July 2013


I wanted to see Jose Iglesias play in Boston until I was at least 40.

I wanted to see Jose Iglesias play in Boston until I was at least 40.

I was having such a good night.

I had just hopped out of a cab on the way back from seeing the Black Crowes on the harbor in Boston, feeling warm and buzzed from the music and the jams and perhaps the Harpoon beer, when I pulled up the laptop to see what had happened in the rest of the world while I was lost in my little rock and roll sphere.

And there it was. The Red Sox had picked up Jake Peavy from the White Sox in a three-team trade that sends three minor leaguers to Chicago and, most troubling, shortstop Jose Iglesias to the Detroit Tigers.

Peavy has been seen as one of the prizes of this trade-deadline season, a pitcher who, when healthy, can be the ace of just about any staff in the league. Iglesias is an all-field, no-hit shortstop who was blocked both at short by Stephen Drew now and Xander Boegarts later, and by Will Middlebrooks at third for the foreseeable future. It all makes sense, and hearing about this trade made me furious anyway. (more…)

Ryan Braun: baseball player and person who does not have an effect on my life.

Ryan Braun: baseball player and person who does not have an effect on my life.

Overshadowing actual baseball news yesterday, Ryan Braun was suspended for 65 games for his connections to Biogenesis, a Florida company that supplied baseball players with banned substances. It is apparently a very big deal.

It’s not as though there aren’t other subjects to talk about. The Tampa Bay Rays have climbed to within a half-game of the Boston Red Sox thanks to a Matt Moore shutout yesterday. The Chicago Cubs traded Matt Garza to the Texas Rangers for a small army of young players. The Dodgers might finally be good.

But a player who said he didn’t take drugs admitted to taking drugs, and now that’s all that matters. He must be held accountable. He’s a liar. He’s a hypocrite. He must apologize.

If the context wasn’t obvious, the whole thing is pretty ridiculous. The idea of Braun being required to apologize to me personally or to baseball fans or to those he “cheated” just confounds me. Or, maybe it’s exhaustion. But he has had no impact on my life since winning the National League’s Rookie of the Year award in 2007, and I can’t imagine that changes.

Since the baseball world was duped into caring about Mark McGwire’s and Sammy Sosa’s home run chase in 1998, there has been this constant movement for baseball to right old wrongs and punish anything and everything that moves in an attempt to make the game as pure as it was in the good ole’ days, when men were men and players ran on hot dogs and played hurt and whatever other nostalgic nonsense is spewed up in these cases.

I don’t understand it. I don’t see or feel the moral outrage and I don’t feel particularly good or hurt or vindicated when a player is busted for using outlawed chemicals on his body. (more…)

Daniel Nava is no longer just a scrappy footnote.

Daniel Nava is no longer just a scrappy footnote.

Daniel Nava started his career with a bang, as everyone knows, hitting the first pitch he saw in the summer of 2010 for a grand slam. He then proceeded to do little else the rest of that season, and spent all of 2011 in Pawtucket.

So, when Nava came back to the team in 2012, it was a bit of a surprise. When he started hitting like a Major League outfielder, it was a bigger surprise. And when he started fielding his position with more than just a passing ability, I was nearly floored.

He’s embraced all parts of the game, and his impact has been felt on and off the scoresheet. (more…)

This is Dustin Pedroia. I'm pretty sure he still plays baseball, but it's been a while.

This is Dustin Pedroia. I’m pretty sure he still plays baseball, but it’s been a while.

Today, after work, I walked off the T and picked up a package of ground beef on my way home, changed into my Marco Scutaro t-shirt, relaxed and then got down to the business of making dinner. Tonight was enchilada night, not that every Tuesday is enchilada night, but just to give you a little bit of color this evening.

While I made dinner, I had the Eddie Vedder Water on the Road DVD playing in the background, and “Sometimes” and “Rise” and “Guaranteed” and such provided the soundtrack while I chopped peppers and browned the beef with the taco seasoning.

After dinner, I sat down with a drink and I turned my full attention to the Red Sox game, as they hosted the Padres in the first of a three-game series to dovetail with the Fourth of July. John Lackey was pitching, but I decided to stick with my decision to watch it anyway.

And it was right around that time that I realized this was the first time I was sitting down to watch a baseball game in earnest in more than a month. (more…)