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Wow. You can't make this stuff up. The Red Sox are now in Year 1 of waiting for The Next Championship, scheduled for 2090 (every 86 years), while their AL East pals in pinstripes gave back what they took away from the Angels -- home field advantage -- after just a single day. Aaron Small is human, after all, choosing his post-season debut to break up his personal 10-0 Yankee perfect record. The Bosox/Chisox recap follows behind the "More" link, but feel free to comment on either game, kids.

Paul Konerko's two run homer had given the White Sox a 4-2 heading for the Boston sixth. But Manny Ramirez led off the bottom half with his second homer of the game to cut the lead to a single run, and Ozzie Guillen summoned LH Damaso Marte to relieve Freddy Garcia.

Marte hasn't done much to make Ozzie happy lately, and he remained true to this distressing pattern. Trot Nixon singled to RF - Marte then walked Bill Mueller and John Olerud to load the bases with one out.

So Ozzie sent for El Duque.

If Orlando Hernandez is telling the truth about when he was born, he was only 32 when he came to the major leaguies in 1998, already a legend back in Cuba. On his next birthday, which is Tuesday, he'll only be 40 years old. Right.

It may be remembered that Kenny Williams, Ozzie Guillen and the White Sox took a fair bit of heat when they decided to keep Hernandez on the post-season roster instead of young Brandon McCarthy. Here's what Rotoworld had to say:

A big mistake in our opinion, especially considering that McCarthy pitched seven scoreless innings against the Red Sox in a start last month. There is the problem that McCarthy wouldn't have been able to go on Tuesday or probably Wednesday, but he would have been a better to hold down the Red Sox offense than El Duque.

The White Sox were banking on Hernandez extensive post-season experience, and his history of some pretty impressive October pitching performances: lifetime in the post-season, he is 9-3, 2.65.

On came the old man, his team ahead by a run, no one out, the bases loaded, Red Sox captain Jason Varitek waiting for him. El Duque fell behind 2-0, got a swinging strike, and then an infield pop up for the first out.

Next up was Tony Graffanino, looking to redeem himself after his disastrous Game Two error. He fouled off three pitches, running the count full. He fouled off a seventh pitch, and an eighth, and a ninth. And then he hit a harmless little pop up to the infield. Two out, bases still loaded, White Sox still clinging to a one run lead.

Johnny Damon was next. Again the count went full. Damon fouled off the first 3-2 pitch. And then Hernandez got him swinging to end the inning. White Sox still winning.

And those of us who were too young to see Pete Alexander in the 1926 World Series - and that would be, like, everybody - now have some comparable frame of reference.

It just doesn't get any better.

In the seventh, Hernandez struck out Renteria and Ortiz, and retired Manny Ramirez on a ground ball.

In the eighth, he set down Nixon and Mueller before John Olerud finally dented his armour with a two-out single. But El Duque brushed aside Varitek again, to send the game to the ninth inning. His work was done. The Sox added another run in the ninth, and turned the game over to Bobby Jenks, who retired the Red Sox in order. David Ortiz was in the on-deck circle when it ended, with Manny Ramirez waiting behind him.

Freddy Garcia gets the win, Bobby Jenks gets the save, Paul Konerko had the big game-changing hit.

But this game belonged to Orlando Hernandez. That was a Hold for the Ages.

The Champs are Gone: Yankees Lose, Too | 29 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
TJ Caino - Friday, October 07 2005 @ 07:42 PM EDT (#129824) #
I am so happy right now.
Lefty - Friday, October 07 2005 @ 08:18 PM EDT (#129827) #
Now if the Angels can get it done again tonight. The often maligned Garret Anderson drives a three run homer to open the scoring.

Angels Sox would be fine with me.
King Ryan - Friday, October 07 2005 @ 08:41 PM EDT (#129828) #
I could be wrong, but I'm sure I remember El Duque coming in with the bases loaded and NO outs...getting TWO popups before striking out Dumbass.

Either way, I love Orlando Hernandez. That was just an amazing inning all around. Seemed like every at bat was an epic battle.
CaramonLS - Friday, October 07 2005 @ 08:43 PM EDT (#129829) #
That El Duque performance when he relieved Marte was absolutely amazing. You just can't script that kind of thing.

Not to mention, he battled the last 2 hitters both to 3-2 counts, and infact getting them out by throwing Balls.
King Ryan - Friday, October 07 2005 @ 08:47 PM EDT (#129830) #
It was Chacin-like. :)
Tyler - Friday, October 07 2005 @ 09:31 PM EDT (#129834) #
It was depressing. This Sox team, with the exception of Papi and Manny has looked out of gas since early September. Tonight was just another example of that: three HR from Papi and Manny and three runs. Ugh.
Named For Hank - Friday, October 07 2005 @ 10:22 PM EDT (#129835) #
I'm a very happy man that I saw both El Duque's amazing performance and a suicide squeeze with the catcher running from third today. What a game. As Mrs. Hank said when she saw the upcoming daytime TV schedule for Sportsnet a couple of days ago, "You're really liking the stay-at-home dad thing this week, aren't you?"

Hell yes I am.
Jordan - Friday, October 07 2005 @ 10:46 PM EDT (#129837) #
Give credit to Jamie Campbell. During the Blue Jays' four-game split at Fenway the last week of the season, he noted that the Red Sox did not look like a team ready for the playoffs. They looked tense, tight and tired, and that's how they played in this series. That 14-2 shellacking in Game 1 seemed to take all the wind out of their sails.

What do you do if you're Boston? Pedro's long gone, and he sure would've helped them this series. Curt Schilling can't be counted on as a rotation horse going forward, and it's anyone's guess when David Wells' odometer finally tips over the limit. Matt Clement and Tim Wakefield do not make a reassuring front two in the rotation. Johnny Damon is probably gone, and the Manny trade talk persists.

It will be interesting to see if the Red Sox go the Yankee route -- retool on the fly at a cost of many more millions of dollars -- or accept that they have a veteran championship team that needs to be de-engineered a little before rising to greatness again. They have the farm system and the money to support the second route -- do they have the patience?

Named For Hank - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 12:18 AM EDT (#129838) #
I'm a very happy man that I saw both El Duque's amazing performance and a suicide squeeze with the catcher running from third today.

And then I saw a second squeeze with a catcher on third in the Yankees - Angels game.

What a killer day for baseball!
R Billie - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 12:31 AM EDT (#129839) #
I expect the Red Sox and Yankees to both be in on the Millwood, Burnett, and Morris bidding.
DepecheJay - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 01:34 AM EDT (#129842) #
I know he's not a popular guy around here, but Kelvim Escobar was CLUTCH today (I don't even feel like I have to mention how money Duque was today. Truly one of the best big game pitchers in the history of the game)

That's two really nice outings from the guy who's come a long way since his stint in Toronto. Job well done Kelvim, it's good to see him succeeding.
belboz - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 01:50 AM EDT (#129843) #
Perhaps not as bad as all that. The pitching was, unexpectedly, the major hole this year, and much of that was Schilling's rushed rehab -- and probably ill-use out of the pen -- and Clement being whacked in Tampa. With Foulke as he was, or as he seemed to be, the bullpen never settled down, and when July passed with no prospects traded for solid help the result last night was always a prospect.

Pedro was gone regardless once he spoke with the Mets, regardless of offers from Boston; and a long-term high-dollar contract wouldn't have been wise. If Wells wants to come back I see no reason for the Sox to refuse, he was a positive this year. And even with Clements travails, if Schilling had taken the time to be 100% the division wouldn't have been close.

It's worth noting that Pedro was a distraction even during the ALCS last year (he stayed in BOSTON??); and that Derek Lowe was valuable but ONLY in the postseason and thus a surprise to everyone.

Damon too had a rough 2004 ALCS for the first 5 or 6 games, somewhat like the WSox series this year. I think he and the Sox can work out a contract, IF he doesn't begin to think he is worth $10 million dollars a year.

I also see no reason for Manny to leave, or for the Sox to push him out. He is the best hitter in the league, and everyone in the clubhouse loves him. He and Ortiz are probably the most exciting 3/4 in whichever order there is today.

Lots of pieces to work on, but almost all are pitching related. Keep Manny; keep Damon -within reason-; keep Mueller within reason; figure out what to do with Arroyo; and either get Foulke healthy and a real part of the clubhouse or see if they can get anything at all for him elsewhere; and find a closer.

Oh .. and keep Millar, I would say if they asked me. As he has noted in the past, who else would take care of Manny??

Wayne
DepecheJay - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 03:13 AM EDT (#129845) #
Wayne, I am a St. John's boy so I will say this. No need to look for a closer, you already have one... Craig Hansen baby! Next year he'll be what Huston Street was to the A's, book it!

Does it get any better? 2 teams with around 350 million $ payrolls combined are about to both be eliminated in the 1st round? That's great!

TJ Caino - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 03:28 AM EDT (#129846) #
""It was depressing. This Sox team, with the exception of Papi and Manny has looked out of gas since early September. Tonight was just another example of that: three HR from Papi and Manny and three runs. Ugh.""

You consider that depressing? I consider that 'screw them'.
Tyler - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 04:57 AM EDT (#129847) #
You consider that depressing? I consider that 'screw them'.

You're not a Sox fan though. I am. I wonder if the moves in the offseason will kind of tell us what they expect Schilling and Foulke to do. If they expect those guys to come back in reasonable form, it makes things a lot easier for the Sox. This team, for everything that went wrong, and as absolutely gassed as they looked this month, still has a lot of positives. It's going to be tough to replace Damon's offence (I think he's gone) but if they can get ML offence at first base for an entire season (Millar out!), it'll cut down on what they need from CF. I'm hoping Manny isn't gone, but fearing that he is.

That said, this past month has kind of had the feeling of being the end of an excellent run, to me at least. This team was good enough to have won the WS in 2003 and last year won't be forgotten any time soon. Unless Theo pulls some great moves, it's likely going to be difficult to maintain 95 wins.

DepecheJay - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 12:06 PM EDT (#129848) #
Wow, this is great. It appears that the BoSox might be heading into a swoon JUST AS J.P. gets some money from the front office and the Jays appear to be on the up-swing.

The Yankees on the other hand will NEVER go into a swoon because George Steinbrenner knows no limits with his money. When players start to decline, he'll simply go out and sign the best FA's on the market. It's that simple.
jayfanbrooklyn - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 03:48 PM EDT (#129852) #
The Yankees on the other hand will NEVER go into a swoon because George Steinbrenner knows no limits with his money. He may know how to spend but he may not have the best advice on what to spend. A recent article from the New York Times (http://www.nytimes.com/2005/10/02/sports/baseball/02chass.html?adxnnl=1&adxnnlx=1128798398-78B/n7mMDWtw+vC0bgzuKQ reg required) talks about how george is listening less to Gene Micheal and more to george's tampa crew. Michael ran the yanks in the early 90 when george was banned and gets the credit for not trading away such players as jeter, bernie and Petite. This may be the end of Cashman's tenure as well. Cashman may not have the eye for talent that michael has but he is a good buffer from steinbrener signing everything in sight. Another article from the new york times from last january talked about how the yanks don't make a profit and that their not signing beltran may have signaled the limit to yanks spending. Add to that the stadium the yanks will build, the back loaded contracts on the team, the luxury tax, the questionable depth of the farm system and the speculation on whether george's son in law will be as willing to spend as george and the yanks may be more of a declining empire as opposed to an evil empire.
Mike Boehm - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 04:10 PM EDT (#129853) #
Steinbrener is a general moron. You can only throw money at the problem for so long before your lack of real substance catches up with you. Next year all those aging stars on the Yankees are going to be another year older. Who are the Yankees going to replace them with? It's not a deep free agent market this winter.
VBF - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 04:54 PM EDT (#129856) #
I agree. Not to mention that New York isn't the place to be anymore. Who will play for a team with players on a short leash held by a short-tempered owner that is slowly digressing?

Add to the fact that there isn't a large crop of FAs, I will say that the Yankees will be lucky to sign one big free agent. Book that.

Twilight - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 05:49 PM EDT (#129857) #
I think Mr. Ricciardi has a good point when he said to free agents that Toronto is a much more relaxed place to play. Fans stand by the team and don't rag on players who have one bad outing. There are even some people here (ok...me) who still like Batista, and I guarantee most of us would greet him politely if we saw him on the street somewhere.

When Johnson was booed off the field last night, I wanted to smack those fans. Why would you boo your own players? Do you want them to continue losing games? Did they all of the sudden forget that winning 17 games and maintaining 95 mph velocity is pretty good for a 42 year old pitcher? He stayed fairly healthy the whole year, he had a bad outing. Maybe they should start wondering why they don't have a bullpen instead. Gordon + Rivera = 2 guys. 2 guys /= effective bullpen.
VBF - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 10:23 PM EDT (#129865) #
Vernon Wells and Corey Koskie would never have surivived April and May in any city on the North East coast. Even at his lowest points he still received welcoming ovations when his name was announced at the Dome. And don't think players don't value this. I think if Manny Ramirez had to chose one city to be traded to, I strongly believe it would be Toronto. Not only do we gather behind players in their down moments, but we're as loud and as appreciative as any other fans in MLB when our players go otu and give a good performance. During Chacin's ovation on Sunday, it had a feeling of Yankee Stadium. Even Gustavo was giggly.
Willy - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 10:27 PM EDT (#129866) #
a short leash held by a short-tempered owner that is slowly digressing?

What does that mean, "slowly digressing"?

Did they all of the sudden forget that...

It's "all of a sudden".

For crap's sake, boys. Try a bit harder.
Mick Doherty - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 11:20 PM EDT (#129870) #
Willy, there are a number of fine grammar wonk internet sites and discussion boards and I encourage you to take such comments there.

I taught collegiate writing for several years and the consensus among the "grammar cops" that inhabit English departments at such levels is that online writing simply does not demand the rigorous editing of the traditional print world.

As a great, great Canadian once posited, the medium is the message. Or in this instance, the medium at least helps determine the delivery of the message. It would be easy, very easy, to spend hours every day correcting the undoubtedly hundreds of SMUG (spelling, mecahanics, usage, grammar) errors on this site, not to mention the many others that are far worse (try the ESPN boards for about 10 minutes).

I truly do appreciate your wanting to see the written word presented properly; it's my career, essentially. And I'm married to a technical editor who is even pickier than I am. So I get it. But this is neither the time nor place for grammar critiques.

If you want to talk about hanging sliders, fine. Dangling participles, not so much.
VBF - Saturday, October 08 2005 @ 11:41 PM EDT (#129871) #
C'mon Willy. Could I at least take something away from this? You didn't even tell me what I did wrong. I appreciate the correction actually, but a little help would be appreciated. I'm doing my best.
Willy - Sunday, October 09 2005 @ 02:11 PM EDT (#129894) #
Sure, VBF--get yourself a decent dictionary. Look up the word "digression". It doesn't mean what you seem to want it to mean. I enjoy your enthusiasm; but it gets badly diluted when you don't express it clearly. Doesn't take much to get it right. Cheers.
Willy - Sunday, October 09 2005 @ 02:26 PM EDT (#129895) #
Sheesh, Mick, what a cop-out. Firstly, I am not a "grammar wonk", nor a "grammar cop", nor do I offer "grammar critiques". And I can't stand credentialism--it doesn't matter that you taught "collegiate writing" (whatever that is) for a few years.

If people are repeatedly misusing their native language, for god's sake, why is it *ever* inappropriate to try to help them get it right? VBF's sentence simply made no sense. What does George Steinbrenner "slowly digressing" mean exactly? I have no idea. And if "all of *the* sudden" is repeated many times on Da Box (as it has been), why not point out that it's mistaken? Maybe the perpetrator doesn't even know he's mistaken? Maybe he actually would like to get it right?

There some very good writers on Da Box. What's wrong with trying to help those who aren't to do better? I just irritate you, that's all. Sorry.
Mick Doherty - Sunday, October 09 2005 @ 03:31 PM EDT (#129899) #
Willy, that couldn't have proved my point any more clearly. It's obvious you care about "correct" language -- whatever *that* is -- but it's your choice of venue and presentation I was critiquing.

If you know the collected works of Shakespeare by heart and are at a showing of "Taming of the Shrew" where someone flubs a line, do you stand up in the audience and exclaim, "Excuse me, here's the proper line you obviously don't know."

Call it credentialing if you want, but the technical term I'm expressing here is "to prepon" or "kairos" -- awareness of the appropriateness of the occasion. If you feel that your place is to help others learn language, that's fine -- shoot the poster an e-mail with your correction. Don't post it for all the world to see you belittling someone else's language skills.

I understand you might not mean it this way, but it certainly comes off as belittling, especially when you frame your comments with "for crap's sake boys" and "Sheesh" ... we can pretty much hear your eyes rolling all the way down here in Texas. It *reads* mean-spirited even if you didn't intend to write it that way.

This is a baseball site. You want to send VBF an e-mail with a link to the dictionary.com definition of "digress" ... that's one thing. Feel free. I suspect most people won't appreciate it, but feel free. If you want to huff and puff and tell him to go look up the word in front of an audience, this is NOT the place to do so.

Split-fingered fastballs, yes. Split infinitives, no.
Willy - Sunday, October 09 2005 @ 07:13 PM EDT (#129905) #
Well, Mick, I hope that your argumentation in the classroom was a little less rhetorically treacherous than that. You say I’ve “proved” your “point”. What proof? What point? You never do say *why* it’s “inappropriate” to comment upon language usage–except that you believe it to be so.

The Box is not, of course, a theatre in which a Shakespearean production is taking place – a false analogy. Unfair, too. If a poster on *any* site makes a slip like the one at issue, how is it “belittling” to point that out? Is it not, rather, the audience that is being insulted by such careless misuse of the language? How exactly is it “mean-spirited” or “huffing and puffing” to expect clarity of meaning? (Nobody mentioned “correct” language, except you -- mistakenly asserting it to be my concern. In any case, it’s not a question of “correctness”: VBF simply had the *wrong* word. You might have scribbled “diction” in the margin of an essay.)

FWIW, since you admire Marshall McLuhan, I’ll mention that I was a grad student of his many years ago.
Keith Talent - Sunday, October 09 2005 @ 08:50 PM EDT (#129910) #
Willy, you must have read "The King's English" by Kingsley Amis. You seem to have the same voice.

A good column by Richard Griffin this morning. I have to say I'm pulling for the White Sox the rest of the way, that game on Friday did it for me. They're just so entertaining, particularly with Ozzie Guillen yelling at the umpire the entire time from the top dugout step. What a sideshow! And these guys have attitude: AJ Pierziensky is a real SOB.

We've talked how "Moneyball" doesn't win in post-season. (Such a stupid sentence, "Moneyball" the term has been damaged beyond repair by the likes of Rod Black.) Does anyone ever mention the Braves as one of the great "Moneyball" teams of all time? Their post-season record points to the same trend.
The Champs are Gone: Yankees Lose, Too | 29 comments | Create New Account
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