Back on August 6th, under the same title, I offered six items to replace Youk’s thumb. Some were abstract, others clearly linked to the Red Sox success over the last months. I mean the chances for success. Last week, on the Baseball Reporters, Tony Massarotti told us that “this thing has been over for a long time.” In so many words, he added, If you thought the chances for the postseason were eclipsed by the Rays last week at Fenway, then you haven’t been paying attention. Well, I was still in the game, still thinking of miracles and long winning streaks a’ la Colorado. Yes, I was still dreaming but paying attention at the same time.
And, yes, I enjoyed it. When Ryan Kalish hit that grand slam, the room witnessed more fist-pumping and joyous dancing than it had seen in a while. Kalish delivered again yesterday, during a game few were watching as the football season began. This is just to say that Kalish has fulfilled his spot in the six-point plan. Papi has too. I can go on with the promises and disappointments of filling in for Youk and Pedroia. After all, the Sox seem loaded with young talent. In light of that, I can restate the obvious, losing Dustin and Youk is what finished us. So there it is: I’ve uttered the words of conclusion. of finality. But even in this wait-til-next-year postscript frame of mind, the sounds of cheering, not merely their echoes, remain.
Thomas’ Trolley Top First Half Highlights
10) Big Papi Winning the Home Run Derby: Meaningless but memorable
9) Darnell’s first at-bat home run and game-winning sac fly: Who’s there? Darnell I am
8) Opening Day Comeback against the Yankees: Full Blossomed Optimism, which vanished faster than Jayson Werth’s liner back to Dice-K on May 22, which leads me to . . .
7) Dice-K’s One Hittter against the Phillies, May 22: Dreaming in Technicolor of the old Dice-K
6) Clay Buchholz’s Complete Game Shutout against the O’s, June 4th: Masterful Season in the making.
5) Big Papi’s 2 homer, 4 rbi pounding of the Tigers, May 14: Meaningful & memorable May
4) Papelbon’s save against the Yankees, May 18th: Saving the game and our souls
3) Nomah Night, May 5th: The Past is the Present, or something like that.
2) Dustin’s 3 HR Laser Show, Colorado, June 24th: Fans required to wear protective gear in the left field stands.
1) Daniel Nava’s First-at-Bat Grand Slam: The story with many stories, like Tolstoy.