And the Red Sox fulfilled the expectations of the packed house with a solid 5-3 win over the trendy-pick-to-compete-for-the-AL East Toronto Blue Jays. Josh Beckett started out a little shaky with a 36-pitch first inning but settled into his live-wire, bundle of emotion self for the next six. Foulke and Papelbon did what they’ve been doing for the first week of the season, closing out the last couple of frames.
At the plate, Mike Lowell stepped out of the time machine to go 4-4. Big Papi, he of the new long term contract, hit a solo-shot insurance run to the delight of the crowd, and probably the front office as well.
On the other side of the coin, whoever had game 7 in the “when will Trot get hurt” pool, you’re a winner. Two starting outfielders hurt, and the depth of the team will be tested immediately. Wily Mo Pena did not exactly wow the fans at the plate or in the field. He was unable to come up with a fly ball against the bullpen wall, resulting in a two-run homer. And he looked bad at the plate. Again. Have some patience with Wily Mo, he can play the game. He filled in for Junior Griffey last year in Cincy and did well.
Defense ruled the game (Wily Mo aside) with a great play by Loretta to start a double play, showing his ups to knock down a line-drive. The bounce conveniently went to Gonzalez and Youk finished the play with a nice stretch at first. Speaking of Youk, the man was a web gem last night! He made a great basket catch on a foul ball that landed him on ESPN.
All in all, it was just what you’d like to see every night. Seven strong from your starter, set-up and close. Good defense and plenty of offense. Spring is here. Baseball is back. All is well.
The picture is for the ladies!