Thursday, October 25, 2007

2007 World Series, Game 1: Live Blog. Sort of.

Ok, so “live blog” is a bit of a misnomer here, since this is not being posted in any timely sort of way. The reasons for that will become apparent if you read on. I get points for trying… right?

Pregame shenanigans: You can see my apartment building in the opening aerial shots! Go me! John Williams, “the epitome of Boston culture” in the words of Joe Buck (I knew I could count on him to entertain me!), is conducting the national anthem. Annnnd the sickest thing EVER just happened, as the fighter jets just did their flyover and it actually made the dishes in my sink rattle. I am delirious with Red Sox fever. START THE GAME ALREADY. This is “baseball you can’t ignore,” according to some stupid car commercial. My goodness, that’s awfully aggressive. I love that the announcers deliberately refer to Boston as “pennant-winning,” but to Colorado only as “representing the National League,” as though maybe the NL managers got together and drew straws for it or something. Haha.

Ok, it’s 8:32 and there’s still no discernable baseball activity on my TV. AUGH. They’re playing that Soulja Boy song to introduce Josh Beckett… stellar. Superman them hoes, indeed. I think Beckett should take it upon himself to impregnate every female in Boston so we can all give birth to a race of powerful superbabies that will ensure the Red Sox championship wins in every season from 2032 to 2047. Eugenics is a beautiful thing.

First inning: FINALLY. Beckett opens with 3 scorching fastballs to Taveras. 4 pitches and he’s out for the first strikeout of the game. The announcers are making a big deal out of the fact that Denver is coming off an 8-day layoff. It’s not like they were sitting at home playing video games, for pete’s sake. They’ve been training aggressively and working out as a team. Enough with this. Second strikeout to Kaz Matsui, again on a fastball. And, holy crap, Holliday also goes down swinging in 3 pitches. I think I might already be pregnant. I need to go lie down.

Yaz introduces the batting order for the Red Sox, which is too cool to merit snarky commentary. Jeff Francis, the ruddy-cheeked lefty, also opens with a strike and OH SWEET MERCIFUL HEAVENS PEDROIA HAS JUST CLOBBERED A HOME RUN OVER THE GREEN MONSTER. I CAN’T EVEN BREATHE. I just lay on the floor hyperventilating for like 10 minutes. That was amazing. Ok, Kevin Youkilis is now on base, and Ortiz is… bunting?! Haha. I’d love to see Ortiz try and run down a bunt. Why on earth is Ortiz, who is notoriously dismissive of the value of the OBP statistic, bunting? Oh, Terry Francona, you crazy bitch. Ortiz is out at first, but Youkilis moves up. Dick’s Sporting Goods is sponsoring part of this game, and I’m definitely going to snicker every time the announcers say “Dick’s” for the rest of the night. Heh. Hehe.

Apparently, I’m supposed to care that Jeff Francis grew up playing street hockey in Canada (because that is what all good Canadians spend their childhood doing). He looks 15 years old tonight. I’m surprised at how far in Clint Hurdle has his infielders playing for this part of the lineup… and apparently that was a bad call, as Manny singles to bring Ortiz home. Jeff Francis just sent a text off his phone that reads “fuck manny singled brb.”

Ok, so I’m trying really hard not to get ornery tonight, but for the love I am SO SICK of hearing about how Colorado has won 21 of their last 22 games. Yes, that’s lovely, but THEY WERE ALL AGAINST NL TEAMS. Boston just took a series from the ballclub that tied them for best record in baseball, while the Rockies faced the perennial pushover Phillies (mmm… alliteration…) and the garbage-hurling Diamondbacks. Ooh, Brandon Webb. How scary. PLEASE. Let’s put this behind us already. Varitek is on base with a nice little hit, and J.D. “Grand Slam Bitches” Drew knocks Ramirez home. Fantastic. We’re already down to the 8th spot in the order as Julio Lugo steps to the plate. Forget good baseball. I want a blowout. The Rockies finally manage to get their third out of the inning, and will probably all go huddle in a prayer circle in the Dugout to plead for deliverance. Schadenfreude is coursing through my veins. Score: Boston 3, Colorado 0.

2nd inning: Beckett tosses another K to Helton, but Atkins gets on base with a double that juuuuuuuust misses clearing the Green Monster. Thank god for that big green wall. Beckett appears to be relying pretty exclusively on his fastball tonight, give or take a few sliders, which is interesting given that it was his terrifying curveball that proved so effective in the series with Cleveland. The fastball seems to be doing a pretty effective job of baffling the Rockies, though.

Guess I spoke too soon, as Troy Tulowitzki clobbers another ball off the Monster and Atkins crosses the plate. Pshh. I’m not worried. The Sox give Beckett ridiculous run support. Also, I love that the Rockies’ designated hitter is batting 9th. These silly Colorado bitches have no idea how to pad a lineup. The Red Sox are back up to bat as Francis takes the mound again. Francis’ hat appears to be developing a C.C. Sabathia-like crook to it. Must be a lefty thing. Fox is trying reeeeeeeeally hard to make the viewers care about Francis, as they are subjecting us to some stupid montage of his favorite things. Ho hum. Youkilis is walked, then HOME with some great base-running on a Big Papi double. Why on earth would you walk Manny Ramirez only to pitch to Mike Lowell, the team’s leading RBI scorer? The last time a pitcher did this, J.D. Drew hit a grand slam. Lowell’s out and the inning is over. Score: Boston 4, Colorado 1.

3rd inning: Beckett throws 3 balls to open the inning, but still gets the out. My roommate is asleep on the couch next to me… aww. It’s raining pretty hard at Fenway, but the grounds crew appears determined to keep the game going. Whatever… it’ll probably snow when we play in Denver. Another 1-2-3 inning for Beckett, and I’ve got to say that letting the Rockies bat at this point feels like a formality. My friends are texting me to get me to come to some bar. Hmm… HAHA Atkins just completely missed fielding a bunt right as the announcers were in the middle of another of those prepackaged spiels about how good Colorado’s defense is. Oh, the irony. Francis has gotten himself out of trouble, and I’m going to a bar. Toodles.

Innings 4-9 recap: Josh Beckett threw 7 strikeouts in the first 4 innings. I went to Lir, where my roommate and I briefly considered taking a shot every time the Red Sox scored. It’s a good thing we didn’t, because then the 5th inning happened. We decided to stop in at every bar on our block just to see if anything looked fun… went to Dillon’s and it was still the 5th inning, went to Cactus Club and it was still the 5th inning, went to Whiskey’s and it was STILL the 5th inning. 13-1, Boston when all was said and done. What a beautiful thing. We came home because the Back Bay is mind-numbingly boring on a Wednesday night, so I watched the rest of the game while eating chicken on my couch. A perfect night, if you ask me. Francona let Alex Cora play a little bit, and even Eric Gagne was finally released to pitch the 9th in a magnificent gesture of even-you-can’t-possibly-screw-this-up. The Red Sox emerged triumphant, and I jumped up and down in front of the TV screaming for about 20 minutes. Then I went to bed.

Hooray for live blogging! I should know better than to try this during a Red Sox game. Game 2 is tonight, and I will definitely NOT be live blogging it, since another bar down the street (yes, that is all we have in my neighborhood. Bars.) has dollar draft night on Thursdays. Wooo spring break and all that. Congrats on a stellar game 1, boys, but let’s not get cocky: The Mile High Stadium awaits us on Saturday. Let’s win again tonight – Curt Schilling (9-8, 3.87, 2.25 lifetime postseason ERA) takes the mound against Ubaldo Jimenez (4-4, 4.28, rookie, weird first name).

I will not count my chickens before they hatch.
I will not count my chickens before they hatch.
I will not count my chickens before they hatch.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Coming tonight... more "live blog" goodness!

Well. Despite my resolution to blog more regularly, somehow the time since Game 1 of the NLCS has escaped me. Getting mugged and having all your shit stolen will do that to you, I guess. Nevertheless, now that my beloved Sox are starting the final push towards the Series tonight, I'll be back in full form.

For the record, the reason I've been holding off on the football posts is that it's just too easy to be a Patriots fan right now. I feel guilty. Really, I do. I don't want to rub it in everybody's face how far, far superior our team is to theirs.

Anyway, tonight will be juicy. Wakefield out of the rotation. Beckett looking to avenge the loss the Rockies handed him earlier this year -- incidentally, the Rockies won the only series they played against the Sox this year 2-1. It was a home series, too. We have the never-ending debate over whether it's SOXTOBER, as local bars would have me believe, or ROCKTOBER, as the Rockies PR machine is insisting. Chuck Meriweather, who called home plate in the final game of the 2004 World Series (who won that year? I kind of forget...) is calling again tonight, but he is notoriously inconsistent with his strike zones. Joe Buck, who can always be counted on to use bizarre figurative language when describing home runs, is announcing. Ellsbury is starting in center field despite the fact that it was Coco Crisp who got the spectacular game-ending out in Game 7 of the ALCS. Maybe it's because Coco can't FREAKING hit with RISP. And, best of all, we have some idiot commentary from Troy Tulowitzki just to get you (by which I mean me) good and mad going into tonight:

One of the reporters asked "Tulo" if the Rockies might become "America's Team."
"I hope so," he said. "I welcome all of America to root for us and get
behind us."

Guhh. I'm so sick of the Rockies and their purple batting gloves. I hope we sweep them in four so I can go riot down the street on Sunday night.

Friday, October 12, 2007

The Tom Brady Stetson commercial

Sometimes, you can have too much of a good thing. Like baseball, which I am overdosing on right now. To offset the NL-lovefest I posted earlier, please enjoy the following, from the oh-so-fantastic LolJocks:

On a completely unrelated note the new ads for Halo 3 feature a clip from the middle section of Chopin's "Raindrops Prelude," which was one of my signature performance pieces at the conservatory during high school. It's always nice when little fragments of your dorkdom come back to haunt you in mysterious, gun-toting ways. Having lived through one semester of being a Halo widow in college, I am skeptical of the new game... but this commerical kind of gives me chills, in a good way. If I wasn't going to be so busy playing Robo during the Sox game tonight, perhaps I'd give it a try...

LIVE BLOG: NLCS Game 1, Colorado at Arizona

Ok, so this isn't REALLY a live blog, since I'm posting it after the game all at once rather than during the game. It's not like anyone checks this thing anyway, so I figure I'm good. But, for those of you who either a) missed the game or b) want to relive the glory that is 9 innings of mediocre NL baseball, please read on. Disclosure: I did go into this game rooting for Arizona, only because one of my closest friends (hi, Vik!) is a fan, and I want to be able to lord a World Series defeat over him.

And so, without further ado, I present: Rockies vs. Diamondbacks, God's Chosen Team vs. The Snakes, From the Mountains to the Desert: Game 1 of the 2007 NLCS.

1st Inning: Well, well, look who it is behind home plate: Tim McClellan, who, of course, is essentially responsible for the Rockies’ presence in this series, since it was his blatantly botched calling of Matt Holliday safe at home that allowed Colorado to score the game-winning run in their bizarre 1-game playoff-for-the-playoffs against San Diego. I bet Holliday high-fives him when he comes up to bat.

In case I was wondering, this broadcast is also available in Spanish simply by pressing the SAP button on my remote control. Good to know… whoa, that was quick. Brandon Webb just retired the side. Yeah, he’s decent, I guess. I forgot about NL pitching in all the brouhaha about Beckett/Sabathia/Schilling/Carmona. Honestly if I read one more headline or sports brief referring to Sabathia and Carmona as a “1-2 Punch,” I’m going to strangle myself. It’s like there’s only one sports copy writer in the entire continental U.S.

Bottom of the inning. Jeff Francis, a 26-year-old lefty with a solid 17-win season behind him, is pitching for Colorado. I really can’t take these Colorado uniforms seriously. The purple accents… the weird little vests… they look like dealers at the Trump Taj Mahal, not potential World Series champions. And, boom, Eric Byrnes has ripped a double down the third base line to bring in the first run of the game. The runner happens to be the oh-so-cute Stephen Drew, younger brother of J.D. Good for him. The inning ends, and it’s 1-0, D-Backs.

2nd Inning: I love it when Chip Caray calls the other announcers “fellas.” Webb is throwing a beauty of a breaking ball, but Todd Helton and Garrett Atkins both single. God, Arizona’s new logo is hideous. They are also sporting the same weird, aerodynamically vented batting helmets as Colorado. Basically, both teams’ uniforms SCREAM “expansion team.” Why do we even let the West play baseball? Uh oh, Webb has now loaded the bases, and it appears that the Rockies are taking a moment to meet in the conference room and discuss the launch of their new website… Whoops, nope, I’m actually watching tonight’s hour-long episode of “The Office.” Hopefully I won’t miss anything good.

Bottom of the inning and it’s now tied, 1-1. Thank god Ed Helms is finally getting some lines this season.

3rd Inning: It’s 4-1, Rockies. Guess I did miss something good. Also, Michael appears to have taken the pizza delivery boy hostage. Oh, the suspense…

5th Inning: That was a fantastic episode. Back to the game, and it’s still 4-1. Jeff Francis appears to have found his rhythm, and is displaying a Papelbon-like tendency to grab his nuts after every pitch. Did Justin Upton’s father just call his son fat in front of Craig Sager? Craig appears not to know whether to laugh or not.

There’s got to be a terrific anagram for Clint Hurdle. Thinking… thinking… wait, what is that ungodly noise? Is the stadium… rattling?! Oh, right, I guess this team is called The Diamondbacks and all that. Whatever. It’s still stupid. Stephen Drew works through a long, grueling at-bat, only to end the inning when he strikes out swinging. Ho-hum.

Got it! The anagram is “Linted Churl.” Now that I think of it, he does look kind of lint-y.

6th Inning: I’m pretty sure Chip just referred to Alyssa Milano as “our collegue.” Gahh. The D-Backs take the field again, and, now that I think about it, Justin Upton IS kinda chunky. Heh. Hehe. The rattling persists as Brad Hawpe reaches first, but is easily picked off to end the inning on what looks to be a trip over his own cleat. Brilliant. Glad that’s over, though, because I absolutely LOATHE the stupid 9-foot-lead graphic TBS insists on imposing under the base runners. What on earth is the point of this? Troy Tulowitzki and Kaz Matsui turn a spectacular double play, and the inning is over. There is no punishment worse than having to listen to Dane Cook talk about baseball.

7th Inning: Juan Cruz is in to pitch for Arizona, and while I remain firmly opposed to the first-base-lead graphic, I will admit that I LOVE the little flames that pop up on the pitch radar box whenever a pitcher throws 96 MPH or above. Yay! Cruz struggles a bit as Yorvit Torrealba walks, then reaches second on a wild pitch; he appears to be settling, though, as he strikes Willy Taveras out with a spectacular slider. Boom, there’s another great slider… “That was filthy,” chortles Bob Brenly. Gross.

Fun fact: Apparently, before he signed with the Mets, Kaz Matsui used to play for the Seibu Lions, which I’m pretty sure is the team that made Dice-K a star. [Fact check update: yes it is!] Matsui gets a single and then steals a base as Torrealba scores on a fielding error. Colorado appears determined to win this game without getting a single extra base hit. And now, Matt Holliday is up to bat, and we are subjected to some long-winded spiel about how he is the Ubermensch and all that blah-dee-blah. “The pride of Stillwater, Oklahoma.” God. Holliday walks, and it seems that will be it for poor Juan Cruz and his “filthy” sliders. Lefty Doug Slaten is in—he only needs to get one out to end the inning, and he delivers.

Arizona gets its first two men on base, and OH MY GOD. I HAVE IT. I found the ultimate anagram for Clint Hurdle, and kids, it’s DIRTY. In fact, I’m not even going to print it. Let’s just say that the first two words are “HE DRILL,” and those of you with a couple seconds to spare can figure out the rest on your own. Hahahahaha. I am amazing.

Wow. Fatty Upton has just plowed into Kaz Matsui while sliding into second base, and it appears the umps are going to call interference on him. Catcher Chris Snyder is still on base, but Arizona fans are PISSED OFF and booing the call hard. I love the awkward silence in the announcer booth whenever fans are being dicks. Now it appears that the Arizona fans are throwing garbage onto the field, since that always helps. More awkward silence. Clint Hurdle, he of the oh-so-anagrammable name, is making the decision to pull his team, and Bob Brenly breaks the awkward silence long enough to call the Arizona fans “knuckleheads.” That’ll show ‘em. Aaannnd cut to commercial.

Ok, we’re back now, but the Arizona fans still won’t shut up. Pinch runner Jeff Cirillo lays a perfect bunt down the third base line, and there are now runners at first and third, which will bring Jeff Francis out after 6 2/3 quality innings. The fans continue to boo rather than cheer for their own player who just reached base. Do I have any wine in the fridge?

Matt Herges is in for Colorado to face Chris Young, who is clearly swinging for a tater (anything less, and he’ll get booed) but ends up walking to load the bases. Francis looks concerned in the dugout, perhaps because he has just realized that he has no chin. Having failed to get the one out he was brought in for, Herges is pulled in favor of Jeremy Affeldt (best Dugout screen name EVER, incidentally). Stephen Drew comes to the plate, only to anticlimactically knock the first pitch he sees into the outfield for an easy out. Guess it runs in the family.

8th Inning: Thank god that inning is over. The new pitcher in for Arizona is a whopping 6’ 8”, plus he’s a fastballer so I get to see lots of flames on the upper right corner of my screen. I think I like this guy… wait, his name is Nippert?! Haha. It’s too easy. Nippert (heh) throws two 97-MPH-ers in a row and makes it look easy, then strikes Atkins out with a 98-MPH bullet. Boom, bitch. Tulowitzki reaches first, but no one else can hit the heat this guy is tossing, and the inning ends quickly.

Brian Fuentes is now in for Colorado. Eric Byrnes is called out on strikes, and the damn Arizona fans are booing again. Incidentally, I really hope that the Colorado bullpen gets shelled at some point during this series so that someone can run the headline, “ROCKIES HORROR PITCHER SHOW.” It’s funny, right? Oh, come on. It’s FUNNY. It’s… you know what? Fuck you. It’s still better than “1-2 Punch” for the 80 billionth time.

Aaannd another lackluster Arizona at-bat ends with a strikeout. My bed is looking good from here.

9th Inning: Tony Pena is in for Arizona. (No, I don’t know how to make my keyboard make the little squiggly thing over the N. Leave me alone, asshat.) Pena has a great breaking ball, but appears to be sticking to his fastball for now, which means more flames for me (yay!) and two called third strikes in a row for him. Whoops, there goes a third strikeout, and it’s Arizona’s last chance to overcome their 4-run deficit. Ok, D-Backs. I stuck around for you despite your obnoxious fans and that incessant rattling. Show me something.

Manny Corpas is in for Colorado. One out… two outs… and Miguel Montero actually manages to crank out a double but then MISSES THE BAG on the slide. An ignominious end to a dull and flying-garbage-filled game. I hate the NL West.

I can't wait for tonight. Highly doubtful that I'll be in live-blogging mode, but the action is all going down at 7 pm (right down the street from my apartment!) and I'm SO EXCITED I could pop. It's Josh Beckett and C. C. Sabathia, arguably the two best pitchers in the AL, as the ALCS gets underway at Fenway Park.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

I sincerely hope this is true

Since I know nothing about anything that happens outside of the greater Boston area, I can only assume that New Zealand online tabloids are paragons of journalistic integrity and factual reporting. Thus, I am completely willing to take the following story at absolute face value:

A Kid Rock and Tommy Lee fight, huh? Does anybody else remember the episode of Drawn Together (please allow me to momentarily entertain the notion that I am not the only person in the universe who watched that show) where Captain Hero had to fight the Justice League, but decided to throw the fight so he could make money off it? But then it turned out the Justice League was also trying to throw the fight, so the fight wound up being a bunch of people standing around posturing and making snarling noises with their shirts off until everyone suddenly collapsed, unprovoked, onto the floor and started twitching? Cause I'm pretty sure that's what this fight would be like. These two guys are pussies. They spend more time on their hair and makeup each day than I do in a month. Plus, they'll both show up drunk. Kid Rock will try to smother Tommy Lee with one of his huge fur coats, and then Tommy Lee will probably hit him with his enormous dong or something, and then they'll both wind up crying and holding eachother while they babble shit like, "No, man, seriously, you and Pam were so good together, I always wanted us to be friends but I was so jealous of you, seriously, dude, there's no need for us to be fighting, let's be friends, man..."

Meanwhile, Pam will be watching on Pay-Per-View from her honeymoon suite with Rick Solomon, which, just to clarify, is the guy she married after she initially
whored herself out to him so he would pay her gambling debts. Oh, and the guy who made some sort of videotape, possibly explicit (I don't really recall), with a young woman I believe may have been heiress to some sort of hotel fortune. It's so hard to keep these things straight nowadays.

God, can we have a fight where two huge pissed-off dudes just beat the crap out of Rick Solomon for two hours? I'm pretty sure he doesn't deserve any better.

And yet, despite my disparaging remarks, I sincerely hope that the aforementioned rumor a) is true and b) comes to fruition as soon as possible.

Coming again soon. Maybe.

So there have been some complaints about the fact that I haven't posted in, oh, two months. (By which I mean: sorry, Mom!) But times have been busy. I moved to a new apartment. I started an amazing new job. The Red Sox almost gave me a damn HEART ATTACK down the stretch in September. Oh, and the new season of The Hills started. A girl has to have priorities, people!

But I will try and post more. The NLCS starts tonight, so maybe I'll warm up with that.

One sad bit of news is that, since I moved, I no longer commute with Yellow Shoes Guy in the morning. So now I have to find someone else to obsess over from afar.