It seems damn near impossible – when you’re stuck in the middle of winter, when the only colors you see out your window are shades of gray, when you pull a muscle in your back doing that weird back-scrunching thing you do on your way to the car in the morning – to imagine that summer will ever come again.
But it always does.
In the sixth inning of tonight’s rain-delayed game, the Cleveland Guardians committed a defensive miscue that led to a Red Sox run and eventual win. This has happened before! I promise you it has! But after a couple of weeks in which it was always the Red Sox infield that appeared to have been hypnotized into believing the baseball was a hand grenade, it was hard to imagine it ever happening again.
It wasn’t even all that bad of a misplay, really. On the 2022 Red Sox Defensive Disaster Scale, it was closer to Rafael Devers than Bobby Dalbec. But, still, there it was: Alex Verdugo slicing a pitch on the outside corner down the line (God, he’s good at that), and Steven Kwan, in his first career game at Fenway, playing way too close to the monster as he chased after it. The carom jumped over Kwan’s head, he fell down reaching for it, and Rob Refsnyder raced in from first to score the go-ahead run. Dogwoods bloomed, cicadas buzzed, and a window-unit air conditioner spit on the back of your neck as you walked down the street. It was summer again.
There were still a handful of things for the more cynical Sox fans to gripe about. We only got good-ish Pivetta, for one thing. The good was his fastball, generating swings and misses up in the zone and leading to six strikeouts. The not-so-good was the fact that he allowed runners in each inning after the first and needed every one of those strikeouts to get out of trouble. And for the Guardians, Zach Plesac struggled to throw strikes but still kept a Devers-and-Martinez-less Sox lineup at bay until Kwan’s mistake.
But after the last couple of weeks, we’re not in any position to complain about a somewhat ugly win. Afterall, you don’t quibble about the crickets chirping too loudly when summer finally comes back, do you?