4-4-2010: Opening Day, Sox down Yankees 9-7

Opening Day on Easter Sunday was quite the spectacle. I’m glad they brought in Pedro Martinez to throw the first pitch, and it was entertaining to have Steve Tyler and Neil Diamond sing (even if they weren’t so good). 5-year old Joshua Sacco’s reciting the speech from “Miracle” was entertaining, though I wouldn’t want my own 5-year old boy saying, “Screw ’em!”.

Some notes from game 1 yesterday:

  • Dustin Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis look like they’re in midseason form already. It looks like this offense will really center around the two of them this season. All the articles today are about Youk’s three extra base hits, but I think it was Pedey’s game-tying home run that was the critical blow last night.
  • The new regulars did well as a group last night, going 5-9 combined. I think Marco Scutaro is going to be a royal pain for opponents at the bottom of the order. He’s patient and he’s got mad contact skills. Adrian Beltre smashed a very long sac fly in the 2nd and had a key RBI-single.
  • David Ortiz looked lost at the plate yesterday. Sure, it was CC Sabathia, but he wasn’t even close on several fastballs throughout the game. At least he was patient, and didn’t get too aggressive early. Let’s hope he doesn’t press too much and lose his plate discipline too.
  • Yeah, run prevention didn’t really pan out last night, but it’s hard to prevent runs when balls are leaving the yard. I was still encouraged by our strong defense (compare Nick Swisher looking foolish on that Youkilis triple to right with J.D. Drew’s playing the carom out there to hold Robinson Cano to a single). Beltre also made a couple of nice plays last night that looked routine, but were tougher than you might think (that grounder to nip the fleet-footed Curtis Granderson to end the game is a good example). Cano didn’t look good defensively at all last night. Lots of diving, no catching. Made me appreciate having Pedroia at the keystone.
  • We should give Josh Beckett a pass on this one. His curveball looked weird last night, and he couldn’t locate it– but it’s just early. Look at the way Sabathia lost his concentration with the changeup in the sixth. He did enough for us to be able to win, and that’s what counts.
  • Speaking of Sabathia, Joe Girardi paid for his arrogance in the 6th. With Sabathia clearly losing it, and men at second and third with no outs, you keep the fat guy in to pitch to Youk? I know you want to keep the lefty in to face Ortiz, but Youk is a pretty big obstacle to that, and deserves more respect. I’d have changed pitchers right there. Maybe that 2-RBI triple will change your mind next time.
  • I was ticked off at Ramon Ramirez for the five-pitch walk to Mark Teixeira, but in his defense, he was staying on top of his fastball and throwing a good hard sinker at the knees. It was the control that was an issue.
  • When Girardi brought in Chan Ho Park in the bottom of the 7th and he threw that first pitch into a different zip code, I knew that someone was going to hit a homer. Park is a gopher ball machine, and Koreans aren’t clutch (I can say that as a fellow Korean).
  • The Yankees’ bullpen may not be as good as I thought. Park was terrible, David Robertson looked flat, and Joba Chamberlain wasn’t intimidating anyone last night.
  • Bottom of the 7th, mildly irritated at Victor Martinez not running out that grounder to Cano. Was it just me, or did he have a chance to beat that out?
  • Hideki Okajima and Jonathan Papelbon look fine.

Ryan Westmoreland was in attendance last night, taking it in from Theo’s private box. He seems to be doing well in his recovery.

Daisuke Matsuzaka, Boof Bonser and Josh Reddick are all at Pawtucket and will start the season there this week. Meanwhile, Portland’s roster is shaping up, and Jeff Natale and Brett Harper were released.

Miss hearing Curt Schilling all the time? You won’t anymore- he’s joining ESPN as an analyst.


2 Responses to 4-4-2010: Opening Day, Sox down Yankees 9-7

  1. marcys says:

    Although I’m in enemy territory here (a diehard Yankee fan), I appreciate your very insightful analysis of various aspects of last night’s game. Of course, I might see some of these things quite differently…but to be honest, I don’t have your skills of baseball observation and analysis, only great passion for the game and the Yankees. Thanks.

  2. redsoxtalk says:

    Thanks for reading and for your honesty. I respect the Yankees as a team, and most of the players, though not all of them. I think the AL East will be an exciting race all the way to the finish. Hope to see you around the blog.

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