The Cell

Here at U.S. Cellular Field, home of those first-place Chicago White Sox. Trust me though, these ChiSox are no tourist trap.

When colleague Mike Bauman and I took a cab to the ballpark this afternoon, the driver said it was the first time any customer had asked him to drive to “The Cell” all year. He then proceeded to tell us that the White Sox really weren’t any good and wouldn’t make the playoffs this year. And all this time, I thought Chicago was a more positive-thinking kind of town.

The Red Sox have their own problems at the moment, trailing those “we won’t go away Rays” by 3 1/2 games, the largest deficit Boston has faced since July 7. They were a season-high five games back on July 6.

Right now, the obvious problem is that two of the team’s biggest boppers — David Ortiz and Mike Lowell — have gone ice-cold. Lowell is 0-for-his last 15 and is batting .202 since July 1.

But you have to think both those guys will get hot, and when they do, the whole team has a chance to heat up with them.

It will be interesting to see when Jacoby Ellsbury goes back to the leadoff spot. Manager Terry Francona indicated that once he puts Ellsbury back up there, he wants it to be for good.

Tonight, Jason Varitek is hitting ninth. The last time the captain hit ninth in a game? You’d have to go back to those Cowboy Up days of Grady Little. It was Sept. 22,  2003. This was the first time Francona ever scribbled out a lineup with Varitek’s name at the bottom.

Did anyone notice that Mike Timlin has been unscored on in nine of his last 10 appearances? Joe Haggerty — a swiftly emerging multi-media presence in the Boston market — has some insight on the matter in a well-done piece that first appeared in Boston Metro and then the underrated Hacks with Haggs blog.

More later.



With the big bats hurting or no longer with the team. Ellsbury’s speed is much needed that much more at the top of the order. I assume within the next 3 days or so, we’ll see Ellsbury at the top. Ellsbury adds another dimension that most teams crave. He is a big key to get this offense scoring runs consisently on a daily basis.


That is the batting order I would go with. I still don’t know why Theo was interested in Brian Giles. If the Red Sox do make a deal in August. It should be for a reliever!!! This pen before Papelbon still concerns me.

First, let’s get Ells back in the lineup. If Tito feels the pressure is too much for Ells to lead off, he could always have him alternate with Pedroia in the one-two spot depending on whether a right or left hander is pitching.Ells being aware of this, may have his mind more at ease.They are both essentially (when Ells is doing better at the plate) good contact hitters. In this manner, they could then shift Drew back into a more power hitting position.

They still have the problem with Papi, but that’s something that Papi has to deal with. He should realize that they may not be giving him the “good” pitches that he is use to get, so he has to be more selective and not just go fishing and swing at anything near, or far, from the plate. Getting on base, one way or the other, should be his primary goal. In fact, he should try to adjust and go the opposite way, even on the ground, when the shift is on. If he can do this he may then spread the infield, which will allow more of his pulled balls to go through. In other words, Papi has to adapt to his situation. He doesn’t have to hit home runs every time at bat.

lol. Brian, you wouldn’t have won today’s “Guess the Red Sox Lineup, Win a Red Sox DVD” contest we’re having. Nobody has yet, but I will keep it going until we have five winners (since that is how many DVDs I have left).

I think that, since times have changed with the departure of Ramirez, it is time to move Ortiz to the cleanup spot and return Drew to No. 3, where he seems to thrive. I would like to see Ellsbury or Pedroia in the leadoff spot. Right now, until Ellsbury proves he can consistently hit good pitching (the Royals don’t qualify), he should stay at No. 9. I like Lowrie at No. 7.

My ideal lineup right now is:

1. Pedroia
2. Youkilis
3. Drew
4. Ortiz
5. Lowell
6. Bay
7. Lowrie
8. Varitek (or Cash)
9. Ellsbury

Since I doubt if Ortiz would be moved to the cleanup spot, I’m alright with Youkilis hitting there. I just think Drew would benefit from hitting third.


Well, the day started well- the Yanks got bombed- couldn’t happen to a better team. Let’s hope that TB does likewise and that the Sox pick up some ground.

A walk issued by Dice-K. What a shock, not!!!

Roll Call time: dave, gsm, arnie, rs015, phil, bsb, jeff, all other nationers?? is everyone present??
Here’s my thought for the moment ( I have too many to call them “for the day”)
These are OUR Sox!! Win or Lose, stumble or flourish, they are OURS. This is sort of an unconditional love. But… What I would love right now is to have these guys, our SOX to go on about an 8-10 game winning run. Thats what we need from them and what they need to get those heads held a little higher. So, what do you say Nation?? Lets just cheer these guys tonight, like we’ve never cheered them before.. No negatives tonight.. And Hey Sox, how about the same from you???

I’m here for the long haul.. LET’S GO REDSOX, LET’S GO!!!!

Lowrie can’t be that slow! First of all he should have had a triple if he was runnung all out . He watched the ball. He should have had his head down and kept running. He knew he had a double. He should have then watched his third base coach wh was waving him to third. his indecision cost the Sox a run. Further,when Ells hit the ball he should have been running and he should have scored. I didn’t think he is that bad a base runner.

I hate to see anyone get hurt, no matter who they are or who they play for…

Ells should steal ASAP. We can’t count too much on Tek. Maybe something could happen.

He decided to try and steal too late. Tek did his usual.

I just read on the NESN sports ticker that old nameless is saying that he wants to sign a “free agent” contract with the Yankees in the off season.. Any one who didnt see that coming needs a guide dog and a white cane!! Hey Bhutt head, go for it.. and see how much krap they put up with…

Runners on 1st and 2nd with Ortiz, Youkilis and Lowell up and they don’t score. Are you kidding me? Absolutely pathetic!!!

Papi is probably trying too hard. He is looking pathetic-swinging at balls he couldn’t do anything with. Ditto- Lowell. Whe you have first and second with none out and your 3,4,and 5 men are up and don’t score you really have a problem.

As usual, Dice-K creates his own problems!!! It looks like it’s only a matter of time.

Dice-K gets out of it again. He creates his own mess and then he usually gets out of it. He has a rabbit’s foot somewhere or a horseshoe. lol.

Positive thoughts!! Positive thoughts!! Positive thoughts!!!
Come on RedSox You Guys Are the BEST!!!!!

Nice stop there by Lowrie… could have been a double play.. but.. COULD HAVE BEEN A WHOLE LOT WORSE than just getting one!!! Good moves by Jed…

Walking the leadoff man again. A glutton for punishment.

Papi ought to take a tip from Uribe. A bunt now and then might help.

It’s a matter of time before those walks catch up with you. Four innings, three walks and a hit batter to lead off each. Not good. The Sox can’t afford to give up these kinds of runs with the way they are swinging the bat.

As far as Lowell is concerned, I think he’s hurting. He can’t follow through on his swing at all which is why he’s off balance and falling across the plate all the time. I wonder exactly what is wrong with his hip? He’s playing hurt which says something about his character.

I wonder how much weight Papi put on while he was on the DL. He looks pretty big to me. In fact, I’m thinking his gut might be bigger than mine, and that’s not a good thing. I think as much as anything, he’s out of shape. C’mon Papi, make a liar out of me.

Dice-K skates out of another inning with relatively little damage. Houdini is a good name for him.

Dice-K gets off easy again. Somebody has to tell him- in English or Japanese- that you can’t keep letting that leadoff man get on- particularly by walking him. That’s not what a good pitcher does. Maybe he will be able to then last more than five innings. A five-inning pitcher is getting to be a habit with him.

Good base-running by Papi and good running by Bay. If it was his “predecessor” running it would have been a DP.

Baseball Trivia: Brand new baseballs are very white and have a sheen which makes them very slippery and difficult to grip. You have probably noticed that baseballs used in major league games are not shiny and white. Before games, the umpires rub down several dozen ball with mud. All baseball rubbing mud comes from the same place. What kind of mud is it, and where does it come from?

OK Ells-time to steal.

It seems that the Sox are gun-shy in trying to take that extra base.

Do the Sox ever consider bunting??

The mud comes from the mudpack from Roseannes face.

Nice bunt Papi!!!!

I’m really glad to see that for the big guy. A real confidence booster.

LOL! Close Pangelotti. A real good guess.

Dave out for a few days,

I will check in on occasion but one of my best friends from Michigan just arrived today so despite the amazing lead I only get to see her once a year or so in person.

That is the Ortiz I know. That ball was crushed!!! Why Guillen left in Boone Logan is beyond my comprehension. Thank you Ozzie Guillen. lol.

Dice-K needs to throw strikes and have an easy inning. No free passes.

Hopefully, Tito has somebody warming up. When Dice-K goes bad he goes bad real fast. When he starts to lose control- don’t wait!! Watch his bases on ballls.

LOL……. less than a week has passed, and the player whose name shall not be mentioned here has decide that he no longer wants to finish his career in LA. Now he wants to sign an off season deal with the Yankees. That’s really comical, but could you imagine A-Rod and Dick hitting back to back.

That was a great inning by Dice-K. He walked the tightrope again in this game but basically came out unscathed. Another solid start from a starter.

I hope that big hit by Ortiz can get the big guy bats going once again. Ortiz needs to be Ortiz if this team wants to go anywhere.

Speaking of the player who shall not be named here, he has now been asked twice by Torre to get his hair cut. He said next week……. LOL!

Way to go Ells. Good hit. Hope it’s a sign of getting your confidence back.

So many positive things tonight!!! Papi, JBay, Obi won Jacoby!! You go Our Guys!!! GO REDSOX, GO REDSOX. GO REDSOX!! (doing the little dance that goes with that) Hey and Tek got a hit, right?? I LOVE MYREDSOX, I LOVE MYREDSOX!!!!!

tHAT’S WHAT WE CAN CALL MR NO NAME:: Good call Dick Noname

I still like to call Ellsbury Obie Wan Jacoby

Maybe “ZAZU” – that will be my name for him from now on- can’t find a barber or hairdresser in LA that wants to tackle the job of dreadlocks. Or maybe he makes like he just can’t understand Torre either. You know – play dumb. That shouldn’t be too hard for him to do. If what is said is true Torre should lay the law down NOW!!- or Torre will get what he deserves.

ZAZU……….. I love it.

Lowrie and Pedroia are really good up the middle. They can both turn the DP as well as anyone in the league. The more I see of Lowrie, the better I like him. Very smooth in the field and get his rips at bat. I see Ellsbury, Lowrie and Masterson and I know Santana belongs with the Mets. Good non-decision by Theo.

Let’s hope Loweel gets hold of one. It will do him good.

Sorry, I thought Bay had gotten a hit.. my blonde.. HE WILL GET A HIT!!

i REALLY REALLY like the name ZAZU!!! or ZAZUI!! It fits!!!

All right, we did it!!! Now let’s root for TB to do what the Yanks did today. Win or lose, at least we picked up one on the Yanks. Let’s think positive!

I think all positives worked tonight

Nothing from Rave-D tonight!! Arnie is xcused due to The Biz.. (his eatery.. thats what they call them in the POSH areas.. I like Diners, Drive-ins and especially Dives!!)

hey guys and gals. I’ve been working too much and it’s been so hot I haven’t been sleeping. I ended up just feeling exhausted. So I benched myself from the blog today. So Papi got some hits and Ellsbury seems to have found his swing again. Did Mike get a hit, I forget. I was a little discouraged after last night but maybe, just maybe, the Sox can finally pull it all together and play baseball the way they can. Now would be a great time. ZAZU Hahahaha, I love it! So Zazu’s unhappy? Fancy that! All that talent, all the adulation from the fans, all the $$$$, the sure HOF induction barring some Rose-esque screwup, and NO happiness. To quote Mr T, “I pity the fool”. It’s sad, really. But WE’RE happy. The Sox are winning again, at least for today and that’s what counts! Dice-K does it again. Walks every other batter but only lets one score in 8 innings. How does he do it?? Maybe he just pitches better under some pressure. Well, whatever! As long as he can win.

Dice-K wins while the Nation, and no doubt Tito, gets ulcers. But we won. Let’s continiue to move forward.

I remember Ellen’s best friend and favorite announcer(That’d be the charming and witless Tim Macarver.) talking about the Blackburn(sp?) river mud from the Delaware. I think it comes in a big can, and the umps or some flunky rubs up about 12 dozen balls before a game. Imagine the forearms these guys have? Popeye arms.

I heard about the process, my husband saw a tv show about the process.. it would probably fascinate me,, wow, i really do not have a life !!
G’night y’all, I’m outa here.. See you tomorrow.. different Sox time: Same Sox blog channel!! Bye Guys!! Night Nationers!!

Keep winning series.

I would give Buchholtz one more chance to see how he fares against a pennant contending team. Personally I’d like to see Masterson pitch this afternoon.
Buchholtz, forget about your pet for a moment. Avoid a big inning, and the Sox will give you plenty run support. Then you will be Ok.

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