Guess Who’s Back? Back Again: A’s-Sox Gamer VII

At long last, Manny Ramirez returns to the Red Sox lineup, batting in an unusual spot but playing the usual position and — if his batting practice performances are any indications — ready to resume the .309/.405/.522 clip he’s been hitting since June 1.

He faces Chad Gaudin and the Oakland A’s, one of the few teams that have a winning record against the Sox this season. By sweeping this two game set, Boston can do no better than tie the season series.

The Red Sox hold their destiny in their own hands. Win five of the next six, and it doesn’t matter what New York does. Of course, it doesn’t really matter what New York does anyway ;-).

Comment away!

With Youkilis expected to return tomorrow, it sure will be nice to see the full lineup again:

Boston

1. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
2. Manny Ramirez, LF
3. David Ortiz, DH
4. Mike Lowell, 3B
5. J.D. Drew, RF
6. Jason Varitek, C
7. Coco Crisp, CF
8. Eric Hinske, 1B
9. Julio Lugo, SS

Oakland

1. Shannon Stewart, LF
2. Daric Barton, 1B
3. Nick Swisher, CF
4. Jack Cust, RF
5. Mark Ellis, 2B
6. Dan Johnson, DH
7. Marco Scutaro, SS
8. Jack Hannahan, 3B
9. Kurt Suzuki, C

111 comments… add one
  • Youkilis gave a pretty funny pre-game quote to the Globe on Ramirez batting second:
    “He’s hitting second so I think he’s going to move over runners,” Youkilis said. “He’s going to do the little things. He’s going to play small ball. … I think he might get a contract extension, maybe, if he finishes well. He really has to show himself now because he’s one of those September call-up type guys you’re not sure about.”

    academic-SF September 25, 2007, 6:54 pm
  • That’s great, academic. The crowd loves Manny.
    Ellsbury in center rather than Crisp…”illness”, says Orsillo.

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:07 pm
  • 2nd batter hits it out. 1-0 A’s.

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:13 pm
  • I wonder what percent of the time a pitcher gets a win after giving up a homer in the first?

    z118 September 25, 2007, 7:14 pm
  • I don’t feel terrified/angry the way I normally am when the opposing team scores in the 1st. I hope the Sox prove my attitude sound.

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:19 pm
  • Yay Manny!!!

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 25, 2007, 7:22 pm
  • Really tried to give that one a ride on the 1-0 pitch. Missed it.

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:23 pm
  • Welcome back Manny with a single.

    rob September 25, 2007, 7:24 pm
  • Opposite field single…yeah, Manny.

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:24 pm
  • RBI wallball double. LOWELL!!!

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:27 pm
  • I like this, Manny hit, Papi walk and Lowell drive some in.

    rob September 25, 2007, 7:27 pm
  • Batting Manny 2nd seems to be working out so far… although having to run multiple bases on a ball in play is maybe more work than I’d envisioned him doing tonight. ;)

    Jackie (SF) September 25, 2007, 7:30 pm
  • Damn it Drew. We need you to get hot for the playoffs.

    rob September 25, 2007, 7:30 pm
  • Oh JD, maybe you’ll hit in the post season. I’m in a good mood today, I have faith!

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 25, 2007, 7:30 pm
  • Drew K’s swinging on a ball inside.

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:30 pm
  • Tek walks….time for Ellsbury to add to the legend.

    rob September 25, 2007, 7:31 pm
  • 4 pitch walk to Tek. How many times has THAT happened this year?

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:32 pm
  • Ooohhhh, that 0-2 ball was close.

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:34 pm
  • Sucks they didn’t get more, but they made Gaudin throw more than Schilling…

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:34 pm
  • Way too much solid contact off Schill for my taste tonight so far. Way too much.

    LocklandSF September 25, 2007, 7:39 pm
  • That works.

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:43 pm
  • Anyone had a SF sighting lately?

    rob September 25, 2007, 7:45 pm
  • Man, Hinske just seems to be completely guessing up there.

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:45 pm
  • Then of course he hits for a single. Thanks, reverse mojo!

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:45 pm
  • With Eric Hinske destined for another 3 pitch K, am I the only one curious to see the results of the Brandon Moss-first base experience?
    As I typed that, Hinske reached on an error. Well-done, um, luck.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 7:45 pm
  • Oh never mind, it was an error, took my eye off the game. Suck, Hinske! :)

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:46 pm
  • I guess I should have said “experiment”, but experience could be an apt description. Either way, he puts in higher quality ABs than Hinske.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 7:47 pm
  • I’ve decided Hinske deserves a little credit. OBP is 100 points higher than his batting, which means he can take a walk, and his slugging is very good for his batting, which means that when he hits, it’s for power.
    Consider this: Hinske’s OPS is higher than Lugo’s and Crisp’s and I think is even with Drew’s and Varitek’s. It’s better than any of the Sox’ bench players; his slugging is higher than Wily Mo Pena’s was when he was traded.
    So Hinske I think is far from the waste some make him out to be.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 7:51 pm
  • Pretty horrific inning there for the offense. Gaudin 45, Schilling 37 after 2.

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:52 pm
  • Paul, you’re absolutely correct, it just feels like in-between walking and swinging with authority (which he does, I won’t argue about that), he seems to strike out on three pitches or “do the Drew” (i.e., get pull-happy and GO/GIDP to 2B).
    With bench players, there’s only so much you can hope for, and the best ones get made starters on other teams anyway.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 7:54 pm
  • Barton continues to dominate Schill. 2 for 2 with a HR.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 7:57 pm
  • Schilling gets through 3rd on 11 pitches. Pretty good, especially for a baserunner being in there. Now I’m off home. Enjoy the game, folks.

    Devine September 25, 2007, 7:58 pm
  • Heck, I think it was here where there was kind of a reverse conversation about Mirabelli. People were saying, we don’t need him, stick with Cash. While Cash at his best offensively is < Mirabelli at his worst.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 7:59 pm
  • True, Quo. Mirabelli has had really a terrific season for power, about 20 AB/HR, which was even with Ortiz for a while. Not that Belli is Ortiz, but that it seems his pop returned this year, whereas last season it was terrible average AND no power. Cash brings what Belli was last year.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:00 pm
  • *sigh* Wish Drew had gotten that double with men on base. He’s just had lousy luck as far as when he gets his big hits and when he gets his strikeouts. I refuse to belive it’s some anticlutch gene, as I generally don’t believe in clutch outside the rare exceptions.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:05 pm
  • Wish Tek had taken a pitch.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:06 pm
  • Arod just got a granny, they’re up 5-0 already. Hope the Red Sox can win this game.

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 25, 2007, 8:07 pm
  • In the spirit of nstbSF’s comment, Kei Igawa has thrown 15! of 37 pitches for strikes.
    You know, when YFs around here mention that we haven’t gotten $100M worth out of Daisuke, it’s time to remind them that they’ve probably gotten a lower % of their $50M out of Kei Igawa.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:10 pm
  • You know, when YFs around here mention that we haven’t gotten $100M worth out of Daisuke, it’s time to remind them that they’ve probably gotten a lower % of their $50M out of Kei Igawa.
    I think in some regards we both teams have gotten less than what we expected on the field, but the sales and revenue off the field may have already paid for both of them.

    rob September 25, 2007, 8:13 pm
  • I think the difference is expectations, Quo. Dice was supposed to step in and be a legit #1. Igawa was said to be a back of the rotation guy.
    This year, they’re both far from those predictions. Since the Sox paid more (and the hype was way more – what happened to the gyroball?), they get the heat.

    Pete September 25, 2007, 8:13 pm
  • All three K’s that inning were looking.

    rob September 25, 2007, 8:16 pm
  • The gyroball that never existed?
    And even with expectations, I think it’d be hard for even the most devout YF to argue that Kei ($50M) has been worth half of Daisuke ($100M). Is this a simplistic way of looking at it? Absolutely. Have some of our non-comrades made it that simplistic when talking about Daisuke? No doubt about it.
    Hey, if anyone bet that Schilling would strike out the side looking in the 4th, you better have made a LOT of money.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:18 pm
  • I watched the first 3 innings of Igwawa and the DRays have hit him hard but with bum luck outcomes. Like a blistering shot to left that would’ve cleared the bases went foul by inches. Curious to see how much longer his luck holds out.
    Schilling getting the K’s, that’s always a good sign. Now hits-hits-hits boys!

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 25, 2007, 8:18 pm
  • Hinske is on twice in two PAs! The reverse-jinx from Devine continues to work.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:20 pm
  • What? The gyroball didn’t exist? And it does seem as if he’s gotten away from the variety of pitches. Is that Varitek or Farrell?

    Pete September 25, 2007, 8:22 pm
  • Pete, I think it’s Dice-BB himself. I’m guessing he shook Tek off repeatedly in favor of FBs several starts ago, and if/when Tek continued to call for them, he was just following DM’s lead.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:24 pm
  • Dice was supposed to step in and be a legit #1.
    Dice was never supposed to step in and be a legit No. 1. I heard no one say they expected him to be the staff ace this year.
    His recent starts have definitely been below expectations and have tarnished his image and reputation, but until then he was decidedly above what most people had dared hope.
    I think there was enough from what we saw this year to say the Sox should be very excited for what Matsuzaka can bring next season, when the expectations are that he should be a legit No. 1.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:28 pm
  • Sure he was Paul. I read it from that Yankee fan with the Dice blog. And I could swear I read it from Neyer.
    And doesn’t he have Cy Young clauses in his contract? Somebody thought he’d be great.

    Pete September 25, 2007, 8:30 pm
  • Both sides getting baserunners. No one doing anything with them.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:31 pm
  • Everyone thought he’d be great — I doubt anyoen thought he’d be great this year. Most people, including the people at YFSF when the signing took place, estimated 15 wins and a mid-4 ERA. Which is exactly what Matsuzaka has given us.
    He’s transitioning. We weren’t so naive to think he’d be an ace in his frist year. Next year, on the other hand, those expectations will be raised, and rightly so.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:33 pm
  • Meanwhile, check out his monthly numbers. He too has had only two good months. The rest have been average (April and August) or much worse (May and Sept). He’s got a ton to prove next year.
    I’m going to go eat some dinner and watch the game. Or else I’m going to drive you guys nuts.

    Pete September 25, 2007, 8:33 pm
  • A lot of people have award clauses in their contract. I’d put the possibility of Giambi having GG-clauses in his contract as being pretty good. The chances of him reaching those clauses is probably slim.
    Having award clauses in your contract just means you have some leverage with the team in some way that allows you additional monetary considerations for winning awards.
    It’s possible Julio Lugo has batting title clauses in his contract. Manny could have had SB-clauses built into his. Derek Jeter might have a clause in his contract granting him $70M if he leads the league in range.
    You read it from ONE Yankee fan and maybe Rob Neyer? Smoking guns, those.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:34 pm
  • Being ends the night with a 1/2 + BB line. One run scored. Moss in to PR.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:35 pm
  • Nice first game for Manny, he did well.

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 25, 2007, 8:35 pm
  • Manny get hurt again?

    rob September 25, 2007, 8:35 pm
  • rob, nope. I’m guessing this went exactly according to plan. Manny reaches in his 3rd PA and is PR for.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:37 pm
  • Now Ortiz walks. Lowell looking to take back the RBI lead.
    Rob, Manny was only going to get three or so plate appearances. Part of the plan.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:37 pm
  • Ok..I know he hasn’t played in a few weeks, but we are talking about “a highly tuned athletic machine.”
    Right?

    rob September 25, 2007, 8:38 pm
  • Had he doubled and looked like a GD gazelle doing it, Moss probably still would have PR.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:38 pm
  • Bases loaded for…Drew.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:40 pm
  • Prediction: Big hit from Drew here.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:40 pm
  • Drew up with the bases juiced. Please oh pretty please Drew.

    rob September 25, 2007, 8:40 pm
  • lol, Quo at the gazelle line.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:40 pm
  • Orrr, the RBI walk. Now Varitek will swing at the first pitch and ground into a double play.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:42 pm
  • Well at least Drew didn’t hit into the DP.

    rob September 25, 2007, 8:42 pm
  • Drew with the bases-loaded BB. Good enough.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:42 pm
  • Old friend Lenny DiNardo. Seems to have fallen on slightly harder times since we last saw him…

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:45 pm
  • Ugh, Varitek,
    Let’s go Ells!

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:46 pm
  • Well, sac fly better than nothing. Hinske up to reward my faith in him.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:48 pm
  • SF to RF. I’ll take it.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:48 pm
  • Ooooh, Youk!

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:48 pm
  • Youks to try out the wrist.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:48 pm
  • Youkilis! He is in!

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 25, 2007, 8:49 pm
  • Pop-out. Oh well. Ahead in the game with a stronger defense at the corners.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:51 pm
  • Ah well. Couple runs is what you should get when you load the bases with none out.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:52 pm
  • lol, Paul.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:54 pm
  • We’re on the same wavelength, tonight, eh, Quo?
    Please let this not be one of those outings where Schilling makes “two mistakes” that lead to four runs.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 8:57 pm
  • Of course, it could end up being not funny.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:58 pm
  • 6 IP, 6 H, 6 Ks, 86 pitches with 62 for strikes. 0 BBs.
    Hasn’t been dominating, but I like the fact that he’s been able to get some Ks.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 8:59 pm
  • Si, Paul. I’m kind of ready for us to put this one away. A bases loaded with none out situation would probably make that possible, right?

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 9:00 pm
  • Schilling gets out of it. Still 3-1 into the bottom of the sixth.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 9:01 pm
  • Pedroia is the only Sox starter without a positive contribution at this point. Time to change that.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 9:01 pm
  • I hear ya. None of this close-games crap. I’d love for the Sox to pick right now to begin the year’s first and only six-game winning streak. Just leave no doubt.

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 9:02 pm
  • Sheesh. Helluva time to slump. Might cost him the ROY the way Young’s been swinging the bat.
    I still say Pedroia should get it on value to his team, offensive value of his position and historical magnitude of the numbers he’s putting up as a second baseman. But how many voters will think of that?

    Paul SF September 25, 2007, 9:03 pm
  • Fielder’s choice to give the Sox a slower runner on-base.
    “Luckily” for PedRoYa, his competition (Delmon Young) has done nothing against Kei “No thanks, don’t need the strike zone” Igawa.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 9:04 pm
  • Seems silly based on this to have used Moss already. He’s not that much/any faster than Kielty. If they were going to PH, then WTH?

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 9:06 pm
  • MDC in.
    Does this make them more/less likely to pitch Schill on the last day?

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 9:08 pm
  • With Drew on 2nd with one out, the A’s just IBB’ed Varitek to get to Ellsbury with two outs. Even with lefty-on-lefty, that’s an… interesting strategy.
    And as I type this, Ellsbury singles home Drew.

    academic-SF September 25, 2007, 9:26 pm
  • Gagne in.
    Game Over … for somebody.

    SoxFan September 25, 2007, 9:36 pm
  • That should be Gagne’s slogan:
    “I will hasten the end of the game, somehow. Guaranteed.”

    FenSheaParkway September 25, 2007, 9:39 pm
  • I’m now thinking back wistfully to Igawa’s 5 shutout innings after the bullpen turns a 5-0 lead into a 5-6 deficit.

    J (yf) September 25, 2007, 9:45 pm
  • Paps in for the 4-out save.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 9:49 pm
  • Phew. Gets the first on a FB that Ellis was just overmatched on.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 9:51 pm
  • Brother to brother, this is cute.

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 25, 2007, 9:54 pm
  • What’s cute is a Kielty SF and a Papi 2-run bomb giving us some significant but unneccessary breathing room.

    QuoSF September 25, 2007, 10:10 pm
  • Maybe it was unnecessary, but I don’t mind having Papelbon get to call it a night after one pitch. Not to mention getting Corey some more work.

    FenSheaParkway September 25, 2007, 10:23 pm
  • …all the good relievers are gone. It’d suck if Corey let the A’s stick a toe back in the door…

    Josh SF (D1) September 25, 2007, 10:25 pm
  • What’s not cute is the Yankees tied the game. :(

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 25, 2007, 10:27 pm
  • That’s true. But we shouldn’t need Papelbon to douse a 6-run lead, right? Wait, right?

    FenSheaParkway September 25, 2007, 10:27 pm
  • Oh good gravy. Now Bryan “Joba” Corey has an ERA.

    FenSheaParkway September 25, 2007, 10:28 pm
  • Motherflippin sweet snag by Pedroia there. ROY and GG, I should think. ;)

    Jackie (SF) September 25, 2007, 10:31 pm
  • The Rays got out with the tie intact and Farnsey’s in the game. They still have a chance down there.

    FenSheaParkway September 25, 2007, 10:31 pm
  • Do they give Gold Gloves to rookies? It’s such a “rep” award.

    FenSheaParkway September 25, 2007, 10:31 pm
  • SWEET!!! Magic number is 4!

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 25, 2007, 10:35 pm
  • I was mainly being facetious, but… yeah, you’re right. It’s the only way to explain Torii Hunter’s continued dominance.

    Jackie (SF) September 25, 2007, 10:38 pm
  • MAGIC NUMBER IS 3!!

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 25, 2007, 11:19 pm
  • Correction: Magic number is 3. Thank you, Jeff Karstens and el Guapo, Dioner Navarro.

    Josh SF (D1) September 25, 2007, 11:20 pm
  • DON’T JINX US!!!!!

    Ed September 26, 2007, 12:12 am
  • Ed, do you want us to call John Sterling, SF4Life, SF* or just plain old Ed? You let me know.

    Anonymous September 26, 2007, 8:38 am
  • That was me…I was commenting on this comment found in the Yankees thread. Apparently Ed is having multiple personality issues.
    Ballgame over, YANKEES LOSE THEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE YANKEEEES LOOOOOOOOSE
    Posted by: John Sterling

    John - YF (Trisk) September 26, 2007, 8:44 am
  • Crisp was substituted for before the first inning even began. Would it have been legal to use him later in the game?

    Ron Newman September 26, 2007, 9:30 am

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