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Red Sox vs. Angels, ALDS Game 2 Live Blog: YOU WAN CRAAAZY FACE HUNDURA MIRRION DORRA?!?, Playoffs Edition

Posted by Mike on October 5, 2007

The Boston Red Sox won the AL East for the first time in 12 years, the only team title that had eluded the Sox since John Henry bought this team in 2003. Now they face the Angels in the ALDS, up 1-0 in the series so far. The playoffs is when the real season begins.

But the real reason we’re covering this game is because it’s Daisuke Matsuzaka’ first start in the MLB playoffs. At Digital Headbutt, that means only one thing: A Live Blog/Engrish/Japanese game show extravaganza!

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8:58 pm: The Red Sox-Angels game is currently being pre-empted by Yankees-Indians, which just went into the 11th after Cleveland left the bases loaded. Meanwhile, Daisuke just got out of the 1st inning, and it’s still 0-0.

9:00 pm: CORRECTION: You can see the Sox game on TNT.

9:02 pm: Kevin Youkilis faces 0-2, but he manges to bring up a walk from Kelvim Escobar, setting up a David Ortiz at-bat with one on.

9:05 pm: Ortiz gets an base hit, a 1-2 line drive to left-center field. Two on, one out, Manny at the plate.

9:09 pm: After a long at-bat, Manny hits a ball deep into center field…and right into the glove of Chone Figgins. Two on, two out.

9:12 pm: Escobar walks Mike Lowell to load the bases for Boston. This is both a good thing and a bad thing; The Red Sox lead the MLB in runners stranded, and J.D. Drew is at the plate. (shivers)

9:13 pm: Line drive don the middle of the diamond, and Drew has a base hit! Youkilis and Ortiz come around to score. The Red Sox take a 2-0 lead in the first inning.

9:16 pm: Varitek line out to second base to end the inning. Boston leads 2-0 after 1.

JAPANESE VIDEO: HUMAN PAC-MAN GAME

9:20 pm: Unbelievable. Matsuzaka sets up 0-2, and then he throws four straight pitches to Casey Kotchman’s feet. One on, no outs to start the top of the 2nd.

9:24 pm: Kendry Morales grounds it to Pedroia, but he just misses the ball. Morales gets the base hit and Kotchman goes to third, but perhaps more importantly, Pedroia seems to have injured his shoulder. Fortunately, he looks okay.

9:26 pm: Matsuzaka is in trouble with runners on the corners and no outs, and Howie Kendrick is at the plate for the Angels.

9:27 pm: Daisuke seems to have suddenly turned on his nasty pitching; He just struck Kendrick out on 3 pitches. What’s more impressive is that Kendrick swung twice and missed–badly. One out.

9:30 pm: Jeff Mathis grounds out to Lowell, but he can’t make a play at home, Kotchman scores, and Boston’s lead is down to 2-1.

9:33 pm: Figgins gets a hits into left field, and Manny Ramirez, apparently distracted by the breaking news that Cleveland beats the Yankees, runs right past the ball. Morales scores, and the game is tied at 2-2.

9:34 pm: Within two pitches, Orlando Cabrera hits a deep shot to the base of the monster, Figgins scores from second, and the Angles take a 3-2 lead. This inning has not been kind to Matsuzaka.

9:36 pm: Guerrero grounds to Pedroia, and the top of the second mercifully comes to an end. The Angels have taken a 3-2 lead in the middle of the 2nd inning.

ENGRISH OF THE SECOND INNING: Do not drink this coffee.

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9:39 pm: The game switches back to TBS, as everyone’s favorite breakfast cereal will lead off in the bottom of the second.

9:40 pm: Coco Crisp quickly strikes out. One down, and Lugo is up next.

9:42 pm: Julio strikes out just as quickly as crisp, Pedroia grounds out on the first pitch, and the inning is over in less than 10 pitches. Some nice pitching by Escobar, and the Angles keep their 3-2 lead after two innings.

JAPANESE VIDEO OF THE INNING: Hurdles and a giant treadmill. What can go wrong?

9:47 pm: Garrett Anderson hits a blooper to right field, and Drew can’t quite get to it. Anderson gets a double to lead off.

9:48 pm: Izturis grounds it to Lugo in front of a running Anderson, and he’s out by a mile at third. Good defense, but bad running on Garrett’s part.

9:49 pm: Matsuzaka has already thrown 66 pitches tonight, and he’s only had 7 outs.

9:50 pm: Maicer Izturis steals second base uncontested.

9:51 pm: Kotchman hits into the easy groundout. 2 down, and Izturis goes to third.

9:52 pm: Morales hits one deep, all the way to the right-center warning track, but Drew is there to make the catch.

9:53 pm: ENGRISH OF THE INNING: This sign is an Engrish goldmine.

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9:55 pm: Escobar continues to throw nasty stuff, quickly disposing of Youkilis on the strikeout.

9:57 pm: Did Escobar suddenly space out? Ortiz is walked on four pitches, and Ramirez is at the plate with one on.

10:00 pm: Ramirez’s AB did not begin well. Two big swings, two big misses.

10:01 pm: After two foul balls, Escobar throws a high fastball past Manny for strike three. That’s four strikeouts in two innings for Kelvim.

10:03 pm: Lowell grounds to Cabrera, and he easily throws him out to end the 3rd inning. Angels are holding onto a 3-2 lead.

JAPANESE VIDEO OF THE INNING: Quite possibly the most bizarre ad you will ever see.

10:06 pm: Some serious technical difficulties from TBS. Howie Kendrick suddenly looks like a player from Tron.

10:08 pm: For the third straight inning, the Angels leadoff batter gets on base. Daisuke’s face says it all: “Dame desu yo.”

10:09 pm: Matsuzaka pitches a foulout to Varitek in the first pitch.

10:10 pm: What a play by Youkilis! He makes the big dive to stop a potential double, and he beats Figgins to first. Two away, Kendrick at second.

10:11 pm: Cabrera grounds out to short to end the inning, and the Angels are holding onto a 3-2 lead in the middle of the fourth.

ENGRISH OF THE INNING: Wow, Japan is really un-PC.

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10:15 pm: Drew hits a decent grounder, but Kotchman makes the grab and throws Drew out to Escobar at first. One down.

10:16 pm: If not for Escobar’s bottom 1st and Matsuzaka’s top 2nd inning, we may have a great pitchers duel on our hands.

10:17 pm: Varitek hits a line drive into left field, but Anderson is there to make the catch.

10:18 pm: On the first pitch, Coco Crisp lays a perfect bunt, and he outruns the throw to first for a single.

10:19 pm: Mathis, the catcher, bobbled on the throw and Crisp steals second easily. All it rakes now is a decent hit by Lugo for Crisp to head for home and tie this game.

10:22 pm: Is it just me, or does Dustin Pedroia look just like EVERY COLLEGE-AGE SOX FAN ON EARTH?

10:23 pm: Lugo strikes out to end the fourth. Angels lead, 3-2 after four innings.

JAPANESE VIDEO OF THE INNING: Ask Milk! (Or as they call it, Gyuu-nyuu)

10:27 pm: Top of the 5th inning. Guerrero grounds out to Lugo for the first out.

10:28 pm: Garret Anderson flies out to Coco Crisp. Two up, two down.

10:30 pm: Matsuzaka is not helping his own cause. After Youkilis deflects the ball trying to catch it, and Dustin Pedroia had a chance to make a play and end the inning. But Daisuke did not get to the bag in time, and Maicer Izturis makes it to first easily.

10:33 pm: Kotchman screams a line drive foul into the Angels dugout, and it looks like someone on the bench is hurt.

10:34 pm: Izturis steals second again. The Throws bounces off of Lugo, but Pedroia is there to back up and prevent a possible run to third.

10:35 pm: Mastuzaka throws a wild pitch advancing Izturis to third, then he walks Kotchman, and that will be the end of the night for Daisuke. Francona is pulling him.

10:37 pm: Lefthander Javier Lopez enters the game to Mexican Standoff music.

10:39 pm: The Red Sox get a forceout at second to end the top of the fifth. The Angels’ lead remains 3-2.

10:43 pm: ENGRISH OF THE INNING:

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10:44 pm: Pedroia opens the bottom of the 5th with a line drive double down the left field line. Youk advances Pedroia to third on the check swing.

10:45 pm: Escobar intentionally walks David Ortiz to put runners on the corners for Manny Ramirez. MAN-NY! MAN-NY! MAN-NY!

10:47 pm: Boston pulls a reverse Bartman (or a semi-Jeffrey Maier). A fan makes a huge extension to take the ball away from Mathis and a foulout.

10:51 pm: Manny manages to work the count, and walks to load the bases. If Mike Lowell drives in runs to take the lead, that kid who caught the foul ball will be the toast of Boston.

10:52 pm: Lowell hits deep, deep ball to left-center. Figgins makes the catch, but Pedroia tags up from third to tie the game at 3-3.

10:56 pm: After a very long at-bat by Drew, he grounds out to first to end the inning. Good thing the inning is over, because Ortiz is exhausted from running on four stright 3-2 foul balls. The game is tied, 3-3 after five innings.

JAPANESE VIDEO OF THE INNING: Everyone’s favorite game show, another episode of Human Tetris!

11:02 pm: Top of the 6th. Manny Delcarmen is in to pitch for the Red Sox.

11:03 pm: Youk takes the grounder and throws to Delcarmen at first for the out. One down.

11:04 pm: Pop out to J.D. Drew. Two down on very few pitches.

11:07 pm: Figgins strikes out to end the top of the 6th. The game remains a 3-3 tie, as Delcarmen’s stuff looks really good right now.

ENGRISH OF THE INNING: Uh, thanks but no thanks.

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11:09 pm: Scott Shields is in to pitch for the Angels, replacing Escobar.

11:12 pm: Shields disposes of Varitek to start the bottom of the sixth inning.

11:113 pm: Shields lost a bit of control, walking Coco Crisp on what looked like four pitches.

11:16 pm: Lugo hits a line drive down the line, but it’s just outside and short of the Pesky Pole.

11:18 pm: After Lugo flies out to center field, Coco Crisp made a huge baserunning mistake. He slides into second and a bit past, but he doesn’t know where the ball is. Seeing Figgins at center, he rushes back to first, but he doesn’t retouch second base and the Angels throw him out at second for a double play to end the inning. The game is tied, 3-3 after 6 innings.

JAPANESE VIDEO OF THE INNING: Uh, good vibrations? WTF?

11:23 pm: A flyout to Crisp to open the inning. One away.

11:25 pm: Guerrero takes a bad hit on the shoulder from Delcarmen, and he’s not happy at all. With a runner on first and one out, Delcarmen is coming out of the game in favor of Hideki Okajima.

11:32 pm: Okajima, after a long at-bat, finally rids of Garret Anderson on a flyout to Crisp.

11:34 pm: Whoa. Okajima’s offspeed pitch is absolutely filthy.

11:35 pm: Strikeout, and the top of the 7th is over, with the game still tied, 3-3.

ENGRISH OF THE INNING:

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11:41 pm: Shields remains in the game. Pedroia grounds out, and then Youkilis hits a fly ball directly into Anderson’s glove. Two up, two down, and Ortiz is at the plate.

11:44 pm: Shields walks Big Papi, his third straight walk. Manny now comes on with two outs.

11:47 pm: Shields walks Ortiz and Manny back-to-back. Spire, another reliever is warming up, and he will likely face Mike Lowell. For now, Shields stays in.

11:49 pm: Lowell faces a full count and he…flies out to Figgins to end the inning. The game is tied a 3-3 after 7.

JAPANESE VIDEO OF THE DAY: Human bowling.

11:53 pm: Hideki Okajima remains on the mound for the 8th inning.

11:55 pm: One away, but Manny nearly lets that fly ball drop.

11:59 pm: Okajima strikes out his next batter for the second out of the inning, but that will be all for him in this game. Papelbon is coming in.

12:02 am: On the first pitch Kendrick grounds it to Lowell, but Youkilis can’t handle the throw. I believe that’s his first error of the season. The Sox were going to get a very easy out; instead they have Kendrick at first.

12:04 am: Kendrick steals second base easily, and Juan Rivera comes in to pinch hit for the Angels.

12:07 am: Instead of the bottom of the 8th, we’re stiil in the Rivera at-bat. It’s been a long AB, it’s a full count, and now Kendrick is at third.

12:08 am: Papelbon had a 1-2 count, but he ends up walking Rivera. Now Figgins comes to the plate, instead of a a one-pitch out to end the inning.

12:10 am: The Angles pinch runner for Rivers takes second base easily.

12:11 am: FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, GET OUT OF THIS INNING ALREADY!

12:12 am: Finally, Papelbon strikes out Figgins to get to the bottom of the 8th. The game remains a 3-3 tie.

ENGRISH OF THE INNING: Lindsay Lohan, there’s still a pageant for you!

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12:16 am: The Red Sox had some nice momentum after that strike out. Drew promptly kills it with a bad groundout.

Apparently, Vlad Guerrero is out of the game. Justin Speier is in to pitch for the Angels.

12:19 am: Varitek grounds out for the second out of the inning.

12:20 am: Dammit! Coco Crisp hits one high and deep, but it was 10 feet short of a homerun. The game remains tied, 3-3 after 8 innings.

JAPANESE VIDEO OF THE INNING: A different kind of yakyuu…

12:23 am: Only three days into the postseason, and I’m already sick of Dane Cook.

12:24 am: Sorry Steve Stone, for Anderson to look like Oscar De La Hoya, he needs to be in a thong and fishnets.

12:26 am: After nearly walking the first batter, Papaelbon manages to dispose of Orlando Cabrera with a popout.

12:28 am: Papelbon gets the next batter to fly out to Lugo. Two up, two down, and Garret Anderson is at the plate.

12:32 am: Anderson swings and misses–badly–on the first two pitches, but he still manages to draw a walk. Fortunately, Papelbon pops out Izturis on bring it to the bottom of the 9th. The game is tied, 3-3, and the Red Sox get the top of their lineup after Lugo leads off.

ENGRISH OF THE INNING:

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12:36 am: Lugo gets a base hit on the first pitch, and the winning run is on for the top of the lineup.

12:37 am: A hit and run by Pedroia. He’s thrown out at first, but Lugo is now in scoring position.

Out goes Speier, in comes K-Rod for the Angels. Youkilis will head to the plate with Lugo at second.

12:40 am: A sneaky move by K-Rod, who almost picks off Lugo at second.

12:42 am: Youkilis strikes out. Two out one on, and the Angels will almost certainly walk Ortiz, and it’s all up to Manny now.

12:45 am: OHHHHHHHHHHHHH! OOOHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! MANNY RAMIREZ TAKES THE PITCH, AND HE SENDS IT OVER THE MONSTER AND INTO THE TURNPIKE! HOME RUN, AND THE RED SOX WIN, 6-3 off the walk-off home run.

What a way to end this game, which give the Red Sox a 2-0 lead as the series heads to Anaheim.

I hope you enjoyed the game and the Japanese weirdness tonight.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in AHHHHH!!! MY EYES!, Baseball, Big Papi, Boston, Dice-K, Engrish, Japan, Live Blog, Matsuzaka, MLB, Nihongo ga hanasemasu ka?, Things that are more fun in foreign dialects, Way More Tags Than This Post Merits | 3 Comments »

Nyjer Please: How Will The Red Sox Lose It This Year?

Posted by Mike on August 8, 2007

Slowly but surely, the tentacles of Digital Headbutt are spreading through the Internet. Luke Halpert was kind enough to invite me to write on his blog, Nyjer Please.

I haven’t discussed baseball here very much, so I decided to write an article about my beloved Red Sox. More specifically, about the many hilarious ways that they could lose the AL East in the next month and a half. I’ll give you a preview: one such way may or may not involve Hello Kitty.

 

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Posted in AHHHHH!!! MY EYES!, Baseball, Bloody sock, Boston, Dice-K, Great Moments in Stupidity, MLB, Nyjer Please, Red Sox, Stuff That Involves Things | Leave a Comment »

Look Out, David Ortiz: Daisuke Wants Your DH Job

Posted by Mike on July 20, 2007

YouTube is a fabulous place. You can entertain yourself for hours. But even better, you can post something on your blog if you’re to busy (or lazy) to any actual blogging for a short period of time, which has been the case for me.

Anyway, it turns out that Daisuke Matsuzaka averaged 19 at-bats per home run, which puts him somewhere between Pat Burrell and Alfonso Soriano in home run efficiency. The problem is that he only batted 19 times in his Japanese career, which means he’s hit a grand total of one home run as a pro.

Want to see it? Come on, I KNOW you want to! Well, here it is:

The unfortunate victim is Darwin Cubillan, Venezuelan pitcher for the Hanshin Tigers. He throws a high cheese, and Matsuzaka hits it 370 feet to the seats in left-center field. Overall, the homerun was not that impressive. However, those announcers…I want those guys covering the game whenever I hit a home run.

OHHHHHH! KORE-WAAAAAAA!!! HOWAITO-NOOOOOOO DA-KYUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU!!!

Posted in Baseball, Boston, Dice-K, Red Sox, what is this hyperbole of which you speak? | 1 Comment »

Red Sox vs. Yankees Live Blog: YOU WAN CRAAAAZY FACE HUNDURA MIRRION DORRA?!? Part II

Posted by Mike on April 22, 2007

Tonight the Red Sox face the Yankees in the final game of their series against each other this season. Boston has won the first two games, and tonight Daisuke Matsuzaka is playing the Yankees for the first time. Combine that with the fact that Hideki Okajima is becoming a very good middle reliever for the Sox, and I have an excuse to try and top last week’s live blog and show you even MORE crazy Japanese stuff. If only Matsui were off the DL, tonight would truly be insane. Let’s just hope the offense doesn’t go anemic like in the last two Matsuzaka starts (both solid outings on his part).

The madness commences!

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8:09 pm: Up first for the Yankees: Johnny Damon. Or, as a true Fenway Park fan once called him while he still played for Boston, “Captain Vagina.”

8:11 pm: Matsuzaka has been pitching aggressively against Damon. And by aggressive, I mean, “A little off.” That’s two pitches from which he had to get out of the way.

8:12 pm: Damon flies out to Julio Lugo. He’s not the same without the beard. Jeter’s up next.

8:13 pm: Jeter flies out to J.D. Drew. If A-rod hits that, it’s a home run. Abreu is next.

8:14 pm: A nasty pitch by Matsuzaka. It just died before getting to the plate. Jon Miller thinks it’s the gyroball, but it looked like a slider.

8:16 pm: Kaibutsu (calling him Dice-K is lazy) walks Abreu, and A-Rod is up next.

And on the first pitch, he hits Rodriguez on the arm! I didn’t think he had the boorus to do that in the Major Leagues.

8:18 pm: Giambi hits to the left-center field wall, the edges of the Monster. Managing to reach it outside of the plate, and he gets a double. Abreu and Rodriguez score. 2-0, Yankees.

8:19 pm: Matsuzaka easily retires Robinson Cano, but the Yankees are already up 2-0 at the middle of the first inning.

Japanese picture of the first inning:

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8:22 pm: Pitching for the Yankees tonight is rookie southpaw Chase Wright. Lugo is up first for the Red Sox.

You know you’re not going to run the bases well on a given night when Wily Mo Pena is playing center field.

8:24 pm: Lugo is walked to start the bottom of the first. Up next is Kevin Youkilis.

Lugo is caught out of position, and Wright nearly picks him off.

8:27 pm: Doug Mientkiewicz is the first baseman for the Yankees. It’s some kind of cruel joke that even after Boston won their first championship in 86 years, the guy who caught the final out is now in pinstripes. It would truly be a scandal if he still had had the ball from the final out, as was nearly the case.

8:30 pm: Lugo steals second base, and despite an initial 0-2 count, Youkilis is walked by Chase Wright. David Ortiz is up next, wearing #42 tonight. Apparently that’s because the Red Sox’s Jackie Robinson celebration got rained out.

8:32 pm: On the second pitch, Ortiz flies out to Abreu.

Manny Ramirez is now at the plate. He’s really been struggling early this year, batting .193.

8:34 pm: And just as quickly as Ortiz, Manny flies out to Abreu for the second out of the inning. J.D. Drew, who has done surprising well offensively so far, is up next.

8:37 pm: Drew strikes out to end the inning. 2-0, Yankees. Now these are the Yankees I;ve come to expect. Against the Mariners they were completely shut down. At least now it’s back to normal, leaving a bunch of guys on base before coming up empty. AAAHHHHH!!!

Japanese video of the first inning:

8:40 pm: Matsuzaka starts the second inning well, easily ridding of Mientkiewicz. But he sucks as a batter anyway, so maybe it doesn’t prove anything.

8:41 pm: A deep fly ball by Melky Cabrera, but Pena is there for the catch at the back of the Monster.

8:42 pm: Lowell catches the line drive to retire the side. It only took 7 pitches for Matsuzaka to get out of that inning, and the score remains 2-0, New York.

Picture of the second inning:

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8:45 pm: Bottom of the second inning. Mike Lowell is leading off. He’s a good player, but to me he;s a reminder of that Boston should have never traded away Hanley Ramirez to the Marlins.

Just like that, Lowell strikes out. Jason Varitek is next.

8:48 pm: Varitek flies out to Abreu. That’s three right field flyouts already. Wright is pitching well this inning.

8:50 pm: Wily Mo Pena gets the free pass to first base, as Wright walks him. Dustin Pedroia is batting next. His batting average this year is a whopping .158. Ugh.

8:51 pm: Pedroia manages to hit a line drive past Rodgriguez down the third base line. Amazingly, he gets the first hit of the game for the Red Sox. Boston goes back to the top of the order.

8:52 pm: But on the second pitch, he grounds out to Jeter. The Yankees still lead, 2-0 after 2 innings.

Japanese video of the day: okay, technically it isn’t Japanese, but it inspired the title of tonights live blog. And it’s really funny.

8:55 pm: Johnny Damon hits a grounder off Matsuzaka’s leg and into the outfield for a base hit. BOOOOOOOOO!!!

8:56 pm: On the first pitch, Matsuzaka beans Derek Jeter. I think it’s just bad location on his part, but I think that by hitting the two biggest Yankees stars in his very first start, he has completed his initiation into the Red Sox brotherhood.

8:59 pm: Kaibutsu strikes out Abreu with a nasty changeup. Alex Rodriguez is up next. Let’s see how he bats after getting hit in the first inning.

9:01 pm: You know who stinks? Aramark. They are the company on charge of concessions at Fenway, and thanks to them you can’t get a Sam Adams in the stadium, in Boston, Because they have a contract with Budweiser. That’s like having to drink Chinese beer in a stadium in Munich! WTF?

Daisuke strikes out Rodriguez. Two out, runners on 1st and 2nd, Giambi at bat.

9:05 pm: One strike away from the end of the inning, Giambi manages a blooper to the outfield. Pedrioa can’t reach the ball, and Damon scores to make it 3-0, Yankees. In so doing Jon Miller and Joe Morgan manages to insult midgets in some way.

9:07 pm: Matsuzaka strikes out Cano to end the inning, but The Yankees lead 3-0.

Japanese Picture of the 3rd inning:

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9:11 pm: Bobby Abreu has played really well at right field tonight. That’s the fourth fly ball he’s caught, this time one he had to chase courtesy of Kevin Youkilis.

9:12 pm: I think it only took one or two pitches to get Ortiz to fly out again. He’s 0-2. Manny’s up next.

9:14 pm: HOME RUN! Manny hits a solo shot over the Monster and through the window at the Cask & Flagon across the street. 3-1, Yankees.

9:16 pm: ANOTHER HOME RUN! J.D. Drew hits a hanging breaking ball into the stands behind the bullpen at right-center. 3-2, Yankees.

9:17 pm: ANOTHER HOME RUN over the Monster, this time by Mike Lowell. By the angle, I’m pretty sure that ball is now somewhere on I-90. 3-3.

9:19 pm: WWWHHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! Another solo shot over the Monster, this time by Jason Varitek. 4-3, Red Sox. Wright is getting absolutely lit up right now, and the bullpen is already warming up.

This is the first that the Red Sox have ever hit 4 home runs in a row.

9:20 pm: Pena strikes out, but Boston takes a 4-3 lead with four straight home runs. Total insanity.

And speaking of total insanity…the Japanese video of the third inning:

9:25 pm: Right after getting a lead from the offense, Matsuzaka allows Mientkiewicz to hit a ground rule double into the deepest part of center field.

9:27 pm: Cabrera grounds out to Youkilis at first base, but Mientkiewicz goes to third.

9:30 pm: My nightmares of losing a lead against the Yankees to a backup journeyman catcher are nearly realized. Thankfully Dustin Pedroia is there to catch the line drive. Two down, Damon up next.

9:32 pm: Captain V grounds out to Youkilis to end the top of the 4th. Red Sox lead, 4-3.

Japanese pitcure of the 4th innning:

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9:34 pm: Joe Torre has pulled Chase Wright, and now pitching for the Yankees is some fat guy with a weird pitching motion whose last name is Bean. This oughtta be interesting.

9:36 pm: Pedroia hits one solidly into left field, but Cabrera is able to chase it down for the first out.

9:39 pm: Nieves is hurt in his left hand. Based on Jon Miller’s reaction, you don’t even want to know who the third option is at catcher for the Yankees.

9:40 pm: Youkilis grounds to Jeter, and Cano nearly converts the double play, but Youk gets there just in time. Ortiz is up next.

9:42 pm: Just a thought: I do not want to be the guy that has to clean David Ortiz’s gloves. he spits on them before every swing.

9:43 pm: The phlegm is powerful, as Big Papi hits a ground rule double into right field. Runners on the corners, and Manny is up next.

9:45 pm: You have to believe that by this point in his career, Joe Torre is slipping Jack Daniels into his Gatorade to keep from going insane.

Which reminds me: Happy Birthday, Terry Francona!

9:46 pm: Ramirez hits a ball on a check swing, and is easily thrown out by “Mr. Bean to end the inning. Two LOB, but Boston still leads, 4-3.

Japanese video of the 4th inning:

9:49 pm: Wow. Even his little necklace says “Dice-K” on it. Still, I refuse to surrender to that nickname.

9:50 pm: Jeter manages to hit a high inside pitch by Matsuzaka over the Monster to tie the game at 4. AAAAHHHH!!! Why did it have to be Jeter? At least Wil Nieves didn’t hit one out of the park. That would really suck.

9:53 pm: Daisuke redeems himself, retiring Abreu and then striking out Rodriguez in 3 pitches. His breaking ball for strike three was unhittable.

9:55 pm: Giambi’s pop foul is caught by Varitek to end the inning, but the game is now tied, 4-4 at the middle of the fifth.

Japanese picture of the fifth inning:

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10:00 pm: J.D. Drew is walked by Mr. Bean. After the home runs, the offensive output has been decidedly disappointing against New York’s relief pitching.

10:02 pm: Mike Lowell flies out to center field. Jason Varitek is up next.

10:04 pm: Drew steals second base, and Varitek walks to put runners on first and second with one out, and Wily Mo Pena at bat. Most fans think “home run” or “RBI single”. As a Sox fan, I automatically think “inning ending double play.”

10:06 pm: Instead of a double play, Pena strikes out swinging to bring up Dustin Pedroia. Wait, that’s the same thing!

10:07 pm: Pedroia grounds to Jeter, who forces out Varitek at second to end the 5th inning. The game is tied, 4-4.

Japanese video of the 5th inning:

10:12 pm: The Yankees get two straight outfield singles off of Matsuzaka. Nobody out, runners on the corners, Cabrera at the bat.

10:15 pm: Cabrera grounds into the double play, but Cano scores from third. Nieves is quickly disposed of, but the Yankees lead 5-4 at the middle of the 6th inning.

10:26 pm: Sorry, missed the bottom of the sixth. The Sox didn’t score, leaving the score at 5-4 in favor of New York. Pettite pitched in relief in the 6th, retiring the side in 9 pitches.

10:28 pm: Johnny Damon flies out to begin the 7th inning.

Jeter grounds out on the next AB. Two outs, nobody on, Abreu up next.

Joe Morgan: We still don’t know if the Gyroball exists.

Umpire: you are blind. That’s two straight strikes that you’ve called balls.

Matsuzaka ends up striking Abreu out swining to end the inning. The score remains with the Yankees leading, 5-4.

Japanese photo of the 7th inning:

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10:34 pm: Manny Ramirez leads off the bottom of the 7th inning. Scott Proctor is pitching against him.

10:36 pm: Manny hits a grounder that rolls into right field for an easy base hit. J.D. Drew is up next.

10:37 pm: Drew hits a double just off the bottom of the Monster. Manny goes to third. Nobody out, runners on second and third, Mike Lowell is at bat. The Yanks consider bringing in Vizcaino to pitch, but decide against it. Still, he’s warming up.

10:40 pm: HOME RUN! Mike Lowell hits one deep, and it just barely makes it over the top of the Monster. A three run shot by Lowell, and The Red Sox lead, 7-5.

Luis Vizcaino is definitely coming in now, after Proctor really screwed thing up for New York.

10:44 pm: Vizcaino forces a groundout for Varitek, and the Yankees finally get their first out of the 7th inning. Pena is up next.

10:46 pm: Pena strikes out AGAIN! He’s really chasing outside pitches that he shouldn’t swing at.

10:47 pm: Pedroia Gets a line drive single into left-center. Lugo is up next, with two outs and one on.

10:50 pm: Another walk, this time to Lugo, and there are runners on first and second with two outs and Youkilis at the plate.

10:53 pm: The Yankees get the forceout off the grounder by Youkilis, but the Red Sox have taken a 7-5 lead after 7 innings. The Yanks’ power lineup is up perhaps for the last time in the game.

10:57 pm: Top of the 8th inning, Matsuzaka is still pitching, and everyone’s favorite breakfast cereal/center fielder, Coco Crisp, is back in the lineup.

10:58 pm: Rodriguez hits a line drive single over Pedroia’s head, and that will be all for Matsuzaka. He’s leaving the mound, and Hideki Okajima is coming out of the bullpen in his place.

Japanese Video of the 7th inning:

11:00 pm: Top of the 8th, Matsuzaka is still in, Rodriguez is at the plate, and everyone’s favorite breakfast cereal is back at center field, Coco Crisp.

Rodriguez line drives one over Pedroia’s head for a single, and that will be all for Matsuzaka. He’s leaving the mound, and Hideki Okajima is coming out of the bullpen in his place.

11:01 pm: Wow. The only guy on the Red Sox roster more metro than Daisuke is Okajima.

11:02 pm: Giambi flies out, but the wind almost carries it away from Mike Lowell. 1 out.

11:03 pm: Robinson Cano is able to get a base hit, as Crisp can’t get to the ball in time. Runners on first and second, 1 out, and Jorge Posada is pinch hitting.

11:07 pm: Okajima walks Posada to load the bases. With Melky Cabrera up next, Okajima is out and Donnelly is in.

11:12 pm: Lugo gets the forceout at 2nd for out #2, but can;t convert the double play, and Rodriguez scores from 3rd to make it 7-6, Red Sox. The run was given officially to Matsuzaka, who will be charged with 6 ER in 7 IP. Statistically his worst performance so far, but the Red Sox a very much in position to win.

11:15 pm: Pedroia makes a great dive for the third out, and the Sox get out of the inning, Still leading 7-6 in the middle of the 8th. No matter what, Papelbon will have at least a one run lead to save in the 9th.

Japanese photo of the 8th inning: Aren’t yachts in your face enough?

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11:20 pm: Bottom of the 8th.

David Ortiz hits one deep into left field, but it’s very playable, as Cabrera makes the easy catch. One away.

11:24 pm: Manny gets another base hit, and J.D. Drew is up next against Yankees pitcher Sean Henn.

11:25 pm: Drew grounds to third base. Rodriguez is able to throw him out, but Manny gets to 2nd base. Two outs, one on, Mike Lowell at the plate.

11:29 pm: Lowell is walked, and Jason Varitek is up next with runners on first and second.

11:30 pm: Varitek is promptly rid of for the third out. The Red Sox are hanging on to a 7-6 lead going into the 9th inning. Papelbon will be in to close the game.

Japanese video of the 8th inning: Pray to God that your Grandma is smart.

11:34 pm: Top of the 9th, and the top of the Yankees order is batting.

11:35 pm: I haven;t noticed this before, but Johnathan Papelbon has an absolute death stare.

11:36 pm: Joe Morgan: “Damon got good wood on the ball, but he couldn’t get it up.” You gotta love baseball. Ramirez catches the fly ball for the first out.

11:38 pm: Papelbon fires the inside fastball, and Jeter strikes out swining and missing badly. Two down, and it’s up to Bobby Abreu to extend the game.

11:41 pm: Uh-oh. Papelbon walks Abreu, and Rodriguez is up to bat, representing the potential game-winning run.

11:44 pm: Rodriguez grounds to Lowell, who gets the forceout at second to end the game. The Red Sox win, 7-6, sweeping the Yankees for the first time in 17 years at Fenway, and in turn take a dominating early lead in the AL East. Matsuzaka, despite an average pitching performance, is credited with the win.

I leave with one more piece of Japanese weirdness. Good night!

engrish-18.jpg

Posted in AHHHHH!!! MY EYES!, Baseball, Boston, Dice-K, Digital Headbutt, Funny Videos, Live Blog, MLB, Red Sox, This is why the Internet was invented, Yankees | 3 Comments »

Red Sox vs. Mariners Live Blog: YOU WAN CRAAAZY FEISU HUNDURA MIRRION DORRA?!?

Posted by Mike on April 11, 2007

Tonight, The Boston Red Sox play the Seattle Mariners in Fenway Park. It’s Daisuke Matsuzaka’s first home start, as well as his first chance to face Ichiro in the Major Leagues (I discussed this in more detail on Monday) . However, other factors will likely determine this game, such as: Can anyone stop Davis Ortiz’s bat? Will Felix Hernandez be able to stop the Red Sox offense? Will Seattle get any offense? And if the Red Sox have a lead, will middle relief ruin it before Papelbon can get on the mound?

But primarily, I’m watching this because it will be my first opportunity to see Matsuzaka (or Mothra, as I am now calling him. Using Dice-K is lazy!) pitch live. To celebrate the huge Japanese influence on this game, every inning I will show a picture of Japan f—ing up English and a truly bizarre video from Japanese TV. In fact, I will start with one of each to tide you over:

engrish-11.jpg

Hey, those don’t look like the Mariners! maybe I’m getting sleepy…

7:05 pm: The first at-bat of the game will be Mothra vs. Ichiro. That will be odd, the most anticipated moment of the game happens first. How anticlimactic.

I wonder if the big layoff after the Indians series was snowed out will still affect them tonight.

7:11 pm: A huge breaking ball by Matsuzaka, and Ichiro bites, hook line and sinker. A quick 0-2.

7:12 pm: Ichiro has adjusted quickly. It’s now a full count, 3-2.

7:13 pm: He swings at the full count pitch, and he grounds out right to Matsuzaka. 1 out, nobody on.

7:14 pm: He seems to be relying heavily on the breaking ball. Still, he retired Adrian Beltre in 2 pitches. 2 out, nobody on, top of the 1st.

7:16 pm: Jose Vidro’s grounder gets by Julio Lugo, and Vidro has the base hit. Julio, you have to get that ball, the Sox paid you $36 million to make that play.

7:18 pm: Raul Ibanez hits a grounder to Mike Lowell at 3rd, and he gets the force out at 2nd. Top of the first inning over, 0-0.

Engrish Picture of the 1st inning:

engrish-5.jpg

7:20 pm: Bottom of the first inning. Now we get to see Felix Hernandez’s filthy stuff.

7:22 pm: Julio Lugo grounds out to 2nd. 1 out, nobody on, Youkilis up next.

7:23 pm: A great inside pitch by Hernandez causes a flyout to Jose Lopez. 2 outs, Ortiz at the plate.

7:24 pm: Another groundout to Lopez, and that’s the end of the first inning, still scoreless.

Weird Japanese video of the 1st inning:

7:27 pm: Top of the 2nd inning. Mothra easily disposes of Richie Sexson. 1 out.

7:29 pm: Jose Guillen crushes a fastball off the Monster, but is held to a single by Manny. Johjima is up next. He has 5 HR against Matsuzaka.

7:30 pm: Oh crap. Johjima hits one into left field, and Guillen goes to third. 1 out, runners on the corners.

7:33 pm: Betancourt also hits one deep into left field. Ramirez makes the catch, but Guillen tags up from third, as the throw is a little too far to the right.

7:34 pm: Jose Lopez grounds out to Lowell to end the top of the 2nd. 1-0, Seattle.

Engrish picture of the 2nd inning:

engrish-8.jpg

7:37 pm: Ramirez’s grounder ricochets off Felix’s leg, and he still gets thrown out at first with time to spare. Come on, where’s the hustle?!?

7:39 pm: Hernandez strikes out JD Drew looking. His stuff is nasty tonight.

7:40 pm: Hernandez retires the first 6 Red Sox batters in about 20 pitches. Insane. 1-0, Seattle after 2 innings.

Weird video of the 2nd Inning, the oddest commercial you may ever see. I swear, you will be humming this tomorrow:

7:43 pm: Matsuzaka is back. The first batter of the 3rd inning (Ichiro) flies out to Center Fielder/Cereal Coco Crisp.

Peter Gammons just said the buzz was BIGGER when Pedro arrived. Now that’s saying something. About what I have no f—ing idea.

7:45 pm: Beltre flies out to Lugo, 2 away, nobody on. The 2nd inning struggles seem to have gone away.

7:46 pm: Mothra gets his first strikeout to retire Vidro and end the top of the 3rd. 1-0, Seattle.

Engrish picture of the 3rd inning:

engrish-2.jpg

7:50 pm: We may be seeing one of the best pitchers’ duels this season. Felix Hernandez’s stuff is absolutely destroying the Red Sox right now. A big slider struck out Varitek.

7:53 pm: Eight up, eight down for Felix. Rookie 2nd baseman Dustin Pedroia is at the plate.

7:54 pm: No perfect game for Felix, as he walks Pedroia. He retires Lugo in two pitches to end the innig, however, and maintain the no-hitter.

Weird video of the 3rd inning: I dare you not to laugh.

8:00 pm: Matsuzaka strikes out Ibanez to start the 4th inning. His pitching has gotten better as the game goes on.

8:02 pm: Sexson bites on the inside pitch, and completely whiffs the breaking ball. Daisuke has struck out 3 straight batters.

8:03 pm: Guillen is hit in the elbow by a pitch, and he’s on first with two outs and Johjima at bat.

8:05 pm: Lowell gets the forceout at 2nd, and the top of the 4th inning ends. 1-0, Seattle. Excellent game so far by both pitchers.

Engrish picture of the 4th:

engrish-14.jpg

8:08 pm: Felix walks Kevin Youkilis on 4 pitches. One on, and Big Papi is up next. Watch out…

8:09 pm: …Or not. Ortiz grounds into the double play. Unbelievable. Hernandez still has a no-hitter.

8:11 pm: The fourth inning ends, as Ramirez grounds out to 3rd. 1-0, Seattle after 4.

Weird video of the 4th inning:

8:15 pm: On an 0-2 pitch, Betancourt (I think) hits a line drive, but Lugo catches it. 1 out, 5th inning.

8:16 pm: Jose Lopez’s line drives safely goes into right field for a base hit. Ichiro’s up next (0-2, 2 groundouts).

8:19 pm: Matsuzaka’s breaking ball strikes out Ichiro. ESPN gave the Japanese radio feed. I thought it was cool. and I learned a new word…Otoosuru, which means to strike out. As in, Otooshimashita.

8:20 pm: Uh-oh. One bad pitch leads to a triple by Beltre, which brings Lopez home from first. Beltre scores on the next hit, a blooper by Vidro. Matsuzaka retires Ibanez, but not before it becomes 3-0 Seattle on essentially one bad pitch.

Engrish picture of the 5th:

engrish-10.jpg

8:24 pm: If you want to throw a no-hitter, you need to have good infielders. Sexson leaps to catch a bad throw to get out JD Drew.

8:25 pm: Felix Hernandez continue to impress with his filthy pitching, but you have to give a lot of credit to Jose Lopez, the second baseman. I think he’s made at least 6 different plays in the infield.

8:27 pm: Felix retires the side in the fifth inning, still with a no-hitter. 3-0, Seattle. I know Felix is pitching well, but I expected more from our bats.

Bizarre video of the fifth:

8:30 pm: This has nothing to do with the game, but I have found that a lot of Japanese people have bad teeth. I just saw Matsuzaka’s smile, and there are at least two teeth way out of place.

8:34 pm: Matsuzaka retires the first two batters, the last a flyout to right.

He’s pitching well , but he already has 80+ pitches. Conversely, Felix’s pitching total is somewhere closer to 50.

8:35 pm: Johjima gets another double off Daisuke. He’s 2-3 tonight. I guess he knows his weaknesses after 100+ at-bats against Matsuzaka.

8:37 pm: Betancourt flies out to Crisp to end the top of the 6th. 3-0, Seattle.

Engrish picture of the 6th inning:

engrish-12.jpg

8:40 pm: Bottom of the 6th inning. Coco Crisp strikes out swinging at a slider. Crisp is a good outfielder, but he hits like crap.

8:42 pm: Pedroia grounds out to the short stop. Felix Hernandez has retired 15 batters, with 2 walks and a double play.

8:43 pm: Lugo grounds out, and Felix still has a no-hitter through six.

3-0, Seattle.

Bizarre video of the 6th inning: more commercial weirdness…

8:46 pm: Jose Lopez hits a single off Matsuzaka to start the 7th inning. Ichiro up next (0-3).

Hershiser says that Matsuzaka has customized his pitches most for Ichiro tonight. I don;t know, I think he needs it for Johjima more.

8:48 pm: Ichiro finally gets the single avoiding the double play with his baserunning. Still, they gets the forceout of Lopez at 2nd.

8:50 pm: It looks like Matsuzaka is really starting to struggle as he approaches the 100 pitch mark, walking Adrian Beltre in 4 pitches. The cold Boston weather is certainly not helping matters.

8:52 pm: Matsuzaka and Youkilis force the double play to end the jam in the 7th inning. 3-0, Seattle. Francona may pull Daisuke now.

Engrish picture of the 7th inning:

engrish-4.jpg

8:56 pm: Youkilis makes a great hit to left field, but Ibanez makes the tough catch.

19 down for King Felix. Ortiz is up next.

8:57 pm: Big Papi hits one deep but also flies out to Ibanez. 20 down for Felix, still no hits. Ramirez is up.

The Mariners are having such a good game; you think it would be able to wipe that constipated look off of manager Mie Hargrove’s face.

8:59 pm: Manny Ramirez strikes out looking. Hernandez’s stuff has not wavered at all. 3-0, Seattle after 7 innings.

Bizarre video of the 7th inning: Who doesn’t love a good nutshot?

9:02 pm: J.C Romero is in for Matsuzaka, who had a solid 7 inning outing tonight. If not for King Felix, Boston would still be very much in this game.

9:04 pm: Romero makes quick work retiring the two batters he faces in the 8th inning before Piniero comes in to replace him.

9:07 pm: Guillen hits one down the left filed line before bouncing off the the close wall there. Guillen gets a single, and Johjima is up next. How will he hit against a non-Matsuzaka pitcher?

9:10 pm: Johjima is walked, putting two guys on base. Piniero hasn;t been able to get anyone out, but they’re leaving him in with Betancourt at the plate.

9:11 pm: …And he flies out to Crisp to end the inning. 3-0, Seattle. Red Sox are still in this one, but they have to find a way to hit off of Felix Hernandez.

Engrish picture of the 8th inning: Pay attention to #3.

engrish-7.jpg

9:14 pm: JD Drew finally breaks the no hitter!!! A grounder away from Jose Lopez’s outstretched mitt. Mike Lowell is up next, and the Sox have finally gotten a base hit.

9:16 pm: The Fenway crowd nearly came back into this game, yelling when Lowell made good contact with an Hernandez pitch, but He flies out to center field.

That reminds me, in June we need to trade for Ichiro.

9:19 pm: Sexson easily fields a Varitek grounder, but he drops the throw back to him, botching the DP.

But Crisp grounds out on the next pitch to end the 8th inning. 3-0, Seattle, as Felix Hernandez has really stolen the show.

Bizarre video of the 8th inning: Obstacle Course!

9:23 pm: 9th inning. Piniero still pitching for the Sox, I think.

Lopez grounds out to Julio Lugo for the 1st out.

9:25 pm: Ichiro flies out to Coco Crisp. He’s 0-5 tonight.

9:26 pm: Julio Lugo fields the ball well, but makes a bad throw that goes into the dugout. Beltre goes to second by default.

9:27 pm: Lugo redeems himself, throwing out Jose Virdo to end the top of the 9th inning. It is now up to the Red Sox batters to somehow get at 3 runs off Felix Hernandez (and possibly JJ Putz) in the 9th inning to stay in the game.

Engrish picture of the 9th inning: Uh, no comment…

engrish-9.jpg

9:30 pm: Bottom of the 9th. King Felix is still pitching.

9:31 pm: Hernandez shows his fielding skills, throwing out Pedroia at first.

9:32 pm: Another groundout, this time by Lugo, means that the fate of this game now rests on Kevin Youkilis. Things are looking pretty bleak for the Sox right now.

9:32 pm: And it ends on a curveball strikeout! Seattle wins, 3-0. Felix Hernandez pitches about as good a game as you will see all year: CG, 9 IP, 1H, 2 BB, 6K, 17 groundouts. The Red Sox offense did not have a chance. Matsuzaka had a solid outing tonight (7 IP, 3 ER), but Felix definitely stole the show.  I’m just glad we won’t be facing him tomorrow.

Finally, the video of the 9th inning, absolutely hilarious. Good night!

Posted in Baseball, Boston, Dice-K, Digital Headbutt, Funny Videos, Ichiro, Live Blog, Mariners, Matsuzaka, MLB, Red Sox, Seattle, Stuff That Involves Things, This is why the Internet was invented | 15 Comments »

Japan Is Going To Implode on Wednesday

Posted by Mike on April 9, 2007

This Wednesday night is the biggest event is Japanese sports since the 2002 World Cup. In Fenway Park, Daisuke Matsuzaka is starting for Red Sox against the Mariners, where he will pitch against Ichiro. You can bet everyone in Japan is going to be watching, and that I will be liveblogging. Mothra (Boston’s answer to the Yankees’ Godzilla; I refuse to call him Dice-K) vs. Ichiro could be the single most important at-bat in the history of Nihon no Yakyuu. If this video is any indication, Matsuzaka has the advantage over Mr. Suzuki. This video is from when Matsuzaka was 18, and his stuff was still too nasty for Ichiro. Three at-bats, three strikeouts.

I’ll be liveblogging the game…expect weird Japanese stuff throughout.

UPDATE: When I said “Mothra (Boston’s answer to the Yankees’ Godzilla; I refuse to call him Dice-K) vs. Ichiro could be the single most important at-bat in the history of Nihon no Yakyuu“, I meant how the Japanese media was going to treat it. It has no bearing on my opinion of either player. And three at-bats in one game, admittedly, isn’t exactly an accurate analog. But 34 AB, 8H, .234 BA is accurate (which is shown near the end of the video).

Also, Kenji Johjima, the only Japanese catcher in the majors and a rising star, also plays for the Mariners. This should make Wednesday night’s game even bigger in Japan.

UPDATE #2 (4/10/07): Mike Plugh of Matsuzaka Watch has an article that describes really well the importance of this matchup in Japan. Trust him, he’s much more of an expert on the subject of Japanese baseball. These two players are truly icons across the Pacific. As if the current hype isn’t enough, Felix Hernandez will be pitching for Seattle on Wednesday.

Posted in Baseball, Boston, Dice-K, Digital Headbutt, Ichiro, Live Blog, Matsuzaka, MLB, Red Sox, Seattle, Video | 65 Comments »