Sunday, August 31, 2008

It's my fault the Sox didn't sweep.

Against my better judgement, I decided a day at the lake with Ang, the kids, and some good friends was a better choice than guzzling antacids and watching Wake take on the White Sox today. So I'll take the hit on missing out on the sweep of Ozzie and the Pale Hose.

We were invited to do some boating and tubing a few weeks ago, so after church we packed up and headed to the lake to spend the day with Edge and her family; which is where Rakes and I had one of our typical conversations.

Rakes: "I gotta go to the bathroom BEALLY bad, Dad."

Me: "OK son, let's go".

Rakes: (While walking) "I gotta go Poopy, Dad. NOW."

Me: "C'mon, let's run."


Me: "We're almost there; just try not to think about it."

Rakes: (With a look of resignation I can't accurately describe) "I'm just gonna go right here".

I'm pretty sure the look that flashed across my face when he uttered those 6 words would have scared any new born within 50 yards; somehow we made it to the restroom with seconds to spare and any collateral damage was avoided.

If my shrink gets word of this I'll be putting in 3 visits a week for the foreseeable future, so it's a good thing I had Miss Hathaway put a block on the blog the other day.

Which brings to mind this question; Why, at any public place, are we the farthest point away from the closest restroom when he turns into Lloyd from Dumb and Dumber? It never fails; he has to go and we're 4 football fields from the nearest facility and when we get there they are out of toilet paper, soap, or both.

I guess I should count my blessings; at least we made it.

Bring on the Orioles.

And pass the Tylenol.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

I'm getting a familiar feeling...

*Picture courtesy of Kelly at sitting still*

An 8-2 win over one of the hottest hitting teams in baseball.

The rookie pitcher fresh from Pawtucket getting his first Major League win, going 5 innings and looking like this sort of thing happened every day.

A 5 foot, 6 inch second baseman hitting cleanup and going 4 for 4 with an intentional base on balls thrown in for good measure.

Fresh from the purgatory known as Atlanta, the new 4th outfielder hitting a single and two doubles to drive in 3 runs and win the hearts of Red Sox fans from Peabody to Los Angeles.

Michael Bowden, The Munchkin, and Mark Kotsay all deserve a standing ovation and a Fenway Frank for how they performed tonight; think about this for a second. If I'd have told you a week ago the Red Sox would have taken out one of the best teams in the AL, and Bowden, Pedie, and Kotsay were the biggest contributors, you'd have been looking for the closest padded room to send me too.

Instead, here we are on the verge of sweeping the Pale Hose and no matter what the Rays do, the Wild Card is there for the taking. As much as I'd love to win the division for the second year in a row, I'm a firm believer in the old saying "It's not how you drive; it's how you arrive". Whether we get to the post-season as the division champion, the Wild Card, or Vanna White picks our name out of a hat; I could care less. Just get to October and let the best team win.

To top the night off, Rakes, during a crucial inning, asked me the following:

Rakes: "Dad. Wow (Why) does Papi 'pit in his hands before he hits?"

Me: He just does, son.

Rakes: "But wow, Dad? 'Dat is dross."

There really needs to be a book for stuff like this.

Friday, August 29, 2008

What a difference a year makes.


8-0 win, 2 hits, 0 walks, and 8 innings pitched.

For a guy who pitched like a high wire trapeze act on meth last year, Dice-K has been the Dirty Harry of the Red Sox staff this season. When you factor in the time he missed due to injury, this could have been one of those once in a lifetime years you read about every now and then.

You can't beat classless wins at Fenway Park in the stretch drive, yet alone one vs. one of the best teams in the AL. I had the NESN feed on, but I'd like to think there were 6 innings of dead air on the White Sox feed, intermixed with Hawk Harrellson simultaneously crying/muttering under his breath. Knowing that dink, he just twisted the top off his 40 ounce Shlitz and let the good times roll, all the while lamenting the fact he didn't get to utter "She Gone!"

That alone will get me through the weekend. Sox newbie Michael Bowden tomorrow, and if Kelly O is right, and she usually is, we are in for a fantastic night tomorrow.

Rays and Yankees win, so for the time being we tread water in the playoff race.

Sometimes that's good enough.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

While I put away my broom....

Forget the Sox missing out on sweeping the Yankees by one run, Giambi and his PED enhanced body hitting the game tying Home Run AND the game winning single, and the 50,000 + convicts sitting in the stands at the Toilet today.

Even bigger is The Commander heading to Birmingham, AL to visit Dr James Andrews, baseballs version of Jack Kevorkian; apparently the guy can fix ligaments, tendons, and bursa sacs better than anyone, but just hearing the guys name gives me a case of the hives. 'Cause him, ballplayers, and elbow pain doesn't usually end well.

When I heard on the way home Beckett was headed his way my first thought was "Tommy John Surgery" which was immediately followed by George Carlin's "7 Words you can't say on Television" which was backed up by my fist hitting the steering wheel.


Losing Beckett at this point in the season would be tantamount to dropping your gun in the middle of a bank robbery surrounded by the L.A. Swat Team. In other words? Not good.

I've been praying for the last hour that Beckett walks into his office, utters a stream of expletives not seen since Richard Pryor was Live on the Sunset Strip, and shuffles back to Boston with lightning in his arm and piss and vinegar in his veins. This is my heart talking; my head keeps telling me what I've always known; I'm a freaking moron.

Until I hear otherwise, I'm sticking my head in the sand and pretending everything is OK and it's just a Wii injury. Because thinking about trying to get past the Rays or maintain the Wild Card lead without the 2008 version of Nolan Ryan just makes my head hurt.

4.5 games out of first in the AL East and a 2 game lead in the Wild Card race as I head to bed. It could be worse.

Just ask Joe Girardi and the Yankees.


Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Don Meridith was a Prophet.

Turn out the lights. The party is officially over for the MFY's.

Paul Byrd, Jason Bay, and The Munchkin made it official tonight. And if the 11-3 win isn't enough to convince you, the shots of Hank Steinbrenner looking like he'd rather be getting a prostate exam than watching the game should be.

'Course they probably knew it beforehand; when Sidney Freaking Ponson is your greatest hope, you're pretty much scraping the bottom of the barrel anyway. Tonight in the Bronx, the Red Sox sent a big time message not only to the Yankees but to the rest of the contenders in the AL East.

Screw Manny, screw logic, and screw all the prognosticators who wrote the boys off for dead when they traded Manny to LA. This team can still hit, pitch, field, and flip the bird to the rest of the league with the best of 'em; 2 World championships in 4 years will do that for you.

So Joe Maddon, his hipster eye wear, and the rest of the Rays best take notice; the season ain't over, not by a long shot. And as long as the schedule says there are games to play, this team isn't conceding anything. Unless I'm mistaken, the Rays haven't played a meaningful game in September since, well, never.

Fenway Park in the stretch run is just a TAD bit different than in June; something tells me those boys will find that out pretty quick next month. We just went into Yankee stadium and
treated the GREAT NEW YORK YANKEES like the Jr. Varsity team at Podunk High.

I couldn't be happier if I'd hit the Lotto, won season tickets to Fenway Park, and found out Rakes was getting a full scholarship to Harvard.

If the Sox sweep the Yankees tomorrow in the final series between the two at Yankee Stadium?

You'll need an idustrial grade sander and some SERIOUS sandpaper to wipe the smile off my face.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

It NEVER gets Old.

I don't care if the Yankees are as relevant as last years front page; anytime we can go into the Toilet and pull off a win I'm happy.

Tonight? We just might have pounded the final nail into the coffin that's the Yankee 2008 season.

7-3 and the bullpen made it seem closer than it was. Forget the fact that I'm pretty sure our 'pen, as currently constructed, will have a tough time making it past the first round. Tonight was all about beating the Yankees, dashing their fans hopes like some demented Santa Claus on crack and moving on.

I think we accomplished our primary goal, though a win tomorrow night by the Sox would firmly confirm it. The dinks from NY are on life support and one more big loss will write their off season ticket to golf courses, strip bars, and all you can eat buffets at Hooters courtesy of that one way ticket they deserve.

It doesn't matter how may team meetings at the mound, how many fillibusters from Hank Steinbrenner, or how many protested calls they make; the Yankee season is one out away from contacting Hospice and I can't tell you how happy that makes me feel.

Screw Pride, Tradition, and Joe Girardi acting like he's been there before; you've got a bad team going nowhere and I hope you choke on your tradition; welcome to reality. You, and your team suck this year.

Count your blessings and pray Cashman sells the farm for CC Sabbathia next year.

And I hope you enjoy the playoffs from the 19th hole.


Monday, August 25, 2008

Mondays: Just another kick to the Gibleys.

Normally I hate Mondays on principle alone. First day of the week, LONG wait until the weekend, 5 full days of Al Roker and Matt Lauer, etc..

Today was a little different; today, Ciera started 5th grade. That means that one year from now I'll be walking her into middle school while shooting dirty looks at any male over the age of, oh let's just say 2. This isn't possible; I swear it was last week when I brought her home from the hospital, yet here we are on August 25th, 2008 and I'm basically screwed.

Top it off with the fact the Sox had an off day and head into hell on earth, NYC tomorrow night to start a 3 game set with the MFY and I'm beside myself.

So here I sit, watching last season's season finale of "Prison Break" while fuming about Father Time moving so freaking fast and cursing the schedule makers for this stupid off day. Don't they know I've got issues I'm having to deal with?

Tomorrow, Wake will be on the mound, Papi will be spitting in his hands and slapping his gloves together, and I'll be OK.

Or at least as OK as I ever am.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Another letter from the desk of Miss Hathaway

From: Miss Hathaway

To: All Members of the Boston Red Sox

Re: The awesomeness that was today's game

Dear Sirs,

As the restraining orders from your legal staff illustrate, most of you are aware of how much my employer hates to be reminded of the years 2005/2006; especially the latter. So you can understand how uncomfortable it had become around the office over the past few months.

Random diatribes directed at, among others Theo Epstein, Manny Ramirez, and strangely enough the sausage vendor at Gate C. Profanity filled tirades about "gas cans in the bullpen" and the art of hitting into a rally-killing double play game after game after game. He would get especially animated when discussing amongst himself the age old question of "Why can't they win 2 games in a row?" Whenever I would bring up the point they had, in fact, just won 2 games in a row I was threatened with insubordination charges and promises of a transfer to our Greenland affiliate. Never mind the fact we don't even HAVE an affiliate, much less one in Greenland; you get where I'm going.

I write this letter as a request from Chief; whatever you do, DON'T let what happened today go to waste. Unfortunately, I was putting all the RSD's homemade score sheets (long story; you're better off not knowing) into alphabetical and chronological order and I missed the game. However, during my 2 1/2 minute break I did get the synopsis of the exciting events from today.

Now, here is where I've got to speak up; you have no idea what it's like to work for a deranged lunatic who lives and dies with every game you people play. The man is deranged; and guess who he takes it out on? Not his wife (A saint of a woman I tell you) and not those demon seeds he calls children (who, in my opinion, need a good switching with a stick every now and then. Who am I kidding? He should wear that stick in a holster like Wyatt Earp and just flail away every 3 minutes, but that's not my call to make.) No, he takes it out on me, his most faithful employee, and quite frankly, I'm getting sick of it.

So if you let Jason Varitek getting 2 hits, that handsome young Mr. Ellsbury crashing into the wall and losing a contact, or that new outfielder who looks like Opie Taylor and his Spiderman catch today go to waste you best be prepared for the consequences.

Or HR's by that little fella with premature balding issues, Coco Crisp (what kind of mother would name their child after a cereal?) and that young fella who apparently Julio Lugo has issued a "hit" on (whatever that means) I swear on my collection of knitted scarves there will be hell to pay.

You took a series against a division opponent in THEIR park and you did it by coming from behind to win. You took the last hopes a team had of making the postseason and you stomped it into the ground like my boss does my request for a raise; smiling, laughing, and trash talking the whole time. Next up? The MFYankees, and no, he still won't tell me what the F stands for; it doesn't matter. You can take the hopes of your most hated rival and smash them to pieces in 2 days, much like my hopes of a raise, promotion, or the SOB firing me so I can file unemployment get dashed on a daily basis.

What I'm trying to say is you're all I've got to hope for right now. You gentleman pull this thing off, get past the Rays, and win the division? I've been promised a promotion. Or at least he'll give me an actual desk to work on. You take the wild card and I get a chair to sit in; nothing fancy, mind you. No arms and no cloth seat, but it beats the broken toilet he had replaced in the executive rest rooms last month I've been using.

This has been a long season and it's getting to be crunch time; you make the playoffs and I can coast through October and November; he's too busy checking his blood pressure, trying to catch up on sleep, and writing gloating emails to all his Yankee loving rival executives. But try as I might to forget them, I remember the winters of '05 and '06.

I will NOT, I repeat WILL NOT go through that again.

So please use the epic win today to catapult you to a 22-3 game record over the next 25 games which would put the Rays, Yankees, and anyone else so far in your rear view mirror you'd need the Hubble Telescope to see them and be the team everyone thought you'd be in March. Take the mojo from today and carry it all the way into October where lame Dane Cook commercials, Joe Buck being a tool, and my "Understanding Tim McCarver Dictionary" seem normal.

Thank you for your time, and speaking for myself I appreciate the restraint most of you have shown over the past few years; the letters alone would have sent me over the edge, much less the phone calls, emails, faxes, and florist deliveries.

He really is a good man. He just needs 90 days in a well run sanitarium to get on the road to wellness.

Good luck, God Speed, and hit 'em where they ain't the rest of the season.


Miss Hathaway.

P.S. Could you ask Mr. Francona if he got my "care package"?

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Crabcakes has a sad.

So do I. After working all day, I hopped in the car, called my little brother Josh, and got the good news on the final score; 11-0 Blue Jays and apparently the suck Clay Buchholz left behind the other night got to Jon Lester today.

I started the day off with kisses from Rakes, Trot, Ciera, and Ang. I sold some furniture, got back in the car, and came home to kisses from the aforementioned lineup, sans Ciera who is spending the night with a friend. All I missed was the game today.

Suddenly I'm glad I had to work.

Tomorrow is coming, and with it comes Daisuke and his 15-2 record.

Which reminds me, I need to stop by the drug store on the way home from church and stock up on TUMS and Rolaids.

Tell me again why it is I love the pennant race?

Friday, August 22, 2008

It's not a matter of if. It's a matter of when.

World's are gonna collide. Sometime, somewhere, there is going to be chaos at Casa de Ted.

On one side is 10 hour work days, a loving wife, 3 beautiful kids, and a list of chores a mile long.

On the opposing bench? Red Sox games, blogger, Facebook, and a desire for some free time.

Just like George Costanza once had to deal with it, I'm about to experience world's colliding; and it ain't gonna be pretty.

I've put it off like the UN sanctions against Iraq held off the inevitable; one day soon I'm gonna have to pick one side or the other.

Obviously, I'm picking Ang and the kids.

Although it's a good thing it's August and not April when I have to make this decision. Otherwise, I'm pretty sure all bets would be off. At least until the World Series ended.

It's a shame "Leave it to Beaver" and "The Walton's" never prepared us for stuff like this.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Reason # 3,597 to hate off days.

Because of all the free time I had tonight due to the lack of a Red Sox game, I think I joined Facebook. Although I can't be 100% since I think you have to have a calculus degree to make it a 100% certainty.

At least that's what I keep telling myself, 'cause the only other solution is I'm dumber than a tree stump and I just don't want to admit that at 10:30 at night.

I'm 38 years old, happily married, have 3 kids AND a blog and I honestly think I have time for Facebook. She's either going to leave me or sign us up for disability when I tell her the happy news; I've already been pressing my luck in the "time allotted for the computer" for the past 8 months.

Meanwhile I've got Beckett with a tingly arm, Buchholz and his inability to find home plate and Bartolo Colon and his extra 100 lbs to worry about.

I need a vacation in the worse way.

Tomorrow night we start a 3 game set vs. the Blue Jays and the only consolation I have is Doc Halladay beat the crap out of the Yankees tonight and we don't have to face him. If someone could tell me Marco Scutaro fell into a sinkhole tonight, my world would be fine.

It's still August and I need a full time therapist.

Man, do I love this game.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Enough is Enough

When your CF makes like Spiderman, climbs the outfield wall, and falls rear end over teakettle to try and catch a home run, he really deserves his starting pitcher making it out of the 3rd inning.

Unfortunately, that didn't happen tonight; Clay Buchholz was all over the place. Hits, runs, walks, hit batsmen, home runs, and I'm pretty sure I saw him doing the Macarena pantsless at one point.

Look, I love the kid and all, but coming into the playoff stretch the last thing the Red Sox need is a headcase trying to find his way around the mound. It's obvious to anyone who has been watching him pitch for the past few months he's completely lost out there and no matter how much we want him to find himself, it's not happening. At least not while he's in the bigs.

Give me Bartolo Colon and his overweight body any day of the week right now; he's a Cy Young winner who's seen it all before. And inter league play is over so we don't have to worry about him throwing out his back while doing his best impression of Babe Ruth at the plate. At least until the World Series.

On a night when Tampa Bay lost we had a shot to make up a game with a win; instead, our starter was in the clubhouse before the 4th inning, the bullpen went into gas can mode, and we end the day just like we started it; 4.5 games back of the Devil Rays.

I'm not even gonna go into my theory that involves Bud Selig, voodoo dolls, and Hank Steinbrenner chanting over incense. What's done is done and tomorrow is a new day; the boys are off and headed to the Great White North for a 3 game set with the Blue Jays.

Bottom line is it isn't April anymore. It's fixing to be August the 21st, we're in 2nd place in the AL East and clinging to the wild card lead; the time for trying to get guys right left the building a long time ago. I don't care if it's the entire Mitchell Report leading the charge, I just wanna make the post-season.

OK, that's a lie but you get my drift. Give me the best possible team you can, night after night, and I'll get all up on my high horse after the season. This team is too good and too deep not to get to October, where I'll have to deal with Dane Cook commercials and inane commentary from Buck and McCarver every night.

It's a small price to pay, but I'm willing to deal with it.

Somebody pass me the aspirin.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Some things you just can't explain.


The Loch Ness Monster.

Tom Cruise.

Ryan Seachrest's appeal.

Daisuke Matsuzaka being 15-2.

I've watched everyone of his starts and I could swear he should be 8-9 with a 7.89 era. In reality, he's sitting at a 2.74 era, 72BB, and 103 K's. Which floored me.

If I'd had to have guessed, Rudy Stein would have better numbers. 'Cause every start he makes seems like I'm guzzling TUMS by the gallon. But when you look at the numbers, he's actually been one of the best pitchers in the game all year.

It must be those bases loaded, 1 out situations he always seems to find himself in.

As long as he keeps getting out of trouble, I'm willing to keep on mainlining Maloxx. Between him and Beckett I'm gonna need stomach replacement surgery come November anyways, so what's a few more nailbiters?

Sox go for the sweep tomorrow with Buchholz on the mound.

I wonder if my insurance covers this sort of thing?

Monday, August 18, 2008

Taking Over Charm City

I knew tonight was in the bag precisely when Rocky Cherry came into the game. Seriously; your name is Rocky Freaking Cherry and you're pitching in a Major League game? You might as well go by Buck Naked and be in the porn industry.

Tek and Jason Bay go yard (Twice for Bay), Lester is channeling Curt Schilling circa 2004 and the Red Sox shake off the suck from yesterdays 15-4 beat down by the Blue Jays and beat the O's 6-3.

All of a sudden I'm not scoreboard watching and freaking out if the Rays actually win. I STILL think they hit a speed bump in the road on the way to the playoffs; Cinderella always loses her glass slipper, no matter how many times you read the story. Maddon and the Rays have been living on borrowed time all year; something tells me it'll catch up to them sooner or later.

In the meantime, I know there is a God. 'Cause there is no way I'd have gone through the nonsense with Rakes this afternoon I went through without the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow being a Red Sox victory.

Daisuke tomorrow and hopefully Rakes will be civil.

Or else all that money I spent on tranquilizers will have just gone down the drain.



Sunday, August 17, 2008

Happy Birthday, Princess

10 years ago tomorrow my life stopped being about what was best for me and switched over to what was best for her, although I had no idea at the time. When Ciera came into the world I was overwhelmed at what was happening and had no clue what I was doing. All I knew was I had this precious little girl who squealed "DADDY!" whenever I came home and I was absolutely positive nobody was any better off than me.

Now I just want someone to tell me where in God's name did the last 10 years go? 'Cause it seems like yesterday I was pushing her in the backyard on a swing and freaking out because she wanted to go higher. Or teaching her how to ride a bike with no training wheels, holding her close in the ER when she was dehydrated from a Rotovirus at 3 in the morning, or trying to explain to a just-turned 3 year old why those airplanes were flying into buildings on 9-11.

I've got memories of reading Junie B. Jones books to her at bedtime so clear in my mind I'd swear they just happened, but I know it was at least 5 years ago when it occurred. Watching her swim the length of the pool after taking swimming lessons, with every nerve in me screaming "JUMP IN AND GET HER; SHE'S GONNA DROWN!" or putting her on my shoulders while we walked in the park; To quote the Dire Straights? "So close, yet so far away."

And so it happened that I spend the majority of this afternoon watching this little girl I love more than anything else, having the time of her life on her birthday surrounded by her friends and her family. Even in between making sure Rakes wasn't pushing some unsuspecting guest into the pool and trying to keep Trot out of the women's restroom, I had enough time to realize something significant was happening.

My baby girl had done gone and grown up on me. And while she's still only 10, it'll never be like it was again. Soon she'll be calling boys on the phone and even worse, boys will be calling her. And little by little, she'll grow up and apart from me in a way that I'm sure will break my heart. One day, she'll be waving goodbye from her car while I'm left standing on the front porch, with tears pretty much like the ones I'm stomping down right now streaming down my face.

I know the fact that I'll be trying to keep Rakes and Trot from winding up in juvie for the next 10 years will take up some of my time, as well as the knowledge that trying to avoid having Angie hit me with a frying pan for my latest idiotic comment will be keeping me busy. Doesn't change the fact that one day, sooner rather than later, there will be a void in my heart that nothing will be able to fill.

But as of today, she's still my Baby Girl.

Happy Birthday, Boo.

Daddy loves you more than you'll ever know.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Happy Days

After sitting through a rain out on Friday night and a Doc Halladay complete game win on Saturday, I needed something pleasant to get me through until The Commander took the hill on Sunday.

So I went back and looked at every picture and read every comment from Elmerpalooza and all was right with the world.

I remembered I've got a lot of good friends from all over the country and I can't wait until I get back to Boston next spring.

It's really amazing how you can meet lifelong friends on the Interwebs and how much they mean to you.

We had a mini-palooza with ab and BB the other week and in October we're having another one with Rob, JD, and Candaon for the UNC-BC football game.

While I'm really looking forward to October, I can't help but wish it was already next May and Teddy was back in Boston again.

On a positive note, the Rays just lost to the Rangers which keeps the Sox 3.5 games back. Other than being ahead in both my fantasy leagues this week, this is the only positive baseball news I've gotten all day.

I think I just miss my friends.

And I can't wait to see them all again.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Nothing Sadder Than a Covered Baseball Field

After working 10 hours and selling all day long, there is nothing, other than kissing my wife and kids, that I look forward to more than seeing the Red Sox play. And as much as I hate to see the phrase "Rain Delay" on my television screen, I hate seeing this even more.

"Game is Postponed".

Why doesn't Mother Nature just go ahead and have a 10 foot tall tree fall on my gibleys and call it a day?

You work all day with that game at 7 p.m. your light at the end of the tunnel and at the end of the day you're stuck watching the Rays/Rangers game and praying for a miracle to happen and the Rangers to stop the sucking.

Word to the wise: you can pray all you want and it still won't matter. Tampa is winning 5-0 and Texas still stinks.

To top it all off, there won't be a double header tomorrow; according to the geniuses who run MLB it'll be made up in SEPTEMBER. Personally, I think Bud Selig should be tied buck naked on top of an ant hill while slathered in Honey for decisions like this, but because of all the restraining orders he'll never hear my opinion.

All I know is it's 10:00 p.m., I have no Red Sox on my television, and I've spent the last 45 minutes putting my collection of NESN transcripts in chronological order.

There'd better be a game tomorrow night or else I'm gonna be forced to color code the stupid thing.

I really need to consider getting some sort of life.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Everybody get out your broom


Scoring a grand total of 37 runs over 3 games, the Red Sox swept the Rangers out of Fenway tonight to the tune of 10-0. Other than the ulcer inducing 19-17 win on Tuesday, this has been about as a relaxing 3 game series that I could imagine; Tonight's 10 runs combined with last nights 8 has me wondering if we've messed with the baseball mojo heading into a 3 game set with the Blue Jays.

Who, by the way, are coming in loaded for bear. Doc Halladay tomorrow, Marcum on Saturday, and AJ Burnett and his .25 cent head on Sunday while the Sox counter with newly signed Paul Byrd (who makes the old dude from Major League look like a flame thrower), Beckett, and Buchholz on Sunday. Byrd is a wild card; I have no idea what we'll be getting from him. Beckett? I imagine he'll be his normal pissed off, angry self come Saturday.

It's Buchholz I'm worried about; his last 8 or so starts have been excuses to slam your head in the car door repeatedly; I'm hoping he's got his stuff together enough to where the bats can carry him through. I gotta admit though; I really wish it was Bartolo and his Andre the Giant-like body taking the bump for that game.

Finally, I had one of those "Man, is it awesome to be a Dad" moments tonight.

Rakes, after letting me read three books to him before bedtime, wanted to watch a little bit of the game.

A few minutes in, he looked over and said the following: "Do you know who wears ladies underwear, Dad?"

"Derek Jeter". Which was immediately followed by a giggle fit from him.

And me.

Being a parent truly is a calling.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

The Grumpiest 11 game Winner You'll Ever See

No, his dog didn't get run over by a bus, he DID save a lot of money on his car insurance, and he won his 11th game of the season 8-4 over the Rangers tonight.

I've got no idea why a guy who beat cancer, won the deciding game of the 2007 World Series, and threw a no hitter earlier this year is so grumpy.

Nor do I care; Jon Lester is 11-4 while doing his best impression of Walter Mathau in "Grumpy Old Men", so as far as I'm concerned he can go on acting like Fred Sanford with a bad case of hemorrhoids as long as he wants. Another fantastic performance against the Rangers tonight and he's giving Beckett and Daisuke a run for their money when it comes to who actually is the staff ace this year.

All I can say is this; out of the three of them, I reach more for the potato chips and less for the TUMS when Crabcakes (copyrighted by Cyn) is pitching than the other two. And if you've followed the Red Sox for the past three years, you'll know just how weird it felt for me to type that.

To top the night off, the MFY's lost to the Twins and I'm hoping for carnage or a minor earthquake later tonight while the A's host the Rays. 'Cause a world where the Red Sox aren't sitting at the top of the AL East is a world I don't wanna know.

1 1/2 games back would be a great way to wake up in the morning.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Talk about a kick to the gibleys...

You wanna know the definition of surreal?

Reading "5 Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed" to Rakes while I watched the Red Sox gack up a 10-0 FIRST INNING LEAD. Here is this innocent little 4 year old sitting next to me, I'm reading about these idiotic monkeys, who even though they've seen catastrophic injuries to their siblings from all the jumping, yet STILL keep falling off the bed (They gotta be Yankee fans. No other explanation makes sense) and all I want to do is punch something.

In my mind, I've gone into "Richard Pryor: Live on the Sunset Strip" while in reality I'm calmly reading this story while my blood pressure reaches Defcon 5.

Throw in the fact Papi hit TWO home runs and drove in 6 runs in the FIRST INNING and I'm about to morph into Al Pacino in the final scene of Scarface; I'm talking EPIC meltdown. Somehow I maintained control and got through the story, got him into bed, and .3 seconds after shutting his door was doing my best impression of Brendan Donnelly while stomping around the living room.

As I type this, it's 16-15 Rangers in the top of the 8th inning.

On the bright side? If we don't win this game, I've got a brand new flat screen in my near future.

As a bonus, the old one will have one Carolina Baseball League Official ball in it.

11:07 pm. Sox win 19-17, thanks to Youk's second home run of the night. I'm pretty sure I'll be in therapy for the next 30 days so I may not post something new tomorrow.

Who am I kidding? I'll be out in 2 hours.

I can't express how much I love this team.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Charlie Tadao Zink, Welcome to the Show

27 years old. His first Knuckleball in a game hit the batter in the head. He's been in the Red Sox minor leagues since 2002 and tomorrow night he makes his Major League debut at Fenway Freaking Park against the Texas Rangers.

Thanks to my friends Cyn and Kelly I know more about Charlie Zink than 99% of the civilized world. I used to think I was a fan; then I met those two and realized I have a lot of work to do just to reach "Fan" level.

Even weirder is the fact he's a knuckleball pitcher replacing a knuckleball pitcher; Wake is on the DL and Zink is taking his place. I don't know what the odds are for one franchise to have 2 knuckleball pitchers in it's system, but I'm fairly certain you've got better odds hitting the Powerball.

Without boring those of you who read this any more than usual, I'll just link his story HERE. He's a feel good story looking for a place to land, and it looks like Fenway Park is his launching pad. You can bet the farm I'll be plopped in the easy chair with Rakes right beside me tomorrow night when he makes his debut.

Speaking of the hooligans, we went to the pool today and had a ball. At least until Rakes decided to terrorize the neighbors 3 year old, steal his swim noodle, and decide to instigate all out war with everyone in the pool with his water gun.

Trot practicing his movie star look.

Ciera giving me a glimpse of what is coming in the next 3 years. Which reminds me, I really need to buy that gun.

Finally, this could be your President in 30 years.

And you thought the last 8 years were bad.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Just Another Manic Sunday

Trot woke up from his nap about the same time the Red Sox lost to the White Sox today; this picture perfectly captures my mood.

Grumpy, pantsless, and ready to kick someone in the gibleys at the slightest provocation.

I just figured a 2 year old in that condition was a little more palatable than an out of shape 38 year old with rage issues.

Losing 6-5 is nothing to hang your head about, but I'm up to my eyeballs with moral victories. We're smack dab in the middle of a pennant race and in one corner we've got Lester, Beckett, Matsuzaka that we can count on. On the other side? 42 year old Wake and his messed up shoulder (I never would have guessed that throwing 60 mph could be harmful, but apparently it is), Bartolo "Weight is just a number" Colon and his bad back, and Buchholz's million dollar arm and .25 cent head.

Staked to a 3-0 lead in the first inning, he battled his way through approximately 2 innings before that was erased. The guy threw a FREAKING NO HITTER last year, yet he can't somehow manage to get past 5 innings today? Look, I love the kid. He's obviously got filthy stuff, but if he can't get it done now, we need to send him down to Pawtucket and find someone who can, ASAP.

This isn't April; it's August the 11th, the race to the pennant is on, and Joe Maddon, his stupid retro glasses and the Tampa Bay Rays don't look like they are gonna fade anytime soon, much to my astonished surprise. Back in May I figured they were just having the run of a lifetime and come August they'd be in our rear view mirror. And we'd be worrying about the MFY's like we always did.

Only August is now HERE, the Yankees are 8.5 games back with no pitching, an idiot for a manager, and clinging to the playoffs on the hope that HGHiambi's porn stache and magic thong are gonna get them to the promised land.

Reality is? The road to the AL East is either going through Boston or Tampa Bay; and if the Sox don't wake up and get it together, we're all gonna be watching Raymond ride that moronic three wheeler on FOX come October. Loading the bases with 1 out and getting NOTHING for it today only added 30 points to my blood pressure.

If I'd been alone, I would have thrown a shoe through the television, spent my allotted curse words for the month in about 2 minutes, and grabbed my sledge hammer and went Led Zepplin on the neighbors Volvo. Instead, I sat down, pulled up the ottoman, and read the angriest, fastest version of "Cat in the Hat" to Rakes you could possibly imagine. I'm pretty sure he went to bed wondering what that dumb cat had done to piss me off so much.

For the proverbial cherry on the sundae known as my day today, I've had to listen to Joe Morgan call the Sunday night game on ESPN for the past 3 hours.

It's a good thing I don't own a handgun.

To paraphrase Clark Griswold:

Somebody pass me the Tylenol.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Wally Pipp, circa Boston 2008

*Photo courtesy of Kelly*

For anyone who doesn't know who Wally Pipp is, he played first base for that MFY's team back in the day; he decided he needed a day off and his back up came in to fill the void. Turns out that void lasted 2,130 games.

His replacement? Lou Gehrig, otherwise known as "The Iron Horse".

In no way am I suggesting Jed Lowrie is the equivalent of Gehrig; just that Julio Lugo may not ever play SS for the Red Sox again.

All my man Jed has done in 36 games is hit .288, 1 HR, 22 RBI, and has an OPB of .350. Throw in the fact he plays SS like Ozzie Smith in his prime and it's a no brainer. The Sox had 4 double plays tonight and I'm pretty sure Lowrie started 7 of 'em. Maybe not, but that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

I've been a defender of Lugo since he got here; it's not HIS fault Theo and Co. thought he was worth $9 million a year for 4 years; but with the way Lowrie has played, Julio's gotta be looking at the housing market in about 15 different cities right now.

'Cause other than a natural disaster, Lowrie getting run over while walking north by a southbound bus, or a giant asteroid hitting earth between now and next April, hell will freeze over before he's starting at SS for the Boston Red Sox next year.

Sox win 6-2 vs the White Sox, Daisuke gets win #13, and Papi is back to being Papi again with 3 hits. Meanwhile, somebody call the Guinness World Record people:

The Red Sox rendered Ozzie Guillen speechless.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Chi-Town Craziness

Just when I think I've got this game figured out, they go and change the rules on me. And by that I mean just when I know I'm gonna have to watch nine innings of a game feeling like some gremlin is hitting me in the gibleys with a ball peen hammer, the Red Sox make it interesting.

Down 4-0 heading into the 8th and looking like a Pony League team against Mark Buehrle all night, The Munchkin hits a 3 run bomb and all of a sudden it's 4-3 Pale Hose heading into the bottom of the inning.

Wouldn't you know it? The Gremlin with the mean streak is back, Carlos Quentin hits a solo HR and as if 10:28 p.m. it's 5-3 White Sox, bottom of the 8th.

I really need to take a good hard look at myself; I'm 38, out of shape, and have high blood pressure. I eat like a 12 year old, don't get enough sleep, and spend roughly 4 hours a night watching grown men try and hit a small, round ball a really long way. Throw in the fact that if my team doesn't win my first thought is to go look for the nearest bridge to jump off and you've got a psychology major's term paper right it front of you.

Yet day after day, night after night, I do the same freaking thing. Even when it makes me re-create Eddie Murphy's set from "Raw" I just can't quit this game. Whether it's a 2-2 game, 9-0, or like tonight, 5-3 headed into the last a/b, I gotta stay up and watch it all.

I blame Dave Roberts.
'Cause he made me realize it's NEVER over; not even when the rest of the world is moving on and that big fat dude in Vegas is counting all his money, you never take anything for granted.

Even though the Sox lost tonight, they COULD have just as easily won; before 2004 I woulda been in bed already. Thanks to Saint Dave, now I never give up.

Sure, I'm sleep deprived, agitated, and almost ready to give myself a swirly; but because of that one play I'll never give up on a game again.

I'm not sure whether I should thank him or sue him for my sleep deprivation.

We win tomorrow, I'm hand writing the thank you note.

We lose? Ted's getting paid.

Far as I'm concerned, it's a win/win.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

80's Television Haz a Lie.

You ever have one of those days where you seriously contemplate sending your kids off to military school until they reach the age of 21? You know the kind I'm talking about; the ones where you utter "How come Bill Cosby never had this kind of day on the Cosby Show and you can't tell me one of HIS kids never took a whiz on the living room rug, even though the bathroom is 5 feet away?" sort of moments.

How come we never saw Cliff Huxtable have to deal with kids taking off all their clothes at the public pool, trying to stuff Buzz Lightyear down the toilet, or his 10 year old daughter Rudy wanting to know why exactly she couldn't get her eyebrow pierced?

Plus, we never saw him have one of those coma inducing arguments with his spouse where both of you keep saying the same thing that the other one thinks is a load of crap, leaving both parties looking for the next available steel pole to bang their head repeatedly into.

Have I mentioned how much I hate off-days?

Red Sox/White Sox starting tomorrow night.

Maybe I can put off that group therapy session after all.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

A Road Series Win!

Thanks to some fantastic pitching by Wake and a 3 run HR by Jacoby, the Sox take the series against the Royals 2 out of 3. Normally, a series win vs. Kansas City is hardly cause to celebrate, but the way road games have gone for the boys this year, I'll take it.

Off to Chicago, Hawk Harrelson and Ozzie Freaking Guillen for the weekend.

Is it too much to ask for a Josh Beckett fastball to ricochet off the helmet of AJ Pierzynski and hit Ozzie smack dab in the middle of his forehead? Or at the very least can Ozzie trip over a sprinkler head and tear his ACL?

I didn't think so; Bring on Griffey Jr., Konerko, and the rest of the Pale Hose.

The charge to first place in the AL East is now officially on.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Some Days it doesn't pay to get out of bed.

I got home tonight around 7:30 and enjoyed approximately 15 minutes of serenity while we ate dinner; after that? The circus came to town.

Rakes and Trot spent the next 40 minutes either wrestling, fighting, or running save for a brief period where I got them to lay on our bed and watch "Mickey Mouse Clubhouse".

To answer your next question? Yes, Rakes has his hand down the back of his pants. And no, I have no idea what in the world he's doing. In fact, I'm pretty sure I don't want to know what he's doing; some things are better left unsaid.

It was right about the time I walked in to check on them and found Rakes whipping Trot with my belt like Dusty Rhodes laying the strap to Ric Flair, AFTER I had warned him about 587 times to be gentle, that my wires sort of went haywire.

You'll be happy to know that instead of hanging him by his shorts on the nearest hook, I simply sentenced him to bed at 8:30 with no snack, no tv, and no Star Wars on the PS2. Even though he was pitching a fit like I'd put him on Death Row, I'm pretty sure he'll be none the worse for wear.

Anyone know someone willing to be a Nanny for 3 ruffians and no hazard pay?

Monday, August 4, 2008

It was Uncanny, really.

Rakes did a spot on, perfect impression of Tek at the plate tonight, complete with the foot lift and the waggling of the bat.

I have no idea when he perfected this or how he sat still long enough to absorb it into his memory, but somehow he did.

I'd love to post a picture but Blogger is pitching a hissy fit and I can't download an image off the Internet, much less one from my crappy camera.

Somehow I get the feeling he'll be debuting this new trick come the first T-Ball practice next spring.

If so, at least he won't be standing at home plate with his arms in the air celebrating a ground ball to second while I'm screaming "Run!" from the stands.

A victory, no matter how small, is still considered a victory.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

It's Amazing What A Three Game Sweep Will Do.

Trot and I, minutes after the Red Sox swept the A's out of Boston. I'm positively giddy with the win, and Trot was just thrilled I wasn't throwing the remote control at the television again.

Man, does a 3 game sweep versus a 3 game beating make the biggest difference in my mental state. After watching the Angels come into Fenway Park and treat the Red Sox like a farm team this week, beating up on the A's was especially satisfying. And anytime I see Frank Thomas looking like he's ready to cry is another notation in the scrapbook.

Throw in Jason Bay doing his best impression of Roy Hobbs the past 3 games and some really good pitching by the bullpen, I've got high hopes for the rest of the season. If we can go into Kansas City and treat those boys like the Jr. College team they are I'll really be feeling my Oates.

And if somebody ACCIDENTALLY flings their bat into the White Sox dugout next weekend and puts Ozzie in the hospital for a few days?

All the better.

If all this seems a bit much, I sincerely apologize. But we're potty training a child who thinks the world is his personal toilet, Rakes is in training to be a cage fighter, and Ciera is setting the world record for "earliest a child has entered puberty."

Throw in the fact Manny must have ran into Jimmy Swaggart in LA, as his hamstrings have miraculously healed and he's hitting bombs like it's batting practice and I'm on the verge of going Peter Gibbons in "Office Space", with some creative liberties taken:

"It's not just about me and my dream of repeating as World Series Champions. It's about all of us. I don't know what happened to me at that hypnotherapist and, I don't know, maybe it was just shock and it's wearing off now, but when I saw that dread locked man keel over and quit - Ang, we don't have a lot of time on this earth! We weren't meant to spend it this way. Human beings were not meant to sit in little cubicles staring at computer screens all day, filling out useless forms and listening to eight different talking heads go on and on about why Manny left and how it means we won't go to the World Series!"

Is it really only the beginning of August?

How in God's name am I going to make it for another 3 months?

Saturday, August 2, 2008

I think I'm taking it harder than he is.

Because Mom had us all over for dinner tonight, it was the bottom of the 3rd inning when Rakes and I settled into the easy chair to watch the game tonight. In addition to him repeating my yell of "Way to Go JED!" after Lowrie's bases clearing triple, I decided to finally break the news about Manny being gone as gently as possible.

The following is a play by play account of our conversation as Coco stepped into the batters box.

Me: "Do you know who that is, buddy?"

Rakes: "Him look like Manny, Dad".

Me: "Nope. It's not Manny, bud."

Rakes: 'Dat is Toto Trispy, Dad. Bere is Manny?"

Me: "Manny doesn't play for Boston anymore, buddy. We traded him to the Dodgers."

Rakes: "Oh. When is Papi doing to bat?"

Guess I was all worried about nothing; his favorite player is gone and Rakes could care less. Maybe he gets the whole "It's all about the name on the front and not the back of the jersey" concept.

Or he just doesn't understand and I'll get a barrage of questions over the next few days that will have me pulling out the Yellow Pages for the first available therapist or wondering why in the world I even mentioned it after he's asked me for the 5,986th time about why we let Manny go.

It's a little easier to deal with this stuff after a 12-2 blowout win vs. the A's tonight and Jon Lester dealing like an ace.

Bay getting his first HR as a Red Sox player and Youk depositing 2 balls over the Monster make it even better.

I think we'll all be just fine.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Mr. Bay goes to Boston

He looks like the guy who brings you your mail or changes your oil or bags your groceries at the local Piggly Wiggly. He most definitely doesn't look like the guy who played LF the past 8 years at Fenway; no dreads, no baggy pants, and apparently he only has to shave once a week.

However, the Red Sox win 2-1 and guess who scored both of the winning teams runs? Jason "I can't be Manny Ramirez" Bay. First one came on a walk in the second, and the last one came after a triple he hit, followed by a Jed Lowrie bang-bang play at first that resulted in Young Jed being safe and Bay running home while "Dirty Water" blared in the background.

Not a bad way to start your gig in the pressure cooker known as Boston. Now, if the media would just leave the guy alone and let him be Jason Bay, we should be OK. Although I'm betting CHB will have a nasty column about how he'll never make it in Boston and we never should have traded Manny, complete with a chart and a pie graph showing how many times Ortiz struck out with Manny sitting on the bench.


Live well and prosper, Manuel. I hope you find that peace you're searching for.

Long live the Jason Bay era.