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Too many Sox! Too confusing!

July 31, 2011 3 comments

So, I rolllllll into my house. Check the internet. Start flipping out because it says the Sox pitching can’t hold up. Says the Sox lose.

So damn angry. Take a shower.

Still angry.

Don’t even want to look at my computer.

Walk the dog.

Watch Cheers on Netflix.

Make dinner plans.

Turn on computer to flip out. Again.

Say oh. Oh. As I realize the WHITE Sox pitching failed. And the WHITE Sox lost.

Oh.

Well, good…

So, we get a pitcher from Seattle. I love Seattle. I think I’ve said that. I’d like to LIVE in Seattle.

Erik Bedard. Hmm.

Okay. Let’s see…

WAIT. The “oft-injured” Bedard??????

ANOTHER ONE?

Really, Theo?

Erik Bedard. Is Canadian. Speaks French. Okay.

I’m still fixated on this “oft-injured” bit.

~L

 

 

Things fall apart

July 31, 2011 3 comments

Pink Sox: Take 2: A sort of live, sort of sporadic version of the DLB.

July 30, 2011 28 comments

DLB. Drunken Live Blog. Duh.

So, I’m starting this in the 6th inning. The last time I started a game in the 6th inning was horrible. That was yesterday. Yesterday was horrible.

Jon Lester. Jon Lester is today. TODAY.

And, if the 4-0 score is any indication, today is a GOOD day. One out.

——

GOOD DAY. THREE OUTS. GOOD FRICKING DAY.

—-

4-0. Pedroia doing his I-know-how-to-play-baseball (he forgot yesterday) trek to first. AND Second. Man on first. Man on second. Triple sexy. Welcome back, Gonz. Thanks for running to first base this time. See how much better things progress when we run?

Weird. They keep doing these crowd closeups. And no one looks invested. Are you seeing this? Everybody’s just like, eh… it’s a game. There’s no anger. No fire. Really, no Chicago hats. Oh. There’s one. Weirdness. It’s like body snatchers or something. They’re soulless out there.

Youkie strikes out.

As we’ve been pitching (let’s say hurling) lately, a four run lead seems scant.

Scant, I say.

Thanks-be-to-Lester.

Papi at the plate.

By the way, did you see THIS? Jeb sent me the latest proof that the Onion hates us.

Facing the cruel prospect of winning 200 grueling games in his interminable 19-season career, 44-year-old Red Sox pitcher Tim Wakefield tried to get a line drive to hit him in the head Friday to finally put an end to it all. “I didn’t throw [White Sox hitters] any knuckleballs because I wanted to make sure the ball had enough speed coming off the bat to shatter my skull,” said Wakefield, who lunged face-first at everything batted toward him.

Andddddddd…. strike out. Whatev.

—–

That was a sexy Youk catch. Catch. Throw. Kazaam. Out. Bottom of the 7th. One out.

Really?! Really? Homerun. That’s not what I’m reallying. I’m reallying at the dramatic fireworks. Well. Okay.

—-

Top of the 8th. Carl Crawford. Is out.

It is so hard to keep my attention on this game.

Top of the 8th. Two outs.

We’re on a base. That’s nice. Hi, Josh.

Well, that got my attention. 5-1. Two outs, one on base.

So, I met a strange person that gave me a very strange idea today. I met a girl who… Okay, Whatever. Scut looked safe in THAT replay. Whatever. Okay. Story. Right. So, I met this very strange person…. ohmygodithoughtthatwasahomerunbutitwasapopout. Right. Three outs. Okay. Very strange person. She watches tv. A lot of tv. And is, apparently, quite dissatisfied with just an hour-long episode. She writes fan fiction. See, I knew that people did this with Star Wars (I dated a guy… there was a Wookie incident… don’t worry about it) but I was unaware people did this with, say “Friends.”

Weird, right?

But it gave me this idea. What would happen if we wrote baseball fan fiction? I mean, besides scoring 50,000 runs, I keep thinking about things I would insert into games. Drama. Plots. Side characters. Clearly, there would be some elicit scandal.

Orioles cry off the field after 47-0 shutout. What a great title for my fan fiction. I’ll work on it.

—-

It is the bottom of the 8th. One out.

Kevin Youkilis would be the star of my fan fiction.

Oh, and that homerun… the one that just made the score 5-2? That wouldn’t have happened. I might, however, keep the lame fireworks.

—-

And the eighth inning ends. And the 9th inning begins. And I’m distracted thinking about my fictional game where Yamaico runs on the field for a goodbye anthem.

It’s really great.

Oh, we just got on a base. Just one base. Because I’m not writing this game. 9th.

—-

You know what? I like watching games on mute.

And Adrian Gonzalez gets a homerun. Oh, that one was real. And the score is 7-2. Top of the 9th. Zero outs. That means no outs.

—-

Okay. If you are not watching this, you’re going to think this is fan fiction too: Kevin Youkilis just got his 15th season homerun.

See, you know I didn’t make that up, because if I made it up, it would be like 211th home run. 8-2, top of the 9th with Papi at the plate.

Oh. One out, by the way. Sorry, Papi.

One on base. Jarrod Saltalamacchia about to show off. Right? Right.

Brilliant. 9-2. Brilliant. Hi, Salty. Your doubles make my heart smile.

—-

Did I say 9-2? I must have meant 10-2. Because that is the score now. With one on first. And 2 outs.

Rich Harden? What? I’m glad FDA is paying attention in the comments section. Because I’m paying attention to the game. Oh, and my brain.

Okay, who is Rich Harden? We’ll know soon enough, apparently- talk of a trade- Lars Anderson may be leaving on the Yamaico jetplane:

The 29-year-old has a 4.30 ERA this season, the ninth of a career that has been slowed by injuries. He has had sub-3.00 ERAs in three different seasons, though he has never reached 200 innings in a single season.

Oh. Wikipedia says he is from Vancouver. Which means he’s probably a fan of Maxim Lapierre. Ew.

—–

Ew. Do you think he will spread Canuck (the hockey team, not the Canadian stereotype) germs all over OUR Fenway Park?

—-

Oh. Hah. I self-corrected, FDA. Totally just read your comments.

Well… we need a pitcher…

—-

Okay. Man on first. Really???? I think it’s cruel to draw it out so, Wheeler.

—-

Wow. I am at 979 comments now. I have to start planning my super-amazing piece of artwork. Commenter number 1,000, you see, will be treated to a special marker drawing. I should really get more markers.

—-

Dear White Sox,

The pinstripes are still a bit much for me.

Re-evaluate.

Thanks,

Lauren

—–

Oh, look. One on first. One on second. I’m sorry. One on second. One on third. Oh look.

I’d be concerned, really, I would. But it is 10-3. I’m just slightly bemused that you’re doing this to them, Dan. It’s like… beating a dead horse? Ew.

Thank you. Thank you for that out.

That’s right. Rip the band-aid off.

Now we can pay attention to these trades. Rich Harden…

—-

I mean… wikipedia doesn’t SAYYYYYY he’s a Canucks fan. I’m just assuming…

—-

Oh NO. He’s another Jed Lowrie. He’s “oft-injured.”

OHNO. That is exactly what our bullpen needs <- sarcasm.

MORE INJURED PEOPLE.

And Clay, you’ll like this. He gets blisters too:

Harden, 30, missed the first 82 games of this season with a strained latissimus dorsi muscle, the same injury that put Sox left-hander Jon Lester on the disabled list earlier this month. But in the course of a big-league career that began in 2003, Harden has had disabling injuries to his shoulder, hip, back, trunk and elbow. He also has had blisters. The never-ending cycle of injuries is one reason Harden has never won more than 11 games in a season, and has pitched more than 150 innings just once in his career, back in 2004.

THIS article says Navarro was projected as a third baseman. Good. I’m glad he’s leaving then. GOOD. You heard me.

So much drama.

What are your thoughts on trades/Youkilis’ beard/the Pink Sox series? You know. The important things.

~L

PS- As indicated in the comments, TOOSOXY correspondent FDA will be at next Wednesday’s Wake-fest. 200. It’s going to happen.

SOOOOOOO The rest of this is pretty much in response to FDA comments. Which I’m sure you care about extensively. So I thought I’d let you know to increase your attention and focus.

All the comments! FDA, that’s why you were promoted to correspondent! Keep up!

Some Canadians play baseball. Um. Toronto. It’s very cold there.

No. I don’t pay people.

I like Canada. I really like Vancouver (as a place). They have orca whales. Did you know that, FDA? Orca whales. Which is great. And baseball is great. So. Um. Logically…

You never know, FDA. Maybe he can be converted. It happens. And maybe he’s not a Canucks fan. Maybe… um. Maybe he likes something totally random. Like the Ducks. For no reason. It could be a personality quirk. Sort of endearing in an awkward irrelevant way?

Well… at least twenty people were fans. There were fires, after all.

A baseball chat would be nice. We should do a dual blog. I wish I were smart enough to know how to do that.

Well, Harden is official. It’s in USA Today.

Southern accents are swell.

Peace, Yamaico. We hardly knew ye…

July 30, 2011 2 comments

No wonder you got so much playing time lately, Yamaico! You were Theo Epstein’s very own version of a buyer’s showcase.

It was almost good while it lasted, Yamaico. I mean, it was okay. I mean, it didn’t suck. Most of the time. You hit the ball that one time. Remember?

I feel like we should say a few words about our evicted comrade.

Like… share our favorite Yamaico memories. Okay.

You start.

Um.

Okay.

I’ll start.

Um.

It was cool. When you hit the ball. That one time. It was a homerun? In Texas, maybe?

Have fun in Kansas. There’s lots to do in Kansas. Really. Everyone’s favorite movie is based in Kansas.

(See, Yamaico? This could be you. But without the singing and stuff.)

I mean, I think “Wizard of Oz” was filmed in California. And um… most of it is based in… um… Oz… But. Um.

And they have a lot of farms in Kansas. And everyone has to eat. I like eating.

Oh. And there’s that possibility that a tornado might sweep you up into a colorful metaphor for growing up.

Right.

Well.

Um.

Have a good life.

“I think it’s probably good for him because I think he’ll get a chance to probably play more there than he would here,” Francona said. “We certainly wish him well.”

In other news, you were replaced by Mike Aviles, called a “utility” infielder.

(Does he look like he’s compensating for something in this shot? Just asking…)

“He’s a guy I think our organization has kind of liked from afar for a while,” said Red Sox manager Terry Francona. “He came up — he was that guy that could really hit left-handers — actually both.”

I wish I had paid better attention when the Royals were in town.

I think THIS is encouraging, at least.

So, Soxies… thoughts? Comments? Casual observations? Styling tips? Leave a comment. And feel free to shoot me critical e-mails- ohnolauren@gmail.com.

~L

There’s just something wrong with Yankee fans.

July 30, 2011 5 comments

As a whole. I’m not talking about you. Why are you reading a Sox blog anyway?

Seriously. There is something wrong with them.

A new poll found that Derek Jeter is tied with Babe Ruth as the greatest Yankees player of all time, the New York Post reported Friday.

So. Um. I’m going to give you a minute to digest that.

I’ll be over here.

~L

It is 9:37 and I just got home, if that is any indication of how bad my night has been…

July 29, 2011 2 comments

But this 1-0 lead makes it a little better.

Wait. What is going on with THIS inning, Wakey? One out. Bottom of the 6th, man on second.  Wait. Okay. The MINUTE I start watching… tie game?

Really?

Well… I guess that’s kind of how my Friday night is going.

——–

Sometimes people are infuriating. Really. And sometimes you just get annoyed and have to leave the bar. It’s for your own sanity, really. And to protect people’s sensitive, sensitive eyes. So easy to tear out, you know. Sometimes you just have to call it a night.

Even if it is only 9 p.m. and it’s only your second Friday night off in an ever. Really. It was that bad. But… I picked up a bottle of pinot (the G) on the way home. So don’t you worry about me, Soxies. Spend your time worrying about Timmy and number 200.

—–

Okay, kids. You know what you were getting into tonight. You knew you’d have to slug ‘em out. You knew Wakey would need it. Let’s allllllll be honest.

And still, you refuse to hit the ball.

Just saying. I expected more from you. Especially you, Carl Crawford of the icky strikeout. I thought we were friends now. Compadres. Compatriots. High fivers.

I guess not. I guess NOT.

“That was real close to being trouble,” announcer says, patronizing what could have been a Salty homer. Jerks.

Two outs. Three outs. 7th inning stretch. Oh, I’ll stretch. I’ll stretch your face, Salty. Oh. Apparently you got our only run. Okay. That bought you amnesty. I should find someone else to take out my shitty night on. Any volunteers? Fast runners preferred.

—–

I’m having all kinds of chicken and egg revelations. If… if… I didn’t watch the game tonight… would the score still be 1-0? It’s like “The Shining.” By Mr. King. A Red Sox fan:

“Well, you know, Doc, when something happens, you can leave a trace of itself behind. Say like, if someone burns toast. Well, maybe things that happen leave other kinds of traces behind. Not things that anyone can notice, but things that people who “shine” can see. Just like they can see things that haven’t happened yet. Well, sometimes they can see things that happened a long time ago. I think a lot of things happened right here in this particular hotel over the years. And not all of ‘em was good.”

My negative energy is like those scary twins in the hall of blood. Sticking around and seeking company.

See?

Bottom of the 7th. Two run homer. I blame myself.

—-

A less selfish person would stop watching.

Maybe, deep, deep in my soul… I secretly want us to lose. Just so everyone else is as bitter as I am tonight.

One of those “If I go, I’m taking you ALLLLLL with me” rants is coming, I’m sure.

Just wait for it.

1-3. It is now the top of the eighth. Well. Two outs. Of course. 10:02. Time flies when you’re pissed off. Did I say two outs? I meant three. Because five seconds just passed. And, apparently, that’s all it takes for dreams to die. I’m going to watch orca whale videos on youtube again. That ALWAYS makes it better.

——

Alfredo Aceves. You wouldn’t believe my evening. You wouldn’t make it worse, would you? You are really growing on me. I could love you, you know. I love how Catholic you are. And I’m not being the slightest bit sarcastic. I love it.

Reddick catches. That does not make up for your complete and utter lack of offense, Josh.

But thanks for trying.

Two outs? Did that happen while I was on the phone? People sure do call me a lot.

Due up: Pedroia. Did he extend his hit streak? Because hit streaks are meant to be extended. And not rot. Stagnant. Like a lovely girl on a Friday. Or a rotten thing. Like. Um. A tomato.

I am realllllyyyyyy getting tired of this town.

——-

Oh. Two outs away from losing to the fricking White Sox.

Oh.

Ortiz.

Strike. Mmhmmm.

Foul.

Mmmhmmm.

“Two outstanding pitches,” announcer said.

SHUT. YOUR. FACE.

Anger eyes. Yes. Do those anger eyes again, Papi.

And the count one and two.

Sox, I hate your stupid pinstripes. That make you look-

Check it? Check it? No. I don’t think so. I don’t.

Damnit.

Oh. Good call.

He didn’t.

Oh. Good call.

Good call?

Wow.

What does that mean for America?

Ground ball. To first. Out.

Two down.

Of course.

Youkie. It is up to you. Don’t stress, Youkilis. I will not blame you this time when you fall, fall, fall into the abysmal crap that is my evening. Like bird poo on a sweater.

Strike.

Mm-hmm. I kind of thought so.

A foul. Out of play. Mm-hmmm. Because if they had caught it would be over. And no. We want to drag this on, don’t we?

Of course we do.

Why end pain quickly?

And this isn’t pain, really. It’s duller. Like the numbness of sitting for a very long time.

This wine gets better the more you drink it. For $8? Swell.

Strike? Oh. A foul. Oh. Okay.

Baby, I admire you for trying. Never giving up. That’s why I love you. It’s sad, really. In this sweet, write-a-book-about-it kind of way… or a song. A sad song.

Ball. Two and two.

And caught.

Oh.

Okay.

~L

We lost, by the way. But… you caught that.

Yep.

The Pink Series

July 29, 2011 3 comments

Get it? Red… White… PINK?

The battle of who gets to keep their Sox.

White Sox games leave me bittersweet, remembering the good ol’ days watching the Charlotte Knights (The White Sox’ Triple A) knock around Fort Mill.

I can still remember the day Peavy pitched. Lovely.

And then… the PawSox would come into town… and I’d switch hats, turning into the traitor you see before you. Can’t mess with my Red Sox, guys. And Peavy, you were naive if you thought this would last when the REAL team came to town. I AM married, after all. Hi, Youkie.

But see, this game isn’t about nostalgia. This game is about TIM WAKEFIELD.

19 seasons. And it comes to this. GAME 200. Happens TONIGHT.

“One step closer,” he said of the 200-win mark. “I’ve been fortunate this year to pitch as well as I have. The last couple haven’t been that great, but they’ve been good enough and I’ve been fortunate to be on a great team and to get some wins here and there.”

200 or BUST. BUST. Do you hear me, Youkie? BUST.

In honor of Timmy’s milestone, I’d like to hear your Tim Wakefield memories. Shoot your best/most vivid one to the comments section.

A few changes: Gonz- scratched. Youk- first.

You can do it, hubbie.

~L

PS- “BUST” wasn’t meant to be literal. Please don’t break, Youkie.

FCS vs FBS

July 29, 2011 4 comments

Today has been a very weird day.

Many of you know my life’s goal: To become the next Heidi Watney.

In order to accomplish this, I need to get sports-savvy. And, more importantly, I need sports-savvy street cred.

THIS is me at an ASU football game with my bestie a few years ago:

Then it got cold. Really cold.

We left at halftime.

Clearly, I have a ways to go. But whenever sports lets me slide in and write a sports story… I jump in. Whenever possible.

Today, an opportunity popped up as Appalachian State University Chancellor Kenneth Peacock made the announcement that a decision on possibly repositioning ASU is imminent. And so, armed with Wiki-pedia and my old network news sports director’s number on speed-dial, I proceeded to spend the next three hours fulfilling a quest: Look smart when talking about football. It’s a process, really. One that should be easy for an ASU graduate. Um. Yeah.

After defining terms like Football Bowl Subdivision (what they’re talking about) and Football Championship Subdivision (what we’re in), I knew I was ready to start typing.

I go in with a clear cut idea: FBS good. FCS lame.

13 revisions later, I have so many questions. And my brain hurts a little.

My contacts, my research, say many things. Says increased attendance at games (our games are already sold out). It says increased economics (the town of Boone is under water restrictions and doesn’t issue new business permits likely). It says increased tourism (our roads already can’t handle the bulk of summer tourist traffic. And don’t get me started on the parking). It says more scholarships (but the money has to come from somewhere, and thanks to Title IV, has to go into women’s sports equally. This could put other sports program scholarships in jeopardy- stuff like Cycling- where ASU has a national championship under its belt, golf, etc). It says so many “compelling” things.

But there’s one argument that took me awhile to understand. “It means ASU will never win another National Championship again.”

Think about that.

If you don’t live in Boone- if you’re not connected to the culture- that might not mean a lot. But when we beat Michigan. When we beat… um… EVERYONE. This town was transformed. Sold out stadiums. Black and gold everywhere. EVERYWHERE.

Will we still have that if we’re the new favorite Homecoming team?

Add in the fact that, while we may be able to play bigger teams, big named teams will NEVER come to Boone…

I’m not seeing this as a good idea. Couple that with ASU’s emphasis on academics versus some discussion about what to do about NCAA infractions… and … I’m not seeing the plus.

I’m fully aware that Bruce and Jeb might be the only ones to find this post interesting- but the professional writer in me is really curious- what does the internet world think about the possibility of Appalachian State University moving from SoCon to FBS? They’re looking at Conference USA (ECU, Marshall).

They’re looking to decide soon.

Am I naive in questioning this? Or remarkably astute. Seriously. You decide. And, if you’re Boone-side, a read to the Sunday paper might put a few things into perspective. Don’t worry. Sports gets a whole day with it. I was already laughed at for referring to “non-conference games” as “inter-league play.”

Yeah.

~L

PS- Can you all (even those of you who don’t give a frick about college football) just be proud of me for a sec? Because our sports editor said my coverage was “just fine” and that he was “surprised at (my) insight.”

Really.

Bad news for baseball.

July 28, 2011 5 comments

Baseball lost another of its own today. Not my favorite player. Not my favorite team.

Former Yankees pitcher Hideki Irabu was found dead at his California home yesterday. 

But very, very sad.

Suicide suspected. Since “retiring” in 2002, it’s been a checkered life, with bar fights and ridicule. Remember Steinbrenner’s “Fat Toad” remark? Sad events like this remind us all that, despite our passions, it is just a game. And they are just people. And it’s sad that anyone ever felt this alone.

Rest in peace.

~L

Because I can watch baseball and work at the same time.

July 28, 2011 6 comments

I wonder. 0-0.

Off the wall. Varitek gets to third. Double by Navarro.

I wonder.

With hits like this… pitching could get complacent.

That’s why we have Josh Beckett. Who is badass. Occasionally angry. Frequently belligerent. But NEVER complacent.

It is the bottom of the 3rd and I am watching the game. Working. And waiting on a phone call. I mean, if I knew there was the possibility of having a negative article about me in the Friday paper, I would call the reporter back. But, you know. That’s just me. Second and third. Thank you, Jacoby. Thank you!!!!!

That was nice. Did you see the way his tongue did that weird thing we he ran just now? 2-0. BOSTON. Jacoby on first. That’s the first game in awhile where we have an early lead. The one run that it is.

I hope Lackey is watching this. Jussssttttt an observation. In no way an indication of going against any pledges. One out. Okay.

—-

Gonz at the bat. And my phone is ringing. Which means we’re about to score fifteen runs I won’t get to see.

————-

One at first. One at third. Youk was robbed.

Okay. a fair strike out. Fair. I guess.

And Ortiz is at the plate. Ortiz, aka: the Slammer. I just thought of that. Does that work for you? The Slammer. I like it better than Papi. That was a power strike. And an out. But that’s okay, see, because we have Beckett. So the 10-run cushion isn’t necessary. Right, guys? Right, Youkie? You don’t need a 10-game cushion…

Why is it that these games against sucky teams have been so stressful? I’m sure there is a life metaphor here.

—-

Two phone calls later, I just saw THE coolest hat. Did you see that? It looked like a red sombrero with Socks instead of tassels. NICE.

2-0, top of the fourth. Zero outs. And an Alex Gordon on first. Blah.

Seriously. That was a neat hat. Let’s make one. We should have a hat contest. I would win.

Josh Beckett is doing his badass glare. That, mess with my mound and I’ll shove a cleat in something glare. Hah. And Gordon was tagged out. Gordon was not tagged out? Did I miss something? First and second have runners, Josh. Now, I don’t want to judge you. I’m a little afraid of your death stare today, but you know there are no outs, right? You know that? Just checking. Oh no. I hope you didn’t drink the Lackey juice. Eek. That sounded defamatory. I didn’t mean it, Johnny boy. I didn’t mean it.

1-1.

That guy at the plate sure adjusts himself a lot. Just saying. Necessary? Oh no. OHNO. Home run. With two on. That’s two thirds of the way to a Grand Slam, Beckett. IF THAT IS YOUR REAL NAME. Billy Butler. Oh no.

What. Is. Going. On???? Is this because I have split focus? Are you trying to pin this one on my attention span? Because I didn’t make the schedule, Tito. Bud Selig did. 3-2 Kansas. Josh. Beckett. What happened? It’s the time machine, isn’t it? You accidentally switched places with April Josh Beckett. The real Josh Beckett is drinking margaritas on a beach with 2007 Dice-K. Ohgod. ONE out. ONE out. I am so full of hate.

Yay! Jup is live blogging too! Glad to see you, Jup. My coworkers are doing this glarey thing because I held a mini-temper tantrum over the Beckett bust a few minutes ago.

“Font sizes,” I say. “Silly Apple computers.”

Damnit. Full. of. Hate.

Josh Beckett… seriously. What’s going on? You can tell me. Is it the rocket scientist? Because we can send her away, Josh. Is it the trials of immediate fatherhood? Because we can hire people to do that. Just tell us what you need, Josh. Just tell us what you need…

—–

I do not understand this world.

—-

ONE out? ONE out????? STILL? It has been like ten minutes. Or an hour. Or something. And you are not applying yourself. Damnitdamnitdamnit. Base hit. And score. And… Anddddd…

Clearly, I am not mature enough to do this and work. I just threw a notebook. Okay, Lauren. Shrug it off. Calmly… calmly walk across the room… pick up the notebook… nothing to see here, guys. Nothing to see. It was… um… a source. A source was frustrating… and… and… DAMNIT, JOSH!!!!???? Who are you and what did you do with JOSH BECKETT???????? 4-2. In this cosmic joke of a game. Yeah. Foul. Hah. EAT THAT FOUL. YOU EAT THAT FOUL AND YOU DIE.

I’m okay, guys. Sorry. I just. Um. Broke a nail. That’s it.

—-

WHY? 4-2. ANOTHER one on the base. And ONE OUT. Someone is lying to someone. I want a DNA test. Can I do it? I really want to be the one to prick your finger, Josh Beckett.

Hi, Peter. Thanks for entering the conversation. Maybe you can keep me from hurling my rolly chair across the newsroom. Because that would be wrong. Yes it would. Second and third runners. I care. You care. We all care. Josh doesn’t seem to care. Nooooooooo. 2 outs. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? YOU ARE WARMING UP RANDY WILLIAMS? RANDY FRICKING WILLIAMS? WE TRIED THAT ALREADY!!!!!! WHY? Seriously?! Are you watching this, Curt Young? Do you take notes? I take notes. YOU CAN BORROW MY FRICKING NOTES.

—-

This is like a group project gone horribly awry. You remember. In college. It’s a group grade. And there’s that guy who just doesn’t show up. But he gets your grade anyway. Even though you’re the one who had to stay up all night in the drafting studio. YOU ARE THAT GUY, CURT YOUNG.

Out. Fah-fricking FINALLY. I need a break. I need a… cigarette. I don’t smoke anymore. I need a… I need a cigarette. WHO ARE YOU AND WHERE DID YOU GET THE JOSH BECKETT SKIN?

—-

Jup is right. Maybe Beckett is just a reality television super fan. Because I feel like I’m on reality television. Given an impossible variable and being forced to maintain composure. Act normal. Like my shirt isn’t filled with snakes or something. And only the audience and I know the hilarious reality. And I must keep the peace for the million dollar grand prize.

Wow. That would be a great show. DAMNIT. Salty, salty tears of frustration. It’s okay, guys. I just stubbed my toe. That’s it. No. Don’t worry about me. I have phone calls to make. Josh Reddick. Hopefully the skin stealer didn’t go after all our Joshes. I would cry rivers of yelling. RIVERS.

I need a stapler to throw. Oh. Not that one. This one. The one I broke last time I watched a Sox game at work. yessssssssss.

—–

Hi, Heidi. I do not know what you are saying. Because my computer is on mute. But I know I would say it better. Faster. With more pizazz. Oh. JD Drew. I am imagining what he’s saying.

“I, too, was the victim of the skin stealing monster. And now, with Beckster’s public meltdown, perhaps others will finally believe my testimony,” he says. Maybe. He could be saying that.

Maybe JD Drew is a spy.

Drew Sutton. Oh. I had a teacher named Sutton. She hated my poems.

And Sutton is out. And that’s not poetic at all. See how there are two outs in like five minutes, guys? That’s what you’re SUPPOSED to do. Jason Varitek!

Oh, Captain. They’re trying to tear us down, Cap. They’re trying to break us apart. Me and Josh. The world’s against us, Tek. I’m getting my hair done Saturday. Should I go blonde again, Tek? I hear you like blondes.

Tekkkkkk… save us. Save us all.

That was a dumb fastball. It was intellectually inferior to other fastballs. That’s right.

DAMNIT. Why, Tek? Is it because we’re not believing hard enough? Is it because I’m not watching closely enough? WHY MUST YOU FORSAKE ME?! I thought you were my captain. MY captain. Robin Williams would NEVER have done this to his class in Dead Poets Society.  You, sir, are no Robin Williams.

Useless. All of you. USELESS.

—-

Yeah. I can’t do this. I have to minimize this for a few minutes. I… I… I… I am so full of hate. And at a job where hate starts trickling in when your foot hits the parking lot…

I… I… I…

I need the river.

I’m going to the river after work.BLAH. Deep breaths. Somebody give me a happy thought. STAT.

—-

THANK YOU. Outs. THANK YOU.

Clearly, you care about the functionality of staplers in my office. THANK YOU.

—-

Yeah. Um. Jackass copy editor just sent me an obnoxious e-mail signed, “cheers!”

He deserves to die.

Not really. I didn’t mean that.

Damn. One out. Still 4-2. 72 pitches. Bottom of the 5th.

In other news, we just saw the trailer for Battleship, the movie. It’s… um… it’s not good.

No. It’s not.

Liam Neeson is in it. It just created a “What the ffffff” wave over the entire office.

“That’s one of the worst looking things I’ve…” ~Film critic.

Now I’m pretending I’m being disgusted by the trailer. It’s my cover, see.

AND I THINK THE BLUE OF YOUR UNIFORMS IS OBNOXIOUS.

——-

TWO OUTS. It’s welling. From the pit of my stomach up my spine. At first it was kind of warm. A tingly feeling. Growing hotter. Painfully hotter. Like fire. THIS IS RAGE. Pedroia got to first. I think it was a walk. I don’t know. I don’t care. I DON’T CARE.

It’s just a game. Just a game.

I think, perhaps, the addition of a bad baseball game to an already toxic environment makes me meaner. Because I just called the copy editor short. He is short. It’s not like I made it up. His shortness is not MY fault.

—-

STOP SMILING. STOP IT.

Gonz. Hi. You wouldn’t believe my day, Gonz. AND people won’t return my phone calls.

That was a power strike. Hopefully the precedent to a power hit? Wait. Was that a power strike out? Jesus. That was almost an outsteal, Pedroia. You are very, very lucky that the Royals can’t catch. I think we are all very, very lucky that the Royals aren’t that good. Because Beckett, if the Royals were good, this would be a 32-2 game. And This rage that is building would make me explode. Pieces of my appendix would fly to Boston, I’m sure. I am like a confetti bomb of rage just waiting to blow up all over your televised image, Josh.

We should quarantine Lackey.

I didn’t mean that (I DID).

WERE YOU EVEN TRYING, GONZ? YOU COULD HAVE BEEN FASTER. He fake jogged that. Like a 19-year-old in makeup running in the short shirts.

—-

Aw. The kid that caught the ball just cried. I would cry too. I feel like crying. Let’s all have a group cry. That actually wouldn’t look suspicious. People cry in my job allllll the time. True story.

Hi, Eric Hosmer. Your eyebrows make you look mean.

Josh Beckett. There are zero outs. It is the top of the 6th. And we are trailing by two. I just want you to know that.

Anddddd, aided with that information, one out.

See what happens when we work together? When we listen? It’s like Israel.

Jeff Francoeur. No. No. No. No. OHTHANKGOD. Jacoby caught it. It’s okay. Two outs.

Okay. Okay. Okay. It’s going to be… damnitdamnitdamnit.

So, I’m writing about this pig. It’s a pot-bellied pig. And it’s 20 lbs. And illegal. And it escaped. So the town knows it’s there. And there’s this fine situation. It’s kind of hilarious. And kind of keeping me sane through this game.

Everyone is crowded over at my friend Frank’s desk. Watching youtube videos. How unprofessional.

TWO OUTS. We want THREE outs. I can help you count, Josh. I can do that for you. I just can’t throw the damn ball. Really. I wish I could. I have the drive. If I had talent, there would be no stopping me.

Josh. Beckett. Baby. I know you’re in there somewhere. You’ve got to be in there somewhere. Fight it, Josh! Fight it! Come back to us, baby. We’re right here! We’re right here! Move your head or something so I know it’s you in there.

Pedro could do it.

Just saying.

Out.

Thank. You. God. I say thank you, God and not thank you, Beckett. Because I don’t know who you are today, Josh. We are going to have a conversation about this. WITH a therapist. So clear your schedule.

—-

Phone call. Please don’t lose while I work. Please.

——

That was my fault. It’s because I wasn’t watching. I’m sorry, Youk. I’m so sorry.

—-

Up walks the Slammer. And back walks the Slammer. Because he is out. Whatever. WHATEVER. My foot is falling asleep. Damnit. My foot is falling asleep and I’m at work and I hate work and I hate you and I hate your sunglasses and you are disappointing my hopes and dreams.

Josh Reddick. Another member of the Josh Club fails.

And, in the fastest inning against a crappy team in history…

—–

No. I’m actually not DRUNK, e-mailer. I’m actually angry. That’s worse than being drunk. And if I was angry AND drunk, you’d know. Oh, you’d know. I’m actually at work, see…

—-

Jeff of Bickleyhouse fame just sent me THIS link. It is the only thing that has been able to remotely cheer me up in the last hour.

AND, after what just happened with VARITEK, I am glad I had one small laugh in my life.

He landed hard on the catch fail too. He better not be hurt. YOU BETTER NOT BREAK YOURSELF ON AN ERROR, TEK.

—-

One out. Fah-fricking-finally. Runner on third. Eminent doom everywhere.

It’s rising like nuclear ash. Or does nuclear ash fall? It’s doing whatever nuclear ash does, this eminent doom. It’s like in Rainbow Brite. You know. The gray people? That suck happiness and personality out of all the colored magical people? It’s like someone has sucked the color out of Josh Beckett and he’s this gray creepy cartoon with an anxiety disorder and dream breaking tendencies.

This is NOT the Josh Beckett I know and lust over. Ohno.

But I will find out who you are. Even if I have to do a google search and make something up.

Maybe the hemp necklace… maybe it’s been replaced with a cursed necklace. There’s a book about that.

Something mystical is afoot. It’s really the only logical explanation. Sometimes hoof noises are zebras, after all. Because zebras exist in the world. They do. It’s true. I’ve seen them in zoos. And on cartoons. Can you ride zebras? I’d like to ride a zebra.

This runner on third is of great concern to me. No one else seems concerned. Nope. No one else. Something Wicked This Way Comes. That’s a book. And how I feel. Right now. With the two outs. And the two on two. Something bad is coming. Like in Harry Potter.

Oh. Good. An out. That makes three.

Oh. Good.

You know that offensive explosion we apparently have? It. Is. Time. It. Is. Time. The time has come to pop these suckers out. The time has come to show America …. um …  A marine (is she a marine) is singing. I think. I don’t know. It is muted. I do not know what is going on. Maybe she is summoning the help of mystical forces. That would be, you know, useful.

—-

Okay. So. I have had like five minutes to think about this. And I think it’s obvious. Beckett has been bodysnatched. It’s like an alien film. But real. That’s the only explanation I can think of. It’s alllllll starting to come together. There will be a book about this, and we’ll be major players, you and I. We’re the people who figured it all out, see. So, probably, only one of us will be able to live (it is a movie, after all). I’m betting I’ll survive. I’m wiley.

Bottom of the 7th, Franklin Morales and Daniel Bard are in the pen. I vote Bard, Young. And we have one on first. And Gonz on the plate. Zero outs.

Two outs. Jacoby. Damn. Three outs. This is not the way I hoped this inning would go.

—-

Morales. Okay. Further proof that my psychic messages go unnoticed. You heard that, didn’t you? I mean, my brain was screaming Bard. I really thought it was more of a screech than a scream. But whatever.

—-

One out.

Seriously. Blonde? You think? Because I can pull off Heidi so much better than Heidi. Jussssst saying.

—–

2 outs.

WHY WON’T PEOPLE CALL ME BACK?

Someone just said I sounded young on the phone. Yeah? Well, you sound old.

—-

Francoeur is giving me a Jeter vibe. You feeling that? And he walks. Oh, he walks. Of course he does. See, if we had Bard on the mounddddd…

—–

OHNO. WHAT? That was like an ansta-out. And you … You… You dropped it. What was that? What… It’s okay. We’re okay. We’re okay. 4-2. We’re not okay. We’re not okay.

Out. Yes. Out. Inning over.

Okay, guys. THIS IS IT. This is the inning of absolution. Of vengeance. Of … of…

So, I get to do a hawk release tomorrow. That is exciting. I covered a set of owl releases last year. Yay. And they’re giving me a photographer. Which is swell. Because my photographer will even drive me there. And I hate driving. That’s a small victory. I get them sometimes.

—–

My boss is wearing a collared shirt. It is powder blue. Like… 70s prom without the ruffles. AND a darker (but still powdery) blue tie. Just an observation to distract myself from this fricktastic game.

Bottom. Of. The. 8th. No joke, Pedroia. You’ve GOT to do this.

—-

Thank you. Homerun. Thank you.

SOME people listen (glare at Beckett. Glare at Beckett). 4-3.

A beacon of hope. A lighthouse amidst a stormy sea. A sugary sprinkle on the crapcupcake of our lives.

—–

“You are full of hate today.” ~My office mate.

“So is your face.” ~Me.

“Wow, Lauren. Wow.”

—-

Youkie-poo. 4-3.  2 outs. It’s okay, Youkie-poo. You were the inspiration for Dustin Pedroia’s homerun, I’m sure.

No. You know what? Not even YOU get a free pass today, Youkie. I’m sorry. I’m sorry, but I’m not sorry. You, too, are dead to me for the next ten minutes. THE NEXT TEN. Okay. The next eight.  Okay. The next seven. BUT THAT IS IT.

—-

Out. Out. Out. End of the eighth. We are 4-3. There is hope. There is hope in this sea of adversity. I am going to close my eyes and think of orca whales now.

—-

Put the lime in the coconut and drink it allllll up… that song always makes me feel better. Because it’s about alcohol. And coconuts. I will play it now.

—-

2 outs. And a mileage check! Huzzah. And a base hit. As soon as I sit back down. OFFRICKINGCOURSE.

Peter, what is going on? Why are they doing this to us?

Can you fix it? You’re closer.

—-

Orca whales. Penguins. Kittens. These things make me happy.

—-

So, I’m thinking of doing a question and answer blog. Do you have any questions? Because I’m thinking about answering them. ohnolauren@gmail.com.

—-

I wish our pitcher would stop spitting. He is embarasing himself. Why must they spit? Seriously. There are women and children present! Doesn’t he know the wild west code?

Two strikes. If you could make that three strikes, we could rally. Because we need to rally. We NEED to. See, it’s the 9th inning. And we trail. Oh, we trail.

WHAT? A steal. We catch. Plenty of time. We drop. He’s safe. Of course. Are you shaking your fist, Peter? I’m shaking my fist for us all.

Oh, Um. It was a mosquito. That’s it. A mosquito…

Damn you and the horse you rode in on. First. Second. Runners. It’s like we’re doing it on purpose. It’s like it’s charity game day. It’s not charity game day. There is no charity in baseball. They donate money when we get homeruns. That’s charity enough. We dont’ need to be giving games away too.

And a catch. And the inning ends. And we need to breathe. We need to breathe a lot. Because the bottom of the 9th… all the oxygen is about to leave the room.

RALLY.

—-

Okay. Seriously. I am working. I am doing about fifteen things at once. I cannot be expected to do this all by myself. Joakim Soria. OhIhatethisguy. Remember him from the game that wouldn’t end Monday? Fricktastic. Got to keep it in check, guys. Come one Josh-I-am-still-speaking-to. 1-1. Breathe, Josh. Breathe. Okay. That was not… um… ideal. One out.

Okay. We’re fine. We’ve got this. My imaginary hat is on backwards and I’m ready to rally. Okay. I’ve been using this stapler like a stress squeeze ball. I think I have jammed it permanently.

You were meant for greater things than paper stacks, stapler.

What is with the grounders? Wow. I can’t believe we made that. That’s god. Right there. Because that should have been an out. But it was a single. A single. Because … because… oh… someone wants us to have hope. It’s probably because he knows losing with a string of hope is much more painful.

Crawford. Ohno. He’s excited. I can tell. An excited Crawford could be a sloppy Crawford. And the only thigns that are sloppy and good are dog kisses and sandwiches.

And I’m not a real fan of the sandwiches. Because I like white t-shirts.

But that’s neither here nor there nor relevant.

Carl Crawford has 3 walk off hits this season. Three. Okay. I know it’s hot. I know you’re sweaty. But you can drink water in a minute, Carl. It’s rally time. Ohohohohohohohohohohohohohohohno. No.

Caught. Out. I thought…

It doesn’t matter what I thought.

Okay. We’ve got an out left. Okay. Oh.

That one hurt. Stupid Francoeur.

Oh.

It’s fine. Yamaico Navarro. Ohno. Okay, Yamaico. You just have to get on a base. That’s all you have to do. Just get on a base. I don’t care which one. Your team needs you. Your city needs you. My stress levels NEED you.

Strike. Watch it, Navarro. You do. Not. Have. To. Swing.

Maybe you shouldn’t swing. Maybe you… oh no. 1-2. Oh no.

I feel it… I feel…

Oh.

Damn.

Oh.

Shit.

Oh.

Damn.

And a close up on Youk. Don’t do a Youk close up. Close up on Josh Beckett. IF THAT IS HIS REAL NAME.

What’s worse than losing to a crappy team?

Losing to a crappy team with your favorite pitcher.

~L

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