Saturday, June 21, 2008

Maiden Wins, Sox Lose

Wow, Iron Maiden's still got it. Dickinson is all over that stage, running around and changing costumes and everything. And he still has that crazy voice. The rest of the band didn't seem to miss a note, either. I wonder if they ever think about the whole Spinal Tap thing and say, You know, joke or not, we still can play to crowds of tens of thousands.... I'd say they got the "last laugh," but Tap is still funnier. Or something. It wasn't quite the summer outdoor concert experience we had hoped for, since it rained right away and we were wet the whole time, but it was still cool to see a band I never thought I'd see or were even actual people as far as I knew. The crowd was definitely young, too--all the high school metal heads out to see one of the bands they owe their genre to.

While we sat there waiting to leave the lot, I got to hear the recap of the game. Those take on a whole new level of excitement when you have no idea what happened. The way Rish was talking, I thought we were gonna pull it out, but Youk left the tying run on third in the ninth. And Lugo made errors galore. Fox game tomorrow... if you're coming from the vacationing Joy of Sox blog and you're looking for a game thread, the next one I'm gonna do here will be Tuesday....

Friday, June 20, 2008

Meet Me In Mansfield

St. Louis comes in for three tonight. Wakefield on the mound for us. One person who won't be taking the mound anymore is Schilling. He's done for the year. I really thought he'd be pitching in September. Oh well. We'll see if he attempts to pitch in '09. I won't see the game tonight as I'll be at the former Great Woods to see an aging Iron Maiden.

In Mysterious Cities of Gold news, a movie is in the works! I am more stunned by this than the Schilling news. I thought I was one of two people who remembered that show, but judging by the 200,000 comments on its theme song (below), and, you know, THE MOVIE, I guess I was way, way, way off.

I'd Like To Teach The World To Sing 80s Red Sox Themes

They showed this game on NESN tonight. It was Remy's first broadcast, 20 years ago. Part of their "Remyniscense" series, leading up to his own day at Fenway on Tuesday.

1988 was the heart of "my era." I was 12 that summer, old enough to have known all the players (which for me started at age 3, but by 12 I knew a little more about baseball), but still young enough to have not discovered, uh, anything besides baseball. Except for Coke cans. Coke put Disney characters on all their cans that summer. All summer, we looked for dwarves, ducks, and mice, in a futile attempt at "collecting them all." We never did find Doc, though the discovery of Daisy Duck on a diet Minute Maid Orange soda caused quite a celebration. I think it was the next summer that they started putting the various Super Bowl logos on cans. Or maybe that was '87, as I seem to remember Super Bowl XXI was the latest one available. No Coke summer promotion was more talked-about than 1990's MagiCans, whose ads featured New Kids on the Block, and which spat out dollar bills at you. Some kid drank the "foul-smelling" liquid in one of the winning cans, and the promotion was pretty much screwed.

Anyway, my room at any given point in the late-80s was filled with soda cans. Our neighbor owned the local bowling alley (Danbury's Bowlarama, later replaced with a shopping center featuring the Borders bookstore I'd work at a decade later. I think the front door was right about where the front door of The Q, Bowlarama's sister-pool haul, had been. I didn't think of that fact enough while I worked there. Ah well, ol' Mike with the big stogie who worked the desk, this late-80s-themed post is for you. (I'm hoping some old Danbury person finds this and gets a nice stroll down Recollection Road.)) era. Right. Back then we didn't get NESN games in Fairfield County. Oh wait, they still don't get NESN there. But at least back then we got the TV-38 feed on WVIT-30, New Britain/Hartford (previously "New Britain/Hartford/Waterbury/New Haven"--those last two got the shaft around '90). But only on Fridays and Sundays for the most part. So the NESN music I heard on tonight's throwback broadcast was completely foreign to me. I knew Ned Martin's voice, as he did both cable and network games. But we didn't get Remy as the sidekick, we got Bob Montgomery, who stuck around when Sean McDonough replaced Ned.

It was great to see those guys on my modern TV in their stirrups, but otherwise clad in the same duds they wear today, only more loosely. Barrett, Evans, Rice, Spike Owen, a young Gator, an aging Hurst, and of course Gedman. Geddy hit a key sac fly in our eighth inning, game-winning rally that culminated in a wild pitch scoring the go-ahead run. The sparse April crowd was going nuts in the freezing cold. At one point, a guy in a Yankee jacket applauds Todd Benzinger as he leaves for a pinch-runner. I also noticed that the plastic seats that replaced the wooden grandstand ones in section 33 were already in place by '88. I could go on, but the point is, it was fun watching stuff from my heyday. That was the time when the Red Sox were on TV just often enough. All the games were on radio, but you could count on a few a week to be on, and all of Castiglione and Coleman's radio descriptions would magically come to life for a few hours. Remember, in southwest Connecticut, we grew up thinking the players were statues, stuck permanently in their baseball card pose. I've still never seen Jack Brohamer move. I'd like to.

I also wanted to make a list I've probably made here before. The songs channel 30 (and maybe 38, I still don't know if each affiliate had its own music/highlight theme packages) played during and on commercials for Sox games. I mean, obviously the voiceover was channel 30's own. I can still hear him. "Catch the Red Sox and the Brewers, Friday at 7:30, on 30!" I'd like to interview that guy, I wonder if he's alive, or if he went the way of the Gino guy. (Sad face here.) But was the music played all across 38-land, and each affiliate would put a voiceover on it? Or did 30 come up with the whole thing? Anyway, here are the songs: "Industrial Disease" by Dire Straits, "Every Little Kiss" by Bruce Hornsby, "Obsession" by Animotion, and the classic "Rock with the Sox" ("Rock Around the Clock"--that one came with a spinning record.) "Red Sox Rock" ("Jailhouse Rock") was another tune, but that was a music video, not a channel 30 theme.

So I ask again, does TV-38 have any of its old broadcasts? Those are the ones I wanna see. Preferably the channel 30 feed, of course. The NESN ones are still cool, but I'd like to see a game I know I saw the first time.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Did I Ever Tell You.... much I hate those scalper sites?

Four bleacher seats together for tomorrow night's game on StubToe: up to 114 dollars each.

Four slightly better bleacher seats together for tomorrow night's game from 26 dollars each. (Also note the StubToe fees go up the higher the ticket price.)

NEVER USE THOSE SITES. Don't get yourself ripped off for no reason! Prices so high just make everybody else think it's okay to raise their prices because that's "fair market value." A guy on craigslist today was selling standing room for 60 each. And not even for a weekend game. Just be a little bit vigilant in your checking of the ticket office and you'll get the seats you want.

Also, if you buy from Ace (for the bullshit prices they charge), who the Red Sox advertise for right on their fences at Fenway, and then you see the ticket office has the same section to the same game available, try suing the team for leading you to overpay for something (illegally, I might add) they know they can provide you with directly. I'm just waiting for that to happen...

This whole system can come crashing down if we all stop needlessly supporting it.

As If We Didn't Know

Shit-eating grin.

Number Of The Beast

You probably heard Big Bank Hank complaining about interleague play the other day. At this point I'd only be the millionth Sox fan to say "hey, I agree with Hank, that's so crazy, ha ha ha." But it's true. He thinks it's dumb, just as I have since the day it started.

Now Hank, instead of just spouting off to the media about it, why don't you get together with all the other owners and just end it! I pretty much only hear complaints about it from people in power, so why can't they do something about it?

Oh, and another thing, Little Stein, if you're gonna complain about ILP, maybe at least acknowledge this: In 2008, the Yanks and Red Sox each play the Reds and Astros, but the Red Sox' other four NL opponents are the 42-32 Phillies, the 42-31 Cardinals, the 38-34 D'backs, and the 38-33 Brewers, while the Yanks get the 35-36 Mets (twice), the 31-42 Padres, and the 34-38 Pirates. I don't know if I'm more offended by the difference in quality of those opponents, or the fact that in a year when the AL East is supposedly playing the NL Central, the Yanks get four series' against east or west teams, compared to two against the central. The Red Sox have four against the central, two against the east/west, also void of sense. What's the point, Bud?

I thought I was gonna go to the Celts parade today, but, eh, I'd just be taking up a spot that could go to a die-hard Cs fan. Looks like the rain will hold off...but maybe not for tomorrow night's outdoor concert we're going to: Maiden! They're reuniting and playing only the classics, I hear.


[Update: We have a winner. Only took 15 minutes! Sweet... Ticket finally has a home...]

Okay, it's "the end of the day Wednesday," and Saturday's ticket has not been claimed. So, all you have to do is be the first person to email me and I will give you an upper bleacher ticket to Saturday's Cardinals-Red Sox game at Fenway. No quiz question, no guessing game. If you want it, it's yours. Two2067 at aol dot com. (You just have to meet me at some point before Friday mid-afternoon to pick the thing up.)

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Bostons Take Series; Philly Men Fall Short With Late Rally

The Athletics have long since waved adieu to Philadelphia, taking up residence in Oakland via Kansas City, MO. The Braves left Boston for Wisconsin, before settling on the Peach State as a home. These days, it's only when the American and National Leagues join up for their summer battles that the cities of Boston and Philadelphia face off on the green field. Over 45,000 persons witnessed Boston's taking of the three-game series in eastern Penn. today. Many Bostonians were in attendance, but the "cranks" of both cities yelled as loud as their lungs would allow during this Wednesday matinee.

Boston's Red Sox were represented on the hillard by snappy "Bat" Masterson. The kid was staked to a lead and held tight, allowing two Quakers to score in five innings, good enough for a win. Bat has proved he is a good man to hold in case of emergency, and may even join the front five permanently.

The Boston ball-whackers roared out of the gate, perking up against Kendrick. After two singletons, blazing Drew launched a three-run dong toward the skyline. The salted and peppered third-sacker Lowell followed with a sun-shot of his own, giving early gate-crashers a kick in the pants and putting a crooked number on the board. A "hand discomfort" caused Crisp to come out, but Moss filled in for his fallen brother and knocked home two to widen the lead.

Drew added the final run to Boston's grand total in the fourth with a ribbie bingle. He would finish with four hits on the day, Pedroia three of his own.

Lopez threw a fine inning after Masterson fled for the stalls, but the next man in, Hansen, got into a real bind, and had to be rescued by Delcarmen. The big bear Howard was struck out to end a Philadelphian threat. Papelbon shut the door and turned out the lights in inning nine for a seven to four win.

Sox @ Phils, 1:05 PM

[Update: SOX WIN 7-4. Thanks for threadin', everybody. Next one for me here will be next Tuesday night.]

[Update: MDC strikes out Howard with the tying runs on to end the 7th. 7-4 us in the 8th.]

[Update: After 4 and a half, it's 7-1 Sox. Drew is a triple shy of the cycle, and Masterson has only given up one hit. Coco left the game with "left hand discomfort." Come join us in the game thread in comments.]

I'll have a live game thread in comments here for this afternoon's game. Joy of Sox (on vacation) doesn't usually get many folks for the weekday afternoon games, so I might be all by myself here, but if you want to join in, moderation will be off. Thanks.

Masterson for us, Kendrick for them....

Latest Leg Of "Curse" Ends After Four Months!

Man, they just don't make curses like they used to. When the Patriots lost the Super Bowl, idiot Yankee fans who happen to be Giants fans (despite that lots of Yankee fans are Jets fans, lots of Giants fans are Mets fans, lots of older New Englanders are Giants fans, and plenty of people's favorite teams are not all from the same city) proclaimed the "curse" was back on the city of Boston. Yes, the curse that ended in 2004, then incredibly, uncharacteristically even by curse-standards, came back, before being broken again in 2007. (Please note that the "curse" affected only the Red Sox between 1918 and 2004--the 20-odd championships by the three other Boston teams in that period were "allowed.")

So, this past February, "it" was "back." Red Sox fans, as reigning champions, were somehow supposed to feel "cursed" yet again. Select Yankee fans delighted in the fact that things were finally--whew!--"back to normal." Even though, granted, the Red Sox hadn't even gotten a chance to repeat as champions. It didn't matter. The city of Boston was back to the losing ways that it had grown so accustomed to since the start of the "curse," not including the years 1929, 1939, 1941, 1957, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1972, 1974, 1976, 1981, 1984, 1986, 2001, 2003, 2004, and 2007.

But amazingly, tonight, just four months and a few days after the return of this "curse," the Celtics miraculously broke the chains of...of...who the hell's curse is this anyway?...and won another championship for the losing-est city of all time with their mere 32 major championships. Incredible.

I will be very clear about this. I have no NBA team. I'm not reveling in the glory of a championship. I'm happy for the Celtics, as I rooted for these guys all season, but I would not try to take credit for this being "my team's championship." That would be unfair to all the true Celts fans, and would make me no better than all the people I grew up around who knew nothing about baseball, never seemed to care, and then, when October rolled around, would suddenly have on a shiny new Yankee hat and a championship T-shirt on. Nor am I some bitter Pats guy--I am not a fan of the Patriots. Again, I know the different sports have nothing to do with one anther, but...

I am ecstatic knowing that all the Yankee fans who have sunk to the level of thinking their team benefits from the failures of teams in other sports, (see first two letters here) now have to see another Boston team win. Did you see the articles going into game 6? Some of the New York writers were fooled, yet again, into thinking there is some magical power that doesn't let teams win based on the city they play in. Which makes no sense, considering that city's teams are winning again and again and again!

So can we stop this now? Can everybody just stop with the curses already? Could this possibly be the straw that broke the fake curse's back? If you're gonna say Boston's cursed because the Pats lost, you have to say it's un-cursed when the Celtics win. Even though it had been broken just three months before by the '07 Sox, which was actually a re-break since it had been broken three years before that. Does this sound silly to anybody? (Especially coming from fans of a team who's seen three different Boston teams win a total of six championships since it won its last one...)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Whitewash In PA/Title In MA

The Cancer Kid baffled Philly axmen over seven blank frames to-night, tagging them with the stigma of the "Chicago." Okajima and Papelbon each threw a scoreless inning, the latter whiffing all three Brotherly Lovers to complete the whitewash.

An amateur nine couldn't have fared worse against Mister Lester than the Quakers did in this outing. They played with that slow, lifeless style credited to Philapelphians.* The Hub road warriors retain a two-game lead in the American East.

Centre-fielder Crisp continued to swing the ash-stick like the blades of a mighty windmill, striking his third long-ball in as many contests. The blow gave the Bostons a two to nil lead. Lugo accounted for the third and final run by the Americans by connecting on a double, plating Crisp. The Phils' mound-man was ol' Moyer, who has managed to squeeze an entire career between championships of the Celtics basketball club from Boston. Moyer's first game came eight days after the Celts won the trophy 22 years ago, and his most recent performance to-night came mere hours before the hoopsters captured their 17th title back in Beantown tonight.**

*I don't actually believe this to be true! But I got the phrase "that slow, lifeless style credited to Philapelphians" from a New York Times article from 1894 about a Philly-Giants game. Isn't that crazy?

**I wrote that with like six minutes left, Kobe!


Here's something I never knew. Fenway Park used to have the AL standings up on the facade along the third base line. Check out this pic, and you can see the ten banners, one for each team in the league at the time. At least I think that's what this is. The colors seem to match the order of finish for the '67 season (the pic is from the World Series that year). Boston first, Tigers second, etc. (The only one that seems off is the tenth-place KC Athletics, but maybe it was an old flag--they only switched to green and gold a few years earlier.) The flags are also divided up into two sets of five. If you've ever read baseball articles from pre-divisional play, you'll see a lot of talk of "first division" and "second division," meaning the top five and the bottom five. I wonder if they had the NL on the other side.

[Update: Here's another pic from that (awesome) site. It's from '69 (MLB sleeve patch gives it away) and you can see the banners up on the other side. There six, then a space--'69 was the first season of divisional play and there were six teams in each division, so that must be the NL East up there.]

Sox at Philly tonight. I'm gonna be hosting some live game threads starting tomorrow here for the afternoon game. After that I'll do some next week. Joy Boy is on vacation so the folks from there, here, and anywhere else will be welcome to join in.

Contest Update

Wow, I'm having trouble giving stuff away. The winner of the Cardinals ticket can't go to the game (mainly for the reason that he lives a thousand miles away), so second-place contestant, Sarah Gates, the ticket is yours if you want it. E-mail me. Though I see you live in NYC, so you I don't know if you can go either. You have till the end of the day Wednesday. Please note: I am psyched these two entered even though they live far away. It's fun to just play a game even when you know you can't use the prize. Thanks for playing, both of you...


I don't even wanna talk about last night's game, let alone describe it in quirky, descriptive, and/or antiquated but super-fun terms.

We had two contestants in the contest last night, and jcal76, with his prediction of the Red Sox scroring two runs, was the winner of a ticket to Saturday's game at Fenway vs. the Cards. jcal, send me an e-mail.

Alclem, winner of the Manny500 contest is still AWOL, though...still trying to figure out what to do there....

Have you been following the story of the hedge-fund scammer guy? I cut and pasted the pic of him from the Daily News so you can see their caption. It says he's on the right in the pic. So for those of you who were sure the caption was describing the person in the vehicle waaaaay in the background at left, you were way, way, way off. It's the other person. The one who takes up nearly the entire frame. Anyway, this guy stole millions and millions of dollars from people, got caught, and was scheduled to show up for his 20-year prison sentence the other day. That day comes, and the guy doesn't show up. Despite his lawyer (Lionel Hutts?) saying he wasn't a flight risk, he has indeed flown. They found his car on a bridge with "suicide is painless" scrawled into the dust and pine needles on its hood. The stupid people in charge actually start searching the river below. By the time they figure out he probably didn't jump, he's long gone.

I really hope they find this guy, double his sentence, and make it in some crappy jail, not the ones they usually send white guys who wear ties to. But in the meantime, I do like the idea of having the lawyer who said he wasn't a flight risk serve the time till they find the guy. Here's the latest article.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Wang And The Wang

Wang will be out at least six weeks, meaning he won't touch a mound until August minimum.

Want a free ticket for Saturday's Cardinals-Red Sox game? Scroll down two posts for your chance.

Also, did you see Kobe kissing that little kid A-Rod rescued last night?

Blaze Williamson

The Red Sox have just acquired right-handed pitcher Blaze Williamson from Louisville.

Of course, there isn't really a Blaze Williamson. Nor is there a Louisville. Well, there is a Louisville, but the Red Sox don't go haphazardly acquiring pitchers from there. The reason I bring up Blaze Williamson is because of the Celtics. I went to "the Master" trying for game 6/7 tickets. As good as I am with scoring seats from the Red Sox ticket office, I can't figure out "the Master" for the life of me. I just can't break the code. Can't find any tips or hints that actually work. At this point, the NBA playoff ticket-hunt is just for show. Just going through the motions so I can at least say I gave it a shot. But the latest thing in robot-deterring technology over there is the use of two security words separated by a space. I like to read the words and make them fit into my life. "Feeling payments"? Why yes, Master, I sure would be with all the fees you charge. But this wouldn't be an issue, as I was shut out as usual.

An hour after the sale started, hoping I'd catch some new tickets as they're released, something the phone operators will tell you does happen, I went in again. My word-combo was "Blaze Williamson."

Who is Blaze Williamson? Will I ever get tickets? The world may never know.

Quick Contest--Win A Red Sox Ticket

Before the season I bought four tickets to a Sox-Cardinals game. They were taken away by the ticket office due to some stupid rule I didn't know I had broken. My idea to collect single tickets to the Saturday game as they went on sale throughout the season ended when I realized I wasn't gonna be around that day anyway. Fortunately I only spent money on one ticket, but now I need to get rid of it. It's an upper bleacher seat in section 38. You want it? Guess the number of runs the Red Sox score in Monday night's game vs. the Phillies in comments. Closest person gets the ticket. If it's a tie, I'll conduct a random drawing out of the correct guessers. I'll keep comments hidden until Monday at 6 PM, which is when the contest will end. And don't gimme any of these 6:05 guesses. (Michael Leggett, I'm looking in your direction...) Remember, as long as you have a ticket, you can go anywhere in the park. So if you stand in the standing room areas, you'd be in a 20-dollar area with your 12-dollar ticket. Which you'd be getting free. If you win. Oh, and the winner has to meet me before this Friday to pick it up--the game is this coming Saturday, June 21st. Good luck. I know single tickets are about as desirable as a toothbrush in a Secret Santa session, but I'm hoping some of you maybe really want to see a rare Cardinals appearance at Fenway.... and in case you can't tell, this contest is run entirely by me, with a ticket I bought on my own from the Sox ticket office. No outside companies have anything to do with this.

Do you realize the Reds have three current players with WKRP in Cincinnati character names? Homer Bailey (Bailey Quarters), Andy Phillips (Andy Travis), and Johnny Cueto (Dr. Johnny Fever).

So Wang hurt his foot, not what the Yanks needed. Looks like he'll miss his next start--more news tomorrow. The Daily News is saying his season may be in jeopardy.

Bronson Arroyo's OPS is 61 points higher than Wily Mo Pena's. Wily Mo has one home run in 148 at bats. Bronson has one in 26 at bats. Wily also never did turn that walk-strikeout ratio around

And remember the people who said batting Jacoby leadoff wouldn't work because he'd "steal too many bases and Papi would never get to swing the bat"? Terrible job by those people.

Old-timey wrap-ups return tomorrow! (Probably.)

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Four-Dong Day

Sox blow out Reds 9-0. Yanks blowing out 'stros. Rays getting blown out. More later.

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