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Home » May 2009 Game CommentsMay 2009 » Incursion


Game 27: May 5, 2009
WinRed Sox7
W: Josh Beckett (3-2)
H: Hideki Okajima (4)
17-10, 2 game winning streak
L: Joba Chamberlain (1-1)
13-13, 3 game losing streak
Highlights: I watched the Red Sox complete their sweep of the Yankees in New Jersey. For most of the game I was at Tiff’s in Pinebrook; Tiff’s is a small chain of sports bars co-owned by Tony Siragusa. I was happy to watch the game even though it was on YES because Michael Kay and company’s voices were drowned out by a motley assortment of songs blaring out of an internet jukebox.

So this was a small taste of what Jere went through living in the Yankeeish part of Connecticut and New York City. I felt somewhat safer in numbers because at my table were two New Englanders. We would be a barbican waving the nation’s flag in the midst of enemy territory.

My friend B proudly wore his Red Sox cap with baby blue “B” logo. Since it wasn’t the traditional red, from a distance one couldn’t be sure that it was a Red Sox cap. My friend has a loud voice, however, so even from far away you could tell which team he was cheering for.

At the bar a pair of guys who looked similar except for the color of their polo shirts craned their necks to watch Dustin Pedroia single past a diving Derek Jeter in the first inning. “He should get to that!” one exclaimed. The other shook his head in disgust. Have they watched a Yankees within the last three years?

“Past a diving Jeter!” intoned my friend while takings special care to adjust his cap with a flourish so that everyone could see the insignia embroidered on its crown. Red Sox fans + Yankees fans + alcohol + Cinco de Mayo + Jason Bay first inning three-run homer = potential for things to get out of hand early.

There was a female fan with a satin navy jacket with the NY logo. She was quiet until another female Yankee fan showed up. The second fan was loud and boisterous, stirring up the zeal of her compatriots. David Ortiz took the box with runners on first and second but by the time he lined a single to center Jacoby Ellsbury had swiped third. Pedroia scored from first on Ortiz’s single.

“Shrek! I hate him!” screeched the rabble-rouser. The polo shirt twins spoke animatedly to one another, loud enough so that we could overhear the word “steroids.”

“Yeah, nothing like accusing another team about steroids when your own club is full of them,” B’s voice carried across the establishment. Another flourish with the hat but this time punctuated by a glare.

My other friend glanced across the bar to size Rabble-rouser up. “Actually, she looks like Shrek’s wife.” From that point forward Rabble-rouser was dubbed Fiona.

Fiona would have Tourrette-like bursts of obscenity while watching the game, much like I would do in the privacy of my home. At one point we heard her ranting about a “fake, no-good cheater.”

“Are you talking about A-Rod?” asked B in a tone as neutral as Switzerland.

Fiona wanted to strike back but because B asked his question without provocation Fiona would have looked (more) insane. “He doesn’t mean anything to me,” she replied. “I was talking about Favre.”

Sure you were, Fiona.

B also got in a few digs at Joba Chamberlain. When Pedroia got an infield hit because Chamberlain failed to field the ball cleanly, B attributed Chamberlain’s jitters and his intemperate reaction at lasting 5⅔ innings to meth.

Josh Beckett surrendered a three-run bomb to Johnny Damon to render the score 4-3 in the third. The Red Sox pitcher settled down to strike out Mark Teixeira, and Mike Lowell helped out the hurler with a superlative catch. The third baseman looked almost completely recovered when he made a running grab of Hideki Matsui’s pop out into the no-man’s land between the infield’s outermost range and the outfield.

Defensive gems were not limited to the infield. In the fourth the Red Sox put on an outfielding clinic for the sparse crowd. Pedroia couldn’t glove Melky Cabrera’s liner but did not give up on the play. J.D. Drew pursued the ball into the right field corner and retrieved it with a bare hand so that he could fire it back to the infield. He hit Pedroia perfectly and the second baseman pivoted as if he were turning a double play and threw to Lowell for the second out of the inning.

It took just three Red Sox pitchers to keep the Yankees in check while the home team went through twice as many pitchers just to lose 7-3.

We came, we saw, we conquered.

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