Opening Day, Part Deux, tonight at the McFee Coliseum in Oakland. In case you care, I saw one of the great baseball games of my life from this press box. Game 3 of Yankees-A’s Division Series 2001. Jeter made the behind the back throw to the plate to cut down Jeremy Giambi, who never slid. Mike Mussina pitched a gem. Posada went deep in a 1-0 game in what was a series turning win for the Yankees. Zito pitched incredibly well for the A’s that day but one mistake haunted him.
Another great game in this stadium: Game 5 of the 2003 Division Series where it was the Red Sox turning the table on the A’s. There was the Johnny Damon-Damian Jackson crash, but also a drama-filled save by Derek Lowe, who reverted back to his old role for a night and threw perhaps the nastiest sinker of his entire career right by Terrence Long.
Anyway, I’ll stop digressing. Josh Beckett did great in his last Minor League outing. As manager Terry Francona said today, “Beckett will more likely than not, start Sunday in Toronto.” That means he will face Roy Halladay in a marquee matchup.
One other news item: Ellsbury will lead off tonight. The main reason is that with Drew not playing, they can hit Youkilis sixth so they’ll have a little more thump in the middle of the lineup.
Look for Pedroia-Youkilis to be the 1-2 punch again on Wednesday.