I’m old enough to remember back when Big Lee Smith gave up a game-winning home run in his Red Sox debut back in 1988, so I know all about the best laid plans of mice and men and promising new acquisitions. Needless to say, yesterday’s loss in the Fenway home opener was a real kick to the jimmy in that it fell squarely on the shoulders of our two shiny new toys, David Price — whom we spotted a three-run advantage in the first — and Craig Kimbrel.
I’m with Denton in that moving Price to the Fenway opener was a sketchy move to begin with. After the offense put us up 3-0 in the first, Price carried the day until the third, when he imploded and gave up a quick five runs, including a three-run home run to Mark Trumbo.
Two innings later, Price was gone, but the offense clawed its way back. The game sat at 6-6 when Kimbrel entered the game in the top of the ninth to an over-the-top, Jerry Bruckheimer-worthy multimedia barrage that included “Welcome to the Jungle” playing over a video promising thrills and mean stares and things catching fire and UTTER CHAOS when Kimbrel enters the game. After all that build up, Kimbrel lost the game, giving up two walks and a long home run to straightaway center by Chris Davis that left the bat with authority (I was there; trust me on this).
The final insult was Mookie driving a home run into the Monster seats in the bottom of the ninth to make it 9-7, where it remained. That should have been our walk-off, man.
Is it exemplary of what we can expect from Price and Kimbrel going forward? Nope. But on a day of pomp and circumstance and banners and good vibes and a packed house, it was a gentle reminder that baseball is a funny game and nothing–nothing–can ever be taken for granted.