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Posts Tagged ‘Sergei Samsonov’

Every time Masterson starts, he wins.  Or if he doesn’t win, he gets saddled with an undeserved no decision.  But he doesn’t lose.  We talk all the time about how young the kid is and how he pitches well beyond his years, and how he looks like a veteran on the mound every start.  No so last night.  Last night he looked like some kid from Pawtucket called up to make an emergency start.  I mean, fine, he couldn’t go on like that forever and every pitcher has a bad day, but I think I would’ve been much happier if he’d had his bad day not during the second game a four-game series with the Rays, because now we’ve lost two and Toronto’s jumped out in front.  So we’re officially on a losing streak and in second place.  Wonderful.

One thing’s for sure.  When I envisioned what a Masterson bad day would look like, I wasn’t really seeing back-to-back home runs, the first of which was a grand slam.  That was definitely not part of the plan.  Masterson pitched six, gave up six runs on six hits, walked three, struck out six, and relinquished those two home runs in the fifth inning.  Evan Longoria hit the grand slam, followed by Carlos Pena’s solo shot.  Both were hit with two outs.  As we know, Masterson wouldn’t last much longer.  But there were some high points.  Because the bullpen’s been working overtime lately, we needed Masterson to go deep.  Because Masterson is so young, deep for him is somewhere around five or six innings.  So he did that.  He did his job.  It wasn’t his best work, not by any means, but he did his job.  And if we have to take this loss because it was important for the bullpen to get that extra rest, so be it.  In the long run I think it’ll be worth it.  I’d rather not have any more pitchers put on the DL with arm fatigue so early in the season, and if that means we have to take a loss while our starter is left in the game a little longer than usual, ultimately that has to be fine with me.  And it’ll be good for his endurance too, because eventually six innings will become the norm for him.  Delcarmen and Ramirez aced.  Still 0.00 ERAs for both of them.  That’s something I hope will last.

Unfortunately the offense didn’t do much.  We ended up losing by a score of 6-2.  In the third, Jason Bay walked with the bases loaded to bring Pedroia home, so that’s scored as an RBI, and the man still leads the American League in walks.  How about that? Even when he doesn’t get a hit, he still manages to plate somebody.  And the other RBI goes to Drew.  Pedroia and Youk both had great nights, going three for five and two for three with a walk, respectively.  Youk’s still batting above .400.  It’s very early in the season, but I suspect he and Pedroia will battle it out for MVP again this year.  Lugo got a hit, which I didn’t believe until I saw a replay of it later.  We did out-hit the Rays, though, 9-7.  In theory, the team with the most hits should win, the key phrase there being “in theory.” The Twins out-hit us even though we beat them, 7-3, so technically I can’t complain about that.  But still.  It would’ve been nice if more of those hits came with runners in scoring position.

So we’ve dropped the first two to Tampa Bay.  The key at this point is to not get swept.  I never thought I’d say this, but I’m so thankful that it’s Wakefield on the mound tonight.  He always does well at the Trop.  Maybe he can put a lid on this before it gets out of hand.

In other news, the Bruins finished off the Hurricanes in Game One of Round Two the same way they finished off the Canadiens in Game Four of Round One: by a score of 4-1.  Timmy Thomas, folks.  Timmy Thomas is winning the Vezina Trophy this year, and last night he showed why.  There were some beautiful saves and definitely some beautiful goals.  Great physical hockey.  I have to admit, I was a little worried about the fact that we hadn’t seen action on the ice in quite some time, and you never know how a long rest period is going to affect you, but by the second period we were all good.  And it was nice to see Sergei Samsonov again, even if he was playing for Carolina.  Actually, he and Axelsson are the only players involved in this series who were also present in the 1999 Bruins-Hurricans Stanley Cup quarterfinal, except that back then Samsonov was also wearing black and gold.  Also, congratulations to Zdeno Chara on becoming a father and to Claude Julien on becoming a finalist for the Jack Adams Award.  But the point is we buried them and we have good momentum going into Game Two, which is at home on Sunday at 7:30PM.

The Providence Journal/Mary Murphy

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