The Red Sox dropped the game and the series, falling to the M’s 5-4, despite Manny’s 400th career homerun. To me, when a player reaches an individual milestone as big as that (only the 39th player to get there), the team should win the game. It would just seem right. But it wasn’t meant to be. In a game filled with bizarre plays, Manny’s bid for 401 with two outs in the ninth fell short.
Seattle put up 4 in the second, the weirdness beginning when Boone scored from second on an Olivo infield single that Mueller couldn’t make a bare-handed grab on. A quick word on Olivo – he was hitting .125 going into the game and 0 for his last 27 at-bats. Reportedly Kevin “warning track power” Millar gave him a piece of hitting advice prior to the game, and he went 3-4 with a homerun. The craziest play of the game came in the fourth. Ichiro was on first when Randy Winn doubled to right. He was waved in as the relay came in. Mirabelli, the ball in his bare hand, dove to make the tag. Ichiro hit the brakes and ended up on all fours tagging the plate with his hand just after Mirabelli, still completely sprawled out on the ground, got the tag on his ankle. It can only be described as baseball’s version of Twister. You need to see it to believe it.
The Sox got to within one in the fifth on Manny’s historic 3-run blast with two out in the inning. The game, in my opinion, hinged on a couple of plays, both coming in the seventh. Manny singled with two out, followed by a deep double to right by Nixon. Manny was held on third. One of two things has to happen: either you send Manny taking your chances that the throw won’t be perfect, or you stop him and pinch hit for Millar, most likely with Tek. Manny was held and Millar flied out. The Sox end up losing by a run.
One question burns in my mind after watching the Sox play the Mariners. Why does Ichiro have the name “Ichiro” on his uni instead of “Suzuki”? Japanese teammate Shigetoshi Hasegawa has “Hasegawa” on his.