It’s been far, far too long since we’ve had a dramatic, drop-yer-beers-and-grab-yer-balls finish like that.
So long, in fact, I’d practically forgotten what it felt like to stand up and pace back and forth around the room, punching at thin air and grasping at straws and begging for the Gods of Baseball to grant one simple wish. Hell, the last time I got worked up about a Red Sox game in the past two months was when NESN replayed the infamous Pedro Martinez-Gerald Williams mash-up from a few years back. And it felt good to have beer dripping off the ceiling and shards of chips across the floor when this one was over.
Just when I thought it was a wash, just when I thought we’d be dropping a game to the wretched Devil Rays, Mike Lowell gave us a taste of late inning glory that’s been far too rare these days. A big-ass, game-tying home run that we may very well be looking back on one month from now as the moment when everything changed, and the lads slipped on the big pants for good. After Lowell evened things off, we get a double from a Tek, a game-winning single from Coco, and shit, as they say, went nuts.
And come on, could this have ended any other way? This was Jon Lester’s homecoming, for christ’s sake. Do you really want to follow-up that standing O as he walked in from the bullpen and his gutsy, one-run-and-two-hits-over-seven-innings performance with a lifeless, 1-0 flushing at the hands of Tampa Bay? Or let Mike Timlin’s bases-loaded strikeout of BJ Upton or Eric Gagne’s striking-out of the side in the ninth go to waste? Mike Lowell, who beat cancer himself, sure as hell didn’t think so.
After a weekend that saw even the most indefatigable among us looking for weak links along the Tobin Bridge, this game was just what I needed. Better than a magic, self-refilling keg or an army of heavy-drinking Jessica Biel clones moving into the apartment across the hall.
It was simply one of the best games since the Mother’s Day Massacre. And in the end, the two big guns were Lowell and Lester. The message here? F#@k you, cancer!
Oh, and big hugs for El Bencho. Yeah, the dude knocked us out of Sunday’s game, but he absolutely terrorizes the Yankees.