Game 7

Here we go, Game 7. The Red Sox would have jumped at this chance four days ago when they were down 3-1 and they’re definitely jumping at it now.

Daisuke Matsuzaka had, in Jonathan Papelbon’s words, "a grin on his face" after the Red Sox won Game 6. He badly wants to redeem himself for the way he’s pitched so far in the playoffs.

Can Jake Westbrook do what Fausto Carmona couldn’t last night and quiet the crowd?

By the way, how bad is the timing of this HGH/Paul Byrd story for the Indians? The last thing they wanted today was an added distraction.

In a shocker, the Red Sox are keeping the same lineup that produced Saturday’s 10-2 romp.

The Indians will not play Nixon. Gutierrez is back in right.

By the way, the most revealing stats to come out of last night? The Red Sox are 13-3 in elimination games since the 1999 playoffs. And Curt Schilling has pitched five times in his career with elimination being the consequence of a loss.He is   4-0 with a 1.37 ERA. And the no decision was Game 7 of the 2001 World Series, his epic duel with Roger Clemens that the D-Backs won in the bottom of the ninth.

Best case scenario for the Red Sox tonight would be seven innings from Dice-K and two from Papelbon. That way you could open the World Series with Beckett if you can win this game. Tito said before the game that Wake is the only pitcher not available tonight. He threw a side before the game. I’d think he might be a candidate to pitch one of the first two games of the WS. Not sure you want him pitching in Coors Field. the last time the Red Sox went to Coors, back in 2004, they purposely re-aligned the rotation so that Wake wouldn’t pitch.

The crowd last night was the best it’s been all year. Tonight’s will be louder. That is, unless Westbrook or the Cleveland bats can keep them quiet.

More later.

Ian.

205 Comments

It has been 21 years since Red Sox fans have seen them clinch the A.L.C.S. on the Fenway lawn. Clemens was the winning pitcher that night.

The Byrd situation can only help the Red Sox. This Indians team doesn’t have alot of experience.

This could be the Dice-K moment we have been waiting for all season.

Wakefield could be with this team as long as he is able to field his position. The knuckeball exerts no stress or fatigue on the arm so it is not like he is going to blow out a shoulder or an elbow throwing it. As long as he can stay in shape he will be playing baseball whether thats until he is 42, 45 or even 50.

I do agree though that tonight he should not be pitching. I said yesterday have Dice-K give you 5-6, Beckett 2-3 and then Pap for the final 3-6 outs.

Wakefield should be starting game 4 if they make it there and not Lester. Lester in Coors is a risky proposition.

Ideally, the Sox will not need Beckett to pitch tonight,and he can start Game One of the World Series. However, if Dice-K falters, Beckett could give the Sox a couple innings and be ready for Game Two, if they can win tonight. I’m all for everyone except Schilling, Wakefield and Gagne pitching tonight. It would be a great confidence boost for Dice-K if he can post a quality start tonight.

Jeff

http://www.soxandpinstripes.com

Last night was absolutely awesome, and I’m really excited for tonight. I hope Dice-K can prove that he’s really worth the money…and if not, sacrifice Beckett for a few innings in relief. The only person I’d really cringe if I saw in the game is Gagne (and I did that last night!).

I hope it’s an exciting one… I wish I was gonna be there, but Fenway better be REALLY loud tonight!!!

Even if Beckett pitched tonight he still could start game 1. His pitch count would determine his status for game 1.

Wakefield has 2 years left. He will not pitch until he is 50. I here people say/write that and find that to be funny. His body is breaking down a little right now, how is he going to last until he is 50?

I’m not for Gagne pitching tonight, unless the Sox really had to.

What does his body matter when he is throwing a pitch that is 65 mph?? If he was like a Pedro or a Clemens and put everything he had into a pitch going 95 miles an hour then it would be important to keep your body from breaking down. But all he does is push a ball 65 mph, 80-100 times a night 60 feet 6 inches away. Why did Niekro last until his late 40s? Because he threw an knuckler. If it is not for the Red Sox then Wakefield will catch on somewhere, with a team willing to take a chance on him when he is in his mid to late 40s, I believe. Guess we’ll have to agree to disagree on that one.

I think I have heard it all and when you wrote “what does his body matter”. Are you serious? It matters a whole bunch. Why was Wakefield shutdown for a while and wasn’t on the playoff roster in the 1st rd? I will answer that for you, his body was sore and had some physical isssues. We agree to disagree as you wrote earlier.

I hope the Red Sox crush the Indians!

this whole wake/inn’s eater theory is a joke. wake has pitched 200+ inn’s 2X in the last 8 yrs. he’s only pitched 180+ 3X. and his era is rediculous. he’s totaly dependent on huge run support. he is, like niekro, a gimmck. he prob could pitch another 5-6 yrs but at some point you have to cut the cord. he’s gonna be a .500 pitcher most years at best and he’s a liability in the post season. he should do the classy thing and retire. if he pitched for anybody other than boston or NY he would have been out of the league a long time ago.

Doesn’t anyone else want the Sox to crush the Indians????????

i absolutely want em to. i just don’t have a great deal of confidence against pitchers like westbrook.

So now you are in doubt of Dice-K? I’m betting he pitches the game of his life tonite!

Wakefield is on a year to year basis. I would expect him too be back next year. I don’t mind seeing him on the Red Sox roster for 2008. 4 million dollars and he can give you close to 30 starts. A 17 game winner this season, sounds good to me. He’ll give you the innings and that is what the Red Sox want. I don’t want Mirabelli back, he is nothing but an automatic out. It is time too say goodbye to Mirabelli when the season is over and this time for good.

smckinny,

If the Sox waived him a few years ago someone would have scooped him up. This day where pitching is desperate, a guy like Wakefield is valuable to a staff. He’ll give some quality starts and as we know some not so quality starts.

depending on the situation beck might go 1 inn tonite. tito will plan/save him for wed if that were to happen. 20-25 pitches tops IMO.

I would love too see the Sox beat the Indians down like a drum. A blowout in game 7, would be heaven.

I agree with you smckinny on the use of Beckett. If Francona used him too much he wouldn’t be available for game 1 and the Sox don’t want that. If Beckett pitched too much tonight, Wakefield would be the game 1 starter.

mydongirl. don’t doubt dice. just know they’ve struggled to score ANY runs against pitchers like westbrook. i would expect dice to go 6-7 and give up 3-4 runs. a solid effort IMO.

smck:Your “gimmick” idea.. hmmm. A gimmick that has worked for what, 12-13 years?? Not bad for a gimmick, huh???
I was shocked to see a clean inning from Gagne, and would stil cringe if he came in tonight.

About 120 minutes til 1st pitch. Here’s hoping tha Matsuzaka had his eyes opened the other night and he gets off to an awesome start tonight.

BELIEVE, BELIEVE, BELIEVE!!!

We are the blogging Faithful (not as catchy as the Fenway Faithful). Think positive, quiet confidence. Candles, ritual uniforms, red socks, water bottles, whatever it takes. We are THE REDSOX NATION, 1000% behind our team. We eat, breathe, sleep RedSox and Dream World Series for our Guys.

LET’S GO REDSOX, LET’S GO!!!

I BELIEVE.

DO YOU?????

Ellen,

I BELIEVE!!!!!!!!

You’re scaring me a little bit, ellencullum!

bosox. i don’t think wake would get an offer from anybody. wakefield is not a “pitcher”. he’s an gimmick. he’s hard to hit some nights but most teams IMO would not want him. there’s a reason there are no other knuckle baller’s in b-ball. 1 pitch pitchers are too risky. especially starters.

smckinny: please tell me your definition of the word gimmick.

ellen. i’ve always said i admire what he’s been able to do. but the fact is, IMO, if he pitched for any other team he woulda been done a long time ago. he’s benefited greatly from being on a great offensive team over the years. i mean really if he were starting tonite how good/confident would you feel?

You didn’t answer my question. I know he can get shelled but, he can also throw a ball 6-65 mph and make a lot of grown men and heavy hitters look ABSOLUTELY SILLY.

ellen. a gimmick in terms of wake/b-ball is s-thing you never see. once you see it once or twice it becomes easier to deal with. hence the reason he rarely make it past 5-6 inn’s or that far against veteran teams.

*60-65

I’ve been a fan of the Red Sox since I was eight years old but I will say last night was it. They will be shelled by the Indians early. Dice-K desperately wants to win but he doesn’t have it. He will try too hard and struggle with control and go down in two — if we’re lucky. In the meantime the Sox bats will be quiet but Manny is right — we always have next year.
As far as Tim, the knuckleball is the most difficult pitch to hit, the hardest to throw and the hardest to predict. The pitch isn’t used much because it’s very hard to learn — not because of effectiveness. I like Tim a lot. he’s a good guy from what I hear and a bargain price.

ellen. IMO the thing with wake is most ML pitchers have enough pitches and/or velocity to get away with mistakes occasionaly. wake doesn’t. he either get’s outs or get shelled.

Wakefield would like to retire as a member of the Red Sox. For 4 million and what he’ll give you, a bargain for this day and age.

dave,

Mr. Dark Cloud, wow!!! Why play the game? lol…Your not much of a fan in my opinion and I would think that most people on here would agree. I Believe!!!! Do you Dave?

Nice positive thoughts dave!

Ellen, you know i believe too. :-)

And i also believe that they can do it WITHOUT Josh. Who knows, maybe Dice-K was saving his best effort for that kind of challenge ?! GO SOX !!!

Nicely said Brian!
You know where I stand with comments like his!!

I Believe!!!!

just saw on nesn that wake isn’t available tonight…that could make it much more interesting.

Another clouded judgment by the one person who is on here way too much and puts his dense knowledge of baseball into his posts. Smckinny, Tim Wakefield is 17-12 this year with a 4.76 ERA and 1.35 WHIP which IMO is **** good when facing American league teams and all you throw is a knuckleball, a 75mph fastball and a slower curve. Wake has a lifetime 4.33 ERA. And FYI in the 17 games he has won this year, 13 have been decided by less than 3 runs. Not much support in those situations.

Oh yeah, I don’t think any gimmick in baseball has been a major league pitcher for 15 seasons

I’ve probably been a sox fan longer than many of you have been alive. I remember Teddy Ballgame Yaz, Tony C and too many loses in the playoffs /w series etc. This team is solid. I haven’t been much of a Wakefield fan simply because the knuckleball is far too unpredictable. Even he doesn’t know what it will do each time he throws it. I think what many of you are missing though is Schilling will be on his usual rest for game 2. The series starts Wednesday. Thursday would be Schill’s next time to pitch were it the regular season so why not now? Also, today would be Beckett’s day to throw on the side, as pitchers do so what does it matter if he throws 30 or 40 pitches in the game or the pen? Matsusaka has been a gamble all year long. Despite playing in Japan he IS still a rookie. He came up big in the world championships a few years ago and could tonight. If he can go 5 or 6, then Beckett for 1, Okajima for 1 and Pap finishes it off and its hello Rockies, the now likely stale Rockies.

Is Crisp in CF tonight?
I thought I saw his name on in the line-up.

Wow, that 13-3 record in elimination games since ’99 shows something amazing.

So, lets do something amazing Sox, and lets do a great job supporting them!

Rally bottles, check.

Red Sox hat, check.

Faith . . . . check.

Rsjones, Ellsbury is in CF and is hitting 8th. In fact, Sox are going with exactly the same lineup as last night.

For the Indians, the one change is in RF : Gutierrez is back, Trot is out.

Saw it on Gameday.

Lets go Red Sox!!!! Lets Go!!!!

rsox,

Thanks for clarifying that question.

Everyone is aviable for the Sox besides Schilling and Wakefield (who is apparently ailing from back/shoulder).

The same goes for the Tribe, who are without Carmona and Laffey.

I am almost 100% confident in a Sox win tonight. Then again I always am so that doesn’t mean much. Westbrook did it once to the Sox, on his own mound against a team that wasn’t hitting. Now he goes to Fenway in a hostile environment and except for maybe 1 or 2 guys, everyone else is firing on all cylinders.

Dice-K shouldn’t go out there thinking he needs to go 7 or 8 perfect innings. Just get 15 outs and turn it over to the bullpen/Beckett. The one thing I am most confident in is that Matsuzaka has a safety net tonite in Beckett if things go wrong.

Here’s to a Sox win and a trip to the Fall Classic!!!

GO SOX!!!! Im shure well win tonight, GO SOX!!!!

1967… Watching the games with my grandparents. I was a mere 7 years young… Sure wish I still had all the souvenirs I had back then. The yearbook, the 8×10 black and white photos… Reggie Smith was my fave. Fast forward 40 years–I love Mike Lowell like I loved Reggie Smith, and HECK YEAH – I BELIEVE!!!!! GO SOX!!!!!!!!!

Enough of Kevin Kennedy, he drives me to drink!!!

I didn’t like him when he managed Boston and I certainly don’t like him now.

The bats will be alive and well. Varitek with a homer tonight, the captain steps up!!!

Lowell is poised to pull one over Green Monster. Let’s do it tonight, Mike.

Okay all, light your candles, get your water bottles ready, HERE WE GO!!!
LET’S GO REDSOX, LET’S GO!!!

I BELIEVE!!!!!

It all comes down to two things. Will Dice-K throw strike one and pitch ahead in the count? That’s my biggest concern. The other is will the Sox solve Westbrook? This has all the makings of a 10-7 game.

Bottles ready!!!

LETS GO RED SOX, LETS GO!!!

FAITH + BELEIVING

Very nice first inning for Dice-K. He was in complete control ….. now break out the sticks!!!!!

Dice-K looked great in the first inning!!!

It is the loudest I have ever heard Fenway!!!

Time for the bats to do there magic!!!

Dice-K has more zip on his fastball than he had all year. That has to be a good sign.

The bounces are going Boston’s way, always a great sign!!!

The bases are loaded for Drew again. Can he do it 2 nights in a row?

Not much production for four hits, but a lot of pitches for Westbrook, and Drew did hit the ball hard. Bad break that it hit the mound.

Not quite the same result.

But hey, the good thing is, Westbrook now knows that he’s been hit hard and that he will suffer to get every out.

Plus the Sox know that we won’t have a replica of game 3.

Westbrook worked his tail off that inning. Great approach by the Red Sox, good swings that inning and that is what you want too see.

Pedroia’s double during game 5 got him going and that is great too see.

Let’s hope Dice-K keeps the mo going!!!

Just what Boston needs to do. Get a early lead against an inexperienced team. Let them white knuckle it in the batters box. Get them to press a little bit.

Dice-K looks so focused out there and relaxed. This game is starting out just great!!!

Dice-K is doing exactly what he needs to do. Now, the Sox need to continue to pressure Westbrook.

The captain keeps the pressure on. Way to go Varitek!!!

Time to get Ellsbury running!!!

I would have liked too see a more patient Lugo in that spot.

Another run though!!! You gotta love it.

I don’t understand why Ellsbury wasn’t running. Maybe he didn’t have a good read. For a fast guy, Lugo hits into a lot of double plays. Still, another run which is good. Nice job by Ellsbury fighting off a tough two strike pitch.

2 innings, 2 runs. We got to be happy. But they’ll have to stop killing the momentum with double play balls.

Brian and gsm, i think we’re on the same page !!

Dice-K a little shaky that inning. A couple of 3-2 counts and I would guess about 25 pitches. But he maintained his composure.

rsox_34, Brian and I have already determined that great minds think alike. It’s possible you may be eligible for our Great Minds Club!

Not bad, a little small ball and another run. Need a good innint from Dice-K.

The double-play balls are starting to hurt perhaps, but they aren’t killing our team yet.

Dice-K is keeping his cool and is composed so far. You have to love that.

I have to love the hitting approach so far; perhaps they might have gotten a bit over-excited at points, but I’m assuming Tito’s keeping ‘em calm and collected.

So far so good.

-Raj

http://pacol250.livejournal.com

gsm52: Yeah, that small ball point is what I’m impressed by so far.

If Dice-K can get out without anymore trouble, I think he’s done for the night.

Just my two cents.

It’s almost a relief to see our deadbeat Drew and Lugo back to their old selfs. I don’t know if I could handle a world with these guys making 9-14 Million a year and actually contributing. Next thing you know I’d have pigs flying through my windows. Thank God we are leaps and bounds better than these other teams for 4-5 GIDP per game might actually hurt us. I know I’m not a major leaguer… but there has to be something a batter can do to try to avoid a double play? Is there any adjustment possible? I’ve seen a million of these games… chance to put a team away… let them back in.

LOL
Thanks gsm, i’ll do my best.

Dice-K’s first real mistake of the game was on Garko and he paid the price. Hopefully he will regroup.

Whew!! Barely made it out of this inning with 3-1. Dice-K left so many pitches up for them to hit and they did. I think he should not be sent back in the next inning. I agree with pacol250.

I’m not understanding why Dice-K has gone to so many breaking balls. His fastball is good tonight and they are all over his breaking stuff. Bad mistake on an 0-2 pitch.

rayman94: DP balls are meant to be exactly that: hard to lay off of and unless you have super speed, you’re always gonna be done.

Plus, Westbrook is that type of pitcher so that doesn’t help our cause any.

But, Dice-K got out of this inning; however, if you noticed, he’s started to nibble at the corners again and sort of stopped attacking the strike zone. Unless you can get that through to him and his confidence up that he’ll be fine, you don’t let him pitch in the 5th anymore if he allows a baserunner.

Let’s all breathe a sigh of relief that we’ll probably never have to see Crisp as our starting center fielder again. I’d also like to take this opportunity to say “I told you so” to all those whiners out there with the… “Francona is coach and you’re sitting at home… he obviously knows that Crisp is the better CF.”… It took all the way to the point when Crisp was convulsing incoherently at the plate before making the change. We could have won many more games much earlier if he just had the gonads to make the change earlier. There is a lot of pride and “tradition” with some of these coaches that prevent them from doing the obvious.

Ellsbury is my new hero. I just his speed on the bases. It’s just amazing.

And Lugo’s seems like he has reverted back to what Ellen said earlier this season, J-Go :-D

Or not…man he should have been sliding…

UGH…double plays are really going to hurt.

Another inning ending DP!!

Lugo should have been running when Pedroia wasn’t forced to swing.

Red Sox need more than just a 2 run cushion here.

Manny being Manny…brings the crowd back into it.

Respect that arm…

-Raj

http://pacol250.livejournal.com

Lofton was out because he came up off the bag. A good call.

Time to pull Dice-K.

Dice_k is done for the night. Take him out!

Why is throwing all that breaking ****? What is Tek thinking about?

Bad decision!! Take him out!

The RedSox will eventually find a way to hit 2 double plays in one inning.

Dice-K isn’t fooling anyone anymore. The Indians took 4 innings to figure him out but now they get him. Time to bring Oki.

OMG…Dice-K thank you for getting that K.

I nearly just died.

Have you noticed how quiet the crowd is right now ? I don’t like it.

Westbrook made 2-3-4 look silly that inning. Need a quick defensive inning to break the Indians’ momentum.

It’s ridiculous that we have a 1 run lead in this game. Let’s find out once and for all whether the bullpen is going to lead us to the promise land.

The crowd needs to start getting back into it. I think Dice-K’s rough innings have pulled them out of it.

I’m with gsm52; we need a quick defensive inning to pull momentum back.

Nice job by Okajima and a nice play by Lugo. That ball stayed down and was tough to handle. Now we need to break out the sticks.

I think I’d let Okajima go another inning.

I said it earlier today, but Lowell is poised to pull one over Green Monster. Time to make some noise, Mike.

Buck is right, Westbrook is a completely different pitcher. I don’t think he’s thrown a fast ball in two innings.

Need another quickie from Okajima to set the way for Papelbon.

The Fenway Faithful NEEDS to get loud!

What’s going on with the crowd there lately? We can do this folks!

GET LOUD! :-D

-Raj

http://pacol250.livejournal.com

Lugo is so stupid. It was Manny’s territory!

Brutal… Lugo has been terrible at the plate all year and now his defense looks like its going to hurt too.

Manny would have made that play.

Nice DP by Boston!!!!

OKI DOKI!

It sometimes appears like Lugo has no brain. Of course Manny should call him off that. It’s Manny’s call all the way.

A run or two would really be nice right about now.

We need to get at least 1 run just get the pressure off of the team.

Just 1. That’s all I ask for.

Home run Pedroia!!!!!

DP GOES DEEP !!!!!!!!!

OMG!

DUSTIN PEDROIA!

5-2, but it’s not over until it’s over!

2 more innings of shutting down the Indians.

If they bring in Pap, he needs to get out there and not screw around. Throw strikes, get outs. Another quickie defensive inning is in order.

RSN to Tito:

BRING IN PAPELBON!

Say the rest of the 8th goes fine, why must Tito make us fans feel like he’s always one batter too late in making a pitching change?

Why? My adrenaline is hurting me now, lol.

-Raj

http://pacol250.livejournal.com

How about Beckett to finish this inning? Pap only has one 5 out save!

s2cqdb: Because Papelbon is the closer, not Josh Beckett.

Beckett would have been best for long relief, but seeing how we didn’t need him yet, Papelbon can do this.

He’s rested and ready to throw fire (and not burn down Fenway hopefully).

C’mon…..how could they screw up that DP!!!

I agree paco. If Beckett was going to pitch, he would have started an inning where he wouldn’t have to pitch from the stretch right away.

Good job by Pap, nice catch by Ellsbury. That was pretty close to being out of here.

DP or no DP, we got out of that inning thankfully.

Ellsbury can move. And I mean move!

One more run would be really nice.

gsm and pacol – You both are right. Good decision to bring in Pap. I was just worried Tito might bring in Timlin before Pap.

HUGE run there by the Sox.

Hopefully Lugo won’t hit into another DP.

That may be the only time in his life Jacoby Ellsbury is intentionally walked.

Dustin Pedroia for MVP!

DP’s my ALCS MVP. Either him or Josh.

I’m not sure if I should relax now or what…

Well, i know i do.

The Little Man comes through.

Pap has earned the right to finish the game and get the save.

Exclamation Point!!!!!!

That’s a wrap, folks.

Yup!

World Series here we come!

Yoooouuuuuk!!!!

rsox_34: I was thinking the exact same thing. You are officially in the Great Minds Club….. Congratulations!

That being said, Julio Lugo’s error had all the potential of being as bad, or worse than Bill Buckner’s.

Coco pulls a Willy Mays and we’re in it !!!!!!!!!!

Thanks gsm, i’m really proud of it. I wanna thanks my mom, my agent …… :-)

THE WORLD SERIES !!!!

We did it!

Ladies and Gentlemen, boys and girls…

Welcome to the World Series 2007!

-Raj

http://pacol250.livejournal.com

I have never been as proud as I am right now to be a member of this RedSox Nation!!! We have THEEEE Best Team in the World!!!
Hey Dave do you believe now?????

No question rsox, your mom is very proud of you.

Coco was awful in the post season, but you got to give him credit, he kept his head in the game, and he can play a mean center field.

I’m glad for Coco. I don’t care about the score …. he made a great catch to end the game so he contributed. A nice balm.

Josh Beckett for MVP!

gsm52 and rsox_34: Coco semi redeemed himself with that great catch to end it all.

If that wasn’t caught, things could have gotten bad cause you never know with the Indians.

Another thing, I just realized that Dice-K didn’t walk anybody…

Signs of goodness to come?

Yes Raj, and he ( Coco ) can now walks with his head up.

As for Dice-K, you’re right. Haven’t noticed.

Ellsbury, Coco, Drew ….. pretty darn good defensive outfield.

Cleveland is one classy team. I have a high respect for the manager and its players. They have heart. I’m of course estatic that the Sox won but I feel for Cleveland. They’re not like the Yankees. To all the Cleveland fans my respect for your team.

Also want to add that Crisp made the catch of the year. It was impressive and a great way to end the nailbiter. Once again Dice-K was vulnerable but is getting better. The problem is that he’s unable to get past batters. They work his pitch count up so high. He needs to be ten times better against Colorado. They are killers.

Sox are Series bound!!

Who would’ve thought the Indian’s third base coach could have caused the greatest momentum shift in that game? The tribe went from tie game, man on second with one out to inning ending double play. They never scored after that moment.

This is the punch the Sox have been waiting for when their whole lineup is clicking at the plate.

Colorado’s been hot, but hopefully 13 days off will bring them back down to earth, just in time to run into Beckett in Game 1 on Wednesday. GOOOO SOOOOX

Finally, my hats off to Papelbon. He is amazing. This guy is Mr. Reliable. He’s a machine. He and Beckett are the reason why they are in the post season. Also want to mention the amazement I have at the entire team. Everybody contributed. Even J.D.Drew finally got his moment. No question though if I picked a season MVP I’d pick the team. All of them have been impressive and when one goes down, four others go up.

Well, RSN, we’re in it. See you all this week on this blog. Should be a fun ride.

After Garko’s qoute, “The champagne tastes just as sweet on the road…” I wonder how his is tasting tonight??? OH Wait they’re not drinking champagne are they??? DOH!

To all the wonderful people here on our blog: They did it and we’re apart of it!!! (well almost all of us, those of us who BELIEVE). Great team we’ve got here!!!

SOX RULE!!!!!!

4 wins to go!!

Go Sox!

Ellen, champagne tastes better at home doesn’t it? :-D

For all the criticism we’ve thrown at Tito and the front office, I’ll have to admit, they still got the job done.

However, those Rockies won 2 of 3 from us, so even with their lay-off, we sure better take them seriously.

And I know we will. :-D

7 down, 4 more to go!

-Raj

http://pacol250.livejournal.com

Hi, All:

Just got back from our Red Sox Nation Orlando gathering. With the exception of being at Fenway Park, there is nothing better than watching a dramatic win like tonight among a group of Red Sox fans at a sports bar!

I’m about to write my post at Sox and Pinstripes right now. Not sure if I will be able to sleep tonight. What a great comeback, and pure domination outscoring the Indians 30-5 in three consecutive wins.

Jeff

http://www.soxandpinstripes.com

Sox vs. Rox! Congratulations to the Red Sox Nation and the Sox faithful. Cannot wait for Wednesday!

Dice-K did a great job tonight. He was in trouble but he limited the damage and threw a lot more strikes. I liked that he struck out the last batter he faced. This will likely boost his confidence.

And Coco with a spectacular catch to seal the victory over his old team.

Pedroia put an exclamation point on his (probable) AL ROY year.

Youk is crushing the ball!

Just good stuff all the way around.

Congratulations to the respectful fans of Red Sox Nation.

Hey Ellen!

Jeff, the sites waiting, I already posted, haha.

Thanks Vince, you’re a respectful Yankee fan.

A lot has been said about the the Sox’s ALCS win. Here’s my observation why the Sox was able to mount another historic comeback:
1. BECKETT, Schil, and Dice-K

2. Ellsbury magic

3. JD’s grandslam althiugh I think the Sox would win Game 6 in sipte of the shot

4. Good fortune going the Sox way in Game 5, 6, and 7. Too many plays going the Sox’s way to mention here.

My question for Eric Wedge, the candiadye for the manager of the year.

1. Why didn’t start Nixon in game 7

2. Why stayed so long with Betancourt until the game was out of control?

3. To the 3B coach, why put a stop sign at the speedy Lofton?

By the way the Lugo almost caused the Sox the AL championship.

Wow, It’s a bright beautiful RedSox kind of day. So far no need for rose colred glasses.
What a great weekend. The way our 6-9 guys stepped it up was fantastic. I read peoples remarks earlier in the week that this team didn’t have the chemistry that the 04 team had. I disagreed then and now. It hadn’t been proven then but it has now!! I’m hearing on ESPN Mike and Mike that people are having a problem with Millars “pep talk” Saturday and with him doing the line up last night. That was cleared through Orioles management even before Millar was contacted. I think that was a SPARK somehow. It raised my RedSox spirit. Ditka says it was totally inappropriate and that Millar is just another guy, and they should have gottn the Mayor of Boston or the Governor. I think Ditka should stick to something he knows like doing Best Buy ads with Elway.

I’m in SUCH a good mood today!! :D how often is it that you ground into 14 double plays in a 7-game series and still manage to win? haha.. if it wasn’t for that, the game would have gotten out of hand much quicker last night.. oh well, i’m looking forward to josh in game 1 on wednesday!!!

It is great to be a Red Soxfan. What a FANTASTIC night.

The smallest guy comes up big.

4 wins away from the biggest prize in baseball. You gotta love it!!!!

Some anxious moments last night. Thank you Joel Skinner!!! Then again maybe it was Dale Sveum coaching third base. It was great too see the Sox finally hit Bettancourt, they POUNDED him last night.

ellen, don’t listen to Dikka. he didn’t know what he was talking or doing. You invite the Mayor or the Governor to throw the first pitch in Game 1 or 2, not in Game 6 or 7. What a jerk Ditka is.
I think it was a nice gesture to invite Mueller and Millar, who were a big part of hte 04 team, to throw the ceremonial first pitch in Game 6 and 7. I was thrilled by the idea.

Honestly, I was little concerned about Game 5 since too mnay breaks went the Tribe’s in the previous games. I was afraid that Beck would lose 1-2. Once the Sox got by Game 5, I was confident and no doubt that the Sox will win the ALCS.

I might add that awesome combination of Oki Papalbon, as throughout the season,

was the main reason the Sox took Game 7. Do not forget the score was 3-2 when Oki came on board in the 6th.

bosox, Lugo (dropped the pop fly and failed to turn a sure dp ball) almost costed the Sox the championship. If Lofton scored, the game would be tied and with one out and man on first. Who knows what would follow in a tie game. Whew!!

As I think about the game last night — wow, did we walk the edge of the cliff or what?

(1) Lofton, being called out at 2nd (probably safe — but close enough that it was not a bad call — how could the ump know in real-time speed that Pedroia’s glove didn’t get Lofton’s hand)

(2) Lofton being held at third (Lofton must think he has his own personal post-season curse :)

(3) Garko’s double — 2 feet to the right and its a two (or would it have been three?) run homer

(4) Lugo’s two miscues — man, did Oki and Pap pick us up on both those occasions?

Who knows what kind of momentum shift might have followed if anyone of those had gone the other way —

Then again, the way Ped and Youk were hitting, I’d like to think we would have scored nearly 8 runs anyway.

I have to say, I didn’t have the same positive feeling I felt with the ’04 team, probably cause you think it can’t happen twice, didn’t see the muster in this team until now.

Same challenges as we face the Rockies, somebody besides Becket has to win 2 games!!! You might say, likely balance for success is (we will need): 2 wins go to pitching (Beckett) — 2 wins by the offense — but anyway it comes — maybe it will snow so much in Denver, we can use Beckett 4 times — LOL !!! and win that way

The Rox beat Beck and Schil pretty bad in June and took 2 out of 3 in Fenway. That was regular season which didn’t mean a thing. Ask the Yanks about the Tribe. However, the Sox shouldn’t take the young and fearless Rockies for granted as they have to 3 games at the chilly Denver. But the Sox will ultimately prevail.

wow. don’t know who is happier today. me, the guy who owns the bar i’ve been watching these last 3 games at or the people at fox sports. i guess it’s prob the team. i think you cold make a pretty good argument that this was more impressive than the ’04 comeback. probably not given the circumstances and history but great to watch nonetheless.

bosox. gotta give you props on tek. he did have a good game at the plate. FINALLY!

As an unabashed supporter of Tito, I think you have to recognize the little things he did. In both Games 6 and 7, he put CoCo in as a defensive replacement in the 9th inning, switching Jacoby E. to left field and removing Manny from the line-up. With the catch CoCo made against Blake for the last out of Game 7, you gotta recognize Tito was not gonna be foiled by Buckner-itis. CoCo came up limping after his amazing catch. I sure hope he didn’t seriously hurt himself. Has there been any mention made of how he is?

Francona made all the right moves last night. He pulled Dice-K at the right time and brought in Papelbon at the right time. How good was that Sox pen last night? Okajima has been doing it all year and Papelbon he is just fire coming out of that pen.

I wonder what the roster will look like for the World Series. I would like too see Tavarez instead of Gagne.

Sox and Rockies almost pulled off that trade last winter. I guess both teams made the right call. I remember a story last winter that Francona told. He called Mike Lowell during the trade talks and when Lowell answered he said this is Mike Lowell the #6 hitter for the Rockies. How funny is that? Sometimes the best trades are the ones you don’t make.

Rockies are going to be a very tough opponent. When the Sox hit Denver, that is going to be the toughest place they have played yet.

This long layoff I think will hurt the Rockies.

Sox in 6 games!!!

The Indians shouldn’t hang their heads. they played well this season. I have new found respect for the Indians after this series.

Putting Coco for the defense in the 9th was more of a symbolic goodwill gesture. It turned out that Coco made a spectacular crashing catch to end the game. Pap saved the game in the 8th inning. I did not believe that the Sox would lose in the 9th even if Gagne was on the mound.
The Indian played horribly defensively and offensively in Game 6 & 7.

Did Sox ever play at Denver?

Francona seems to be a great post-season manager. What happens during the regular season?
All I know is, I better not see Gagne pitch in a game where we aren’t leading by at least 5!!

But what an awesome pitching job by Oki last night!!

I see that the 1985 Royals came back from a 3-1 deficit, both in the 1985 ALCS and then immediately again in the 1985 WS (against St.Louis).

Don’t want to go through another steep up hill climb again — but hey, as Manny says, whatever happens, happens.

I remember the 85 word-series, the worst bad call in ML history that I can remember. St. Louis was robbed by that horrible call that cost them game six and the series — so I am not sure any team has really climbed out of 3-1 hole twice in row – discounting 85 to the umpires.

007. sox played at denver back in the summer and got swept.

That is what I thought — so we are 1-5 against this team this year? I guess we do have to look to the Indians for inspiration.

ellen hit on the head yesterday IMO. lay off or no lay off the percentages have to catch up with colo. you just can’t keep up that pace. i don’t think anyway.

Sox played in Colorado in 2002, can’t remember how they did though. I agree with everyone, the Indians run a classy organiztion so watching them lose is not as sweet as a team like the Yanks. I have no respect for Lofton or Martinez though, so seeing him cry was kinda funny.

I believe if Lofton scores there Cleveland goes on to win 4-3. Who knows maybe Pedey still hits that homer, but I think it took all the wind out of Cleveland’s sails. Betancourt would have been sharper and more locked in with a run lead. It seems like whenever Lofton is involved in an ALCS against the Sox, they always make that magical comeback.

The WS will be very competitive IMO and the Sox will finally get to celebrate a WS championship at home in the 6th or 7th game.

We are not 1-5 against the Rocks this year, dgneubert. We played them once this year and lost 2 of 3. The AL never plays the NL more than once, unless they are a natural rival (Mets-Yanks, DRays-Marlins, A’s-Giants, etc.)

*The AL never plays the NL more than once, IN A SEASON

Sox are 1-2 against the Rockies this year. Got beaten at home in June and outscored 20-5. But no series at Denver, at least from what i know.

Well i should’ve read the latest posts before posting mine ! Rizzo took care of the question !

smckinny, I believe the Yanks not the Sox were swepted by the Rox in Denver. Anyway, the Rox will be a formidable opponent.

rizzo, the Sox beat the Rockies 2 out of 3 at Fenway in June 2002. Still can’t recall whether the Sox ever played in Colorado.

Not true about National league v. American league playing each other. For instance I live in Chicago and the White Sox always play one series against the Cubs in the South Side and one series at wrigley. Maybe I misunderstood the issue.

Like rizzo said : ” … unless they’re natural rivals “.

connor, I wrote above: The AL never plays the NL more than once in a season, unless they are a natural rival (Mets-Yanks, DRays-Marlins, A’s-Giants, etc.)

My mistake, they played at Fenway in 2002 like 007chow said. That means they never played at Coors since they only started Interleague play in the late 90s and it was always AL East vs. NL East for the first 4 or 5 years. Should be interesting to see how they utilize Ortiz/Youkilis in those games. Ortiz is hurting so he will probably play 2 of the 3 games and sit the one that Francis pitches (Game 4 or 5). With Youk in there, the order should be:
Ellsbury

Pedroia

Youk

Manny

Lowell

Drew

Tek

Lugo

Maybe you flip flop Youk and Lowell but I would keep Mikey where he has had success this season.

Like I said the other day, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!

Depends on how the Sox do in Game 1 & 2, Ortiz may sits out Game 3, 4, 5 in Denver where there will be no DH. I would give Cora a shot at SS.

it’s a tough call. i don’t know how you could sit ortiz for 3 straight. especially the way the ball jumps there. my guess is he’ll sit against lefties and play/start against righties.

Too bad Youk can’t play short !

It makes me sick just to think that Youk or Papi will sit for the games in Denver. At least we’ll have some good bats for pinch hitting. Hinske and Cora could finally see some action as well.

With that thin air in Denver, Papi could enjoy his stay if he plays !

Ortiz will be in the lineup for 2 games, that is how they have played it in the past. Interleague games over the last few years. Youkilis will probably see some action at 3b, 1 game. That is what Francona has done in the past.

The last trip to Denver for the Red Sox was 2004.

Lowell, Youkilis and Ortiz will be out of the starting lineup for 1 game. This is where Youkilis’ flexibility helps, he can get in a game at 3b. I think you could see Ellsbury lead off a game or so when the series hits Denver.

bosoxbrian, you were right. The Sox’s last trip to the Coors Field was in June 21, 2004 and shut out the Rockies 11-0.

Brian, I don’t think Ortiz sits at all. This is the World Series, not interleague games. I think it will be Youk who sits, probably for all three games. You can’t take out Papi’s bat, and sitting Mikey with Papi at first would significantly diminish the Sox infield defensively. Given the choice between Mikey and Youk at third, the nod has to go to Mikey. Plus, this gives Tito a good right handed bat off the bench which he doesn’t have now and/or a good defensive replacement for Papi. I don’t think our great minds are thinking alike on this one.

If Youk sits, I could see Ellsbury leading off with DP moved to second in the lineup.

All I’ve heard about all day is that stupid play at second base when Manny threw Lofton out.

First, I’ve been complaining all year about umpiring, but in this case, the umpire was in perfect position to see and make the call. Good job there.

Second, there is no question that Lofton’s hand beat the tag to second base. At that point he was safe.

However, replays clearly show that after hitting the base, Lofton’s hand came up off the bag and he was not in contact with the bag when Pedroia tagged him. He absolutely, positively was out and he knew it which is why he didn’t argue the call.

If you watch the replay, Lofton comes up like he’s going to object, but my guess is that the umpire immediately told him his hand came off the bag, he knew it, and that was the end of it. There was also no argument from the bench, probably because Lofton didn’t start jumping up and down.

These freaking announcers, Buck and McCarver, never got passed the hand getting to the bag first. They are clueless. Good job by the ump for being where he was supposed to be.

The ump made the right call. Dice K was lucky in that the ball was hit so hard that it could be a HR in most parks.

The problem with Ortiz playing all 3 games in the field is you don’t know how his knee is going to hold up. If he were heathly no question he would play all 3 games like he would have in 2004. Best case scenario, Francis starts game 5 and Ortiz sits that one out and has 2 days rest after playing the prior 2 days in the field. I wouldn’t sit Lowell for any of the 3 games at Coors. He was the best hitter on the Sox all season and by putting Youk at 3rd you lose a lot of defense. Lowell is behind only Chavez as the best defensive 3B in the league and Youk has played about 5 games there all season. Youk came up as a 3B but it is clear the position he was made for is 1B.

Good catch bosox about the Sox playing in Denver in 2004. That totally slipped my mind. If I remember correctly the 11-0 blowout win was started by D-Lowe. That was the NL West team he should have gone to. Sinkerballers in Colorado are like gold.

JEFF,

Where in Orlando have you been watching the games???

http://statisticianmagician.mlblogs.com/

Joseph:

I’m the coordinator of Red Sox Nation Orlando

http://www.redsox.meetup.com/131

Feel free to visit the site, join up and RSVP for our gathering Wednesday at the Sanford Ale House by the Seminole Towne Center. I encourage any reader here who lives in Central Florida to join the group. It was especially a blast last night!

Jeff

http://www.soxandpinstripes.com

I also have a feeling that Ortiz will sit out at least one game in Colorado. He is playing with a torn meniscus in his knee, after all. He struggles to make it through a game as a DH. At this point of the season, it makes no sense to play someone out of position because defense is especially vital in the post-season, so likely Lowell, Youkilis and Ortiz will each sit out one game. The first two games of this series are very important for Boston. They need to win them both since they will be minus a batter in Colorado.

GM 1:

Josh Beckett vs. the Rockies

Career:

GS: 6

4-1 record

37 IP

24 K

10 BB

41 H

3.89 ERA

Curt Schilling vs. the Rockies

Career:

GS: 26

11-6 record

174.1 IP

174 K

35 BB

201 H

4.44 ERA

Keep in mind that they both pitched at the pre-humidor Coors Field, and they are pitching respectivly at Fenway.

Keith Law(?) of ESPN.com believes that the Sox will win in 5 games.

Rockies record: 90-73

Red Sox Record: 96-60

Sox R per GM: 5.4

Rox “: 5.3

Sox AVG: .279

Rox “: .280

Sox ERA: 3.87

Rox: “: 4.22

66 lose for the Sox

Interesting article here on Redsox.com about Tim Wakefield and the Coors Field. Tito and his staff are thinking about maybe start Wake in game 2 in Fenway so he could avoid the thin air of Coors Field in game 4, where a knucleball is less likely to “dance”.

The rotation would then look like this :

Beckett

Wake

Schilling

Dice-K

So yes, Dice-K would have only one start. Interesting …..

Well guys we are American league Champs!How was the kool aid Ellen and BoSox Brian?!But we still have a very dangerous Rockies team to face.Do not be surprised if this series goes 7 games as well.I beleive in our guys though.lets go Sox!All the Yankee fans today shook my hand and gave their respects.

Man oh’ man, I’m still in awe of the feat that the team just accomplished.

I crack up everytime I see Papelbon dance. Did you guys see Paps and Youk challenge each other to a dance-off, DOING THE RUNNING MAN! HAH!!

However, unless Paps was extremely happy, he may have been extremely intoxicated. He was dancing in his underwear, pouring beer on the ALCS trophy, and being simply wild. A little disturbing if I do say myself.

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