In the end, it was only Manny, Ortiz, Lowell, and Loretta that got to Moose tonight. The first two are excusable; Lowell, well, he’s on fire, so we’ll chalk it up to a string of excellent luck. He’d had have to be hitting, like, .339/.398/.557 for me to think his 2005 wasn’t an aberration. And Loretta…no, no excuse for him. But all in all, he completely shut down 5/9 of the Boston lineup. And that, as they say, was enough to pick up the dubya.
[MORE]In addition to another serviceable outing by Moose, there was plenty to be happy about. But despite another Giambi homer, an increasingly rare A-Bomb, and Jorge Juicing one, my favorite part of the night was that we tagged Schilling for six runs in five innings. Well, actually, they tagged him for six runs in two innings, as all the damage against the Loud Mouthed Schnook came in the fourth and fifth frames.
Though it may not have seemed so with a four run lead, Proctor’s strikeout of Manny was a defining moment in the game. Manny is a known breaking ball killer, and Proctor has been showcasing his newly effective curveball this season. This was a disaster waiting to happen. And, with a one and one count, Proctor came inside with the deuce, a move I just can’t fathom. You have Manny – a pure slugger – and you’re throwing him a curveball – his favorite pitch to hammer – on the inside half – the best place to take one for a ride. But Manny looked Sheffield-esque and deposited the ball well foul on the third base side. Then, predictably and correctly, he went with the high heat, which seemingly scared the begeezus out of Manny. One pitch later, and he was jogging to the dugout, his team nearly ensured victory.
It may not have been a must win, but it was sure nice to not have gone 0-3 against the Red Sox. And now they can even someone can figure out Wakefield. You never know what you’re getting with him, so Shawn Chacon had better be at his best. His propensity to allow baserunners can become problematic against a heavy hitting team like Boston, but if he can tame the Rangers I’m sure he’s capable of handling the Sox. Whether he will or not remains to be seen. I have a feeling – and I’m not sure how far out on the limb I am at this point – that he’ll pitch better than Randy.
Notice how I write a lot less after a satisfying victory?