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Home » June 2008 Game CommentsJune 2008 » Pinioned


Game 60: June 2, 2008
Red Sox 3 BS, L: Hideki Okajima (5, 1-1) 35-25, 1 game losing streak
WinOrioles 6 W: Jim Johnson (1-2)
S: George Sherrill (18)
27-29, 1 game winning streak
Highlights: Tim Wakefield was in line for his fourth win of the season until Okajima folded in the eighth. I want to say it was uncharacteristic of the set-up man, but lately Okajima has been vulnerable, leaving his fastball up and lacking the bite on his oki doki. With the loss and the news of David Ortiz being placed on the disabled list because of a partially torn extensor carpi ulnaris (sheath surrounding a tendon) in his left wrist, the threadbare Red Sox trod home to face the first-place Tampa Bay Rays. Chris Carter, the first baseman/designated hitter acquired from the Nationals with the Wily Mo Peña trade, was called up to take Ortiz’s spot and Justin Masterson replaced Jeff Bailey.

Nick Markakis, Melvin Mora, and Aubrey Huff singled consecutively in the eighth to load the bases. Miraculously Kevin Millar managed to loft a ball to the opposite field to knot the score at 3-3. Luke Scott grounded to Kevin Youkilis who thought about getting the out at first but instead bolted towards home and faked a throw to Kevin Cash, freezing Mora and making him the third Kevin mentioned in this paragraph.

Youkilis chased Mora down for the second out. The Red Sox were on the verge of escaping the inning without further damage, but Hideki Okajima was allergic to the strike zone and Ramon Hernandez was issued a base on balls to load the bases for the second time in the inning.

Adam Jones arced a ball just out the grasp of Jacoby Ellsbury, allowing the go-ahead runs and two insurance scores to cross the dish. Ellsbury seemed to mistime his leap; a better jump or route may have ended the inning.

The evening wasn’t a total loss. There was yet another Manny Ramirez home run to the opposite field in the sixth and Dave Trembley pulled an Earl Weaver in the bottom of the third. Home plate umpire Alfonso Marquez had enough of Trembley’s chirping and dismissed the manager when he was caviling in his dugout, so Trembley came out to get his money’s worth, as they say.

He pointedly dragged his forefinger down the sides of the batter box. “This is not a strike.” Drag. “This is not a strike.” A fair showing, but the city of Baltimore has seen better.

Jerry Remy reminisced about Weaver’s tirades. Jim Palmer famously said, “The only thing that Earl knows about pitching is he couldn’t hit it.” Of course Weaver would have the temerity to come out and talk to Palmer in trouble spots; Remy said Palmer would stand on the rubber, forcing Weaver to be even further dwarfed by having to stand on the slope of the mound.

Don Orsillo had his own memories of Weaver, a frequent voyager on the Red Sox cruises. Even as a respected elder statesman of the game Weaver would kvetch about the calls made during the annual ping pong tournament.

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