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Home » September 2005 Game CommentsSeptember 2005 » Bamboozle


Game 142: September 11, 2005
Red Sox (83-59), 0
Yankees (80-62), 1
L: Tim Wakefield (15-11)
W: Randy Johnson (14-8)
SW (Supporting Win): Jason Giambi (innumerable, but pharmacologically aided)
H: Tom Gordon (29)
S: Mariano Rivera (37)

3 games ahead in the division

1 game losing streak

The New York Yankees have a roster full of charlatans and fakes. In the 1st inning Alex Rodriguez unneccessarily dove into the stands going after a foul ball hit by Johnny Damon. Jason Giambi hit a four-bagger in the home half of the 1st for the only score of the game.

Isn’t it miraculous how Giambi has come back from being on the brink of being forced to the minor leagues? There are performance enhancing substances that are undetectable, and even more that can elude MLB’s detection because they do not require a blood test.

Giambi probably couldn’t face the prospect of disappointing his teammates. He’s exactly the type of guy that would just go along with an unscrupulous trainer’s suggestions to improve his performance through illicit means. That is not to say that Giambi is not culpable or doesn’t derive benefit from playing better. He at least didn’t completely shield himself within a cloak of legalese and even made a half-hearted attempt at an apology, which I lampooned back in February. But it sticks in my craw to have the team I cheer for lose to a cheater.

Wakefield pitched his second complete game loss against the Yankees this season; the other was on July 17th. He allowed only 3 hits and one ill-earned home run with 1 walk and 12 strikeouts to surpass his career high of 11 strikeouts earned on August 7th. It’s been quite a year for Wakefield on and off the field, as he was recently nominated by his team for the Roberto Clemente Award for the 6th year in a row and the 7th time overall.

The knuckleballer was nails in the 3rd inning in particular. After striking out John Flaherty, Bubba Crosby tripled to right field on a ball that Kevin Millar was unable to catch up to as it flew overhead. Wakefield mowed down Derek Jeter and Robinson Cano with 4 pitches each.

Similarly, in the 6th inning the Red Sox righty struck out Jeter but then allowed Cano to double on a line drive into right field. Wakefield buckled down to strike out Giambi and Rodriguez and not permit a run.

Shockingly, Joe Torre didn’t bring out Johnson in the 8th inning. Later we would find out that the lanky lefty had tweaked a muscle to preclude his pitching a complete game. This made the 8th and 9th innings more exciting than necessary. Tom Gordon, a former starter in Kansas City, was brought in to set up Mariano Rivera.

Tony Graffanino led off the 8th with a single to right field. Adam Stern pinch ran for the Boston second baseman, but was quickly erased. Doug Mirabelli’s infield pop fly was not caught by the entire bevy of Yankee infielders, but the ball hopped right toward Rodriguez so that he could throw to second base and get the force play. David Ortiz batted in place of Gabe Kapler and walked on 7 pitches from Rivera. Terry Francona brought Alex Cora pinch run for Ortiz, apparently thinking that he could push Mirabelli from behind as he caught up with his backup backstop on the basepaths. Damon starched a 3-2 count liner to right field that was just foul of the right field line and ended his monumental 11-pitch at bat by grounded out to first base.

Edgar Renteria nearly decapitated Rivera with a scorching comebacker on the very first pitch he saw. Trot Nixon pinch hit for Kevin Youkilis but merely grounded out to first. Ramirez sparked hope with his 6-pitch walk and Millar stoked the flame with his single to center field. John Olerud batted in place of Alejandro Machado, but struck out swinging.

The Red Sox didn’t win the series, but I would mark this game down as a moral victory for multiple reasons.


Funny, because I would've totally had the one word name for this game be "Asterisk"

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