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Home » August 2005 Game CommentsAugust 2005 » Unravel


Game 115: August 13, 2005
White Sox (74-41), 4
Red Sox (68-47), 7
L: Jon Garland (16-6)
W: Tim Wakefield (12-9)
H: Jeremi Gonzalez (1)

The centerpiece of the series had the White Sox coming undone at the seams. They seemed to think David Ortiz was the Boston version of Scott Podsednik. Garland threw over twice while Ortiz was on first. Evading the ubiquitous shift, Ortiz got on base by lining a slider over the shift in the 1st inning with 2 out. Garland’s pickoff attempts had Ortiz grinning more widely than usual. The lefty has obviously heard about what a terror Ortiz is on the basepaths, sort of like a 6'4" Ichiro.

Roberto Petagine, the Tom Brady to Kevin Millar’s Drew Bledsoe, hit his first home run in a Red Sox uniform in the 2nd inning. The last time he homered in the majors was with the Reds on September 27, 1998, but that was against Jose Silva, who had a career ERA of 5.41. Going yard on a 1-2 count on a possible Cy Young award-winner and team ace in his career year to break a scoreless tie is an entirely different matter.

Wakefield was on the verge of a quick meltdown in the 3rd inning, one of those episodes where the opposition suddenly pins 3 or 4 runs on the board. With runners at the corners and 1 out, the organist played “Call Me.” Who wouldn’t be inspired by the timeless words of Blondie: “Oh, amore, chiamami/ Appelle-moi, mon cherie/ Anytime, any place, anywhere, any way!” So cosmopolitan. Wakefield induced Pablo Ozuna to ground out into a 4-6-3 double play that required Tony Graffanino to adroitly toss the ball to a gliding Edgard Renteria, who nimbly avoided his counterpart Juan Uribe on his move to throw to first base. The seemingly choreographed sequence kept the White Sox off the board.

Chicago was faced with a similar situation in the bottom of the 3rd. Joe Crede, perhaps enthralled by the football preseason, spiked the ball like a quarterback into the infield on a Renteria grounder, allowing the shortstop to reach first. Once again eluding the shift, Ortiz hit a single to right field, advancing Renteria to third. Runners at the corners with no out and Manny Ramirez at the plate, the question is not if Boston will score, but how much. He singled up the middle after patiently fouling off 3 pitches and working the count full, plating Renteria. Following the clean-up hitter’s example, Petagine hit another single up the middle with a grounder that Garland just missed fielding. Aaron Rowand, a.k.a. Wakefield killer, couldn’t get the ball back to the plate in time to stop Ortiz from scoring.

After I had unfavorably compared Uribe with Renteria yesterday, the Red Sox shortstop showed his range to left by catching up with a grounder hit by Tadahito Iguchi in the 4th inning. He made several such plays, as well as the previously mentioned double play, displaying a skill that is lost in his unusually high error count.

Rain, rain, go away. Carlton Fisk visited the booth and spoke of the sundry honors granted to him since his induction into the Hall of Fame: Named the left field pole after him (I was at that game). Flashed his World Series ring at Ozzie Guillen. Posed for a statue for White Sox.

I thought about how I would tell the Aristrocrats joke during the rain delay. I tell jokes badly in front of people. How badly, you might ask. I would make Dan Roche look like George Carlin or Jerry Trupiano seem like Bill Hicks. I’m not so bad at writing jokes, however. What I devised isn’t suitable for this blog.

The rain delay got to Wakefield. He gave up back-to-back home runs to Paul Konerko and Rowand in the 7th inning, erasing the knuckleballer’s shutout. The Red Sox responded with 2 of their runs, but scored them in a White Soxian way. With 2 out, Bill Mueller extended his hit streak to 9 games with a double that clattered against the metal part of the wall. Graffanino then lined a double that hit the less noisy part of the Green Monster to drive Mueller in, and was in turn plated by Gabe Kapler with an opposite field single.

Alacritous Adam Stern made a great catch in the 8th for the second out by ranging all the way to edge of his territory in right field. He tracked down Iguchi’s fly ball, which would have landed just foul in that part of Fenway where a sliver of foul territory recedes into the wall. Stern had built up enough momentum to run into the barricade, but held on to make the out. That speed just needs to be harnessed and combined with some baserunning know-how and perhaps we’d have Dave Roberts version 2.

Remlinger was brought in to get Carl Everett. The bullpen camera showed him not being able to get door open. You could almost read his mind, “Hey, how does this thing work? Where are my damn bifocals? I swear, kids these days.” Just add in that weird whistle that the elderly sometimes have when they talk. He walked Everett, but did manage to get the count full after falling behind 2-0. Remlinger also pitched to Konerko, giving up a double to left field that Ramirez bobbled, permitting Everett to score. Curt Schilling had to be summoned to get the last out in the 8th with a runner on second base, and did so on 3 straight strikes. After Schilling gave up a leadoff home run to Jermaine Dye, he sat the next 3 batters down in succession.

What can I write about Wakefield that hasn’t already been said? A true Red Sox player, gritty, reliable, steady, a winner. He would have pitched more than 6.2 innings if it weren’t for the rain delay. His line: 7 hits, 2 earned runs, no walks, 5 strikeouts, and 2 home runs.


Watching Remlinger pitch automatically starts my face muscles to "twinge" as the approach of disaster nears. Please Terry, put him into games seldomly, if at all. Other than that minor quibble, KEEP BASHING! Trot will be back in no time, with Olerud to follow.

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