Saturday, June 25, 2005
There was a Red Sox moon tonight, huge and bright red low on the horizon. Maybe you have to be on the coast to see it. It being such a nice night out, me and my friends Jess and Dave went for a stroll along Lynnshore Drive (which is all along a great big long beach, for those unfamiliar with it), and gazing out over the water we could see this enormous red moon lurking fuzzily in the dark.
The moon on the night of Game 4 was of course famously pink-tinged, but this was that true, deep red that you can only get when the moon is very low and the light wavelengths are as long as they can be.
So Jess, Dave, and I were walking along, looking at this fantastic moon, turning our faces into the warm sea breeze, tripping our fingers along the metal sea wall railing, watching the streetlights create rippled pools of yellow and white in the inky high tide.
We talk about how comfortable the strong breeze is making the night, and I'm thinking about how this can't be the same weather they're having in Philly, but it sure seems like this would have been the perfect wind to make Tim Wakefield's knuckleball dance like it did tonight.
We sit down on the sea wall to hang out and watch the sketchy Lynn fisherman set up their poles (what on earth are they catching that close to shore?) and I flip my phone open and start swearing quietly when I see that the Tigers are losing 2-1 in Arizona.
It was at this point that Dave declared that I had officially become the most obsessive baseball fan he knew. "I'm not sure who you knocked off, but you're definitely it now." Of course, that was also after I told him I'd been trying to learn how to score the games (I scored todays game, used the diamonds... it worked out nicely, but I think I need a scorecard with slightly larger squares. Also, pinch hitters suck), but still. You get the picture.
The game was just as lovely as the night's weather, what with all those bombs we were hitting. A classic Manny shot, a massive Papi blast into the second tier seats, and Dougie goin' deep. Of course, Dougie then had to go ahead and try to stretch a perfectly nice single into a double and got his square-framed self thrown out by at least 5 feet, but three-run homers go a long way towards making that at least temporarily forgivable.
Plus we got to hear Remy's take on it, which was, as usual, amusing: "For one split second, Mirabelli thought he was Johnny Damon."
The announcer's booth in Philly is apparently quite nice, as Don and Remy discussed at great length. They seemed most impressed with the large fan provided for them.
Remy: "This is a great fan."
Don: "The best fan ever, maybe."
Remy (holding up the fan so the camera can see it): "Look at that. Big league fan."
They spent some time trying to think of one thing they didn't like about the park, and Remy finally decided that the sinks in the bathroom were too deeply recessed, so you had to lean in when you were washing your hands, and your tie would get wet, which, well, really needs no comment, does it?
The game was all about those bombs, and the fact that the Phillies were prevented from doing the same due to the elusive nature of the knuckleball. We've said it before and we'll say it again-- when it's dancing, that pitch is unhittable. There are going to be games where Wake will get shelled, but there are going to be games like today, when he'll throw 8 innings of sit-down-and-shut-up ball.
Manny's sliding catch in left field was as amazing as probably everyone else tomorrow will be saying, but the first time I saw it I honestly thought he'd broken his ankle. He slid leg-first into that wall and if he escaped that catch completely without injury it's a testament to something or other, maybe his shark-like cartilagenous bones. In a game that ended up being 8-0 I almost wish he had just let it drop. Web gems are all well and good, but I'd rather they not come with a potential price of Manny's tender little legs.
After he made the catch, though, the camera caught him looking around, then suddenly focusing sharply on something in the distance and doing a violent, overly happy double-point at them. A few minutes later the camera cut to the Sox dugout, where we could see Kevin Millar (who had the night off) leaning over, staring at someone in the outfield, suddenly making eye contact and doing a great big double-point out there. Is there anything in baseball cuter than Manny and Millar?
No. There is not.
Also, I'm sure it says something sad and pathetic about me that I had a little moment of 'aaww man' when I pencilled in Ramon Martinez' name under the Phillies' when he pinch hit for Lieber in the 6th. Ramon Martinez! Why should I care? But Pudge said he was going to miss him, dammit, and so shall I.