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Entries from Empyreal Environs tagged with “Penny (Brad)”


Game 121: August 21, 2009 Yankees20W: Andy Pettitte (10-6)77-45, 3 game winning streak Red Sox11L: Brad Penny (7-8)69-52, 1 game losing streak Highlights: I thought seeing the Fenway hawk in the pregame show was a good omen. It wasn’t, and Penny wasn’t lucky. I joined Citizens for Retiring the Penny; I hope Terry Francona and Theo Epstein follow. Everything that you need to know about this game: Jacoby Ellsbury tied Tommy Harper’s record of 54 steals in a season in a Red Sox uniform in the first inning. Notably it was against Andy Pettitte, who is known for having the best pickoff move in the game today. Jerry Remy returned to the booth. Getting married in Fenway during a game is a great idea in theory. In practice, you may end up having this momentous occasion at the same time as an atrocious game such as this. For some reason none of the Yankee batters are wearing imprints of baseball stitches on their torsos. The visiting hitters were allowed to abuse the Boston pitching staff with no repercussions. Even with his diminished velocity a pitcher like Pedro Martinez would have knocked back any Bronx Bomber that hung over his part...


Game 111: August 10, 2009 Tigers5L: Zach Miner (5-2)59-52, 1 game losing streak Red Sox6BS: Manny Delcarmen (2)W: Ramon Ramirez (6-3)S: Jonathan Papelbon (28)63-48, 1 game winning streak Highlights: The Bad Fan award goes the folks near home plate who got in Victor Martinez’s way on Marcus Thames’s pop up in foul territory. Although Martinez held on to get the second out of the first inning, he should not have had to reach through a thicket of outstretched arms to do so. So this is what a win feels like. What working the count looks like. What scoring runs in multiple innings looks like. What recovering from a bad relief outing looks like. What a clean save looks like. The local nine got reacquainted with Fenway and with their former selves, snapping their six-game losing streak.Brad Penny pitched he usually does: competent but not spectacular. He’ll give up 4 to 6 runs a game; it’s up to the batters to get 5 to 7 runs with Penny on the bump.Dustin Pedroia ignited his team with a two-run homer in the first. So inspiring was Pedroia’s circuit clout it even helped Nick Green clear the left field wall to kick off...


Game 75: June 28, 2009 Red Sox1L: Brad Penny (6-3)46-29, 1 game losing streak Braves2W: Tommy Hanson (4-0)H: Eric O’Flaherty (7)H: Peter Moylan (11)H: Rafael Soriano (6)S: Mike Gonzalez (9)35-40, 1 game winning streak Highlights: Mmmbop, ba duba dop. Please tell me this is Hanson’s mound music. He was 10 when the song hit number one. The Little Leaguers that took over the NESN studio wouldn’t remember this tune. Tom Caron asked a couple of the tykes who their favorite players were. Not surprisingly, one stripling named Dustin Pedroia. Because of the second baseman’s spunk, his glove, his bat, his accolades? Nope. Because Dustin rhymes with Justin, his own name. Tommy Hanson took a page out of Brad Penny’s book and pitched impressively despite flu-like symptoms. If Hanson maintains this pace he could be named the Rookie of the Year. That Boston lost to an outstanding first-year player and not just AAAA cannon fodder removes some of the sting of this loss. He may have been sick, but so was his stuff.Clay Buchholz’s voodoo doll seemed to work at first. Brad Penny clutched his wrist after a pitch, prompting Paul Lessard and Terry Francona to rush to his side. But...


Game 65: June 17, 2009 Marlins1L: Andrew Miller (2-3)32-35, 2 game losing streak Red Sox6W: Brad Penny (6-2)H: Justin Masterson (3)H: Hideki Okajima (12)40-25, 2 game winning streak Highlights: The 38,196 fans at Fenway were feted by the Boston Red Sox for 500 straight sold out games. The streak started on May 15, 2003 in a game against the Rangers that featured an eighth inning comeback win. There have been 175 players rostered since that day. David Ortiz played in the most games (449) and hit the most homers (109). Tim Wakefield had the most wins with 49, appropriately enough. Penny added to the festivities by delivering his 100th win, soldiering through a Jeremy Hermida comebacker in the first that nearly took his heard off. Putting a dampener on the merriment was official scorer Charles Scoggins’s ruling that Jacoby Ellsbury erred on Jorge Cantu’s fly ball to left-center. Most other center fielders don’t have the wheels to get to the ball to have the chance to miss the catch, and for that reason Ellsbury’s streak of 232 games and 554 chances ended in the first inning. I’ve written about Scoggins before and I respect his acumen, but I think in...


Game 60: June 11, 2009 Yankees3L: C.C. Sabathia (5-4)BS: Alfredo Aceves (1)34-26, 3 game losing streak Red Sox4BS: Manny Delcarmen (1)W: Takashi Saito (1-0)S: Jonathan Papelbon (16)36-24, 3 game winning streak Highlights: When I looked at the match-ups for this Red Sox/Yankees series this was the game that I marked down as a loss. Brady Penny’s trade value hopefully skyrocketed with his 6 innings of shutout ball. He must like pitching here, even though Delcarmen blew what would have been his 100th win. To be a good teammate Penny plunked Alex Rodriguez in the back in the first inning with two out and the count 1-1. That makes the hit by pitch contest 9-3 in the Yankees’ favor. Alex Rodriguez didn’t take his base immediately. He made his way to the mound but must have noticed out of the corner of his eye that no one came out of the dugout to defend him. So, he made as if he were a good Samaritan and was recovering the ball that nailed in the back. After calling a meeting, the umpiring crew determined that Brad Penny beaned Rodriguez intentionally and both dugouts were warned.David Ortiz crushed the first pitch he saw...


Game 50: May 30, 2009 Red Sox3L: Ramon Ramirez (4-2)28-22, 2 game losing streak Blue Jays5W: Brian Tallet (3-3)H: Brandon League (3)S: Scott Downs (7)29-23, 2 game winning streak Highlights: The first two games of this series have been like Groundhog Day in baseball format. Seven innings pitched by the Blue Jays starter? Check. Eighth inning with one strikeout by League? Check. Perfect save by Downs? Check. Jason Varitek didn’t homer twice, but Rocco Baldelli smashed his second home run of the season with Varitek on base. Unfortunately, Rocco Baldelli didn’t complete the game. In the fifth he slid into the wall bordering the right field stands in pursuit of Aaron Hill’s fly ball into foul territory and banged up his surgically-repaired knee, but x-rays came back negative. Too bad; I was looking forward to another withering glance from Baldelli to Jacoby Ellsbury should the latter attempt to poach a put-out as he did in the fourth inning.Baldelli was ball-hawking in center before Ellsbury was drafted by the Red Sox. I wonder, as Baldelli probably wonders, what might have been if his career hadn’t been waylaid by injury and illness. I think if he fully recovers that the former Ray...


Game 45: May 25, 2009 Red Sox6W: Brad Penny (5-1)H: Ramon Ramirez (7)H: Hideki Okajima (7)S: Jonathan Papelbon (12)27-18, 2 game winning streak Twins5L: Francisco Liriano (2-6)22-24, 1 game losing streak Highlights: Apparently Penny was vomiting between innings. Bulimia is not the answer, Brad! Brad Penny’s regurgitation wasn’t about his body image but a sinus infection that impacted his stomach. I had the impression that Penny was something of a softie because of his frequent visits to the disability list, but beneath his squishy midsection are some steely guts.For some reason NESN played a remake of “Making Our Dreams Come True” by Those Darn Accordions. Either they didn’t realize “Laverne and Shirley” was set in Milwaukee rather than Minneapolis or they were paying homage to the Border Battle that wrapped up Sunday evening.It was adorable seeing the heated rivalry between the cheeseheads and the, um, lakeheads. A few folks got into a dispute about whose green bean casserole was better. The battle was hard-fought. Famous people from Wisconsin: Orson Wells, Georgia O’Keefe, Les Paul, Liberace, Thorstein Veblen. Minnesota: Terry Gilliam, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Bob Dylan, Judy Garland, Charles and William Mayo. Sorry, Wisconsin, but Minnesota is superior because “Mystery Science...


Game 20: April 28, 2009 Red Sox8BS: Takashi Saito (1)L: Javier Lopez (0-2)13-7, 1 game losing streak Indians9W: Kerry Wood (1-1)8-13, 1 game winning streak Highlights: In the entry under scapegoat, there is a cross reference: see Lopez, Javier. As hideous as his game- and streak-ending error was, it paled in comparison to Brad Penny’s performance: 2⅔ innings, 7 hits, 7 runs, 4 earned, 3 walks, 1 strikeout, 1 home run, and he lost the lead three times. Amazingly enough, Anthony Reyes’s line was worse. This is a family blog, however, so I won’t expose the tender sensibilities of the young and impressionable to his line. As early as 2004 William Safire was calling for the obsoletion of the penny. That year the 26-year old Brad Penny pitched between Florida and Los Angeles as he, Hee Seop Choi, and Bill Murphy were traded to the Dodgers for Juan Encarnacion, Paul Lo Duca, and Guillermo Mota. In the first inning of his second start in Dodger blue Penny injured his arm. He rehabbed and returned in September for just three more innings before he found himself on the disabled list again. For the Dodgers that season he started three games and...


Game 15: April 22, 2009 Twins3L: Francisco Liriano (0-4)7-9, 2 game losing streak Red Sox7W: Brad Penny (2-0)9-6, 7 game winning streak Highlights: Dave Roberts brings happiness and and good fortune wherever he goes. He visited Fenway yesterday, Terry Francona’s birthday, to throw out the ceremonial first pitch. His stopover coincided with the Red Sox’s second series sweep of the season and the team’s 16th sweep of doubleheader since its inception. Francona so clearly adores Roberts, as do we all. He is so loved he didn’t even have to don the minty green Earth Day uniforms. That uniform looks familiar.Ah yes, we saw those uniforms in the World Baseball Classic worn by our neighbors to the south. Boston’s version had a recycling logo on the right sleeve and clover emblem on the left. Even Jason Varitek’s armor was green.Kevin Youkilis covers both corner infield positions with ease. He spelled Mike Lowell at third while the recently recalled Jeff Bailey played first. Nick Punto thought he led off the third with a line shot double, but Youkilis’s glove had other ideas. There is no one else in the league who can transfer Gold Glove skills across the diamond like Youkilis. Most...


Game 10: April 17, 2009 Orioles8L: Danys Baez (0-1)6-4, 2 game losing streak Red Sox10W: Ramon Ramirez (1-0)H: Hideki Okajima (1)S: Jonathan Papelbon (3)4-6, 2 game winning streak Highlights: No lead is safe in Fenway, particularly if your name is Jeremy Guthrie. The Orioles pitcher was the victim of the 2007 Mother’s Day Miracle (or Massacre, from his point of view). Last night he and his bullpen failed to hold a seven-run lead, breaking the curse of the alternate jerseys. Corner outfielders Jason Bay and J.D. Drew both smashed four-baggers into the visitors’ bullpen, countering Nick Markakis’s 5 RBI evening. Who did Brady Penny remind you more of, Carl Pavano (rocked by the Rangers on April 9th of this year for 9 earned runs and 2 home runs) or Jeff Suppan (7 earned runs and 3 homers in his August 5, 2003 Fenway start against the Angels)? Theo Epstein and his staff know full well how National League pitchers have difficulty adapting to the American League, but they had success bringing over Curt Schilling. But Penny is no Schilling, no matter what conversion rate you use.Fridays mean alternate jerseys. Last night was the first time the hanging sox were coupled...


Game 5: April 11, 2009 Red Sox5W: Brad Penny (1-0)H: Ramon Ramirez (1)S: Jonathan Papelbon (2)2-3, 1 game winning streak Angels4L: Joe Saunders (0-1)2-3, 1 game losing streak Highlights: I analyzed the quartet of color analysts for Friday’s games, but there are not enough words in all the languages of the world to describe the lackluster performance of the Fox broadcasters yesterday. They confused Jason Bay with Rocco Baldelli and mixed up Mike Lowell and Jed Lowrie. Left and right fielders with “B” names, names that start with “L” next to each other in the batting order — way too confusing for Fox. Mike Scioscia’s team started the game with their usual small ball strategy. The poster child of that school of baseball, Chone Figgins, walked to lead off the bottom of the first, swiped second, and scored on two ground outs. Somewhere, Ty Cobb, Tony LaRussa, and Joe Morgan glowed at the thought of runs (or more correctly, a single run) being manufactured. It only cost two outs. All of the Red Sox runs were knocked in by homers, a fact that would make Earl Weaver smile. Mike Lowell jacked a two-run home run in the fifth that was...

Make Some Cents

The Red Sox inked Brad Penny to a one-year, $5 million deal and also signed Josh Bard to a season’s worth of work for $1.6 million. In one day the Red Sox were able to sign two players whose given and family names are also words. (Yes, “brad” is a word.) Not only that: “Brad” is an anagram of “Bard.” I’m about as excited about these signings as I was the watershed David Wells acquisition of 2005, but sadly Penny and Bard combined have neither Wells’s soundbite potential nor girth. Penny’s intrigue does include having bedded Alyssa Milano, but if you’re an MLB player that is about as difficult as falling out of boat and getting wet....


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