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Home » June 2008 Game CommentsJune 2008 » Tatakitsubusu [叩き潰す]

Tatakitsubusu [叩き潰す]

Game 77: June 21, 2008
WinCardinals 9 W: Mitchell Boggs (2-0) 44-32, 2 game winning streak
Red Sox 3 L: Daisuke Matsuzaka (8-1) 46-31, 2 game losing streak
Highlights: The first symbol in the verb tatakitusbusu means strike, beat, hit, thrash, and criticize while the third ideogram stands for crush, smash, break, and dissipate. Such words almost encapsulate Matsuzaka’s return to the mound after his stint on the disabled list. It reminded me of David Wells’s return on July 31, 2006; the pitcher had declined to make rehab starts in the minors and turned in four and two-third innings of work with eight earned runs, which included two home runs. In that game the Red Sox squeaked out a victory in the bottom of the ninth with one out. David Ortiz wasn’t around to jack a three-run walk-off homer this time, however.

Chris Smith struck out Rick Ankiel, the first major league batter he faced. The bases were loaded and the score was 4-0. The recently called-up Smith sensed Ankiel’s hunger and whetted the slugger’s appetite with nibbling change-ups. Ankiel left the dish with an empty stomach.

Troy Glaus wasn’t falling for such ploys, however. The third baseman bellied up and devoured all of a hanging curveball for the fourth grand slam of his career.

J.D. Drew tacked on a solo home run in the sixth. It was a towering shot to right, high-flying and slow-falling. If runs were scored by hang time, this longball would have counted for at least five runs.

One of the few moments of levity was Dustin Pedroia falling down out of the box on his ground out to short. Perhaps he would have better balance if he took yoga as Tim McCarver suggested.

After witnessing the tremendous ceremonies at the opening game of this series I had predicted that the Red Sox would lose yesterday. I thought that a few of them might have been up late with the Celtics Friday night.

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