I'm tempted to give this game the old Single Line Post of Extreme Agony, but I find I don't want to gloss over Daisuke. What we saw from him last night was an extremely encouraging thing and he deserves credit for a gutsy performance with literally a world's worth of pressure on his shoulders.
Remy pointed out that if we think we've been Chicken Littles about Daisuke, we should see what's been going on in Japan. Apparently the Japanese press has been reporting on his pitch selection in bullpen sessions. Tonight, Remy assured us, they would all be glued to the television just like we were on the other side of the world. "Sounds like they're just like us," he said. Except I would submit that they are like us, but to a whole new degree I didn't even conceive of before Daisuke arrived. And it turns out that as hardass and scary as we Boston fans think we can be in times of frustration, this fan base is actually the least of Daisuke's problems right now.
Somehow, though he still struggled at times, Daisuke had a different air about him tonight, an air of total determination and maybe even a little attitude. As he faced Hideki Matsui for the final out of the first inning, attempting to clean up the mess that had been made by an error and HBP, he had a foxy little smile ever-so-subtly playing around the corners of his eyes and lips. His fastball was (perhaps paradoxically?) both lively and deadly, and when he put A-Rod away with it to close out his half of the fifth, I was sure this would turn out to be a feel-good game.
Dice didn't get past the sixth inning, but won the longevity battle against his Yankees counterpart, Andy Pettitte, who was run out of the game after four innings with 101 pitches on his arm; his season high for pitches is 119, and his average number of pitches per game this season total has been 100. And his average number of innings per start ain't four. The Sox lineup did a great job of running him early, in this first half of the game that now seems as if it was a separate contest, which we won in the parallel universe where it now exists only as a figment of our imagination.
You know. Not that I'm upset or anything.
With the score at 5-2 once Daisuke left, and a Born Again Hard Mike Timlin taking care of the loose ends to seal the sixth, things seemed to be moving along swimmingly. And Thank God, I thought. After all the shit this week with the Patriots, this region needs this win like you wouldn't believe.
You know, I really just don't even know what to say about it. On that front, I'm still reduced to agonized reticence suitable for the One Line Post of Extreme Agony. Except I really don't even have a one-liner for you, either. Best I can do, I think, is just point you in the direction of an article that has all the facts, in case you missed what happened and are lucky enough to have no clue what I'm talking about.
It? Was awful. And as Forrest Gump or Bill Belichick would say, that's all I have to say about that.