Results tagged “Dice-K” from Who Made You Mirabelli?

Back in the Saddle Again

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LesterHBP.jpgWelcome back... to the playoffs that is.

The Red Sox clinched yet another Wild Card playoff berth, but there was no celebrating last night at Fenway, as Clay Buchholz and the Red Sox fell victim to an absolute mortar shelling by the Toronto Blue Jays, losing, 8-7, last night. Thankfully the Angels put the hurting on the Rangers to knock Texas out of contention... not exactly the way the Red Sox wanted to head into October... but beggars can't be choosers now.

After a strong month, Buchholz looked uncharacteristically hittable last night, giving up five home runs to the Jays, three of them to Adam Lind. But even after Big Play Clay's second sub-par start in a row, it's not time to panic just yet. He has shown that he has the stuff and his command is improving weekly. The only issue to worry about is whether or not his nerves will let him stay in command as the Red Sox head to the post-season.

What is cause for concern is Jon Lester. The veritable ace took a laser off the knee cap in this weekend's start against the Yankees. While he walked off the field and later was confirmed to have negative X-Rays, Red Sox Nation let out a collective 'oh crap,' as the hopes of October seemed to momentarily get "contusioned" away. (On a more serious note, the announcers could not have used the word "contusion" any more times than they did without having to declare the show "Medical Programming." Worst part is, they most likely don't even know what the word "contusion" means. WMYM apologizes for not knowing who exactly called the game... it was hard to make out the voices on the national broadcast over the droning sounds of "Margaritaville" on loop at some dive bar in Tampa, FL named Miss Vicky's. Can't make that stuff up.)

As for the playoffs, only time will tell what shape the rotation will be in. With Tim Wakefield's issues, his spine might actually start to resemble a question mark -- where is the school nurse with that scoliosis test when you need her? Buchholz has looked shaky in his last two starts, Beckett isn't his old self, and now Jon Lester has a second knee where his shin used to be. Who ever thought that Dice-K would be our most dependable starter going into the post-season... oh crap.

No News is Good News

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dice-k.jpgAs of this morning, everyone and their uncle had their jock-straps in a twist over some theoretical announcement regarding Diasuke Matsuzaka's future with the Boston Red Sox. Was he going to start? Was he going to be benched? Was he going to be released? Taken out back and shot? WHAT? Somebody... please tell us what is going on.
But as the tension become more and more palpable (mostly because of the unreal amounts of media attention it was getting... but what do you want? -- it was an off-day), it became clear that Red Sox fans weren't even going to get a nugget of anything. The Red Sox are almost as bad as the Patriots in that respect. They have become masters in saying literally nothing. It's almost enough to pray for an Ozzie Guillen-type figure... almost.
But taking a step outside the box, the question is this: does it really matter when Dice-K comes back? We've already seen he's no Beckett in the post-season. And now that our bats have woken up from their beauty rest, the team is winning... without him.
Obviously, you want your ka-trillion dollar man out there earning his salt. But his return isn't going to make-or-break the season. If anything, it's going to give Red Sox fans more heartburn, as pointed out in a brilliant, funny, and awe-inspiring article by a good friend of Who Made You Mirabelli, Michael James Silver, or Pythagorus, as he is known is some circles. He's a talented young writer for FireBrandAL who is really going places. No wonder why his work has gotten picked up by the likes of ESPN.com's Rob Neyer, and was featured on the MLB Outsiders homepage.
Although it is somewhat silly that Dice-K, in all of his virtual irrelevance, is making the homepage of anything these days... slow news day.
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In what must have been an homage to the New Yankee stadium, Red Sox pitchers were letting them fly in last night's loss to the Twins. They tied a modern day record for most wild pitches in a single game with a whopping six slips. Four of those humdingers came from the apparently spasm ridden hand of Daisuke Matsuzaka. The other two came from Delcarmen, who laid an egg and a half, and Masterson - who tried to clean up after the cracking of said egg. In related news, catcher George Kottaras had a nervous breakdown after tonight's "display," and the Twin Cities negotiation team has been trying to talk him down from the clock tower.

Masterson and Manny (which it feels surprisingly refreshing to call him) have no excuse - but any Red Sox fan could tell you that if they had to put money on one pitcher throwing four wild pitches in a game, it would be none other than Daisuke Matsuzaka.

"Labor" is a good word to associate with the Dice-man. Everything he does now seems tedious - not boring - but tedious. Never known for his quick style of play (or his endurance for that matter), Dice-K through over a hundred pitches tonight... in only five innings. Sox fans have come to realize that the high priced import is far from a sure thing - apparently a Rolaids sponsorship is somewhere in the wings.

But the interesting thing, the element that keeps us coming back for more after getting slapped around for a few hours every six days, is that the difference between a brilliant Dice-K start is a razor-thin line. Half of the (or maybe the only) fun in watching this guy pitch revolves around seeing him get into these sticky situations just to see what kind of pitch he'll invent to get out of them.

It's long and sometimes painful (as we saw tonight) - but at least it's entertaining. Unless, of course, you're poor George Kottaras.

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