Somewhere around the fifth inning, when it was abundantly clear that the Daisuke Matsuzaka Everyday Sunshine Happy! Happy! Hour had morphed into the Felix Hernandez Steps On Your Nuts Show, I was hoping we’d at least walk away from this game seeing something that somehow lived up to the hype.
A no-hitter? Well, why the hell not?
But once Drew got that hit to lead off the eighth, the game became what I feared it would become once we got that first hit: just another sh-tty game where we can’t buy a run.
Not much else to say about this one; it was all Hernandez all the time, and his stuff was positively nasty, especially that wicked two-seam fastball that kept making Tek shift out of the way before it arced itself back toward the plate.
Not to take anything away from Matsuzaka. He kept Ichiro in check (even knocking him down at one point — sure to be the front page photo on every newspaper in Japan this morning) and made a nice grab of a low Lugo throw to complete a double play in the seventh. Put simply, he was good. He just wasn’t as good as Hernandez, who was literally unhittable.
I will say that if Tito had any sort of flair for the dramatic, he would have brought Brendan Donnelly — instead of Joel Piniero-Bread — out to face his long-time nemesis and sparring partner Jose Guillen in the eighth. Hey, we were getting shut down anyway; at the least, a little bench clearin’ may have jump-started the offense.
Anyway, we go from 14 hits yesterday to 1 hit today. With tomorrow’s game expected to be a wash-out, we look to Friday and the Anaheim Angels.