(photo from Yahoo! Sports)
You know who appreciates SG in-person mojo? Jason Varitek. Also, Wade Miller. And most decidedly Bill Mueller who was so grateful for our collective presence that he hit his first home run of the season. Which, it should be noted, Steve and I called. It went something like this:
Steve: Now’s the time to go yard, Billy!
Me (to Steve): He’s the only one left without one, right?
Steve: Pretty sure.
Me (to Billy and the park at large): Bill Mueller, now is the time for your home run!
Bill Mueller: You asked for it.
Bill Mueller’s bat: Smack!
Pesky’s pole: Ouch! Dammit, not again.
Fenway Park: AAAAAIIIEEEEEEE!
Me (to Steve): You know what that was? That was prescient.
Steve: That is exactly what that was.
Now, I’m not saying there’s a connection or anything but I’ve been to three games this year and in two of them, Jason Varitek has hit a home run. Could be he’s just that damn good, which I am not going to argue with. But maybe, just maybe, he enjoys hitting home runs for me. I’m fine with that too. Last night’s home run was no small shot. It landed dead center over the triangle on top of the camera box. That’s a ways. It’s 420 feet to deep center field. I think it’s time we acknowledge that “Captain Crush” might not be such a hyperbolic nickname.
Also, confidential to the Fenway Park video board operators: If you are going to show video of Jason Varitek frolicking and smiling with wee little children and of Bill Mueller having his neck forcibly massaged by Trot Nixon in some kind of kung fu karate chop gone wrong, you’re going to need to warn the likes of Sam and myself, who, frankly, cannot take this kind of thing without warning. Plus, you’re around this team all year long, there have to be more incriminating videos than that. And I’m not talking about the Rally Karaoke Guy, or pretty much anything else featuring Millar since I’m fairly certain that he is beyond embarrassment. But come on, this team engages in debauchery, I know it. Now let’s see it.
Anyway, I did notice a few things prior to the game which boded well for the Sox chances. I mentioned them to Steve.
Me: We’re going to win. And I’m going to tell you why.
Steve: Okay, why?
Me: Because Johnny Estrada wears a hockey mask. And this is not hockey.
Steve: No, it’s not. Hockey is for old, Canadian people.
Me: Right, so obviously, we’re going to win.
Me: I know another reason why we’re going to win. Would you like me to tell you?
Steve: Please do.
Me: Hudson is wearing long sleeves. His forearms of death are covered.
Steve: Plus, he’s no good against us. Our lineup is going to pound him. He’s always had trouble against us.
Me: You with your logic. It’s the sheathing of the forearms, I’m telling you.
We also decided that Johnny Estrada’s soul patch cannot reasonably be called a “soul patch” because, according to Steve, “It’s not patchy. It’s kind of triangular.” So we named it “The Estrrrrada,” complete with rolled “r.” From it, all his power is derived. I did also move that we just cut to the chase and start calling Estrada “CHiPs” but Steve vetoed because apparently, he thinks he’s the boss. Pshaw.
If I am not mistaken, this is the second game in a row in which Wade Miller has pitched into at least the fourth inning without allowing a hit. I’ve always been of the mind that you cannot start thinking about a no-no until at least the 6th but still, that seems promising to me. Of course, the Braves have about two and a half players actually hitting right now so maybe that’s skewed information, but my point is that Theo? I’m reasonably pleased with this Miller fellow. Good work. It was obvious that Miller started to tire toward the later innings but that’s to be expected for a guy coming off a fairly serious shoulder injury. The important part, I think, is that he was still able to get guys out, albeit with longer at bats and by relying on his defense, which, for a change, did not let him down. And the few walks that he tendered did not come back to bite him in his shapely ass. So much the better.
Now, you knew we were getting to it sooner or later. It can best be summed up thusly: Foulkie…fucking christ. Bizarrely, when Foulke came in for the ninth with a three run lead, the entire park appeared to take a collective deep breath and resign themselves to the Foulke fate, whatever that may be. We stood and cheered him because it’s as if we’d all decided that he needed positive reinforcement and booing wouldn’t do anything but make him cry. Or, as Steve yelled out, “We won the World Series because of this guy, Christ!” Yes, but what has he done for me lately?
It was, as it appears to be written, a rollercoaster ninth. Doubles to Chipper Jones are to be somewhat expected because, despite the fact that he’s ostensibly a grown man who refers to himself earnestly as “Chipper,” he can still hit. What is not to be expected and is much less acceptable, Keith Foulke, are triples to Andruw Jones with a man on second. And then infield hits to Johnny Estrrrada. Screw it, CHiPs. Look at the way Andruw Jones spells his name? You’re going to give up a triple to that guy? Come on. And Estrada wears a hockey mask! A hockey mask, for crissakes! You’re a hockey fan, Keith, surely you don’t approve of this. Foulkie…fucking christ. I shall quote Sam, who, due to Communist standards of “legal drinking age” I did not meet post game, “Did we not know Keith Foulke was going to do exactly that? I hate when I’m right.”
But a win is a win is a win. Plus, felt good to stick it to our natural rivals, no? I’ll be back at it again on Sunday, attending with Beth before heading out to, essentially, cross international borders to catch the series in Toronto. No Dougie for a while, it would seem as he’s on the 15-day DL with a strained wrist. My brother? Pissed. Nevertheless, the blood feud continues. See you all Sunday.