Saturday, August 7

One Down

A few thoughts following the Sox 6-3 victory over the Yankees in this first of a critical four game set:

- Gutsy performance from Buchholz. He was sharp throughout, but there were two moments where it looked like he was teetering on the edge: in the fourth inning, after Scutaro made the bad flip and put runners on first and second with nobody out, then again the next inning when he hit Jeter then gave up a first-to-third single to Swisher. It couldn't have been a pretty sight from the mound, staring at a slim lead, runners on the corners, and coming up Teixeira, ARod, and Cano. But both tight spots, Buch locked in and got out with minimal damage, the lead in tact. That was a gutsy stretch, and once he got through, Buch steamrolled.

- The small strike zone certainly seemed to favor the Sox. It was called consistent throughout the night. Vazquez needed a few gimmes, and when he didn't get them, he lost the zone completely. Good thing, too, because his breaking stuff was breaking hard. He had a thirty-mile per hour difference between the fastball and the curve - sick.

- From the New York broadcast, I just want you to know that Al Leiter is a big Buchholz fan and Michael Kay, whom Vicino can't help but like, is a charter member of the Ryan Kalish fan club. He just couldn't get enough. Kay called him "The Kid" over and over with such fondness you'd have thought Teddy Ballgame was out there. If the Yankee bullpen hadn't tracked down the home run ball, the Yanks announcing crew was going to have a fit. Strange, classy guy.

- I wish Marco Scutaro would drive in more runs. No to complain, I just love yelling out his full name when he does. It feels like something you'd exclaim upon making a great discovery. "Marco Scutaro, I've got it!"

- I really hope Teixeira doesn't start heating up. That lineup is ridiculous enough as is.

- When it was recalled that Kerry Wood once struck out 20 Houston Astros in a game (insane), I sadly had to think for a solid two minutes about whether the Astros still exist as a team. Have I fallen that out of touch with the NL?

- Joba has sure fallen out of favor in the Bronx. Velocity has just been so inconsistent, but it's still surprising to see him coming in to clean up the 6th inning in a 3 run game.

- Was Robinson Cano always this big? I know I'm supposed to be the one keeping track of the pinstripes, but I feel like that guy has put on twenty pounds in the last few months. Always had a bigger frame, I guess, but how can he keep playing middle infield at a high level? He does, and for the time being, he's one of the scariest hitters in baseball to boot.

- Speaking of size, is tomorrow's matchup the biggest, mass-wise, possible in the AL? Lackey v. Sabathia.

- Am I going to be this happy every time Mike Lowell crosses the plate the rest of the season? Man, I wish the guy well.

- Big, big weekend. ITM will be back for more tomorrow. Keep an eye out for the headlines from NY with your morning coffee.

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