For eight innings, the story of Friday's game was a great pitchers' duel, with Joe Blanton holding the dangerous Red Sox to two runs on two solo homers, and Jon Lester flat-out dominating the Phillies. Until the bottom of the ninth, when Ryan Howard hit a titanic blast into the right-field seats, tying the game at 2-2 and sending the contest to extras.
Then, in the bottom of the 11th, with two outs, Greg Dobbs hit what could have been a home run over the right-field foul pole. Was it fair or foul? Almost impossible to tell. But despite Charlie Manuel's request, and without explanation, umpire Jim Joyce refused to review the play. The obvious question: Why have HR review if you're not going to review what would have been a game-winning home run? Even if the footage was inconclusive, at least look at it.
Then, Kyle Kendrick entered the game, and after a 1-2-3 12th, things went to hell in the 13th, the Red Sox scored three runs, and we all got a nice reminder as to why this guy has been an IronPig up until today.
Rays righthander Jason Isringhausen was placed on the 60-day disabled list yesterday morning with an injury to his surgically repaired right elbow, leading some in the media, including the St. Petersburg Times' Joe Smith, to speculate that the 36-year-old former closer may soon call it a career.
If he never throws another major-league pitch, Isringhausen would finish up with a 3.60 career earned run average and 293 saves (good enough for 22d all time).
The Cardinals declined to offer him arbitration this winter and he went on to sign a minor-league contract with Tampa Bay.
Francisco Rodriguez blew his first save of the season against the Yankees on Friday night thanks to a dropped pop-up by Luis Castillo.
The Mets keep inventing fun ways to lose baseball games. This one was a doozy. With Derek Jeter on second base and two out, the Mets decided to intentionally walk Mark Teixeira in order to face Alex Rodriguez. It appeared the strategy was successful, as A-Rod popped the ball up to shallow right-center field; however, Luis Castillo flat out dropped it.
Both runners hustled the entire way and scored easily to secure a dramatic 9-8 win. Rodriguez is now 16 for 17 in save opportunities.
Acta's last stand?
The Nationals will soon fire manager Manny Acta, according to FoxSports.com, SI.com, and others.
I wonder if he ends up back in the Mets organization.