Tuesday Night Fights

At least they didn't rub his head

At least they didn't rub his head

I wouldn’t say that I dislike the Indians but I’ll say this:  After the bush move of bringing Josh Beckett’s ex-girlfriend in to sing during the ALCS, I would imagine Beckett doesn’t think much of them.  So while the logical part of my brain says Beckett wouldn’t be so stupid as to hit Shelley Duncan and Shin-Soo Choo on purpose because the team has been struggling and putting men on base is pretty damn stupid, I can imagine a scenario where every so often Beckett would feel like he could get a little personal justice with no one being the wise – and maybe the Indians felt like they finally got wise.

Or did they?  Duncan got hit in the first inning with a man on and two outs.  While I suppose you could stretch it and say Beckett was mad because he struck out the first two batters he faced and then Choo got a hit before Duncan GOT hit, I think that’s a bit of a stretch.  Then in the third, Lou Marson hits a first pitch home run and then in five pitches Beckett gets the first two outs of the inning.  Was Beckett mad about the homer and taking it out on Choo three batters later just because he has good numbers against Beckett?  Again, this all seems like a bit of a stretch.  The Mason homer made the score 2-1 Red Sox but the Sox still had the lead and Beckett still had two outs.  Makes no sense to me.

Of course, regardless of intent I get that some teams feel like two of your guys getting hit in a game is cause for some kind of retaliation.  I don’t agree, because how many games have we all watched when something like that happens and it’s obvious there was no reason behind it and the game just goes on?  In any event, hit your guy and get it over with.  David Ortiz and Adrian Beltre both came up to bat in the bottom of the third inning.  Then they came up again in the fifth.    Ortiz appeared in the bottom of the 7th, and they threw behind him.  It was so obvious it was ridiculous.  It reminded me of when the Mets finally got their chance and threw at Roger Clemens.  In the bottom of the 8th, the Indians made a pitching change and decided to sacrifice Jensen Lewis to the Baseball Gods by having him throw behind Adrian Beltre .  It’s worth noting that neither Ortiz nor Beltre were ever actually hit by a pitch.  Throwing behind one guy sends a message.  Throwing behind two shows the world that you just didn’t do it right the first (nor the second) time.  Ortiz got it by the feet but Mr. Lewis was stupid enough to throw his pitch behind Beltre’s head.  Beltre did this great staring thing at Lewis as he approached the mound and then as people were pushing him away.  Lewis probably had nightmares last night that involved Adrian Beltre and his psycho eyes.  Here’s a tip, Indians:  If you’re throwing at someone, hit them and be done with it.  (Or throw behind one guy and be done with it.)  You didn’t look “tough” last night, you looked inept.   On the other hand, I should be thanking Manny Acta because his making his pitchers throw at our guys caused one of the more exciting, non-baseball moments at Fenway this season.  Beckett lost his mind on Shelley Duncan and  for a moment I really believe Terry Francona was going to take on the entire Indians team all by himself.

If the non-fight provided the excitement for the night, Mike Lowell provided the pure happiness.  NESN decided to let us hear Fenway Park public address announcer Carl Beane announce Mike Lowell’s first at-bat in the second inning.  We barely had enough time to process the enormous ovation the fans were giving him before he knocked the first pitch he saw into the Monster Seats.  (If you watch the video, you can actually hear Jerry Remy laughing while Orsillo is calling it…even the RemDawg got giddy!)

I have no idea what the rest of this season will bring and what we’ll all be doing in October…but if you’re a baseball fan and can’t appreciate the absolute beauty of Mike Lowell’s first at-bat last night, then you have no heart.  Remy later called it the “nicest” moment of the season and while it’s a bit of an understatement, I totally agree.  This team might be beaten and battered but don’t tell me they don’t have any heart and don’t tell me they aren’t fun to watch or worth rooting for.

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