sorta deflates the enthusiasm doesn't it?


Fluffah! I need a fluffah ovah heah.



Damn good thing it's a marathon and not a sprint.

Very disappointing way to end the series. They should have won that game. Why take out Wakefield when Posada couldn't get close to a hit. Yes I realize they didn't want AJob to steal second but who really cares about 1 possible run at that point. Also what's up with Manny? A flippin walk does the Team absolutely no good. He needs to get a hit to score the run. I know he sees the strike zone better than anyone else but he's not getting those close calls in that stadium with that pitcher on the mound. They are not getting it done in close games. Not the sign of a champ. Will Papi's return make the difference? Will Papi even make a return?

BTW-nice hb,nice :)

I went to bed after the Manny strike out. I knew where that game was headed when they couldn't close the deal in the 9th.

Lisa? Lisa?

[with apologies to Journey]

A batter in a smelly park
A smell of beer and now it’s dark
For they can share the night
It goes on and on and on and on

Nation waiting
Sharing in their weltanschauung.
Their Red Sox searching
In the night

Fenway, people
Livin' just to find emotion
Hidin', somewhere in the night

Workin' hard to get our fill
Everybody wants a thrill
Wishin’ just to see the Series
Just one more time

Don't stop believin'
Hold on to the feelin'
Red Sox, people
Don't stop believin'
Hold on
Red Sox, people…

yours in self-delusion,


To reformulate a discussion we had about this time last year, the Sox need to win 4 in a row while the Rays lose 8 in a row for us to climb into and hold onto 1st place (because they've played four less games than us). Winning 4 is a row should be doable at home, but I don't see the Rays, with that pitching staff, losing 8 in a row anytime soon.

I hope I'm wrong, but just in case I'm right, we better take care of business and knock the twinkies back in the wild card race this week.

Well I though if they could just get past Fruitbat in the 10th, they'd have a shot.

But that Manny at-bat was a killer. For God's sake, Manny, don't be a afraid to swing the bat.

Especially when the called third strike is RIGHT DOWN THE FREAKIN' MIDDLE OF THE PLATE!!!

Alright, I gotta calm down.

Manny's posture at the plate reminded me of the kids on the youth team I coach that are praying for a walk. It really looked like Manny had no intention of swinging the bat. How many times has he faced Rivera in his career? It's not like he hasn't seen him before or needed to size him up.

We shoulda swept that damn series. Our late inning, clutch hitting, especially with the bases loaded, has been horrible this year.

Oh well. What's done is done. Time to look forward to a sweet, delicious Twinkie.

Oh, and regarding A-Fraud and Madonna, didn't she once say that she would never have sex with a man that had not performed oral sex on another man? (of course she put it a bit more crudely) I'm just sayin'...

I seem to be the only one who thinks the Rays still have a serious shot at the playoffs. Everyone else I talk to seems to think that they're going to slide right down into third or fourth place and continue their run at mediocrity. Besides...do you really want NY to have even a glimmer of hope when TB deserves it more than the MFY?

Will the Sox make it to the playoffs? Absolutely. Will the Rays? With the rate they are playing I think they will as well.

//Damn good thing it's a marathon and not a sprint.//

If this is a marathon, the Sox just twisted their ankle on Mile 13 and fell down. Could Manny be our Achilles Heel?

Off topic...

I'm in this week's Iron Ref Round at the Hugging Harold Reynolds site and the writing topic is "Cheap Shot."

Figured I'd poll you experts for possible topic ideas on that theme.

Steve in MD: Your statement assumes that there are only 8 games left in the season, i.e., that these combined wins and losses must occur immediately. Things will become more interesting when NYY wins 2 of 2 this week.

Gravypan: Middle of the plate? The Skull of Death was painting. In Ramirez's defense on the 0-2 pitch, he's got to be thinking that Rivera will throw something way low/outside or his patented rising chest-high 2 seam, which has K'd many a lesser batter.

Both sides got their money's worth from the weekend.

Ooh, fun h.b. Taken as a term, cheap shot could certainly refer to A-Rod's ball slap maneuver. But is it more fun/creative to be literal?: cheap=inexpensive, shot=chance, maybe something to do with the lowest payrolled franchise to ever win it all (whatever sport)... Or maybe boozy ballplayers is your topic, those who partook of many a cheap shot before taking the field...

I can't explain it, but I just don't feel that great about the Sox this year. Just a kind of nagging sense that the (rest of the) wheels are juuuuuuust about to come flying off...

Jason, I doubt your team's ability to beat the Rays. If the Sox have trouble, the Yanks will have trouble.

Rays took 3 of 4 from them last time and have a little more of a live offense.

Colin, the AL East will be between BOS/NYY. Mark it down.

The latest greatest Boston cheap shot I saw was in January.

Montreal was up 7-1 in the 3rd period over the Bruins...and then this happened.


But if you want to stick to baseball, I'd say that A-Rod is a walking cheap shot: from his dropping-the-shoulder, ball-slapping, pop-fly-distraction-rounding-third, cleats-up-slide-into-Pedroia crap on the field to his whoring it up off the field. Who knew that baseball's prima donna was pre-Madonna when he was with that blonde stripper?

When he's not hitting useless homeruns, his on-field antics are a cheap *play* highlight reel...but "cheap shots" are usually pretty violent and A-Rod's too much of a pussy to be all that violent.

One other incident I thought of was when Dink and Dink, Jr. beat the ever-loving shit out of KC's first base coach, Gamboa, in 2002. I mean, he had NO idea or reason to think it was coming.

Thanks for the cheap shot ideas. Keep 'em coming.

One of the ideas I'm toying with is going with the angle of sports columnists as the biggest cheap shot artists of all time.

Could choose to focus on a single one, e.g., the CHB, or make it one big group including the worst of them, e.g, CHB, Tomase, Borges, Chass, etc.


"Especially when the called third strike is RIGHT DOWN THE FREAKIN' MIDDLE OF THE PLATE!!!"

I wish Manny hadnt struck out too but If you watched 5 seconds after he struck out, they showed the k-zone. All three pitches we balls with maybe the first pitch borderline painting the corner. Manny was actually showing tremendous discipline not swinging at garbage. On the other hand, you know Rivera is gonna get the benefit on anything close, so why not foul it off?


Although this is pretty tame its also hilarous...

What about when that threw a pizza slice in the stands during the patriots day game?

Pizza throw

/Steve in MD: Your statement assumes that there are only 8 games left in the season, i.e., that these combined wins and losses must occur immediately. Things will become more interesting when NYY wins 2 of 2 this week./

JO,no, I'm just assuming we play them even otherwise.

BTW, do you think Giradi got tossed on purpose to fire up his team, or just lost it? According to K Zone both the pitches he was complaining about were strikes, so I'm thinking the former, and it seemed to work.

@ cheap shots:

I like the "journalists" slant. Was also thiking about all the ass-hat former players who somehow get annointed color analyst w/ no skill re: Morgan, Sutcliffe. Remy, of course, is not a part of said dip shit group.

Still aching from the Sat/Sun losses but trying to work through it realizing that just about everyone 1-9 and starting rotation has had a stint on the DL. Haven't paid that close attention but don't think the Rays have had the same.

Steve, I think it comes down to the manager defending his players. Notice how ESPN didn't run that K-Zone bullshit on the 25 strikes at the knees that weren't called for either pitching staff.


Yes! The pizza toss is a really good choice. I like that there is already video of it and that it's so funny.

Re: Pizza

It's like $5 for a slice of pizza too...so it's somewhat ironic that it was used for such a cheap shot as it was.

On the journalists theme, you could select as a focus those dipshits (CHB, Bissinger et al) who hate the blogosphere and think all bloggers live in their mom's basement, churning out ill-considered opinions of negative value to the integrity of sports journalism as a whole.

Although maybe that's less "cheap shot" and more simple-mindedness and facile argumentation...

I can't recall the last time the Sox ran down a team in the regular season. The Sox are front runners - they get in first and stay there, or they collapse. I do not see them overtaking the Rays without a massive collapse on TB's part.

Loved the Holy Triumvarite that ended the game on Saturday night. Coco, Tek, and Lugo. Time to make some moves.

The Sox have dug a hole in just a few days' time, but they are likely to go on a tear at some point. The Rays are a good young team, but they are also likely to hit a rough patch. I don't understand the argument that they have to lose 8 straight because otherwise we will play them even. It's just a question of chipping away.

The Sox in recent years have started strong and held on ('07) or not ('06, sort of '05), but the '04 team (admittedly unique circumstances) came from way back to finish 3 games behind NY. The Yankees had a great first half but lost 5 games off their lead and only won the division because they played .600 (45-30) after the break.

We play 16 of 25 September games at home and we're done with the west coast on July 23, meaning the team travels right after the All-Star break, which will be less taxing. We have played 12 more road games than Tampa, and had fewer days off thus far. We also lost 7 of 9, but 6 by one run and the other was a one-run game until TB got an insurance run in the 8th. Very frustrating, and it shows a lack of clutch performance over a week's time, but also that we are right there and with a little more output could win a lot of games like those just as easily.

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