Sunday, June 7, 2009
The Epic-ness of Jon Lester
Now THAT was the Jon Lester I expected to see this season... none of that fifth inning implosion shenanigans. As far as games I've been to, that one definitely ranks first in epic pitching... however in terms of excitement at the end, it has to fall short of Game 5 of the 2008 ALCS. After Game 5, random strangers were embracing in the streets of Boston. Had Lester not given up that double to Young, I have no doubt that Fenway had the potential to become a giant raucous party.
And why did said party not happen? I think I know. In the top of the seventh inning, with one out, a twenty-something girl across the aisle from me said the words that you must never utter during a perfect game bid: "He's like, throwing a, what's it called? No-hitter?" Now, those of us who had heard her immediately stood up and chastised her - she had made this announcement at a high (beer aided) volume, and around twenty people had clearly heard her. Sure enough, the very next batter was Young, who bashed a no-doubt double into the gap in left-center. Those of us who know better stood up and pointed at her... the girl got angry.
"Why," she demanded, "are they pointing at me?! It's not like it's my fault!" Deep down, we all knew that she was technically correct: one fan's words do not affect the outcome of a game, but come on. At the time, everyone at Fenway was witnessing history. Obviously the young woman who made such a boneheaded pronouncement had no grasp of - or respect for - baseball traditions. The guy in front of me decided that there was probably a pink hat within her group. There wasn't, and I don't hold with that stereotype, but when the four of them got up to leave (in the eighth inning), I counted one sparkly hat, one baby blue hat, three Ellsbury shirts, and one rhinestoned Boston tanktop. I also glanced over at the space where they were sitting, and estimated that the four young women had consumed upwards of twenty beers.
Girls like that are the reason I do not own an Ellsbury shirt. Youkilis? Yep. Varitek? Of course. Pedroia? I have three. But until Ellsbury is slightly less attractive to the drunken obnoxious bandwagon fans, or until his performance is so improved that I can't justify this boycott, I will not buy a #46 shirt. (One of the more impressive performances I saw last night was Jacoby actually taking a walk.)
Most of the fans at the park last night were excellent examples of the Red Sox faithful: after Ortiz's dinger, we chanted "Papi! Papi!" until the big man came out for a curtain call. Sox fans will never turn on David Ortiz, and I am so very proud of this fact.
All in all, last night was the best time I've had since my summer vacation started, even though my mother and I got lost for an hour after the game and didn't get home until 1:30am. Six and one third perfect innings, and a two hit complete game from Lester; two hits, including a homerun, by Big Papi; a Mikey Lowell jack; and an actual WALK by Ellsbury (this was probably the most unexpected event of the night for me).
Finally, I should apologize for being so atrocious at updating lately. I know there's no excuse, but I've been working full-time as a one on one aide at an elementary school, and my student is exhausting. However, I promise to be better.