Thursday, May 03, 2007

Beckett, The Darkman, The Mets and United

Not a bad day yesterday for the teams I support, as well as a rotten one for those I don't support.

Josh Beckett (pictured) became the majors' first six-game winner as the Red Sox beat the Oakland A's, 6-4 at Fenway last night. Coco Crisp continued his strong hitting, going 2-for-4 with 2 runs scored, and he made a tremendous diving catch in the ninth to help short circuit an A's rally against Mike Timlin, who got his first save of the year.

Beckett also became the first Red Sox pitcher since Roger Clemens (remember him?) in 1991 to win his first six starts of the season. Beckett pitched seven innings and allowed three earned runs in getting the victory.

Hideki Okajima pitched another strong eighth inning and yesterday was voted the AL Rookie Pitcher of the Month for April. It's ridiculous to think of the Japanese veteran Okijima as a rookie, but those are MLB rules. The Darkman continues to impress mightily, as his ERA for April was an astounding 0.71, and he's only allowed five hits and three walks in 14 appearances.

The A's suffered a devastating blow in the game as Mike Piazza was injured at third base in a collision with Mike Lowell after a grounder to the base. Piazza will be out 4-6 weeks with a shoulder injury.

Nice to see Piazza's old club, the Mets, get back on the winning path with a 6-3 win at Shea over Florida. Oliver Perez looked tremendous yesterday, striking out 10 and allowing one earned run in just over five innings to get the win. (It would have been nice if I had remembered to take him off the bench in one of my fantasy leagues. I'm still miffed about that one.) Perez continues to be a "Jekyll and Hyde" type of pitcher. You just never know which one will show up on any given start.

On the other side of the Atlantic, Manchester United's dream of a treble for 2007 (English Premiership, FA Cup and European Champions League titles) ended in Milan on Wednesday as AC Milan scored early and often in the rain, 3-0, to send United packing. AC Milan now have a date with Liverpool on May 23 in Athens for the European championship.

Tonight: Daisuke vs. Ichiro, Round 2. Be there. Aloha.

7 comments:

Cormac said...

Another Champions League semi final, another amazing atmosphere on the night. The final is going to be fantastic, two great sets of supporters. I challenge anyone in the States who thinks Soccer is boring to watch the Champions League Final and then tell me it's a dull sport!!

Ken K. said...

John did you see that Reina's home got looted while he was playing (superbly) in the CL match? Burned up his Porsche, too.

http://www.thesun.co.uk/article/0,,2-2007200458,00.html

The Omnipotent Q said...

Wow, that was some article, Ken. I feel badly for Pepe Reina and his family. I was amazed to read how many Liverpool players have had their houses burgled...

I've been with groups of people watching the big soccer matches (like Liverpool's FA Cup title win last season at a bar in Manhattan) and it is just really exciting and fantastic to be a part of. Most of those I was with were British ex-pats here in NYC and it was so great. Some Americans see the low scores and just assume it's boring. They don't know what they're missing.

Cormac said...

Bear in mind I am Irish/American when I say this so, no offence to your average US sports fan but this:

''Some Americans see the low scores and just assume it's boring. They don't know what they're missing.''

...is just plain ignorance and laziness. If they gave it half a chance they would love it. Actually, if the uS sports media gave it half a chance, then the Joe Punter sports fan would follow suit.

That's never going to happen though as the 45 min halves means less advertising dollars which means less corporat sponsorship which means, the USA will never be allowed, by its own sporting media, to get anyway into soccer.

Sad, really. I am lucky being half/helf I love the flow of a good Football, basketball or baseball game, but you can't beat 'the flow' of a great football game. Specially on those nights when the crowd is into it.

Cormac said...

oh and..


The police are apparently interviewing Frank Lampard about the burglary at Jose Reina's house. Apparently no-one can vouch for his whereabouts from 7.45 - 10.15 on Tuesday night

:o)

The Omnipotent Q said...

I know exactly what you're saying, Cormac. Unfortunately, soccer in America will never be on par with the four other major sports. That's a shame, really. It's a wonderful sport to watch.

Even here in the USA I hear young kids who aren't into baseball, and the word "boring" usually pops up. It's a time of "The X Games" and reality shows, and that's not a really good thing in my opinion...

I had a feeling those ruffians from Chelsea might be behind that burglary...

Peter N said...

Q, I loved that you used Hideki's "other" nic....THE DARMAN LIVES, ready to snuff out opposing teams. And guess what? He's been doing just that. The Darkman, our bullpen pitcher supreme. He in the 8th into Paps for the save? The Dynamic Duo! I'm confusing my metaphors, but I don't care! Peter, who's very happy!