Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Alexei Slams the Rangers: Sox - Rangers Game 2

Take a page out of Buehrle’s book, Grandpa Jo! I’m already biased in liking Buehrle more than Contreras, but there is a reason why Mark Buehrle got a standing ovation when he exited the game in the 8th. Buehrle had one of his best outings despite having to attend his grandfather’s funeral tomorrow, yet we know Contreras couldn’t have done the same if something like his cat getting a cold had happened to cloud his day. Someone take Contreras’s man card away. (For that comment (or perhaps I said that it means Contreras is officially a woman), I was given 3 days’ ban from the WSI forum for insulting women. I apologize; even women aren’t as bad as Contreras. And trust me, I have years of experience as a woman, I know how we can be!) But, really, back to the game. The Sox finally get a win, and what a win it is! The Sox beat the Rangers 10-2, and extend their lead over the Twins back to 1.5 games.

Now, let’s give Buehrle the respect he deserves! He kept the Rangers from putting any runs on the board until the top of the eighth, pitched with great insight, and did it all after only a 3-day rest. As he did in every other successful outing, he got in the game, was the man on first for at least three outs, and when he was met with the threat of a no-out triple, he stranded him after three perfect outs. Nick Masset had a quick appearance until he deflected a hit off his chest, gave the reins up to Thornton, then Scott Linebrink closed out the game. The combined effort of the pitching staff only allowed two runners to cross home plate (despite ten hits) and only walked one.

So how did the Sox go about putting that number on the board? After a walk from Quentin (who went 0-for-3 for the rest of the game), a double from Dye got Carlos home in the first right as he was trying to steal 2nd, then Swisher’s 14th home run got 3 runs in. Pierzynski, too, got an RBI, and despite grounding into a double play, Konerko, too, got a player home. After a walk by Nick Swisher, with the bases loaded, Alexei “The Cuban Missile” Ramirez, who had been 0-for-3 until that point, got his first major league Grand Slam, bringing the score to 10-0 in the bottom of the seventh. I guess the bench does Uribe well, because he did well in Crede’s position and was 2-for-4 at bat with two doubles. Thome was also successful, going 2-for-2 with 2 walks. The bruised knee did not affect Dye, as he was 3-for-4 today. He continues to carry the team.

But it’s not all good, there’s a lot of bad. My little buddy, O.C. has been off his game for a very long time. The same goes for A.J., who went 1-for-5 today. Other than a walk and some hard running in the first, Quentin did a lot of nothing today. Konerko didn’t get a hit until the seventh, either. He almost got into a double play twice, but miraculously ran too fast for the throw and was only stuck with one. Guess not all your guys can do well every day.

Some interesting notes about today: A.J. bleached his hair to match Uribe’s goatee. In the eighth, maybe to give Dye a break, maybe because Carlos wasn’t doing anything, the outfield changed completely. Anderson took over in CF after Swish moved into right field and Wise took over in left field. I really like the way the Rangers’ first baseman (Davis) plays and bats. I’m totally jealous, and hope that Konerko still has it in him to be half the man Davis is. And Crede was out again because of back stiffness. Just a reminder: we’re 9 days away from the trade deadline. Depending on what Richard does, we might be in desperate need for a starter.

Join the Sox tomorrow when Clayton Richard makes his pitching debut against the Rangers.

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