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Home » July 2008 Game CommentsJuly 2008 » Furukauntobyō [フルカウント病]

Furukauntobyō [フルカウント病]

Game 102: July 22, 2008
WinRed Sox 4 W: Daisuke Matsuzaka (11-1)
H: Hideki Okajima (18)
S: Jonathan Papelbon (30)
59-43, 2 game winning streak
Mariners 2 L: R.A. Dickey (2-5) 38-62, 4 game losing streak
Highlights: There’s a sarcastic term for pitchers who get to full counts too often, フルカウント病, comprised of katakana for “full count” with the kanji for illness tacked on at the end. The English equivalent would be “full count-itis,” a malady that Matsuzaka has suffered from time to time this season. On Tuesday night, however, the hurler reached 3-2 just twice: against Jose Vidro in the fourth, which would result in a single, and in the fifth against Worcester-born Bryan LaHair, which ended in a ground out to second.

Daisuke Matsuzaka also seems to have had a base on ball-orectomy, as he allowed half as many walks as strikeouts. His success can be partially attributed to the futility of Seattle’s offense, but Matsuzaka seemed to making a conscious effort not to nibble.

J.D. Drew lofted a ball over the agile leap of Ichiro Suzuki in the first for an early lead. Jacoby Ellsbury and Dustin Pedroia led another charge in the fifth with consecutive singles. The floundering Ellsbury had reached with a bunt single, which garnered much appreciation from Jerry Remy. The power that the center fielder flashed in his debut season seemed to have all but abandoned him, requiring that the leadoff hitter find other ways to get on base. Pedroia continued to rake, his single nicking the left field line on its trip to Raul Ibanez’s glove.

Drew sacrificed in Ellsbury while Mike Lowell doubled over Ibanez’s head to plate Pedroia. Manny Ramirez singled on a rope to left and dashed to third on Lowell’s two-bagger, putting him into position to score on Jed Lowrie’s sac fly to left.

Those runs proved crucial as Matsuzaka’s strength ebbed in the eighth and he was unable to fend off Bryan LaHair, Suzuki, and Jose Lopez, who combined for two runs. Hideki Okajima took the mound with a man on base; his baffling array of pitches confounded the Mariners and staunched the rally. Jonathan Papelbon took over in the ninth and provided a drama-free save.

I spent much of the game providing instant message commentary to Jere’s (of the renown A Red Sox from Pinstripe Territory) YouCastr broadcast, where he goes by the handle of GedMan, naturally. I may join him next week and everyone is welcome. I suspect it will be something like “Mystery Science Theater 3000” meets The Onion with a touch of Rap Replinger, if I may inflate our potential audience’s expectations.

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