Thursday, October 25, 2007

All baseball, all the time

After last night's World Series game 1, all I can say is wow. Now that was just embarrassing, and for once I say that in reference to the Red Sox opponents -- in this case the Colorado Rockies, who had won 21 of their last 22 games and swept both of their playoff series. Let's see: after five innings the score was 13-1 (also the final score), and in that span the Sox left 10 on base, hit eight doubles and scored nine runs when there were two out. The Rockies starter, Jeff Francis, threw 103 pitches in four innings and gave up six earned runs and 10 hits. The next guy was in the game for two-thirds of an inning and gave up six hits, seven earned runs, a walk and a balk. And the next guy came in with the bases loaded, faced three batters... and walked all of them. See what I mean by embarrassing? Our starting pitcher was a little better -- Beckett struck out the side in the first and two more in the second. In our last four games we've outscored the opponents by a total of 43-6. That's what you call a team hitting on all cylinders. So tonight we have Schilling, he of the bloody sock in '04, facing someone named Ubaldo Jimenez, a 23-year-old rookie who wasn't called up until August and had en ERA of 5.85 in AAA.

I feel damply optimistic, which means I think the Sox really will win the World Series but there's no dread accompanying the hope -- it actually seems too easy. My excitement level went down as soon as the Yankees were eliminated, and it was already a notch lower than in past years simply because we finally won it all in 2004 and that was only three years ago. I mean, where's the suffering to make the joy so much sweeter?

On a related note, I've found a wonderful new baseball blog and am only sorry I didn't discover it sooner, though of course the fact that it appears in the New York Times means I wouldn't have bothered clicking even if I'd noticed it before, except that a good friend urged me to read it. Not that the Times isn't a great newspaper, but it isn't the first place I;d go for comprehensive sports coverage. Anyway, the blog is called Fair and Foul, and just in the past week the writer has had funny and insightful bits on who's-who in the World Series and on J.D. Drew's mediocrity ("the real reason Drew rankles us so much is that he doesn’t seem to be having much fun. He’s not loafing, exactly, but he roams the diamond with the countenance of a man finishing out the end of a prison term. For all his obvious skills, he is thought to have no passion for the game").

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