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Home » June 2010 Game CommentsJune 2010 » Late Arrivals

Late Arrivals

I watched what I could of the United States’ final group round match against Algeria. When Landon Donovan fired the winning goal to the back of the net I let out an involuntary whoop. I thought I contained myself; I couldn’t tell how loud I was because I had my earbuds firmly ensconced. Two people came running to my cube wondering if I was okay.

“The US just scored a goal!” I exclaimed, my voice shaking with excitement and relief. “They’re going to the knockout round!”

I am by no means a soccer maven, although I do know the word “soccer” originated in England and is an abbreviation of “association football,” described as such to differentiate it from “rugby football,” which is also called “rugger.” But I knew more than those particular people I alarmed, so I ended up having to explain as best I could why America would advance but that their opponent was not yet determined.

Today two different people, both who sit about 50 feet away from me, said they heard “somebody” yell when the United States went ahead. I sheepishly admitted it was me.

Later that evening I yelled for a different reason. Jonathan Papelbon blew his second save of the season in a game that would have kept his team in step with the Rays for the American League Wild Card.

Most frustrating of all is that the Red Sox battled back from trailing 5-2 at the end of the fifth to leading 6-5 in the sixth. Darnell McDonald, who has hopefully chalked up enough stats to prove he’s not a quadruple-A player, knocked in Boston’s only circuit clout off Ubaldo Jimenez, for crying out loud. The two-run shot tied the game 5-5. John Lackey improbably doubled to the left-center gap off Jimenez.

This is no slouch starter for the Rockies. He pitched a no-hitter against the Braves on April 17, 2010, a feat that has been somewhat eclipsed by the perfect games by Dallas Braden, Roy Halladay, and Armando Galarraga. Until last night Jimenez had not allowed more than three earned runs in a game; in fact, he only allowed seven earned runs in April and May combined.

Papelbon’s arm wasn’t impressive but Josh Reddick’s was. The right fielder impressively hosed Ian Stewart at second when the Rockies third baseman tried to stretch a single into a double to lead off the fourth inning. Clint Barmes followed that play with a ringing double to left; the outfield assist was invaluable to keeping Colorado within reach.

Mercifully the Rockies won the game before the Red Sox limped into extra innings. Boston is an unimpressive 1-7 in extra frames and games west of the Mississippi start late enough as is. Thanks for the additional hour or so of sleep, Jason Giambi.

Game 73: June 23, 2010
Red Sox
6H: Daniel Bard (16)
BS, L: Jonathan Papelbon (2, 2-4)
2B: Daniel Nava – 2 (7), John Lackey (1)
HR: Darnell McDonald (4)
8W: Manuel Corpas (2-4)
2B: Carlos Gonzalez (9), Clint Barmes (16)
3B: Seth Smith (4)
HR: Miguel Olivo (10), Ian Stewart (8), Jason Giambi (3)

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