Friday, July 07, 2006

Tape Delay Blogging The White Sox / Red Sox Game

Not nearly as cool as live blogging, but Mrs. Occidentality wanted to watch the premieres of Monk and Psych on USA, so I DVR'd tonight's White Sox / Red Sox game. About 20 minutes into Monk my wife fell asleep -- being six months pregnant seems to have that effect on her -- but by then I was committed and wanted to see how the show ended. Then, rather than start watching in the middle of the game, I decided to watch Psych. I still had the game recorded and could watch it, well, now. Note the times are a bit off from the actual game time, but that's why I'm not calling it live blogging.

10:38 --
I actually saw the first inning as it happened -- the game started a half-hour before Monk. David "Papi" Ortiz blasted a 2-run homer off of Mark Buehrle, who got shelled in his last game, but the White Sox came back in the bottom half of the inning, loading the bases on a sloppy Jon Lester before Jermaine Dye drove in one run on a sac fly.

So I'll fast-forward through the first, adding only this: why the hell does Hawk Harrelson have to call the Red Sox the "carmines"?

10:48 --
You should probably be aware that I am on the third serving of my favorite cocktail. I call it the Brooklyn because it's not quite a Mahattan but it'll do in a pinch: Marker's Mark, ice, a little bit of cherry juice.

Buehrle appears to be settling down, getting three outs on fly balls. I think it's the first inning since before his last game that he didn't get walloped.

10:51 --
Did you know has an entry for "walloped"? I spelled it right the first time. (What can I say, I care about correct spelling.)

10:53 --
Lester is settling down as well, though his first inning ended rather well for him, with a strikeout. He loaded the bases but only gave up one run on Dye's weak fly ball. It looked like a performance you'll often see from a strong but young pitcher: very shaky at first, but settling in quickly and pitching well into the fifth or sixth inning. We'll see if that happens (happened?) tonight.

Brian Anderson is coming up now. He's the prospect intended to replace the popular Aaron Rowand. He's hitting .182 right now, but just drove a hit into left. Did you know his middle name is "Nikola"? It makes me want to yodel "Ricola".

Did I mention I'm on my third cocktail?

11:00 --
The nice thing about tape delay blogging is being able to fast forward through the ads, because I swear to God if have to hear Taylor Hicks caterwauling "...possibilities" one more time, I'll drown a puppy. Ford Motor Company, you have been warned.

Buehrle just gave up a hard single to Alex Gonzalez after falling to a 3-1 count. Even though the second inning went well, Buehrle is looking a little shaky.

11:05 --
With the All Star Game coming up -- the White Sox's Ozzie Guillen is the manager -- the local broadcast keeps cutting away to Guillen talking about his all star picks. Kind of dull.

Holy crap! Kevin Youkilis just bounced a ball hard -- real hard -- down the third base line. Joe Crede reached out, picked it off, and started a 5-4-3 double play. Buehrle has two hard hit balls to the left side but two outs and the bases clear.

And he gets Mark Loretta looking for a strikeout to end the inning.

Still 2-1 Red Sox

11:19 --
Paused the game for a snack and another cocktail, but what do I find? I'm out of Marker's Mark! Sacre bleu! So I'm switching to Sam Adams lager, which I discovered in college long before it was cool. I have the same story about R.E.M, the internet, and about a dozen other things. What can I say, I'm an early adopter.

11:23 --
Alex Cintron just dropped a ball between Gonzalez and Manny Ramirez for a single, so the White Sox are off to a good start in the bottom of the third.

Next Jim Thome dribbles a ball into left, past third baseman Mike Lowell. He was playing where the shortstop usually would because the Red Sox had a massive shift on for Thome. And a couple of pitches after that, Paul Konerko singles to left as well. So Lester has the bases loaded for the second time in the game, and no outs so far.

11:29 --
Jermaine Dye just took Lester to a 3-0 count. Bases loaded, a 3-0 count, no outs: is there anything more terrifying for a young pitcher?

Lester gets a strike, then Dye sends a high pop up to center. Another sac fly, a very short sac fly, and the game is tied. A good call to send the runner because Coco Crisp, a great young hitter who is also America's favorite breakfast cereal, doesn't have an arm at all.

Crede grounds into a 5-3 double play to end it. So Lester, apparently, has nine lives. Was that on the scouting report?

11:34 --
David Ortiz leads off the the fourth with a single, then gets to third with two outs after a fielder's choice and a right side grounder. Now Lowell is up again.

Did I mention I'm a Red Sox fan? Not a perfect fan, like the Red Sox Chick, but a fan. I grew up in Phoenix, Arizona and adopted the Red Sox when I was 7 or 8. But I follow the White Sox too, so I'm really enjoying this game.

Mike Lowell just singled in Papi, then Gabe Kapler grounded out to second. 3-2 Red Sox.

11:40 --
Anyway, I'm a Red Sox fan for a lot of reasons. One of the main ones, frankly, is that they were in the post-season (or contending to be) a lot when I was kid in the 70's, and I think I was deeply attracted to them both because they were very good and because October in Boston, unlike October in Phoenix, didn't look hot. I hate hot. I think it was also the tradition: everything in Phoenix is new, but so much in Boston is old and historic, and that attracted me as well.

Despite a walk to Chris Widger, Lester gets through the fourth unscathed.

11:53 --
Blogger both sucks and blows. The connection has gone screwy so the last couple of updates haven't gone through. But I'll keep plugging away for posterity's sake. After all, I'm probably the only baseball fan who doesn't know how the game ended, so its not like I'm live blogging for anyone actually watching the game. Again, that's why we call it tape delay blogging.

Coco Crisp singled to start the fifth, then Gonzalez rolled a single to right and sent Crisp to third. Next, Buehrle gave up a Youkilis sac fly to center, but Anderson nearly got him at home. A good throw that would have gotten a lot of players not as fast as Crisp. 4-2- Red Sox

Buehrle gets out of the inning on a pop up by Loretta and a weak grounder back to the mound by Papi.

12:07 -- Coming back from commercial for the bottom of the sixth, the camera was situated on some kid chewing on the ear of a stuffed bear in a white sox uniform. He looked a little old to be chewing on things like that, but who am I to judge: it takes all kinds to make a world. But then the camera pulled back and sitting next to him is I guess his dad, and the dad looks exactly like John C. Reilly. How weird.

12:11 --
Alex Cintron leads off the bottom of the fifth with an infield single that shortstop Alex Gonzalez makes a great play on, but not so great that he gets the ball to first. Thome strikes out and Konerko hits into a 6-4-3 double play.

Lester has done about what I expected so far: he's settled down after a shaky first and pitched pretty well. He had a shaky third, but got himself out of the jam. He's been very impressive. He's a 22-year-old rookie starter and this is only his sixth game. Very impressive, especially his character.

12:20 --
Buehrle and Lester both cruise through the sixth. If there was anything impressive in there I missed it, as a fast-forwarded through it all.

12:22 --
Gabe Kapler doubles down the third base line to start the seventh. The ball was fair by inches. Now, Coco Crisp is up and he tries to lay down a bunt. Old time Red Sox fans will note the incongruity of a Red Sox batter who is known for his speed trying to move a man over with a bunt. We've come a long way from the staion-to-station baseball of the past. About the distance of a World Series.

Crisp doesn't get a bunt down, but a high chopper to third gets the job done anyway. The Red Sox have a pitcher up in the bull pen.

On the first pitch, Gonzalez breaks his bat and bloops a single to short center field to score Kapler. Gonzalez is 3 for 3 in the game, making him look like a monster even though two of those hits were weak little bloopers.

Hawk Harrelson is beside himself, saying that Buehrle's pitch was great and it was just bad luck the ball dropped where it did, in a no man's land in shallow center-right. After 101 pitches and 5 runs, Buehrle is gone.

12:33 --
Brandon McCarthy is now in the game for Buehrle. By all rights he should be a starter. On any other team but the White Sox he would be, but the White Sox have the best rotation in the majors. He gets a quick double play to end the inning.

12:36 --
Manny Delcarmen comes in the game for Lester, who frankly was awesome; 6 IP, 6 hits, 3 walks, 3 strikeouts. The White Sox do nothing against Delcarmen. Still 5-2 Red Sox.

12:41 --
A couple of notes about the ads I'm fast-forwarding past: Joan Cusack disturbs me for some reason, spastically plugging some wirelss company, and the movie Little Man looks horribly creepy.

12:43 --
Top of the eighth. A quick out, then Papi walks on five pitches. Manny pops up and Jason Varitek strikes out. The White Sox have 6 outs to get 3 runs.

12:48 --
Mike Timlin is in for the Red Sox in the bottom of the eighth. He mows through the heart of the White Sox order -- Thome, Konerko, Dye -- and now the WHite Sox have 3 outs to get 3 runs.

12:51 --
Lowell starts off the ninth with a solo homer against McCarthy. Kapler follows with a deep fly to left for the first out, but Crisp follows that with another solo homer. 7-2 Red Sox.

Alex Gonzalez gets his fourth hit on a soft grounder up the middle. Three soft hits and one hard one; good day for Gonzalez. McCarthy is gone.

12:55 --
Cliff Politte comes in; he does not inspire confidence amongst White Sox fans. Youkilis drives a ball to deep left field that looks like it might leave the park. Scott Podsednik, who came in earlier as a pinch hitter, is backed up against the wall and misses the catch. Runners on second and third and the fans are booing Podsednik.

Politte gets a strikeout against Loretta, then they intentionally walk Papi so that Politte can pitch against Manny, righty against righty. Probably a bad move.

1:00 --
Not a bad move. Manny pops up to left.

1:01 --
Hot-headed veteran Julian Tavarez comes in to close out the game. I had hoped to see Jonathan Papelbon, but the game isn't close enough.

The White Sox get a runner on base but the game ends on a Podsednik grounder to first.

The Red Sox beat the White Sox 7-2.

Here's the synopsis and box score.

Lester was awesome, Buehrle was average, and McCarthy let the game get away. That's pretty much the story.

I'm having another beer.

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TheBizofKnowledge said...

I happened to come across your blog while I was browsing through Technorati. I just wanted to say that I enjoyed reading your game log even though I am a White Sox fan. I was only able to catch the first three innings of the game live, so it was nice to be able to read what happened in detail.

We'll get you back on Saturday!!

McKreck said...

Thanks for the kind words. I enjoyed writing it.

Check back later -- I think I'll try it again for today's game, only this time actually live.