April 15, 2001
Here we go. Red Sox vs. Yankees! This has to be a good game.
Let’s go right to the pitcher’s box to see the fantastic match-up we have in store for us. Hideo Nomo got the nod for the Sox. Slightly underwhelming. But, I suppose. It looks like he pitched just fine. Got the quality start out of it. “El Guapo” made an appearance in relief, along with old friend Derek Lowe. Not a bad collection of pitchers. It’s no Pedro game, but it’ll do.
What about the line-up? It’s early 2001, so Nomar is out recovering from wrist surgery. But, new Hero Manny Ramirez is in the clean-up spot. It had been just over a week since he thrilled us with a 3-run homer on the first pitch he saw in Fenway as a Red Sox. He had been every bit as advertised. In reality, the line-up looks pretty solid, even without Nomar.
The Sox started with a very bizarre inning. Look at those entries. An error, a single, fielder’s choice, hit-by-pitch, fielder’s choice, fielder’s choice. Umm…is that a rally?
You’ll notice that Jimy Williams threw a curveball at me in the eighth. Imagine that, Jimy Williams did something I didn’t expect. He had Brian Daubach pinch-hit for Shea Hillenbrand and Trot Nixon pinch-hit for Mike Lansing. Nothing too odd about that. Andy Pettitte started the game for the Yankees, so the lefties didn’t start. But, Pettitte was out of the game by then. The only issue, of course, is that Dauber isn’t a third baseman, and Trot Nixon isn’t a shortstop. So, how was Jimy going to fix things? When I saw Grebeck come into the field to start the ninth, I assumed he replaced Nixon. But, no. Look what Jimy did. He left Nixon in, and took out Bichette instead. It’s practically a double switch. The really odd part was the Bichette was scheduled to bat fourth in the eighth. So, it was a good chance that Grebeck would bat instead of Bichette. Hmm. Look at the rest of the moves that inning. Lewis went from center to left. Offerman went from first to second. Merloni went from second to third. That let Dauber stay at first. Phew.
The hero of the game for the Red Sox? I like Crazy Carl Everett. Three hits, and two runs scored, along with his RBI. Not a bad stat line for Everett. The goat? I’m going to give it to the seven spot in the order. Hillenbrand and Daubach combined to go 1-5, didn’t score, and didn’t drive anyone in.
In the end, it didn’t matter. The Sox score a bunch late, and survived Jimy’s line-up shuffling. They took down the Yankees, and that’s always a good thing.
And the scorecard shows how it happened.