Friday, October 31, 2008

2009 Baseball Hot Stove Season Kicks Off

Is Coco on the trading block?
During the final two months of the season, Coco Crisp might have elevated his trade value to an all-time high. One of Cubs GM Jim Hendry's off-season priorities is to find more lefthanded hitting. According to the Chicago Tribune: "[Lefthanded] hitters and switch-hitters who could be available include free agents Bobby Abreu and Mark Teixeira along with Brian Roberts and Coco Crisp, who may be on the trading block again."
Kotsay could be moving on

The Globe's Adam Kilgore writes that it seems likely that outfielder/first baseman Mark Kotsay will end up elsewhere. He will be a free agent for the first time, and he has indicated his desire to occupy an everyday role, something unlikely to happen with the Red Sox. Kotsay was acquired by Boston from Atlanta in late August.

Peavy is available if Sox are interested

From the Globe's Nick Cafardo's Sunday notes: "The Braves appeared to be the best fit, but GM Frank Wren is backing off Kevin Towers's demands. The Astros, Cardinals, and Brewers (perhaps the best fit) will be out there. The Sox are waiting to see whether Peavy would erase them from his no-trade list, though he's not a huge priority. Peavy was in the Padres' system when Theo Epstein and Larry Lucchino were team executives, so there's a history. The Sox would be able to satisfy San Diego's demands for low-priced players, especially a shortstop (Jed Lowrie), a center fielder (Jacoby Ellsbury or Coco Crisp), and a pitching prospect (Clay Buchholz, Michael Bowden, Justin Masterson). From the Chicago Tribune: "The Cubs are on the list of teams for which Jake Peavy will waive his no-trade clause. This doesn't look like a fit, but don't be surprised if Jim Hendry tries to put together a package that would include a swap of first basemen, Derrek Lee and Adrian Gonzalez, who is supposedly untouchable." According to the Boston Herald, the Padres have already let it be known they'll be looking for two top young pitchers and a front-line position player - preferably someone who can step in fairly soon and roam Petco Park’s large center field - in exchange for Peavy. Peavy, 27, is 86-62 with a 3.25 career ERA. He won the National League Cy Young Award in 2007 and has twice led the NL in ERA and strikeouts.

Teixeira could be a big target for Sox

The Globe's Tony Massarotti writes that according to a team source, the Red Sox already have had some internal discussion about free-agent-to-be Mark Teixeira, the most desirable hitter available on the open market and a player for which the bidding will be fierce. All signs point to a spirited run at Teixeira, a switch-hitting, slugging first baseman with the excellent defensive skills, exceptional baseball acumen, and discretionary plate discipline that Sox officials so covet. The 28-year-old Teixeira is a switch-hitter with power from both sides of the plate who has averaged 35 home runs and 118 RBIs the past five seasons. He is a two-time Gold Glove winner at first base who finished this year with more walks (97) than strikeouts (93), making him a perfect fit for the Sox in every way.

Tazawa free to pursue career in MLB; Sox interested?

Junichi Tazawa, a 22-year-old Japanese pitcher whose fastball reaches the mid-to-high 90s and who also throws a forkball and slider, was passed over by Japan's 12 professional teams in Thursday's amateur draft. He had told Japanese teams not to draft him so he could pursue a career playing in the United States. He has drawn interest from several major league teams, including the Red Sox, who scouted Tazawa when he pitched in his team to the national corporate league championship in Japan this season. Put this one in the "highly speculative" category for now.

Boras pitching Varitek to Tigers?

Is agent Scott Boras planning a game of musical chairs with his clients, one that might result in Varitek ending up as a Detroit Tiger? FoxSports' Ken Rosenthal thinks it's a possibility, writing: "Boras, according to a rival executive, is trying to sell catcher Jason Varitek to the Tigers as a replacement for another of his clients, Ivan Rodriguez. The idea is not without merit; the Tigers' lineup is strong enough to carry Varitek's declining offense, and his defense and leadership would greatly benefit their pitching staff." . . . The Globe's Adam Kilgore writes that the Red Sox and Varitek have not initiated contract discussions, which is not unusual this soon after the season, according to Boras. Boras did not offer any specific figures Varitek is aiming for, but he outlined an argument - - based on leadership and defense -- as to why Varitek is still an elite catcher. When Varitek signed his four-year contract at the end of 2004, the fourth year was a sticking point. Boras seemed to indicate that Varitek, who will turn 37 in April, will want another multiyear deal this offseason.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Phillies End 25 Years of Frustration

Ryan Howard hoists the Commissioner's Trophy after the Phillies 4-3 victory Wednesday night. Howard struggled against lefties during the World Series, but he exploded for two home runs and five RBI in his club's 10-2 Game 4 win.
With the score tied, two out in the seventh and Jason Bartlett on second, Chase Utley and Carlos Ruiz paired up for the biggest defensive play of Game 5. Utley gloved Akinori Iwamura's groundball, realized he didn't have a play at first and threw home to Ruiz, who dove to tag Bartlett.

Brad Lidge was lights-out in the postseason for the Phillies. In all, the Philadelphia closer pitched 9.1 innings, gave up one earned run, and struck out 13. He was seven-for-seven in save opportunities, including the World Series-clinching save in Game 5.

Philadelphia Phillies relief pitcher Brad Lidge (C) celebrates with his teammates after defeating the Tampa Bay Rays in Game 5 to win Major League Baseball's World Series in Philadelphia October 29, 2008

Manager - Charlie Manuel holds World Championship Trophy

October 30, 2008
Philadelphia Phillies end 25 years of hurt to win the World Series
Philadelphia Phillies win series 4-1

The city of Philadelphia erupted in celebration on Wednesday night, as its beloved Phillies won baseball’s World Series and secured the city’s first professional sporting triumph in 25 years.
The Phillies took Game Five of the best-of-seven series at home against the Tampa Bay Rays, outscoring the visitors 4-3, to win the series 4-1.

No Philadelphia team has won a national title since 1983, when the basketball 76ers won the NBA finals. It was the longest sporting drought for any of America’s biggest cities – 100 seasons of futility between Philadelphia’s four major professional franchises. When the relief finally came the fans still had to wait just a little longer – until the end of what the weather ensured was the longest game in World Series history.

The decisive game started on Monday night but was suspended after driving rain made the field unplayable, with the teams tied 2-2 after five-and-a-half innings. Plans to reconvene on Tuesday evening were shelved when rain again threatened to turn the field into a quagmire.

Related Links
Ray of light for Tampa Bay in World Series
Superstitious approach propels Tampa Bay Rays

On Wednesday, the Phillies jumped out to an early lead when play resumed in the bottom of the sixth inning but the Rays hit back in the seventh inning with a solo home run by Rocco Baldelli
In the bottom of the seventh, the Phillies drove in what turned out to be the winning run when catcher Pedro Feliz singled and Eric Bruntlett scampered home.

Cole Hamels, Philadelphia’s star pitcher, was named the Most Valuable Player of the World Series. He won the first game and, though he did not pitch on Wednesday, his tight performance in the rain on Monday was crucial to the Phillies’ success. Overall, he finished with four wins and no losses in the postseason.

Another key contribution came from Brad Lidge, the Phillies’ famed closing pitcher, who finished off the Rays’ line-up in the ninth inning, and completed a remarkable season of perfection – 48 saves in 48 attempts.

Tampa Bay had been the surprise team of the 2008 season. They finished 2007 with the worst record in baseball, but this year, led by a posse of young and largely unheard of hitters and pitchers, they ended with the best record in the regular season and breezed their way through to the World Series as champions of the American League. But in the final match-up they proved no match for the more familiar luminaries of the National League's Philadelphia.

It was the Phillies' first World Series title since 1980 and only their second in their 125-year history.

"I think when we're all old and retired and we come back, we'll get a standing ovation," Hamels said. "Just like they did for the guys who won the 1980 Series."

"It's been a long ride, I'll say that much, but we did it," Rollins, one of Hamels's team-mates, said.

"I'm very proud of our guys," Joe Maddon, the Rays manager, said. "[It was] really a truly remarkable job. We made a powerful statement. It's just the beginning."

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

MLB Fiasco! Game 5 Maddness!!!!!

Balfour v Madson as Game 5 resumes in Philadelphia

The Bud Selig Era in MLB continues its downward spiral!

A TIE in the All Star Game! Steroids! Now for the first time in history a Suspended Game in the World Series! It is all about greed in MLB! Money makes the baseball roll for MLB HQ and its Dictator Selig.

I am sick at heart that Philly and Tampa Fans were put thru the agony of watching Game 5 begin and drudge along until it was halted in the 6th inning a 2-2 tie. I am sick at heart that young people - who are the future of baseball - can NOT SEE a World Series Game, because the games begin and end soooo late!

It is time for a change. It is time for MLB and its Franchise Holders to dump[ a numb nutted Selig, who looks like he is propped up in his chair to speak.

A young and energetic person - who LOVES BASEBALL needs to be appointed Commissioner. Money IS Important - but it should not rule all!

Wake up before it is too late! Wake up before the fans wise up and begin to drift away in larger numbers than they have in the past 20 years. Baseball is not America's Pastime because the idiots that run the game refuse to identify with the fans. Fans want to see clean baseball and solid competition. The "Dream Teams" that made the 2008 World Series and their fans deserved more respect than they were afforded a couple of nights ago. Making both teams and the Philly Fans sit thru a monsoon for MONEY was a blemish that will never be erased for the face of baseball.

Be gone Bud Selig - move on!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Celtics Celebrate Banner 17!

Banner No. 17 heads for the rafters.

Following pregame introductions before each contest during the 2007-08 season, the Celtics would gather in a circle near the free-throw line in front of their bench and bounce in unison to psych themselves up for that night's game.

So it might have been a bit odd for the Celtics to find themselves forming that same circle in front of the opposing bench before Tuesday night's season-opener against the Cleveland Cavaliers at the TD Banknorth Garden.

Related content
Photos from the banner raising
Video: An emotional night

A new tradition? No, an old one.

After raising Banner No. 17 to the rafters -- a symbol of last year's NBA championship -- the Celtics formed that familiar circle beneath the banner and danced one last time in celebration as U2's "Beautiful Day" -- the same anthem of the 2001 Patriots championship team -- blared through the arena.

The pregame festivities began with a video highlight reel of last season, featuring clips from the Celtics' postseason run. When it finished, Queen's "We are the Champions" began and Celtics legends Bob Cousy and John Havlicek walked onto the court to deliver the Larry O'Brien championship trophy.

Celtics captain Paul Pierce received the trophy and placed it on a table decked with a black cloth and the championship rings in the shape of the number "17."

Flanked by the Celtics ownership group, NBA commissioner David Stern commended the Celtics before the ring presentation opened with Celtics front office and coaching staffs receiving their new diamond- and gem-studden jewelry. Head coach Doc Rivers received his ring last to deafening applause.

Each player from the 2007-08 squad was then introduced, sans the retired PJ Brown and James Posey, the lone offseason defector (New Orleans Hornets). Sam Cassell and Scot Pollard accepted in street clothes, while the rest of the Celtics wore their warmup attire.

The Big 3 brought up the rear of the line with Pierce the last to accept as cheers of "MVP!" bouncing off all walls.

As "Beautiful Day" began, the Celtics walked over to the banner lying near the top of the arc in front of the visitor's bench. Showing the same teamwork that made the Celtics successful last year, each player seemed to want to get a hand on the rope that hoisted it to the rafters, where -- as the chorus hit -- it nestled safely between a set of retired numbers and the last championship banner from 1986.

The familiar chant of "Let's Go Celtics!" poured from the crowd.
After lineup introductions from both squads, an emotional Pierce took the mic at center court and addressed the crowd.

"Sometimes you don't know if this day will ever come," said Pierce. "Dreams do come true."

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Phillies Solve Tampa Bay -- On the Brink

Philadelphia baseball fans are long-suffering. They have only one World Series victory (1980) to their credit. Tonight the Phillies led by the HR Power of Ryan Howard (2 HR's & 5RBI) and the awesome pitching of Joe Blanton - an A's castoff (who also had a HR) - took a 3-1 lead in the 2008 World Series with a 10-2 win.

Tampa has found a way to win all year long. they survived the Red Sox in the regular and post season. They came back after losing Game One of this World Series and fought hard but lost Game three.

Now they face the biggest challenge of their climb to the top of the baseball world. They are behind 3-1 in games in Philadelphia. The Phillies have not lost a past-season game at home in 2008. Their starter has not lost a play off game in 2008.

The Phillies, who led the NL in Home runs in 2008 are scorching hot and their "Bambino-like" first baseman Howard has struck two monster shots in the past two games.

All looks bleak for the Rays. They are not shining as bright as they were last Sunday when they defeated the World Champions in Game 7 at the Trop. BUT!! Their backs have been up against the wall before and they have recovered in fine fashion. Let's see what they can contrive in order to survive. Game time is 8:35PM tonight.

Power play: Howard bashing again
Phils, even Rays, knew his strong bat would return in Series
By Kevin Horan /

PHILADELPHIA -- The "MVP" chants that had been missing since late September are now flowing freely throughout Citizens Bank Park.

These accolades had been stored up over a period of 13 games, and they are finally raining down upon Ryan Howard. The Phillies first baseman smacked two homers on Sunday night to lift his team to a 10-2 win against the Rays in Game 4, putting Philadelphia one victory away from its first World Series title since 1980.

"That's the kind of stuff you dream of when you're a teenager," Howard said. "Getting to the game, obviously, you want to win, but being able to do something like that, and just to help my team win, it's a great feeling."

The Phillies relied on Howard's power and timely hitting throughout September to surge to a National League East title. The first baseman hit 11 home runs in the season's final month, complemented by a .352 batting average (31-for-88).

When the postseason started, however, the power stopped. Howard entered the World Series homerless in the playoffs, with a .258 average (8-for-31).

Rays manager Joe Maddon certainly wasn't counting Howard out. In the American League Championship Series, Maddon witnessed Red Sox slugger David Ortiz continuously struggle at the plate, only to finally break out of his slump in a big way, blasting a three-run home run in Game 5.

"I kept saying, 'I don't trust him,'" Maddon said of Ortiz. "I have not been around Ryan as often or as many times, but again, you know how good he is. Guys like that -- those big power guys -- when they hit them, it normally comes in bunches."

But it was Howard's home run in the fourth that got the barrage started.

"He's a carrier," manager Charlie Manuel said. "And a carrier is somebody that can take your team and get the big hits and knock in runs, and he can put you on your back and he can carry you. And that's one of my favorite statements."

For Howard, hearing that kind of praise and listening to the "MVP" chants is nice, but one thing, more than anything, kept him going during his 13-game homerless drought in the postseason.
"We were winning," the first baseman said. "When you get to the playoffs, it's not about individual goals or individual stats and stuff like that. It's a team effort. And the automatic thing is, you're trying to win a championship."

Saturday, October 25, 2008

This Day In Baseball History......

Orlando Hernandez (8-0, 1.90) loses his first postseason game as the Mets defeat the Yankees 4-2 with a tie-breaking, eighth inning double by Benny Agbayani.
Jackie Robinson dies of heart disease at his home in Stamford, Conn. The 53-year old Hall of Famer broke the color line playing for the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Tampa Ties the Knot!

Jason Bartlett drops a squeeze bunt in the fourth to score Cliff Floyd and give the Rays a 4-0 lead. The pitchers made it stand up, holding the Phillies to 1-for-15 with runners in scoring position.

Shining Moment for Rays
They get even with Phillies in Game 2
By Amalie Benjamin
Globe Staff / October 24, 2008

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Though B.J. Upton expected Joe Maddon to call for a safety squeeze with the not-so-fleet Cliff Floyd on third base in the fourth inning, the designated hitter wasn't so sure.

"That's all Joe," Floyd said. "When I got the sign, I was actually looking in the dugout, then I was looking at [third base coach Tom] Foley like, are you serious? But these legs still can move a little bit. The type of situation this is, I'm going to make myself move.

"Speed kills, baby."

Jason Bartlett executed the squeeze to get Floyd home with the fourth run for the Rays on their way to a 4-2 victory over the Phillies in Game 2 of the World Series before 40,843 at Tropicana Field.

It was another grind-it-out run for the Rays, belying their postseason power surge. The Rays scored their first two runs on ground outs, their third on an RBI single, and their fourth on the bunt.

So the Rays got the runs home. The Phillies did not.

When the numbers are as stark as they were after last night's game, it's difficult to understand how the Phillies won Game 1, though the pitching of Cole Hamels overcame most of Philadelphia's shortcomings.

The Phillies went 1 for 15 with runners in scoring position last night, and are 1 for 28 in the Series.

"Of course, we could not drive our runs in tonight," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said, who added it was one of Philadelphia's "sloppiest" games of the season. "I'm concerned about us hitting with guys on base, because it looks like at times we might be trying a little too hard. But we can fix that."

The Rays used a slightly abbreviated performance from James Shields (5 2/3 innings), coupled with another dazzler from David Price (2 1/3 innings to close it out), and a bounce-back game from Upton to head to Philadelphia tied at 1-1.

One night after an awful evening in which he grounded into two double plays (one with the bases loaded), struck out, and popped out in foul ground, the Rays center fielder played more like the Upton of the American League Championship Series. He began the game with a single, and scored on Evan Longoria's ground out. In the second inning, he singled to drive in Dioner Navarro to make it 3-0.

Just as they had against the Red Sox, the Rays had lost Game 1. After the ALCS opener, David Ortiz had said the Rays' faces looked different from how they looked in the regular season, implying Tampa Bay had been awed by its place in the postseason.

And, just as they had done in the ALCS, the Rays won Game 2. As the Phillies had done the night before, the Rays scored two runs in the first inning, coming on consecutive ground outs by thumpers Carlos Peña and Longoria. Each scored a run, putting the Rays up immediately behind Shields, who was attempting to extricate himself from the snickers at his "Big Game James" moniker.

"There's going to be tough situations that you have to fight through," Floyd said. "We've been in that situation before. It wasn't the norm. We lost the first game of the ALCS, so guys kind of know how to handle those situations. They didn't come in feeling all tense."

Even though he had faltered in Game 6 of the ALCS, when he had a chance to close out the series against the Sox, Shields didn't falter a second time, calling his changeup exceptional. While his teammates were providing the offense, Shields kept the Phillies off the board.

Philadelphia had its chances, though. In the second, the Phillies had two men on with none out and proceeded to deliver a pop foul to third base, a strikeout, and a line out to center. In the fourth, they had two on and one out. But designated hitter Greg Dobbs struck out swinging on a cutter and Pedro Feliz grounded out. And then there was the fifth, in which a line out to right by Chase Utley with two men on became a double play when Jayson Werth was caught off first.

In a surprising move, Rays manager Joe Maddon pulled his starter with two on and two outs in the sixth inning in favor of Dan Wheeler. After getting the first two outs of the inning, Shields allowed singles to Shane Victorino and Dobbs, leaving runners on first and third for Wheeler with a four-run lead. He quelled the threat by inducing Feliz to ground to third for a force.
And then he left the final seven outs to Price, who allowed two runs, including a solo, pinch-hit homer to Eric Bruntlett, but he found his way out. So did the Rays, evening up the series, and getting back to what they do best.

"That's what we're about, the little things," Upton said. "Small ball. We've been doing it all year. No reason to stop now."

Amalie Benjamin can be reached at

Thursday, October 23, 2008

World Series Seperated at Birth

Phillies catcher Carlos Ruiz didn't exactly tear the cover off the ball this season, hitting .219 with four home runs in 117 games for the NL champs, but he still has more pop than...Mario Lopez. The former Saved by the Bell star has hosted Miss America and Miss Universe, and has competed on Dancing with the Stars and American Gladiators. He also auditioned to host The Price is Right, but the gig went to Drew Carey.
The 2005 NL Rookie of the Year and the 2006 NL MVP, Ryan Howard notched 100 career home runs faster than any player in major league history.Michael Clarke Duncan has played a lot of bouncers and bodyguards as an actor, but his breakthrough role came as seven-footer John Coffey in the 1999 film The Green Mile.
Jayson Werth started the season as a platoon outfielder, but an injury to Shane Victorino pushed him into the lineup midway through the year. Werth responded with big offensive numbers, including a three-home-run game against the Blue Jays.Edge (Adam Copeland) is one of the most decorated tag team champions in wrestling history, with 12 WWE titles. He also has appeared on MADTv, Deal or No Deal and The Weakest Link.

ALCS MVP Matt Garzahad a 1.38 ERA and went 2-0 in the series (both times beating Boston's ace, Jon Lester). An offseason acquisition from Minnesota, Garza went 11-9 during the regular season.Eric Balfour has appeared in numerous TV series, including The O.C., The West Wing and Six Feet Under. He's perhaps best known for the role of Milo Pressman on 24.

Phillies left fielder Pat ''the bat'' Burrell hit 33 homers and drove in 86 runs this season, hitting behind Ryan Howard in Philadelphia's powerful lineup.Academy Award-nominee Ed Norton has starred as the Incredible Hulk and earned an MTV Movie Award nomination for Best Fight for his performance in Fight Club.

Phillies Cap Tampa at the Trop!

Chase Utley smashed a 2 run homer in the first for the Phillies in game One of the '08 Fall Classic at the trop last night.

The Phillies' Chase Utley is congratulated by Jayson Werth after his two-run home run. Philadelphia took Game 1 of the World Series after Cole Hamels escaped trouble to win his fourth postseason start. (Boston Globe)

Hope you took a couple of aspirin and got a good night's sleep, B.J. Upton. You must have fought off a killer headache from the nightmare of a game you had last night before a capacity crowd of 40,783 cowbell ringers at Tropicana Field. (Boston Globe)
World Series notebook Golden age in Tampa

Fans Remember Boston Braves Every October

Boston, Massachusetts
Tenant: Boston Braves Opened: August 18, 1915 First night game: May 11, 1946
Last game: September 21, 1952 Current status: Converted for soccer
Capacity: 40,000

Braves Field was the last and largest of the first wave of concrete-and-steel ballparks built between 1909 and 1915. Owner James Gaffney built a wide open ballpark conducive to inside-the-park home runs. A covered single-deck grandstand seating 18,000 wrapped around the diamond from well down each foul line. Two uncovered pavilions seating 10,000 apiece occupied the areas just past the grandstand up to the foul poles. The jury box, as it was called after a sportswriter noticed during a game that only 12 spectators were sitting in the section, seated 2,000 and was located in right field.

With the advent of the lively ball, baseball became a game of over-the-fence home runs for which Braves Field was ill equipped. So, in 1928 the fences were moved in and subsequently tweaked for years thereafter. After the Braves left in 1953, Boston University purchased the property, converted it for football and changed its name to Nickerson Field, where the B.U.

Terriers played football until 1997. Field hockey and soccer games as well as commencement ceremonies are still held there. The old right-field pavilion has been incorporated into Nickerson's seating arrangement. The left field pavilion was replaced by an arena and the grandstand was replaced by three high-rise dormitory buildings. The first base ticket office and the concrete outer wall in right and center field are still standing.

Boston Braves Fans Remember Team every October Video:

Greg Wayland, NECN: Boston, MA - Sixty years ago this month, they were in the World Series. Five years later they left Boston forever -- first for Milwaukee, then for Atlanta. But fans of the old Boston Braves remember their team every October.
The Baseball Head Says: It is great to see that those who were in Boston in 1952 remember the National League Boston braves. It is a shame that Boston is not blessed with two MLB teams. We have been robbed of seeing the greats and near greats who only pass thru NL Cities thru the years. Aaron, Mayes, Gibson, Rose, Bench and others only made passing trips thru Boston. We got robbed....plain and simple. Braves Field would be filled every day -- IF NL Baseball stayed in Bean Town

This video is vintage Boston Baseball. Hope you enjoy it. Also, here is some Boston braves trivia:

Braves Field Trivia:

*Infield grass was transplanted from the old South End Grounds (III).
*Originally, there was a ground-level scoreboard in left field.
*Prevailing winds blew straight in from center field, preventing many home runs.
*In 1915 and 1916 the Boston Red Sox played their World Series games here.
*The scoreboard was moved in 1928 to the rear of right field.
*From 1936 to April 29, 1941 the ballpark was called the Bee Hive.
*Fir trees were planted beyond the center field fence to mask smoke from the nearby railroad.
*In 1948, a 68-foot scoreboard was added in left field.
*Boston University purchased the field in the 1950s and put in a football field from the first base dugout to right-center.
*A plaque placed on the site in 1988 recounts the history of the park.
*Hosted the 1936 All-Star game.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Today In Baseball History.........



In Game 2 of the 2000 World Series, Roger Clemens throws the barrel of a shattered bat at Mike Piazza as the Met catcher runs to first. The eagerly awaited at bat, due to the Rocket's beaning of the Mets' superstar in July, results in the two players confronting one another and the emptying of both benches.


Bret Saberhagen and the Kansas City Royals beat St. Louis in seven games to claim the franchise's first World Series victory.

Sox are OVAH - Now this is what we have to watch on TV! OH MY GAWD!!!!!

Dancing with the Stars 2008-2009!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Red Sox Head Home Empty Handed But with a HUGE HEART!

The Boston Red Sox lost the ALCS last night, but showed a great deal of class in defeat. Here are Post game comments by the Sox and their manager.

(click on the above link for the interviews)

Taken from The Blog Posted by our Friend "Regular" Rob Crawford

VP of Red Sox Nation

October 20, 2008 · 4 Comments

I have two minutes to write before getting my kids ready for school, and myself ready for work. Here’s what I have to say today.

I will run into and hear from scores of people who will either say out loud, or with their eyes and body language, ”I was right to doubt them — they couldn’t pull it off after all,” or, “Turns out you were wrong to believe the Sox would come all the way back, eh? “ My response to them is the same today as it would have been if the Sox had won game 7:

“Believing isn’t about being right or wrong, it’s a way of life. And life’s a heck of a lot more fun when you expect the unreal.”

Painful Ending - The Ray Sines on Tampa Bay!

The Red Sox couldn't complete their rally from a 3-1 ALCS hole.

The Magic Runs Out!

CoCo & Dustin watch the Ray's celebrate their 3-1 victory and a trip to the World Series.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla.—Down to their last chance, the Tampa Bay Rays left no doubt they were World Series-worthy, after all.

The young Rays completed a stunning run to their first pennant, holding off the defending champion Boston Red Sox 3-1 Sunday night behind Matt Garza's masterful pitching in Game 7 of the AL championship series.

The Rays nearly let it slip away when they blew a seven-run lead late in Game 5 and lost meekly Saturday night. But when rookie David Price struck out J.D. Drew with the bases loaded to end the eighth inning, Tampa Bay showed it had plenty of resolve, too.

Baseball's doormat since starting play in 1998, the Rays were a 200-1 shot to win the World Series before the season started. Now, they'll host the Philadelphia Phillies in Game 1 Wednesday night.

Willy Aybar homered and Evan Longoria and Rocco Baldelli also drove in runs to support Garza, who limited the defending champions to Dustin Pedroia's first-inning homer and Jason Bay's one-out single in the seventh to end Boston's bid for a third pennant in five years.

Four more wins and manager Joe Maddon's bunch will become the first team to go from worst in the majors to World Series champion in just one season.

Longoria's fourth-inning double off Jon Lester erased a 1-0 lead the Red Sox took on Dustin Pedroia first-inning homer. Baldelli's single on an 0-2 pitch put the Rays ahead in the fifth after Aybar doubled and Dioner Navarro reached on an infield single.

Garza took the mound for the biggest game of his life with something, perhaps cotton balls, stuffed in his ears to help drown out the noise at sold-out Tropicana Field. He walked David Ortiz after giving up the homer, then quickly settled into a groove.

The 24-year-old right-hander struck out nine before shortstop Jason Bartlett booted Alex Cora's ground ball for an error, leading off a tense eighth.

Boston went on to load the bases when Kevin Youkilis drew a two-out walk. Price, the No. 1 pick in the 2007 draft, became the fifth Tampa Bay pitcher of the inning -- quite a spot for someone who started the year in Class A.

Drew, who capped the Game 5 rally with a ninth-inning single, struck out with a check-swing on a 97 mph fastball to end the threat. Price worked around a leadoff walk in the ninth and when pinch-hitter Jed Lowrie grounded out, the celebration began.

The Rays dropped the "Devil" from their name before the season and came out with a new identity: Gone were the laughable losers who finished last in the AL East in nine of their first 10 seasons, the snowbird specials whose quirky Tropicana Field filled with transplanted Bostonians whenever the Red Sox visited.

After splitting the first two games of the series at home, though, it was Tampa Bay that made itself at home in an opponent's ballpark, with B.J. Upton and the Rays sending shot after shot sailing over the Green Monster. In all, the Rays outscored the Red Sox 29-13 in the three games at Fenway Park, hitting 10 home runs.

But the young Rays' postseason inexperience showed in Game 5, when a normally trusty bullpen blew a 7-0 lead over the last three innings, allowing Boston to save its season with an 8-7 victory.

The Red Sox were the eighth team to rally from a 3-1 deficit to force Game 7 of an LCS, and they're the only club to do it more than once. The Red Sox also battled back in 1986, 2004 and 2007, and went on to win the World Series the last two times.

With the tarps covering nearly 5,800 seats in the upper deck removed for the second straight night, more than 40,000 fans packed the domed stadium for a rematch of the starting pitchers from Game 3, won by Tampa Bay 9-1 at Fenway Park.

Many fans wore Red Sox gear and were even more noticeable when they stood and cheered as Pedroia circled the bases after lining a pitch into the left-field stands. But there would be little for the Boston faithful to cheer the rest of the night.

No team has repeated as World Series champion since the New York Yankees won three straight from 1998-2000. That mark is safe for another year.

Notes:@ Rays senior adviser Don Zimmer, a former Red Sox manager who has six World Series rings, threw out the ceremonial first pitch.

© Copyright 2008 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast,

Friday, October 17, 2008

FRONT Page News - Sox Alive to Play Game Six at Tampa!

Red Sox take away the front pages of our GLOBE & HERALD in Boston. Even the awful fiscal crisis can't dump the Olde Town Team from the rags. The Magic at Fenway on Thursday night is exclaimed for the world to see. YES -- The Sox are alive and well and move on to play game Six at the Trop on Saturday evening.

Can You Believe It? Red Sox Win - Red Sox Win -- Thaaaaaa Red Sox WINNNNNN!!!

Red Sox right fielder J.D. Drew connected on a two-run home run in the eighth inning. The shot put the Red Sox in striking distance of the Rays, who led 7-6 after the home run.

Red Sox DH David Ortiz stroked a three run home run in the seventh inning. The shot made the score 7-4 Rays.

Red Sox players celebrated after J.D. Drew's walkoff hit in the bottom of the ninth inning kept their season alive.

The Boston Red Sox celebrated their come-from-behind victory on the field. The Red Sox were down 7-0 with two outs in the seventh inning and came back to beat the Rays 8-7 in dramatic fashion.

Being down 7-0 with 9 outs in Game 5 of the ALCS at Fenway Park tonight - facing elimination? Not a big problem for the World Champion Boston Red Sox! The Sox overcame that deficit and recorked the Tampa Bay Campaign party with a 8-7 win.

MVP Pedroia, JD Drew, Co Co Crisp and Big Pappi combined to convert tragedy into an exhilarating win for the Home Town team. This is madness - just an outrage. How can this happen so many times. the Sox were down in the ALCS in '86, '04 and '07 and constructed comebacks of the century! Can this happen again? YES!

So - The Sox and rays pack up and return to The Trop. Josh Beckett and Jon Lester have an opportunity to atone for their horrific starts this week at Fenway. Game 6 will be played on Saturday.

It Is Not OVAH!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

There is STILL HOPE on Yawkey Way Tonight!

Don Baylor and Dave Henderson (pictured) hit ninth-inning home runs in Game 5 to pull the Red Sox out of a three-run hole and spark Boston's comeback. The Red Sox won that game in extra innings to send the series back to Boston, then cruised in Games 6 and 7 by a combined score of 18-5.


In the series that exorcised "the Curse of the Bambino," the Red Sox came back from a 3 games-to-none deficit, becoming the first team in Major League history to do so. Curt Schilling's bloody sock from Game 6 is the iconic image of the series, but David Ortiz, who had walk-off hits in Games 4 and 5, and Johnny Damon, who hit two home runs in a Game 7 rout, were also heroes.


After being shut down by Jake Westbrook and Paul Byrd in Games 3 and 4, the Red Sox hammered Indians' aces C.C. Sabathia and Fausto Carmona the next two games to even the series at three. Game 7 at Fenway was close until Boston exploded for six runs in the seventh inning, sealing another trip to the World Series.

Thrilling Ride Ends for Dodgers

No one in the baseball world expected the LA Dodgers to get this far. They were .500 at the end of July and out of the running for a play off spot. Manny came to town and everything changed. The Dodgers swept the Cubs to get to the NLCS but faced the solid Phillies, who appear to be a strong foe to any American League Champ. Congratulations to the Dodgers Organization for making a great run. baseball is better for your efforts!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Phillies Win NL Pennant!

Jimmy Rollins hits a solo home run in the first inning of the National League Championship Series game five, against the Los Angeles Dodgers, at Dodger Stadium on October 15, 2008
Locals celebrate in a Philadelphia bar - The Phillies Win The Pennant!

Phillies' pitcher Cole Hamels starts game five of the NLCS at Dodger Stadium against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

All TV's at the Comcast Center in Philadelphia are on Ryan Howard and the NL Champs tonight. The Phillies defeated the LA Dodgers 5-1 tonight and advance to the 2008 World Series.

Nomah popped out to end the thing and Manny Wood came to a crashing halt in LA LA Land!

The Phillies advance for the first time since 1993 after defeateing the Brew Crew in 4 games and the Dodgers in 5. They will have to wait until a winner is determined in the Red Sox v Tampa Series. the World Series will open in the home park of the American League Champion.

Fenway Park Declared a Disaster Area

Mayor Menino and Gov. Patrick have called out the National Guard. Fenway Park and the Red Sox plans for another trip to the World Series have been designated a Disaster Zone!

The Sox have tanked three games in a row to the Tampa Bay Rays. Each game starter coughed up home run after home run to the AL East Champs, who are in charge of the ALCS 3-1 right now. Yes - the Sox came from behind in 2004 and 2007 to advance to the World Series. BUT - this is a different Red Sox team. They are playing hurt.

Beckett and Ortiz are stymied by injuries. The Captain can not hit any more. Wake and Timlin are Elderly and should stay away from a baseball forever. The loss of Mike Lowell is killing us right now. Ellsury's lack of hitting and no hits in the lead off spot during the ALCS provide no spark to an already dead lineup.

The failure of Beckett, Lester and Wakefield in their starts have sent shock-waves thru Red Sox Nation. I had the misfortune to sit thru 8 of the worst innings I have witnessed at the Old Ball park last night. I evacuated the premises and ran for cover. I was fearful the old joint would cave in on top of me as Tampa dismantled the Sox mini-dynasty right in front of my eyes.

Time might heal our wounds, but it is doubtful that the Sox can recover from a disaster of epic proportions. The 2008 ALCS may be lost. Tampa Bay might complete its destiny and make the World Series and dismantle the Phillies in a 7 game series.

Last night was ENOUGH! I will root - root - root for the home team tomorrow. I will hope that Dice K can do the job. I will pray someone in this DEAD batting order can show some pride and just meet the ball and stop complaining about balls and strikes.

My brother Jamie and my nephew Tim have my tickets for the game tomorrow. I hope they can bring our Sox some luck and wake them up.

There is always HOPE - but things look very shaky right now!!!!!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Beckett & Lester a BUST!

Jon Lester lost his first game at Fenway Park since April. He was trashed by Tampa Bay batters, who scored 5 earned runs (4 on HR's in one inning). Lester looked "off". His performance coupled with the disaster in Tampa put the Sox down 2-1 in the ALCS. Jon picked a bad night to fail to be the Sox Ace. The 9-1 Sox loss at the fens -- sent shock waves around the Baseball World.

Josh Beckett allowed 8 earned runs in the Red Sox extra inning loss on Sunday in Tampa. He was awful!!! Some -- including this writer feel that Josh has yet to recover and will not be affective IF he has another chance to pitch in the post season.

Post Game Fan Reaction:

"What was Francona thinking bring Beckett back in the 5th, he set up damn near every batter with hitters counts thru 4 innings, Tampa could have had 4 more runs before the 5th. Beckett has been mediocre all year, the move was stupid!" -- 10.11.08, 10:51 p.m., reader Robert Stilwell on behalf of Red Sox Nation

"The Sox fired Grady little for leaving Martinez in to long. Francona should be fired for leaving Beckett in too long. what made him think that Beckett could get Longoria out Beckett should have been taken out in the third inning, bonehead decision by Francona." -- 10.11.08, 10:42 p.m., reader J Donovan on behalf of Red Sox Nation


By Ian Browne /
The defending-champion Red Sox are suddenly stuck in rally mode at Fenway Park as starter Jon Lester was rocked early and Boston's bats managed only a seventh-inning sacrifice fly from Jacoby Ellsbury in a second straight loss.Complete story >

Rays lead series, 2-1

Gm 1
BOS 2 @ TB 0
Oct. 10

Gm 2
BOS 8 @ TB 9
Oct. 11

Gm 3
TB 9 @ BOS 1
Oct. 13









Game 4 Line Up - Posted by the Baseball Head

  1. Coco Crisp - CF

  2. Dustin Pedroia - 2B

  3. Kevin Yook - 3B

  4. Jason Bay - LF

  5. Big Pappi - DH

  6. JD Drew - RF

  7. Mark Kotsay - 1B

  8. Kevin Cash - C

  9. Jed Lowerie - SS