To put it succinctly, yesterday was a bad day.
Yesterday could’ve seen Wakefield become our all-time winningest starter. Through the first four innings, he was certainly on track; he allowed an RBI single in the second and that was it.
Then we hit the fifth. Three runs scored, and Morneau avenged his at-bat from Wednesday. That was only the beginning. By the time Wakefield left, we were just over five innings into it and were down by six. Five earned runs on ten hits with a walk and two strikeouts. Ninety-nine pitches. The overwhelming majority were knuckleballs, three were fastballs, and three were curveballs, all of which were thrown for strikes. That’s the chance you take with a knuckleballer; if he’s on, he’s on, but if he’s not, it’s a complete disaster. This was one of those complete disasters.
We have officially established that Target Field is a hitter’s ballpark. The wind blows outward and everything.
Schoeneweis contributed to the mess by allowing two runs on three hits. Ramirez didn’t want to miss out, so although he didn’t allow any runs, he didn’t finish his job before allowing two hits and a walk. It was just an all-around mess on the mound.
To make matters worse, the fielders didn’t help much, either. Hall made a fielding error in the second that allowed runners to advance. Wake’s unearned run scored on a throwing error by Beltre. And V-Mart didn’t want to be left out, so he made a fielding error of his own. Three errors in one game. In one game, we topped our total for the entire season thus far.
We find out that Ellsbury is taking longer than expected to heal and could be out tonight as well. Also, Cameron has been scratched due to a lower abdominal strain. That’s what put Hall in center and Hermida in left. So for two-thirds of our starting outfield, playing status is uncertain.
And now for the offense. There was none. The end.
I’m serious. The final score was 8-0. This was the best I’ve seen Liriano against us, ever. We managed only one hit between the second and seventh innings. Our only extra-base hit was a double by V-Mart, which partly makes up for that fielding error. We left eight on base.
Hard to believe, but there were some bright spots in this whole fiasco. Not many, but there were. Mauer went 0 for 4; Schoeneweis struck him out in the sixth. That was pretty cool. Lowell hit the ball hard to left center twice. (The second time, Kubel robbed him of a base hit. He charged and dove for the out.) Jose Mijares came on in relief of Liriano and promptly loaded the bases. (The fact that we did absolutely nothing with that golden opportunity is not the point. And thanks for that, Beltre; he hit into a double play that ended the inning.) And then there was the guy who’s been a bright spot since coming out of the gate: Dustin Pedroia, obviously. The man went three for four yesterday. He alone equaled the entire rest of the team’s offensive output. I’m convinced that he just can’t be contained. And this isn’t just me talking; check out what a Twins blogger had to say about him:
Dustin Pedroia is good. As in ridiculously, disgustingly good.
Eat your heart out, MLB. (By the way, that blog is called Twinkie Town. What?)
Happy Jackie Robinson Day! Yesterday, all players across the league wore No. 42. I’ve always thought that pretty neat. Dice-K probably just pitched himself off the DL. He tossed six shutout innings for Pawtucket yesterday, dominating completely. He’s now pitched eleven innings in the minors, and I think he’s ready.
Now we get to go home. Thank goodness. We’re four and five, and we need to play some games in Boston to get back on track. We’re taking on the Rays, starting with Davis at Beckett tonight.
The Bruins lost to the Sabres, 2-1. We played well. I’d rather lose by that score than by a blowout. Next game is tomorrow afternoon.
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