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Home » August 2007 Game CommentsAugust 2007 » Forthcoming


Game 126: August 21, 2007
WinRed Sox 8 W: Jon Lester (2-0)
H: Manny Delcarmen (7)
H: Hideki Okajima (23)
S: Jonathan Papelbon (30)
76-50, 2 game winning streak
26-11-5 series record
Devil Rays 6 L: Andy Sonnanstine (2-9) 47-78, 2 game losing streak
10-26-5 series record
Highlights: I rarely delight in the suffering of others unless it is truly deserved, so observing carnage visited upon the Yankees in California was exquisitely satisfying. A tip of the hat to Garret Anderson, who up until his 10-RBI detonation last night was doing his best Bernie Williams ca. 2006 impersonation. I wish I could buy David Ortiz’s Mercedes Benz SL65 AMG and present it to Anderson. The West Coast combustion and Raymond assailing Remy and Orsillo with all manner of weaponry (Silly String, a plush rat on a string, baseballs) made for a thoroughly enjoyable evening.

The Wily Mo Peña three-way trade was finalized yesterday. Chris Carter did indeed get traded to the Nationals (for right-handed pitcher Emiliano Fruto) who then flipped the left-handed first baseman to the Red Sox. Carter was assigned to the Pawtucket Red Sox and will likely get called up when rosters expand.

This trade aided me greatly in the addictive franchise league I’ve written about. I’m the general manager of the Diamondbacks, so week after week I’d watch Carter crush the ball for the Tucson Sidewinders and patiently wait for him to be moved so that he would have a chance to emerge from under the shadow of Conor Jackson. (If anyone is interested in lurking on the league’s site, e-mail me and I can issue a guest account.)

I think the real-life Diamondbacks did right by him as he’ll be moving from one division leader to another. Carter produced at all levels, maintaining his power with an acceptable K/BB rate. There are questions about his defensive ability and he isn’t as flexible a bench player as Eric Hinske, but Hinske’s ceiling has likely been seen while Carter’s has not yet been glimpsed.

Once again the Red Sox secured a win against a team they should get the better of, but unlike the series opener the Devil Rays made a game of it.

Jon Lester is the smartest pitcher in the majors not because of his vast knowledge or intensive preparation but because he found a way to get out of meetings. In the pre-game show John Farrell talked about how Lester overemphasized the minutiae of hitters rather than pitching his own game. So, Lester was told he didn’t have to attend pitchers’ meetings.

Coming soon, a motivational and business management book by Lester on how he survived cancer and then broke out of the everyday doldrums of professional life.

He would go on a speaking tour with Carlos Peña, another player who overcame odds to become a productive major leaguer and also had a book to sell. They’d replay a clip of Lester relinquishing the two-run homer in the first. “Sure, Carlos got his knocks off me back when we were young,” Lester would boom from behind the podium, carrying more of a paunch but a few less hairs, to a gathering of white collar workers seeking inspiration. “But does he have one of these?” Lester would ask as he raised his fist to show a championship ring.

Jonathan Papelbon would join them when he wasn’t hunting moose and describe how he was the first Red Sox player to notch 30 saves in multiple seasons with Boston thanks to his slutter, a cross between a slider and a cut fastball.

“But enough of Pap’s night life,” Lester would break in.

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