Beckett vs. Clemens (Live Blog)

     Ok, this is my first attempt at a live blog.  I am a little hesitant to do it, because I do not want it to take away from the enjoyment of [this] game.  And as we all know, when the Red Sox play the Yankees, emotions run even higher.  But I will give it a shot, and I am leaning toward the opinion that it should be pretty fun.  "Heartland Pinstripes" is doing his version of this from the other end of the spectrum, he being a Yankees fan of course.  To make it even on both blogs (not that this is a competition), he has limited his vocabulary to only nine words.  I have heard a rumor that three of them are:  Giambi, squirrel, and coffee. 

     As for the actual game?  Josh Beckett vs. Roger Clemens.  Two bonafide "power pitchers" going at it.  Clemens not so much using that description anymore, but he is still an above average pitcher, even though he does not throw quite as hard at this age.   Orel Hershieser, Steve Phillips, and that other guy are announcing the game tonight.  It could be worse.  It could be Mark Grace, that guy from the White Sox network that says "He gone" every time an opposing batter K’s, and Joe Morgan the announcer, not the second baseman of whom was actually good.  But anyway, let me post this and then onto the game, I will be refreshing multiple times throughout the night.  Sounds like an ESPN chat. 

     Top 1st:  Nice play by Giambi to make that play on Lugo, but lugo may not even have hit that pitch three months ago.  Pedroia looks at a borderline breaking ball outside.  The little rascal got hit in the elbow.  Pesky little fella.  He would have more heart than any of the munchkins in Oz, the movie, not the show about prison.  If Ortiz can just hit a fly ball to left it will be 2-0.  Yea that’s right complain about that strike, you like to do that often.  Pedroia…you must take that base with Ortiz at the plate.  Foul tip rimmed out, reminds me when I play basketball (that actually rarely happens, I miss plenty of shots, but I don’t rim out many).  Ortiz flies out.  Commercial.

Bottom 1st:  I don’t mind Steve Phillips, but when he talks he shows that he could have been taken far too often as a GM.  Another general manager could have persuaded him to take almost anyone, even Victor Zambrano.  Avoiding that walk to Johnny Damon was huge.  But Jeter doubles.  First pitch breaking ball to Abreu just feels right.  Well, I guess that is ok.  Because I am blogging I missed how Beckett started off Jeter.  What a play by Lowell!  He just barely avoided the seats on that one!  Awesome pitch selection!  I was just about to mention that he should come back with a third consecutive breaking ball.  And a fourth!  Inning over.  Time to stare at the wall.

     Top 2nd:  I have a rather difficult decision to make coming up here.  I don’t have enough food at my place, so I must get some.  I may order a pizza, but I don’t really want it all that much.  I think I am going to go that direction though, after all it is tough to fine much else to be delivered.  What Lowell has done this season has been remarkable.  As he steps to the plate.  I loved that AB by JD Drew against Joba last night by the way.  It was great baseball.  Very intense to me, and there wasn’t even sound at the sports bar I was at.  Just got under that a little too much Lowell.  I guess the Yanks D felt like showing up tonight.  Well Drew has drawn a walk.  Even though it is only 3-0.  It is official now.  JD Drew has walked.  And this is exactly why Drew is perceived as being overrated.  A lot of fans are not aware of the true value of the walk.  If he hit .280 and had Cano’s patience, he wouldn’t be good.  But he gets on base.  This year is a little off kilter with the rest of his career though.  Clemens has walked back-to-back batters.  Coveli Crisp is up to bat now.  Three outs. 

     Bottom 2nd:  That first strike to Matsui was questionable.  He gone!  Ok, I do not condone the use of that phrase.  Shea Hillenbrand is garbage.  I do love Beckett’s curve, as the announcer was referring to.  Giambi popped out, I didn’t feel like writing it, but chose to in the end.  Rather than showing "Home Runs" in that graph, they should have showed "Slugging."  We should be training the average fan during the game about stuff like this.  Ahh, the dreaded walk from the opposite spectrum.  1-0 Yankees.  And yes, that 2-seam fastball was definitely up in the strike zone.  Good pitch in the full count.  Too many pitchers will revert back to the fastball.  Damon wasn’t fooled.  Unbelievable.  3-0.  Finally!  Not insurmountable by any means however. 

Top 3rd:  Time to order a pizza!  I am calling Domino’s right now.  This reminds me actually of the time I got called by the number (000) 000-0000.  I have to say that this was kind of freaky.  It turned out to be Blockbuster, but still.  I just ordered a pepperoni pizza.  And Lugo did a nice job of moving the runner over.  You must execute that bunt for a base hit otherwise it is a lost cause.  Third base is not all that important in this situation.  And Ortiz flies out. 

     Bottom 3rd:  Bad baserunning.  I don’t mind being aggressive, but you cannot get thrown out going back to first.  That wouldn’t have happened to Jeter.  And yes I am showing my respect for Jeter.  If he had AROD’s talent he would easily be the best player of all time.  Of course that really isn’t all that fair.  Combining "Mr. Intangible" with "Talent Galore."  I might as well create a player that has Frank Thomas’ body/offense, but also plays SS and plays it better than Ozzie Smith could ever dream of.  Not too mention this creation of mine pitches and can throw harder than Nolan could.  Hinske fell down.  Come on.  Nice effort by Coco, I really thought he had that, it seemed to float for a while.  That is two hard hit balls in a row this inning.  Santan is getting hit well, it looks.  Unless Cleveland had seven straight seeing-eye singles.  Great pitch by Beckett to Posada, the magnitude of it is greater on the Boston side.  Giambi goes down swinging. 

     Top 4th:  Quick inning!  Drew reminds me of a little leaguer sometimes though.  One with an incredible eye of the strike zone, but he just doesn’t have that "clutch" mentality.  I still stand behind him being [good] but hits are good too!

     Bottom 4th:  Cano shows his lack of patience.  Cabrera is about to be out.  Pizza just arrived, I amy skip the next half inning or so, to eat.  I will obviously still be watching.  Well< i jumped to conclusions on Melky.  He was safe.  Time to eat!

     Top 5th:  5 pieces of pizza later and I am wondering why I put my body through this.  I could have eaten something healthy and the end result would have been much better.  But I have already made the decision.  Varitek drew a walk.  Coco is going year right here.  The odds that he does?  Not good.  Full count now as he let a fastball go by.  And he strikes out.  Now former "Rookie of the Year" Eric Hinske steps up to the plate.  He is like a movie that keeps producing bad sequels.  "Halloween" maybe.  Not that he is terrible coming off the bench, but he has been so far this season.   I am surprised Hinske didn’t strike out.  Come on Lugo, rip one into the gap!  Lugo is out.  If we can somehow take like 12 more walks we could possibly win!

     Bottom 5th:  Jeter K’s.  Another defensive blunder.  Not an error, but an out that probably should have been.  You cannot give [this] offense especially, these extra outs.  AROD made me feel better though. 

     Top 6th:  My cat "Red Sock" is a little disappointed with the game so far.  Or maybe he is unsatisifed with his dried up, sorry excuse for food, that eats every day.  He is pretty spoiled though, anytime I get sushi he gets a few pieces of it.  Not too mention he had a piece of my prime rib sub from Quizno’s earlier.  Now, it isn’t exactly great prime rib, but if you have never had prime rib, then it is probably pretty good, I would think.  Ortiz has got to get something done here.  he was hitless last night, and is so far tonight too.  Thank you Ortiz!  Nice play by Cano though.  I wonder if everyone else hits "Caps lock" as much as I do during my typing.  It happens multiple times per blog.  I still don’t like Youkilis hitting fourth.  I would rather have Lowell here.  What does Youkilis do better thanb anything else?  He draws walks.  Therefore, he should bat ahead of Ortiz.  Now Drew is up.  He could tie it right here.  This is where $14 million should be earned.  I don’t think he will do it, but there is always hope.  2-0 count.  He could try and draw a walk, or he could sit on fastball.  It was low.  Now, he should take the walk if it is there.  And let Varitez try and knock someone in.  The walk will move a runner into scoring position and put the go ahead run at the plate.  3-1.  Drew got a hit, and Youk took the extra base.  Good at bat.  Now Varitek is up.  Fastball, fastball, fastball right here.  I was wrong and so wasn’t Varitek.  Nice eye!  Three outs, but a run.  Must start somewhere.   

     Bottom 6th:  Way to catch the ball Drew!  And Hersheiser’s comment, "Who is on their game more so, Beckett or Clemens?"  Beckett is facing the better offense in his defense, he has settled down nicely, although has fallen behind in the count to both posada and now Giambi.  And falling behind in the count has resulted in two singles by Posada and Giambi.  Here I would throw a first pitch breaking ball for a strike again, to try and get ahead on Cano.  He went with the fastball and Cano was expecting it, but it was hit right at Hinske, luckily.  That was a great play by Lugo, Cabrera just beat it out.  Saved a run, more importantly.  They should have showed Damon’s stats against the Red Sox, while with the Yankees.  I doubt that "animosity" described stemmed from the rivalry heated between the A’s/Red Sox or the Royals/Red Sox.  Nice play!  Pheww!  Inning over.

     Top 7th:  Vizcaino in.  Coco is not locked in today, that is for sure.  What is funny about Steve Phillips comment is that Coco has, what seems to be a pretty good eye, but he has has never had an OBP over .345 in a relatively short career.  He brings some things to the table; speed, defense and decent offense.  But he is not an on base machine.  And he still could improve so I don’t want to say this is the best he will ever be.  Hinske makes [another] out.  Typical Eric Hinske I guess.  Lugo is up.  He has worked the count into his favor…again in this at bat.  2-1.  3-1.  A walk would be great here.  Put the tying runner up in the form of Pedroia.  Not to mention continue the inning.  And now Pedroia comes up in a big spot.  Pedroia fails.  Inning over. 

     Bottom 7th:  Jeter lines out to center.  Abreu fakes a strike out.  Then actually does strike out.  Limit your fastballs against AROD here.  I have mentioned before that he seems to hit all his home runs off fastball, altough I STILL do not know where to find this information.  I do know that his overall performance off the fastball is much better than off other pitches he has faced, which is expected.  And so much for the curve, as ARod launched a homer off of one.  Gagne time?  Delcarmen went last night, and they are down three.  Could go to Timlin too.  Okajima maybe also.  And the new pitcher is…Lopez.  Makes sense, keep forgetting we brought him back up.  Matsui singles.  lopez does not get it done.  And in comes Timlin to clean up his mess.  3-1 count on APhil.  Good Seger reference Hersheiser.  Although I do not like Bob Seger even to the slightest degree.  Timlin succeeds.  I have definitely demolished my comments record tonight.  But it isn’t fair of course, with this being a live blog. 

     Top 8th:  I don’t know much of Dane Cook’s "work," except for "Employee of the Month," which was awful.  But he annoys me in these commercials he does about baseball.  I would like to know how much he knows about baseball to begin with.  Farnsworth should be going after whoever is at the plate (referring to Phillips’ comment), they have a three run lead with the bases empty.  Ok, my prediction:  Lowell singles, Youk walks, Drew homers to tie the game (very bold, but I am trying to be optimistic).  One-third of my prediction is right.  Good call in that Phils game.  YOUKILIS!  A single run separates us.  Come on JD!  In all fairness to Drew, that second strike was outside.  It wasn’t even as close as it originally appeared after viewing it with "K zone" afterward.  That put him in a position where anything but a fastball would kill his AB.  And it did.  Varitek is going to crush a fastball here, but will strike out if it is something else in the strike zone.  He walked.  And Coco is coming up.  Pitching change……..By the way, I have 51 comments!!! Jason at "Heartland" has 281.  have to be consistent ump!  Coco is out. 

     Bottom 8th:  Lugo scares me when he has to throw the ball.  If only he was as fast as "The Flash" and could run to the base.  Having this superhuman speed would also make sure that any ball in the ballpark WILL be in out.  This blog is also my longest in length now too.  Ok, ninth inning. 

     Top 9th:  Hinske, if you can not make an out, then it will be a very big accomplishment.  You have been on base three times agaisnt Mo in your career in ten AB’s.  After searching for those stats, they just said it on ESPN.  That was a ball!  Should be 1-1.  BS!  Should be 2-1, but is instead 1-2.  And he makes an out.  What a surprise!  Down to Pedroia now.  Another tough loss! 

     Thanks for stopping by guys. 

    

63 Comments

Joe, that’s FOURTEEN words, and they also include Jeter, Clemens, strikeout, Damon, coldies, A-Rod, and victory, in no particular. The other five will come later…

How’s it going?

Trust me, having had the misfortune of listening to Mario Impembla and Rod Allen home it up for the Tigers on Faux Sports, it could be a LOT worse with the announcers.

It looks like the Yankees got a break on Pedroia’s steal attempt. That’s why sliding past the bag is a no-no.

It is going fine, thanks. The comments may be a little delayed. I am already having a hard time keeping up with the blog.

hey joe, just checking in as i have to run between the living room and TV and the computer in here…lets have some fun

Heck yeah, Mike.

Classic Jeter swing.

Tough hook from Beckett.

yeah , he’ll be tough tonight. funny stuff about the little bugger, joe ( pedroia)

Eight straight balls from Clemens. So much for the chance at an efficient inning.

I’ve never seen such speed from Giambi.

Ok, I am checking the comments. I feel like I have little time to do this. But somehow Jason is all over my blog, unless that is “Boogie Down?”

whew!

no it’s not boogie j

oh. makes more sense then.

No Joseph, that’s me from the Heartland.

The Yankees are being very aggressive on Beckett’s first pitches. They must have a read on him, such as a tendency for first-pitch fastballs.

Clutch hit from Melky, 1-0 Yankees.

Another clutch, two-out hit from JD. Beckett’s being pressed this inning.

Beckett had to work very hard that inning, and is up to 46 pitches.

sorry i haven’t been posting more as i’m sunning from room to room as well as blog to blog

Thank goodness for Death Valley on that hit from Ortiz.

Jason I am aware of beckett’s early struggles :). Against any other team this would be 1-0, tops. Shows us how great the Yankee offense is.

i’m running, not sunning

get that pizza dude before you starve to death, hey i’m kinda hungry myself…gonna see if J has any snacks

That wasn’t rubbing it in, Joe. In his defense, he pitched well to escape the jam in the third, though he’s up to 64 pitches. Yankees also wasted that opportunity, A-Rod’s bad base running, and Jorge and Giambi failing to score Matsui from third.

I am not even that hungry. Just feel like eating I guess. It is almost here though.

I hope leaving Matsui on 3rd does not come back to bite the Yanks, but Rocket has been exceptional and economical so far.

Really, Joe? I thought Melky was out. Two one-pitch outs for the Yankees in the bottom of the 4th. Not good patience with Beckett’s pitch count up.

Maybe I will retract the economical part, 4 walks (1 intentional) and 3 to the bottom of the order is really not economical at all…

Joe, how’s the pie?

no, but still they got no hits…

It was Domino’s. So it tasted very, how do you say it, decent.

i like papa john over domino

i’m sure that DP makes it taste even better :D

man , that pie must be tasting better and better

I actually finished the pizza a while back in the game.

I didnt mean finished the entire pizza, I meant finished eating whatever I ate of it.

Like my father says, cut the pizza into four slices. I can only eat four pieces.

I think you’ve seen the last of Clemens for the night. He was good, but labored in the 6th.

He was pretty good, yes.

Beckett escaped again, but 104 after six might spell the end for him. We’ll see. He might go batter-to-batter in the 7th.

gotta hand it to your guy there

“My guy” is awesome, just not necessarily against this lineup.

That happens sometimes, Joe. You can say the same for Pettite last night. He was awesome, but the stats weren’t awesome. He just did an awesome job of avoiding the worst of trouble.

Beckett will be the League leader if he wins this-it aint over yet..

What I meant was that Beckett was an awesome pitcher, but every pitcher will appear less effective against this lineup. He has done his job tonight if he doesnt give up any more runs. Even if they have hit him well. Assuming they don’t score off him again.

Uh sorry MLB leader

I will never forget him on the Marlins and that game six where he kicked our butts

Hats off to Beckett. He pitched well and it could have been worse. A-Rod sat on that off-speed pitch.

I followed you, Joseph. BTW, with the pizza, enough bleu cheese solves everything. :-)>

Youkilis’s homer was big, and I’m not too surprised that Nuke LaFarnsworth gave it up. He’s been better lately for certain, but you never know what you’ll get from him game to game. Great arm, no location.

Two days till expansion..

Nuke for a bag of baseballs, or maybe some of your pizza Joe?

There are only 3 pieces left, so yes.

joe, i enjoyed your “play by play” a lot. thanks

Too funny but I think you are still getting the short end of the stick.

LOL, Joseph, but I think we should throw in some batting tape to make the deal fairer.

I know it’s small consolation, but hats off to your team for playing a tough game and for staying close despite some chances for lopsided innings from the Yanks. Beckett was good. Thanks also for doing this, it was a lot of fun. Hope to see you around soon.

Thanks Jay. Congrats on the win.

on a different topic, it’s hard to believe how the tribe beats up on santana. it’s like they are kryptonite to him.

Joseph, sorry for any comments of yours I may have missed right away in the Heartland Digital Living Room. At times, I was away from the computer, and at other times I missed some comments all around. I went back later in the game and tried to respond to a couple things you asked.

PS the annoying “he gone” guy is ken “hawk harrelson

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