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Home » September 2006 Game CommentsSeptember 2006 » Stifled


Game 140: September 6, 2006
White Sox (80-59), 8
Red Sox (75-65), 1
W: Jose Contreras (12-7)
L: Kyle Snyder (4-4)

Dustin Hermanson is still in the majors? The last thing I remember about him was his 2002 stint with the Red Sox where he suffered a litany of ills. You thought this year was bad; Hermanson was a one-man episode of “House” that season.

  • 4/8/02: Placed RHP Dustin Hermanson on the 15-day DL with a right groin strain, retroactive to 4/4; recalled RHP Sunny Kim from Pawtucket (AAA) to report to the Red Sox 4/9.
  • 7/13/02: Assigned RHP Dustin Hermanson on injury rehab to Pawtucket (AAA).
  • 7/20/02: Recalled RHP Dustin Hermanson from injury rehab assignment and reinstated him from the 15-day DL; optioned INF/OF Bryant Nelson to Pawtucket (AAA).
  • 7/24/02: Placed RHP Dustin Hermanson on the 15-day DL with a left elbow staph infection; recalled LHP Casey Fossum from Pawtucket (AAA).
  • 8/9/02: RHP Dustin Hermanson on injury rehab to Gulf Coast (Rookie).
  • 8/13/02: Transferred injury rehab assignment of RHP Dustin Hermanson from Gulf Coast (Rookie) to Pawtucket (AAA).
  • 8/20/02: Recalled RHP Dustin Hermanson from injury rehab assignment with Pawtucket (AAA).
  • 10/31/02: Declined the option on RHP Dustin Hermanson for 2003.
  • 12/7/02: Offered arbitration to OF Cliff Floyd; did not offer arbitration to RHP Ugueth Urbina, INF Carlos Baerga, INF Rey Sanchez, RHP Dustin Hermanson, OF Rickey Henderson, INF Tony Clark and INF Shane Andrews.

The only legacy lingering of Hermanson’s time in Boston is the clubhouse’s predilection for odd facial hair configurations.

It seems I was a bit premature with my nomination of Kyle Snyder for a spot in the 2007 rotation. Like the little girl with the little curl, when Snyder’s curve is good, it is very, very good. But when it is bad, it is horrid. Snyder lasted just two and a third innings with the White Sox ringing up five earned runs in the process. Jim Thome launched a leadoff homer into the bleachers in the second inning, and whatever supernatural force that was containing Chicago’s offense was lifted. The White Sox scored more runs in this game than both teams did in the other two games combined.

With a comfortable lead, Jose Contreras showed why he was so highly sought-after in 2003. His mythic forkball baffled the entire Red Sox offense except for Coco Crisp. The center fielder homered in the third inning for his team’s only run and accounted for three of the home team’s four hits. Alex Cora was the only other batter to solve the conundrum of Contreras.

Dustin Pedroia replaced Mark Loretta at second in the seventh inning and showed that he was learning on-the-job in the eighth. On a Chris Stewart grounder, Pedroia came off the second base bag too quickly to get the force out call of Jermaine Dye from Bruce Dreckman. Dye assumed he was out and didn’t rush to return to the keystone sack in time to beat Pedroia’s tag. I have seen Pedroia come off the base much more quickly than major leaguers do, and I wonder if it is a function of him being used a single umpire covering first and second bases, which is the norm for Triple-A. Meanwhile, Dye complacently assumed the rookie would get the neighborhood call; it was a telling combination of assumptions by the players involved.

Despite the loss, there were a few smile-inducing moments worth mentioning:

  • Remote control trucks, capable of speeds of 50 miles per hour, are now the rage in the clubhouse. David Mellor, Director of Grounds for Fenway, must be tickled by this development.
  • Mike Lowell snagged a Paul Konerko liner in the sixth to stem an extra base hit.
  • David Ortiz’s high fly ball to the façade obliterated one of ESPN’s lights.
  • Impromptu breakdancing by a fan attempting to retrieve a foul ball off the bat of Alex Cintron in the ninth.

Also, if you hadn’t seen all of the new and returning faces in the bullpen, last night would have been your chance. The Red Sox sent six pitchers to the mound: Lenny DiNardo, Craig Breslow, Bryan Corey, Craig Hansen, and Mike Burns.

Burns: Smithers, are they booing me?
Smithers: Uh, no sir. They are saying, “Boo-urns. Boo-urns.”


I'll never forget the Hermanson April '02 injury. Listening to the game on radio in the kitchen of my then new place in Danbury, CT, while washing dishes. And being psyched for him, but hearing him get injured right after we got him. Hey, I didn't say it was an exciting memory.

Hermansen actually started a game in late August/Early September of that year. It was a rain delay game, and he was pitching with the lead, so they were trying to get 5 innings in despite a pretty steady rainfall. He made a pretty sweet web gem in the game, stabbing a liner with his glove behind the back after following through on his lineup. I'm 95% certain Piney remembers this happening.

And that is my only Dustin Hermansen Red Sox memory.

My other Hermansonian memory: Realizing at one point that he looked EXACTLY like me. And saying, Holy crap, this is what it would've looked like if I'd made the Red Sox. Much later, looking at Hermanson, and even old pictures of him, I couldn't see the slightest resemblance to me. Maybe he was just wearing a Jere mask for that one day.

Note: the past three comments are funnier when spoken by the Chris Farley "remember when... that was awesome" character.

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