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Home » April 2005 Game CommentsApril 2005 » Complete


Game 12: April 17, 2005
Devil Rays (4-8), 1
Red Sox (7-5), 3
L: Scott Kazmir (0-1)
W: Tim Wakefield (2-0)
H: Matt Mantei (1), Alan Embree (1)
S: Keith Foulke (2)

I can’t believe I missed a Devil Rays game live. After spending these past two evenings watching this delightful, young, up-and-coming team, I feel as if there is a void in my life. I may even have to remedy the situation and go down to Florida to the always charming Tropicana Field to take in a few games. Isn’t that heckler amusing? I wonder who his target will be?

All kidding aside, we all know that any game against a divisional team is important because the Yankees also play them. Recall how poorly the Red Sox did against the Orioles last year, going 9-10, while the Yankees dominated them with a 14-5 record. This is the difference between winning the division and dueling it out with the other AL teams for the wild card.

Since I was in Pawtucket (more on this in a separate post later), I can only go by what the box score and game log tells me. It’s saying:

  • When there’s a 5-4-3 double play with Mueller, Bellhorn, and Millar involved, it might be the most L-intensive defensive play in the majors. Definitely something to look in to.
  • Spelling Trot Nixon for lefties is a good thing. I like what I’m seeing in Jay Payton, who so far seems to be an upgrade over Gabe Kapler as an outfield replacement. I’ve taken to calling him Payday Payton, appropriate for this game since his 3rd inning 2-RBI single was key.
  • Wakefield is looking like the 2002-3 version, seasons where he was 22-12 and ERAs of 2.81 and 4.09, respectively. He struck out 5, allowed 3 walks, and had only 1 earned run. Wakefield now has 1,343 strikeouts in a Red Sox uniform, passing Cy Young (1,341) and trailing only Roger Clemens (2,590) and Pedro Martinez (1,596). It would be nice to see him in 2011, still throwing the butterflies.
  • The Red Sox hitters’ approach to Kazmir was patience personified early on. First inning-33 pitches; 2nd inning-24 pitches; 3rd inning-21 pitches (they get aggressive here, possibly believing they have figured him out); 4th inning-8 pitches; 5th inning-12 pitches. Kazmir’s control wasn’t there; he walked 4 and only had 8 first pitch strikes out of 25.
  • Any concerns about Edgar Renteria’s production were premature. Actually, any attempts at trending data at this point is hasty. But, it’s Boston. I do it, you do it, even educated fleas do it. Let’s do it. Let’s come to conclusions without due deliberation.

We’re not alone, however. George Steinbrenner is not taking his team’s 4-game losing streak well. Many Bothans died for this information, and I suspect many more will. Steinbrenner likes neither losing or Bothans.

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