It's hard to be upset by an 8-1 road trip through New York, Toronto, and Tampa Bay. I mean, you could try, really really try, and maybe you could muster up some indignation. It might help if you received a series of irritating injuries, were forced to watch a Barney the Dinosaur marathon, and/or got attacked by a tiger. Still, 8-1 is pretty good.
The Sox are headed back to Boston after one of the more successful road trips a team could have. 8-1 in three divisional rivals home parks? And was anyone really going to beat James Shields on Tuesday? Maybe in the violently angry not cool kind of way, but not in baseball. Dude was on.
The trip wasn't without its costs however. Clay Buchholz left Thursday's game after 81 pitches in five innings with the same sore back that's been bothering him all season. According to Buchholz, it just kept getting worse and worse from the second inning on (via Brian MacPherson at the Providence Journal). With Andrew Miller apparently joining the rotation for at least a day early next week, and two off days up coming (next Thursday and the following Monday), the Sox could do some rotational re-jiggering to give Buchholz a bit of a non-DL-oriented rest. Or they could just try to get him right and send him to the DL which, I understand, is a pretty cool bar in Toronto.
Buchholz wasn't the only injury the Sox suffered on Thursday. In fact, it wasn't even the only re-injury. First there was me burning my mouth with coffee again! But we weren't talking about me, were we? Jed Lowrie re-injured his shoulder in the first inning. He'll be re-evaluated but it sounds like he may also be getting a few drinks at the ol' DL If yes indeedy-do that is the case, the Sox will have to call up another middle infielder. Likely it'll be Drew Sutton or Yamaico Navarro, who just returned from the DL himself. He may need a few days to sleep it off.
Chip Buck over at Fire Brand of the AL asks the eternal question, or at least an external question, "What should the Red Sox do about David Ortiz?" I assume this question is in reference to A) Ortiz's great hitting, and B) his impending free agency, rather than C) his dense almost fog-like flatulence, and D) his tendency to apply "Dutch Ovens" to his team mates, members of the front office, and any house pets in the vicinity.
In the former case, Mr. Buck worries that Ortiz's season will price him out of the Red Sox willingness to pay him a market salary. The Sox aren't exactly in the habit of handing out multi-year deals to late 30s DH's with spotty if impressive recent histories. This is true, however for the Red Sox I have to believe Ortiz qualifies as the most special of special cases.
Sure there were baseball reasons behind the decision, but there were also some non-baseball reasons. Ortiz has a special place in team history and as long as he's raking, beating, crushing, and generally smashing opposing pitchers knees in with a ball peen hammer, conversationally speaking, I'd be shocked if the financial particulars didn't end up working out so that he remains in Boston. To be blunt, John Henry will bury himself and then roll over in his grave before Ortiz is allowed to leave Boston over a measly few million dollars. For his part, Ortiz likely recognizes which side his bread is buttered on as well. He leaves Boston, the city he's built a national reputation in and the city with more after career potential than any other by the metaphorical length of his longest homer, at his own peril.
But if it's C and D then good riddance.
Finally, if you're down on your luck or just the cheap sort, SB Nation's Al Yellon has a list of baseball related things you can buy for a dollar. Like hot dogs. And the Mets. Not that you'd really want the Mets but, you know, if they were out of hot dogs.