"Hell may have no fury like a woman scorned but heaven hath no sweetness like a sports fan vindicated." - Samcat

Friday, May 26, 2006

Two Games for the Price of One

(photo from Yahoo! Sports)

Okay, look. I could lie and tell you that I didn't write about Wednesday night's game because I was under strict legal instructions not to divulge any information about what went down in the bleachers and also not to share that at some point about midway through the game, it appears that Fenway Park Security evicted nearly half of the Dunkin' Dugout. I suspect that's not good PR. But the real reason I didn't write about it was because I thought it would be a way better idea to let my SUPREME IRRITATION at Matt Clement cool by watching my taped Idol finale, fast forwarding through the horror of Meatloaf (...let's not even talk about it), see the confetti fall on the idiot with equlibrium issues that this great nation has crowned and go to sleep around 2am. Yeah, that was a GREAT idea.

And honestly, the bleachers at Fenway are always a time, and during a Yankees' game, well, the time is more, shall we say, intense. By the end of the game, it was me, Marianne and four seven-year-olds in oversize Tek jerseys who didn't get thrown out/arrested/endured a beer shower.

Now, I understand that violence is never the answer. (My mommy told me to say that), but why does it always seem that during Sox/Yankees games, there are those guys who absolutely INSIST on starting shit? Every. Single. Time. Look, I understand that we can't actually bar Yankee fans from buying tickets to Fenway (I'm still not clear on why but whatever), and I suppose that I do grudgingly admit that they have a right to cheer for their team. But there is a difference between "cheering" and "standing up in the middle of a section of Red Sox fans, pointing to your sweat and beer-soaked Giambi jersey, banging a goddamn cowbell with a drumstick and openly taunting your entire section while spitting on the three rows in front of you." And THEN, having the audacity to complain when security throws you out. Dude, I'm sorry, but your ass is asking for it. This must be that famous Yankee "class" I hear so much about. And why do these guys always wear Sheffield or Giambi jerseys? It's never someone relatively benign like Rivera or Williams. Oh no, these guys have to promote two of the biggest affronts to the game of baseball and they sure as hell have to let EVERYONE know about it.

Oh, and the girls in the hooker boots and the low rise jeans and the pink Jeter jerseys and the matching Yankee hats? I'm not about to waste a $7 ballpark beer by dumping it on your head. But I can't say I'm too sorry that someone else chose to. Heh.

Anyway, Wednesday was frustrating but it did lead to the inadvertant discovery of Alex Gonzalez Nickelback mojo. I know, I know. But allow me to explain.

Gonzo came to bat at some point with the Sox down a few runs. Marianne snarked (she's snarky, did you hear?), "Oh look, here's the big hero. He'll save the day." I decided this was as good a time as any to break into Nickelback's song from Spiderman. You know, the one that goes, "And they say that a HERO will save us..." Look, I don't know why I know it either. Don't email me. Anyway, Gonzo got a hit. "Check it out," I said, "He LOVES the Nickelback." "Yeah, okay," Marianne said, rolling her eyes.

Naturally, I had to try it out during his next at bat. Worked again. "I'm just sayin'," I said, turning to Marianne, "Homeboy's a Nickelback fan." "I understand why he hasn't admitted this to anyone," she said.

Look, when you lose to the Yankees at Fenway and Matt Clement is one wild pitch away from taking actual hostages, you have to take your humor where you can find it.

And wouldn't you know it, the newly discovered Alex Gonzalez mojo carried over to last night's game against the Devil Rays.

For the second night in a row, I was at the game. I promise, I don't "know" anyone or anything like that. Yesterday was my company's annual Red Sox game. Guess who's in charge of getting tickets? I have no idea how they would have gotten the idea that I'm a Red Sox fan.

::glances around at cubicle walls::

Anyway...Fat Head continued his dominance (am I allowed to say he's dominant? I can still make fun of him, right?), Papi lumbered into third like a dump truck with it's brakes cut and Mark Loretta (promised a rare butterfly with a special light box for his contributions), got in on the fun. Timlin made things a wee bit interesting in the 8th but Papelbon, you know, did what he does and slammed the door.

I don't know if you've noticed but the Devil Rays have actually invented an entirely new fielding position to combat David Ortiz. The third baseman stands in the outfield. Like, the actual outfield, where the left fielder should be and the rest of the outfielders all move towards right. So there's...no third baseman and the right side of the field is stacked. Apparently, this is meant to minimize the holes available for Ortiz to exploit. Which is all well and good if it worked. Instead, it opens the left side up for one of his notorious bunts (okay, he's had like two successful career bunts but still, they were pretty notorious), or he can just make you look the fool by poking one through the hole on the right side anyway as your seventeen fielders positioned specifically to prevent such an outcome flail about out of position like a flounder tossed on a dock. Which is what he did last night. I look forward to future fielding configurations teams will attempt to deal with Ortiz. How about the one where all three outfielders line up behind first base? Or the one where the pitcher decides to toss from halfway between fist and home? Or, my personal favorite, the one where all fielders attempt to make an impenetrable web of Silly String to prevent any of Ortiz's hits from making it into the outfield?

My point being, if Ortiz is gonna get a hit, he's gonna get a hit. And there ain't nothin' you or any Venn diagram of fielders can do to change that. In fact, I believe it's only a matter of time before he starts wearing a shirt that says, "Shift this, bitches" in batting practice.

The good thing about planning a company outing on a day the Red Sox win is that it tends to reflect well on me. Because, you know, I had a little talk with the boys prior to the game and asked for a favor. Note: This is not actually true but no one needs to tell my boss that.

I'm just glad we saw last night's game and not tonight's as I'm in no hurry to see David Wells triumphant return to anything other than the Dunkin' Donuts drive through. He faces off against Kazmir, who can charitably be called "wild." And Manny's been acting his ass off lately with pitches up and in. Expect fireworks.