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Home » July 2008 Game CommentsJuly 2008 » Slight


Game 90: July 5, 2008
Red Sox 1 L: Justin Masterson 52-38, 1 game losing streak
WinYankees 2 W: Mike Mussina (11-6)
H: Jose Veras (5)
H: Kyle Farnsworth (10)
S: Mariano Rivera (23)
46-42, 1 game winning streak
Highlights: Joe Girardi’s motivational tactics made an impact at last. His team held the Red Sox at bay until the top of the ninth. The teams tied the record for combined hit batsmen with seven (Masterson hit Alex Rodriguez, Robinson Cano, and Jose Molina; Mussina plunked Ramirez twice; and Rivera hit Ramirez and Kevin Youkilis).

In retrospect, the game was decided in the first inning. Dustin Pedroia, cocksure as always, attempted to stretch his single to left into a double. Perhaps the infielder forgot that it wasn’t Johnny Damon who roamed that portion of the outfield but Brett Gardner.

The rookie Gardner isn’t noodle-armed like the veteran he replaced, so Pedroia was out at second easily. J.D. Drew smacked a double to right-center which could have plated Peewee.

Mike Mussina’s approach would have been different were he pitching from a deficit in his six innings of work. He already had to grapple with Kerwin Danley’s inconsistent strike zone, making the old-timer even more tetchy than usual.

But because of Pedroia’s foolhardiness and a second-inning RBI single by Melky Cabrera, Mussina and his relievers had the luxury of the lead, slight as it was. Gardner contributed on the offensive side by tacking on a run in the sixth with his sacrifice fly to his counterpart Jacoby Ellsbury.

For the fourth year in a row Kyle Farnsworth reached double digits in holds, just like his IQ. Jose Veras secured his fifth hold of the year, equaling the number of years his by which his birth certificate was adjusted.

Mariano Rivera nearly blew his first save of 2008 but for the weak pop out by Jason Varitek bookended by whiffs by Coco Crisp and Julio Lugo. I guess Rivera didn’t want to be cheered at Fenway like he was at Opening Day in 2005.

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