« The Devil (Ray) is in the details | Main | Find and sterilize imperfection »

Waking up is hard, so hard, to do

Jesus Christ, anothah game like that and it won't be enough to chase the Xanax with a Jameson (or two), no, I'll need to staht crushing that shit and snorting it directly up my nose.


No joke. A normal person cannot be expected to face this shit on a regulah basis without a most focused and unabashed abuse of pharmaceuticals.


It's one thing to try and deal with the emotional trauma of watching Clement crumble down in a heap on linah straight to the brain, but then we have to face Chadford giving up a slammah to tie the game?


Yeah, that on top of a friggin heat wave … I'm watching this mind fuck from Tropicana feeling like a cup of soda that has been sitting — full — for too long. Watery, sides melting, barely able to be handled — but there, so very there, and simply demanding propah disposal.


But you know, of course, the team may have "found themselves" last night, you know, got the so-called wake up call.


Fercrissakes why do the Red Sox always have to act like they work for NASA — You know waiting until their shit totally blows up before fixing things?


Why in Christ didn't my baseball coaches tell me as a kid that the secret to success is to drag your ass for half the season and then, Lo!, seize on some arbitrary event as your "turning point"?


Absolutely. If only somebody had told me about this wake up call thingy, I coulda been a hot prospect, coulda been a contendah.


Author's Notes

Doug's "cup of soda" speech is lifted from the July 18, 1986 entry in Joe Wenderoth's Letters to Wendy's
(Note: The link above was going to the wrong book on Amazon. It's now corrected.)


Glad to hear that Clement is OK. Godspeed, Matty, we need you back.

For a moment (for those of us old enough to remember) did it remind anyone else of the Joe Theisman/Lawrence Taylor incident on Monday Night Football? I'm with Bill and Doug, this kind of game wears you out, and I was sitting (and standing) on the couch.

On the bright side:

DECLARE, MAN! (I know it was just one inning, but that kid had some stuff. Also, he looks oddly familiar...could he be Pedro's illegitimate son?)

Finally, how slow of sports news month does it have to be to drag out this "Manny doesn't want to be in Boston" crap?

H.B., you're a better man than I. I turned off the game in the 7th after they went up 8-6. I knew we had a chance of turning it around, but it had simply been too draining a night already, and I needed sleep, not ulcers. Save me some Jameson, will ya?

Quoting Chops: "H.B., you're a better man than I. I turned off the game in the 7th after they went up 8-6."

Probably a wise call, man. You saved yourself another Svuem moment, and another Schilling quasi-'relief' appearance where he once again hauled buckets of gasoline to the fire. But for the grace of 'Jesus' in center in the 9th inning, it could have been a deja vu all over again ending from the night before.

The chest pains from last night are finally abating.....
First and foremost......Godspeed Matty, RSN is with you.
I couldn't help but remember as a 13 yr old seeing Tony C's career, and effectively his life ended in August of '67. That one is still tough to watch.
Bill Meuller, Mr. Clutch! I hope Theo doesn't trade him. I hope w/T-Graff & A-Cor that the
K-Horn era is over.
Delcarman certainly didn't look intimidated, plus his 95 has some movement on it.
FOT: Absolutely right, this "Manny wants to leave" crap will come up from time to time from the ink-stained wretches.
OK, Wake...time to follow up last night's emotional win with a solid effort......

We need a closer. Has Schilling had a 1-2-3 inning yet? I'm guessing he has been hit hard in 75% of his relief appearances. He got lucky last night, but your closer needs to get Ks or induce weak ground balls consistently. Schill is doing neither. I love the guy.but I don't see any evidence that he is physically up to the challenge.

High- Manny's 28th
Low-Trot going down clutching his side
Low(er)- Matty getting drilled (well wishes from all)
Low(est)-Chadford's bp ball to Huff to tie
Low-Jeremi "I'm the next one out of town" Gonzalez typically sub-par two innings
High- Delcarmen's 1-2-3 inning. And to think, all we had to do was get rid of Halama...
High(er)-Tek's blast
Low-Sveum sending the slowest man in baseball home to get cut down. Seriously- how many times is he going to do that?
High- JD's Schilling-saving catch at the wall...
High(er)-...followed immediately with the game tying HR and Tek's game winning rbi double.

Fuckin shit, man. That was possibly the game of the year. I'd like for the W's to not come with a side of mild heart-attack, though. I don't know about turning point or anything like that (I mean it was the D-Rays ferchrissake), but the team definitely showed what they're made of last night.

If, as some are suggesting, there's a decent probability that Trot misses most of the remainder of the season, then I would think that Theo has suddenly become much more interested in the supposedly-very-available Adam Dunn. Although, frankly I think that has to rank below fixing the bullpen in priority.

Putting aside all SAWX-hating activities for the day. Glad to see Clement seems to be ok. Here's wishing him the best...

Let me go on record as saying I kinda think it might be an OK thing to lose Trot. I'll confess he's never been one of my faves and lately he just seems more and more to be the guy most likely to screw up and cost the game. People poke fun at Manny, but Trot Nixon comes across, to me, as the guy a couple beers short of a six pack more often than not.

Nice game summary NV. I KNEW when Johnny D. made that catch that he would hit a homer to lead off the inning, but I was still surprised when he nailed the very first PITCH! If I were a manager, I would ALWAYS intentionally walk the guy leading off the inning who just made a great catch to end the last one.

COD: I know we need a closer, but we don't need to trade any of our prospects to get one. Schilling can hopefully get guys out and improve game to game until Foulke gets back. For the future there are several possibilities including maybe Manny DelCarmen. But you don't want to put a kid in that position during a pennant race, and you don't want to trade away the prospects it would take to get a legitimate closer. So you're pretty much stuck so let's just hope for the best.

Losing Trot is a big blow; hopefully he won't be out for long. Maybe maybe they can turn even this into a semi-positive by sticking Millar in right field and calling up Roberto Petagine, who is hitting the cover off the ball, to play first base.


HB, nice strip today. I don't know why they need the "turning point thingy" but I do know one thing. In the bad old days, that liner would have ended Clement's season if not his career, the Sox would have lost the game and it would have started them on a long losing streak that would have ended their season and triggered a stupid panic-button trade by management. In the new, Championship era, it looks like Matt will be okay, and the team came back to win the type of game that often triggers a winning streak and good karma all around.

Let's hope so.

You're coming close to sacrilege there, hb. Trot is the definition of a gamer- always 110% with that guy. He's a Red Sox to the core and having him go down will always be a loss.

I'm thinking instead of Millar going into right for the time being, this is a perfect opportunity to bring up Mr. Super-Sub Gabe Kapler. Petagine appears to be tearing up AAA, but you still have to wonder if that's all he's got (esp. after playing in Japan all those years).

re: Sveum- How long will it take for something to change here. it went from head scratching, to confusing, to upsetting, to infuriating. I'm not sure what the next step is, but it can't be good.

Someone needs to go down to Fenway when everyone's getting to the clubhouse and take a page from "Celtic Pride" on Sveum. Akroyd and Daniel Stern kidnapped the opponent's best player...and right now that's Dale Sveum.

Ok, this is OT, but after last night's scare, it might help to think about something more pleasant for a bit. Is anybody else here, like me, ecstatic that the Knicks hired Larry Brown? Talk about a marriage made in hell! It's beautiful! Here we have a franchise that already possesses the most despicable player and GM in the NBA (Marbury and Isiah, respectively) and while they just missed the Triple Crown of Contempt (that would have required the hiring of Phil Jackson) Brown is a good substitute.

Given the Knicks' small, aging, overpaid, and virtually untradeable roster, and Brown's legendary lack of patience, I'd say the over/under for his resignation is 60 games, tops. It will be a beautiful, beautiful NY meltdown to watch.

Trot IS a gamer, no doubt. But he is one heck of a defensive liability and, as someone wrote on SoSH, "He cannot not get around the bases without a GPS system."

And another poignant SoSH comment:

"His botch of a routine fly to right in game 7 of the 2003 ALCS gets lost in the sauce, but it was a play that every right fielder in the league should make. He makes that play and chances are they win that game and the series."

Meanwhile, the "terrible" outfielder Manny has 12 assists to Trot's 5 this season.

If the overall club were better defensively, it'd be easier for me to cut Nixon more slack. But, as things go, the infield is weak, and in the outfield there's on again off again Manny, Damon who can't throw, and Trot who can't run or think.

OK. That's the last of my Trot bashing for the day. Just releasing some frustration...

NV, re: "Petagine appears to be tearing up AAA, but you still have to wonder if that's all he's got (esp. after playing in Japan all those years)." Well, why do we have to wonder? Now that Trot's hurt, let's give the guy a chance and see what he can do against Big-League pitching.

Aaron, as a New Englander who works in NYC, it IS a big relief to watch the foibles of the Knicks, which New York sportswriters insist on calling "the NBA's flagship franchise" among other hyperventillations of hyperbole. I think Larry Brown is actually a good coach, but even the troika of him, Red Auerbach and Phil Jackson would have a hard time getting that squad into the playoffs. It will be mucho fun to watch the back pages of the tabloids this winter, though. Almost as much fun as it will be in a couple of weeks when the Mets finally overtake the Yankess with the best record in New York City, and SteinBUYer blows all his gaskets.

Dude, thanks for tearing a strip out of Trot. His Lord may delight in him, but I've about fuckin' had it.

The assist statistics are misleading I think. Manny's repuation as a weak defender encourages people to run on his arm, so he gets lots of chances. Every game I see the announcers talk about Trot's gun of an arm, so nobody even tries against him.


I largely agree with your assessment of Trot's defense overall, but I disagree with the SoSH account of the fly ball in 2003 game 7...I was there, sitting in the mezzanine behind first, and had an excellent view. I think that he might have made that play, but it still would have been a difficult catch and not a routine. On the other hand, I still think Posada's little dink hit to shallow left to tie the game could and should have been caught by a better 2nd baseman than Todd Walker. I remember watching Pokey play second last summer, and thinking he would have had it easily. One of the many "what-ifs" from my 30 years of Red Sox fandom, all wiped away by last October.

The other two things that I'll always love about Trot:

His homers in the 2003 postseason: the ALDS Game 3 walkoff v. Oakland, and the shots in ALCS Games 6 and 7, all of which I witnessed in person.

The way he went back out towards the RF bleachers to salute the Sox fans out there after Game 7 last year at the Toilet; one of the coolest gestures I've ever seen by a player towards the fans.

You may be right about assist stats being misleading, but let me offer the following.

The greatest Red Sox arm I've witnessed during my lifetime was that of Dwight Evans. And Evans is in the top 10 list ALL TIME for outfield assists.

So you're telling me that guys were willing to run on the Hall of Famer Dewey in right field but are somehow "scared" to run on Trot Nixon in right?

I ain't buying it. :)

For every misplay he has, he makes some crazy diving/sliding catch or robs a HR. As for the 2003 ALCS, we all know that it wasn't that botch that lost that game. Plus, he does have a pretty good arm (esp. when he's playing next to JD).

I can honestly say that this is the first time I've heard public Trot-bashing from Sox fans. I'll still argue you on every point (except the baserunning and avg. vs LH pitching- which is improving). What can I say, I just appreciate the way he plays the game, plus he's the only Sox-for-life we've got right now.

That said, I think I'd still rather see Kap called up than Petagine.

...and it is fully understood that there will never be another Dewey, so you can't even compare the two.

The Red Sox will be without two-thirds of their starting outfield today in Tampa Bay after placing Trot Nixon on the disabled list and resting Manny Ramirez, who asked for the day off.

First baseman John Olerud will take Ramirez’s fourth spot in the Sox lineup, and Kevin Millar will take his place in the field. The Red Sox have a scheduled day off tomorrow, so resting Ramirez today means he’ll get an extra day off.

Amen HB for your nod to my namesake. I'm convinced the guy is *the* quintessential right fielder at least of the 2nd half of the 20th century.

So with Trot getting some time off, when do we get Kapler? He did serviceable work in the field last year, and we don't have to trade anybody away to do it. Speaking of tradess: for all the talk of getting bullpen help, we're stuck with two realities: 1), we've got no one we can really trade without hurting the club now or in the future, and 2) there's no pen help worth a damn on the trade market anyway. You know the well's dry when the biggest news is Phil Nevin nixing a deal for Sidney Ponson.

hb, this is my first post/reply to a strip.
First off - my name is Brian, but for the love of Christ, never to be confused with BigBri!
Secondly -let me say I wait for your strip every morning the same way I used to wait for a new Calvin&Hobbes, the Far Side, or Bloom County strip. I'm a far-flung member of the Nation here in Austin, TX. Soxaholix has been invaluable in educating my baseball fan friends how the die-hards think and speak up theah. Anyway, I gotta agree with NV in SD about Trot - I, too disagree with the prevailing SoSH's collective looking down their noses at Trot. For every mistake, Trot also makes a wicked play. You mention an iffy play game 7 of the 2003 ALCS, what about his 6th inning game-saving catch of Matsui's liner off Pedro? ALDS Game 3 homah, nuf ced. The insurance RBI's, Game 4 WS. The Game 7 right field salute to the Nation at the Toilet, his Clemens-killing... Ok, I'm no fanboy - I still think Trot is mentally retahded on the basepaths, and will chase every crap low and outside slider from a lefty, BUT, he's on pace for 100 RBI's as a PLATOON RF! We're going to miss his bat! Maybe it's fanboyish, but Trot BLEEDS Red, and will run through walls for this team. The silver lining may be a Petagine call-up (Dauber Part Deux)? and Millar's trade for a bag of baseballs...

(forgot to mention the game # when giving Trot his props) - I meant to say his catch in Game 5 ALCS, but I'm sure (hopefully!) we all remember that one...

NV and Rotesocken, Thanks for sticking up for Trot, the only veteran on the team who goes all the way back to the Pawsox. I can't believe we're even having this conversation. Like Mike Greenwell before him, Trot is a great player -- not a Hall of Famer, but a great player who leaves everything out on the field and comes up with huge hits in the clutch -- and most importantly he gets what being a Red Sox is all about. We are going to miss him while he's out, which hopefully won't be for long. I do hope they'll give Petagine a look, but like one of you said, Kapler is probably the logical choice. Oh well.

Hey, Manny played right field in Cleveland. How about putting him out there?

Ok, that wasn't funny, even to me. I apologize. However, even Manny would be a better option in right than Millar. A crash test dummy would be a better defensive outfielder than Millar. Of all the head-scratching Francona moves in the past two years, sticking a completely immobile first baseman ANYWHERE in the outfield has to top the list. Hell, I'd even rather see Papi out there.

Well we've got Adam Stern striking out and the next inning Olerud grounds into a double-play with the bases loaded. Unfortuately we traded Chip Ambres so he's not an option to fill in for Trot. I can't see how Millar and Petagine would be worse than what we've got out there today. Or if you want, send Millar down and bring Kapler up.

Whatever happened to that guy we got for Mientkiewicz- Ian Bladergroen? I saw one of the exhibition games in Arizona in April and recall seeing him out there late in the game.

I guess if I'm bringing up that name, the bottom of the barrel has offically been scraped.

Stern defiinitely isn't gonna cut it as an everyday player. We need to get someone up for the homestand.

Theo- time to work your magic!

Man, I didn't know it was an afternoon game today! Glad they won anyway.

I've been watching the Twins-Yankees game on YES. Amazingly, Jim Kaat actually used the S-word in association with Giambi. His exact words were something along the lines of, "You can say he didn't admit to anything, but I think if you read between the lines, you can see he admitted to being a steroid user." Does anyone know if there's precedent for this? I've watched quite a few Yankee games this year and they always, always, always danced around the word. Maybe it's because he's been doing so well recently that they actually trotted the dreaded word out?


These things are fucking terrible.

The comments to this entry are closed.

The Soxaholix eBook Spinoff

The captivating and long awaited Soxaholix eBook spinoff is finally available!

There's No Crying in Pocket Pool


Purchase at Amazon.


Logo t-shirts now available, several colors, even pink.

'Soxaholix logo t-shirt