In the first inning Giambi thought he had ball four on a 3-1 pitch and started towards first. The pitch was called a strike, and Giambi launched the very next pitch into the right field seats for a two-run homer. That could have rattled Beckett. Hell, that could have rattled anyone throwing against the Bombers in Yankee Stadium. Beckett went on to retire the next 12 batters. What pressure?
In the third, Big Papi came up with two out and two on. Since wrecking a Mike Myers pitch on May 1st, Papi was 1 for his last 20. The Yankees employed the shift, and it worked. Sort of. Ortiz hit a sharp grounder directly at A-Rod, who promptly booted it and Papi beat the throw. With arms, legs and mullett flying, Johnson threw a wild pitch to let the tying run score. Manny singled in the go-ahead run and it was all but over.
It became something of a Bizarro World game after that. Alex Gonzalez homered, Loretta had three hits, Willie Harris had a hit and Wily Mo played all three outfield positions as the game-ending line-up looked like a mid-March game in Fort Myers.
When the dust settled, it was a laugher. At least for Sox fans. 14-3 for the good guys, who piled on for 16 hits while the Yankees helped the cause with three errors, two by A-Rod. Johnson and other Yankees were booed by the loyal hometown fans. beanballs were exchanged in the late innings. Wily Mo made a nice running catch in center, Mike Lowell had two more doubles, giving him 19 for the young season. Nineteen doubles on May 9th, are you serious?
Was this the game that gets the bats going on a streak, or will the Sox be unable to scratch the scoreboard, as sometimes happens after a blowout? If things get out of hand in either direction, how many batters get hit? You never know what might happen, and that’s what makes this the greatest rivalry in sports. Tonight, Moose versus Schill. Fasten your seat belts.