Sunday, April 24, 2005

Don't. Mess. With. Papi.

Just Red Sox- Devil Rays, huh? Just an old-fashioned, relaxed AL East game at the Trop, right? It doesn’t mean much, just a series-ending meeting with the Rays down in Tampa, correct? Not so fast my friend.

Following two games of more than a fair share of behind-the-back fastballs, curves that hang near the batters head and a bit of tension between the clubs, things finally escalate. First, Arroyo nails Huff in the fifth inning, something that I believe was partially intentional because Huff destroys Bronson on a consistent basis. Then Carter goes behind Manny, who promptly answer with a blast to the left field bleachers. As Francona was arguing with the umpires after the previous pitch, you could just see Manny smiling at the side, plotting his way to get back. It would not have surprised me one bit if he walked up to Tito, whispered “I got this, partner,” followed by Tito frantically sprinting to the dugout to get a good photo. Good stuff.

Next batter, Carter goes over the head of Ortiz. I wouldn’t have much a problem if the pitch nailed him anywhere below the belt, but this was a dangerous ball right up near the eyes. This was obviously intentional and uncalled for in a baseball game, risking a guy’s career like that. I may be coddling my Papi, but Carter needs to go hibernate somewhere, the bastard. Eventually, there’s a nine minute delay as the benches clear and Trot gets naughty with Dewon Brazelton, who is still heated from walking every batter he’s ever faced. All in all, Francona, Piniella, Arroyo, Brazelton, Nixon and Carter got the hook.

As for the game, wow. Massive offensive outburst, highlighted by a gigantic blast by Ortiz to make it 11-1, a ball that supposedly met the catwalk near the upteenth deck. Payton finally delivered with the bases juiced with a salami, the aforementioned Manny homered, and Millar, Renteria and Damon all had solid games. And most of all, nobody, and I mean NOBODY, can beat Cornroyo.

The Sox now go home for a three-game set with the Orioles with mostly the same pitching matchups. We get Boomah on Monday vs. Chen (I’ll probably have another Boomer Thoughts installment), Cy Young Clementine vs. Lopez on Tuesday, and Wake vs. Whoever on Wednesday. Then the Sox travel to Texas for a little West action. Keep it goin, fellas.


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