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Home » August 2008 Game CommentsAugust 2008 » Monarchical


Game 115: August 6, 2008
WinRed Sox 8 W: Tim Wakefield (7-8) 66-49, 2 game winning streak
Royals 2 L: Luke Hochevar (6-10) 53-62, 2 game losing streak
Highlights: The pronunciation of Hochevar’s surname borders on obscene, but his stuff is not as nasty as his name. The visitors secured a series win with J.D. Drew, Jed Lowrie, David Ortiz, and Jacoby Ellsbury driving in runs.

Jacoby Ellsbury was rewarded by Terry Francona for his improving results at the plate by being moved up from the nine-hole to seventh in the order. Ellbsury responded with a 3-for-4 showing, including homer to dead center. The three-run longball in the seventh was the ball hawk’s first dinger since June 15.

Ellsbury made a patented dash-and-dive catch in the fifth, but this one was especially remarkable as the center fielder encroached into the fringes of the infielder’s territory. He bellyflopped with Alex Cora and Jed Lowrie sprinting to the same spot and gloved his counterpart Mitch Maier’s short fly.

The camera captured Cora saying what millions of people watching the game said. “Wow.”

Even though he is one of the hottest hitters in the league, Dustin Pedroia got last night off and Cora got the chance to shake off some rust. Like Ellsbury, Jed Lowrie was recompensed for his solid production with a promotion: the shortstop moved from the seventh slot to Pedroia’s usual spot in the two-hole.

The shifting lineup created the exact number of runs as the regular lineup did the prior evening, even with an unexpected replacement. Luke Hochevar uncorked a pitch inside to Kevin Youkilis that nailed the Red Sox first baseman’s right hand in the first. Youkilis stayed in the game only to be doubled off first when Mike Lowell lined out to the pitcher.

The hand that so artfully flutters about the handle of the bat before a swing was merely contused, not broken. Youkilis will not have to be placed on the disabled list, but even if he did Sean Casey is a more than serviceable backup plan at first.

As whiffling as Youkilis’s hand and as slow as Casey rounding the bases was Tim Wakefield’s knuckleball. The Royals batters were perplexed by the eccentric pitches that Frisbeed at them; they only managed to score on a sequence of three singles in the fifth. Even in that spate of hits Kansas City needed help from their opponents’ misfortune. A passed ball with John Buck at the dish allowed two runners to move into scoring position, but otherwise Kevin Cash had as tranquil a night behind the plate as one can have when in a tandem with Wakefield.

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