It’s been quite a while since I’ve blogged. Been busy, especially in the midst of a 9-game home stand. However, after working 6 games, I’ve finally gotten to try the brand new Fenway Frank!!! So, the Evil Empire comes to town, and I am blogging about hot dogs??????
I know you’ve all been drooling at the thought of eating a hot dog at a ball game. Is there anything more American than that??? But, there may have been some worries! Or some gasps from the fans! Replacing the Fenway Frank? Who would ever think of such a thing?
Let me tell you, though, the new Fenway Frank is DELICIOUS! Much better than the previous incarnation. I loved it. It was a great taste, and a very juicy hot dog. Make sure you get 3 or 4 the next time you are at a game.
Anyway, this home stand has been pretty darn good. Tonight, the Yankees
made are making their first trip of the season to Fenway. It was a slow night for me out there, but it has been quite a game. Pretty much a typical Yankee – Red Sox game. They are well over 4 hours played, and don’t seem intent on stopping anytime soon.
Was nice to see Jason Bay tie the game up of Mariano Rivera with 2 outs. We almost had J.D.P. Drew ground into his 3rd double play of the game to end it, luckily the ball was hit just a bit too softly to give Bay a chance. Will be interesting to see when and how this one ends.
I’m a bit disappointed that the next two games will be starting at 4pm and 8pm. What a buzzkill, especially since these next two days are going to be in the 80s. Instead of two SUNNY, HOT afternoon games which leads to lots of great vending, Fox and ESPN want to get some early season ratings of April Yankee – Red Sox games. Gahhhhhhh. Oh well, look for me on National TV then. Vendahhh number 41 on scorecard!!!!
Well, back to the Sox game for me.
P.S. I tried out the new MLB Gameday preview. Not a fan!
Walk-off (I hate that term) Game winning HOMER for Kevin Youkilis. Sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeet, just like the new Fenway Frank!!!
The legendary voice of the Philadelphia Phillies and of NFL Films, Harry Kalas, passed away. While he may not be able to call another game, his voice will never be silenced in my mind as I’ll always remember and cherish his unique voice. Rest in Piece and God Bless his family, fans, the city of Philadelphia, the Phillies, and all that he touched. You will be missed.
Think about this. The highest paid player on your team doesn’t play versus left-handed pitchers. Could you imagine Albert Pujols sitting or
Manny Ramirez sitting (well, yes I can imagine him sitting, that’s not a good example) or A-Rod sitting? Or, how about Ryan Howard, Carl Crawford, or Ichiro Suzuki? However, when you are this guy:
You don’t start versus left-handed pitchers anymore. Against the first two LHP opposing starters the Red Sox have faced, Scott Kazmir and Joe Saunders, manager Terry Francona has opted to start Rocco Baldelli instead of J.D. Drew. The 14 Million Dollar question is why?
I can see once in a while, to get Rocco some at bats, that he’d replace Drew, Ellsbury, or even Ortiz against some LHP. But 2 LHPs in a row Drew sits for Baldelli?
J.D. Drew is a career .260 hitter versus LHP. Last year, he hit .284 versus lefties but in 2007 he hit .224 against southpaws. In his career versus Kazmir, he was 1-7 with a triple a walk and 3 strikeouts. I can see sitting him versus Kazmir, who is notoriously tough (career .212 BA against vs LH batters) on lefties. In his career versus Saunders, he is 1-5 with a double and a walk. Not a large sample against either pitcher, but Saunders is not tougher on lefties like Kazmir is.
If you compare Drew to Ortiz, Big Papi is a career .268 hitter versus LHP. Last year, though, he hit a paltry .221 against lefties, obviously his injured wrist played a factor in this. In 2007, Ortiz hit .308 versus LHP. In the years 2003 through 2006, Ortiz hit .216, .250, .302, and .278 against LHP.
Now, I’m not saying that Ortiz should sit instead of Drew against lefties, not at all. I’m just using Ortiz as a comparison, as their numbers versus lefties aren’t far apart. However, I would have to think that it is very rare that a team’s highest paid player becomes a platoon player. In Drew’s defense, I do not think he should be sitting versus lefties, however, if his at bat versus Brian Fuentes to end Sunday’s game is any indication, maybe Francona knows what he is doing.
It was nice to see the Red Sox and Angels come together in fellowship on this Easter Day:
Should make for an interesting series when the Sox return back to Anaheim in May. Hopefully, they won’t let as many opportunities to score slip away then, like they did this week. And, hopefully they’ll be able to slow down the Angels on the basepaths. It was nice to see Varitek throw out Figgins trying to steal second, though.
Now it is onto Oakland, before returning back to Fenway for the RED HOT Orioles. I think the Sox will take 2 of 3 from Oakland in this series, but I am not looking forward to those 10 PM start times. Oh well.
I can’t imagine what it must be like losing a teammate in that fashion, but it must be a bit therapeutic to be able to get back on the field and play the game that you love, and the game that Nick loved. My thoughts and prayers are with the families of Nick and his three friends (two of who also died) and I hope the drunk driver never see the light of another day.
I was going to post a blog yesterday, after I returned from the Rays – Red Sox series finale, but when I logged onto MLBlogs, that is when I found out the news. So, I think I was going to write a blog titled Two Left Feet or something similarly unwitty to follow up my Right Foot post. Anyway, all thoughts left my brain after seeing the MLBlogs home page.
So right now, the Red Sox are currently playing the Angels. The first game since the passing of Adenhart. The Angels are making it a track meet, which usually happens when Tim Wakefield puts runners on base. I may be able to steal a base off of Wakefield. Wakefield has been a bit of Jeckyll and Hyde tonight. A good inning, a bad inning, and so forth. He just went J&H in the same inning. He loaded the bases with no outs, and gets out of the jam just as quickly as he got in it.
A few noteworthy items tonight. The Red Sox are not where there usual road uniforms. They look like they’re wearing their (Do I have the correct they’re/there/their usuage?) Spring Training uniform, except for a new cap with the Sox in place of the B. Not sure how I like it yet, maybe if they were winning, I’d probably love the new look. Haha.
Next, Jerry Remy is missing from the booth tonight. The Red Sox are going with a musical chair of color guys tonight, each chipping in 2 innings of work. First up was Sean McAdams, from the Boston Herald. He was followed by Angel’s color man, Rex Hudler. Hudler was great to listen to in the booth, recalling many stories of his time as a player under Terry Francona in Philly. Currently, Fox’s Ken Rosenthal is in the booth. He has always been a quality baseball reporter. Tony Masserotti of the Boston Globe will be finishing the night in the booth, that should be interesting.
I must say I am enjoying the free preview of the MLB package on cable. Today, I caught the end of the Tigers blowout in their home opener. I then caught some of the Yankees – Royals game. The Yankees should be undefeated opening up against the last place teams of the AL East and Central. I then flipped between the Mets – Marlins game, which was quite the contest ending in a dramatic game-winning (I’m not a fan of “walk-off”) single by Jorge Cantu, and the Astros – Cardinals game before the Sox game started. I love baseball.
Finally, speaking of the Yankees and their supposed easy opening schedule. It is interesting to take a look at the current standings in the AL East:
It’s funny how things happen early in the season, only to have the cream rise to the top. Most people are expecting that to be reversed by the time the season ends:
Oh well, you get the point!
Top of 7, Sox still down 3-1. Let’s see if they can get their first comeback victory tonight.
It’s only one game in the scheme of it all. However, it is always great to get out of the gate with a win. The best part of the day, was that Josh Beckett was DOMINANT! Will be nice to have the real Josh Beckett this season, provide he remains healthy. Nice looking line:
7 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 10 Ks. All on only 93 pitches thrown.
Dustin Pedroia picked up right where he left off. A home run in his first AB. Kevin Youkilis with 2 hits. Everybody seeming to chip in today. Jason Varitek with a HR. Mike Lowell and RBI double. Jason Bay an RBI. JD Drew with an RBI as well and he didn’t leave the game with an injury which is always a plus.
The only real blemish on the day was Hideki Okijima’s performance. Remember two years ago, what happened to Okijima on Opening Day in KC. If the same patterns follows, we’ll be happy with him come August.
As for me, I was at the ballgame. It is always great to be at the park, especially on Opening Day. Even when it is a cold day. I didn’t see any of the pre-game festivities, as I was underneath the RF grandstands, selling programs. However, I did get to see a lot of the game, since the product I was selling during the game wasn’t a hot item to sell today.
Game two tomorrow night, should be another good one. Jon Lester against Scott Kazmir, two of the top lefties in MLB.
Let’s build a streak!
OPENING DAY POSTPONED
Opening Day game between the Rays and Sox is rescheduled for tomorrow (Tuesday) at 4:05 PM. Figures!
Guess I’ll be flipping back and forth between MLB Network and ESPN today.
Wooooooohooooooooooooo! FINALLY!!!!!! OPENING DAY IS HERE. However, the forecast is for rain, which is scheduled to begin around game time. Doh!!!!!!!! Let’s hope it can hold off for 3 or 4 hours. How disappointing.
However, what wasn’t disappointing was yesterday’s beautiful day that I spent at the olde (really OLD) ball park. I went to Fenway yesterday for 2 reasons.
1) Pick up my uniform:
Oops. That’s not my uniform. I wish.
2) Try and meet up with Julia of Julia’s Rants and other bloggers she was trying to get to meet outside Fenway. Unfortunately, I did not make it in time to meet up. When I was finally finished picking up my uniform, I called Julia and she and Scott from I’m Not a Headline Guy were on top of the Prudential Building. Here is a picture of them:
No, really, they are up there. I was on the phone with her exactly at that moment, as I was standing behind the Red Sox dugout.
Since I was at the ballpark, I’d figure I might as well take in the Red Sox workout. It was a gorgeous day for baseball; warm and not a cloud in the sky. Since I brought my camera, I figured I might as well take a few (or 20 or 30) pictures. Here are some of them:
The view from the RF boxes next to the visitor’s bullpen:
Big Papi & Kevin Youkilis:
Evan Longoria: (thanks to Rays Renegade for the ID)
Theo Epstein (well, the back of his head, anyway):
Mike Lowell (talking with Longoria (l.) and Pat Burrell (r.) thanks to Rays Renegade again on ID of Rays players)
Finally ~ View from the Budweiser section in upper RF:
It was quite a blast. It seemed like I had the whole park to myself. There were a couple of tours going on. Also, there were some other Red Sox employees who had their children there, but the greatest perk of working at the park is being able to be there without any fans.
EDIT: I forgot to mention that I noticed the lower (field level) and upper box (red) seats seem to have brand new seats in there. The actual seat parts have padding. I sat in one, and it was pretty comfortable. However, the only problem is that back rest seems to be the same height. So, now with a cushion there, the
back rest is on the lower part of your back which probably won’t be as comfortable as the game goes on. I think these new seats are only in the infield box seat sections. It looks like the RF boxes, grandstand (blue seats) and bleachers have the same crummy seats.
As I was leaving, I almost walked right into a Tampa Bay Ray coming out of the Red Sox clubhouse. I am not sure who it was though. Maybe B.J. Upton, (did he travel up north with the team while being on the DL?) but I am not sure at all. He was just wearing some shorts and a T-shirt and not a name tag.
All and all, it was a great day. Quite the opposite of what I am looking at through my window as I type this. I better bring my galoshes with me, as I am on my way to the ball park just after I finish posting this.
Josh Beckett vs James Shield. Should be a great game!
Red Sox Jersey courtesy of MLB Stores
All others property of Red Sox Ramblings
I just received my current issue of
Baseball Sports Weekly this morning in the mail. On the cover was our boy Kevin Youkilis with the big cover story being the 2009 Baseball Season Preview focusing on the “Beasts of the East”: Red Sox, Rays, and Yankees.
However, that is not what has me jealous. Inside the newspaper (I can’t call it a magazine when it is printed on news paper) there is a page dedicated to each of the new ballparks opening this season: CitiDebt Field and the “new” Yankee Stadium. Oh, how I crave for a new ball park in Boston as I pointed out to Julia in her recent posting about Fenway Park.
These new ballparks look beautiful. The Mets new park has the spacious and retro Jackie Robinson Rotunda, which looks incredible. There is a review of the new ballpark over at Zack Hample’s blog. He is a bit over critical in my opinion, but he has some nice pictures of the new ballpark and I think it looks great.
The photo along with the “new” Yankee Stadium is an aerial shot of the stadium. I have seen a few pictures of the innards on various blogs here that I can’t remember, and this place looks great as well. The capacity of this new stadium is smaller than at “old” Yankee Stadium at 52,325. The batters will be happy as well, as 20 feet of foul territory has been eliminated behind home plate thus bringing the fans closer to the action.
I can’t wait to watch a game (on TV) with both of these stadiums. Although Fenway Park is the only place I’ve watched a game in person, I don’t understand why people wouldn’t want a new ballpark. From Camden Yards to Jacob Fields to PNC Park to AT&T Park. There are beautiful, comfortable, new parks to create new history in. The ship has long sailed out of port here in Boston, but someday I can’t wait to go to these new ballparks.
As I keep looking at the clock and calender waiting for it to be April 6th, 2009, I’ve been keeping myself busy (besides with fantasy baseball drafts) by watching Jeopardy. I love the modern invention of the DVR (VCR’s are historical though, maybe I shouldn’t have gotten rid of that) as it allows me to
tape record every new episode of Jeopardy. It is funny, as I just read that Jane’s husband is a big fan (apparently she isn’t as she was pleading for Joba’s community service punishment be to watch Jeopardy’s with her husband) of the show.
Anyway, I love this show. My wife doesn’t even get THAT mad at me when I keep blurting out the correct
answers questions. The other night I was watching an episode from February (I am a bit behind, but I believe I am in March now) where the Final Jeopardy category was Baseball Team Names (or something like that) and the clue was:
“This is the only team whose city name and nick name begin with the same four letters.”
That was a pretty simple final jeopardy clue. However, I will leave it unanswered for my loyal readers to try and guess.
Ironically, in some of the past few episodes I’ve watched, the person leading into final jeopardy has done there wager where if they got it correct, they would win by a dollar. However, they got the final jeopardy clue incorrect, and lost money. Thus, in the end the ended up losing by a dollar. That, to me, is JUSTICE.
Well, only 5 days to go.
P.S. Anybody else experience a slower than normal internet? Especially here at mlblogs? The wrath of Conficker.c?