I had just witnessed the Boston Red Sox beat the Tampa Bay Rays and decided to cool off by taking a shower. When I finished my shower, my phone was ringing; my dad asked “What’s going on in Boston? I heard there were explosions at the Boston Marathon?” As someone trying to get in shape, I was furious that some idiots attempted to hurt runners who had just ran 26 miles. As someone who loves history, I was upset that some idiots tried to ruin a celebration of Massachusetts’ involvement in the Revolutionary War. As a human, I am sad that someone decided to injure and kill innocent people.
I don’t know what’s going on, no one does. There were two explosions around 3 P.M. at the Boston Marathon finish line. Some thought it was a possible chemical leak, but now reports are saying that police have uncovered several other bombs. The police found one bomb under bleachers and purposely set it off when no one was around. John F. Kennedy Library might have a bomb. Three people are reported dead, dozens more injured. At 4:08: the official report is 2 dead, 22 injured in blasts. No terrorist group has come forward yet, so it might just be some loner who did this. Someone who is upset at the world. Someone who hates America. Someone who hates everything…
I’m tired of seeing terrorist attacks. When I was in 7th grade, I saw people fall to their deaths from the World Trade Center. I remember the planes flying into the towers, the Pentagon, and into the field – but seeing a bodies falling to their deaths is an image I’ll never get out of my head. Then the reports of attacks overseas involving America’s allies in Europe made me thankful for the Atlanta Ocean separating America from the Middle East and Africa – terrorists would have to board a plane to get here and security at the airport is very, very strict. But Boston shows that sometimes there is nothing we can do to prevent attacks – there is always going to be an upset person trying to bring everyone down to his level.
America has been gun-crazy since the Sandy Hook elementary shooting – one side gather their guns while the other side tries to take the guns. And you know what? Both sides are WRONG. I said months ago that guns aren’t the problem nor are the bombs, it’s the people. The politicians have been spending all their time dealing with guns that they forgot about People – People Kill People. It’s the People who are uneducated that are more likely to be violent, yet the education budgets are always being cut. It’s the People who suffer from mental illness that are more likely to be involved in a mass attack, yet health care doesn’t cover the costs of all the help they need. It’s the People upset that America is involved in international conflicts, yet war continues to wage on (and for what?). Instead of wasting time fighting over guns, abortion, and other controversial laws that don’t do much good for society, how about America comes together to make sure that something like this won’t happen again, to make sure more children don’t grow up to be disgruntled adults pissed at society.
The Rays have played four games (including a split squad on opening day) and already they have beaten their arch nemesis, the Boston Red Sox, twice. Unlike previous spring training games so far, the Rays lineup is similar to an actual lineup during baseball season, one in which Evan Longoria is hurt…
- Ben Zobrist (RF)
- Desmond Jennings (CF)
- Matt Joyce (Left Field)
- Yunel Escobar (SS)
- Luke Scott (DH)
- Kelly Johnson (2B)
- Jose Molina (C)
- James Loney (1B)
- Ryan Roberts (3B)
- Alex Cobb (P)
Red Sox Lineup
- Jason Ellsbury (CF)
- Dustin Pedroia (2B)
- Shane Victorino (RF)
- Jonny Gomes (LF)
- Stephen Drew (SS)
- Ryan Sweeney (DH)
- Drew Sutton (3B)
- Mike Carp (1B)
- David Ross (C)
- Alfredo Aceves (P)
Today marked Alex Cobb’s spring training starter debut. Cobb was told last week that he is starting pitcher number four, which means he won’t be competing with four other pitchers for the limited starting positions. Cobb allowed four hits and two runs. “I was trying to throw a little too hard, keeping the ball up, rushing a little bit. When I did control myself, I had good results. Obviously the home run isn’t very good, and the RBI double isn’t very good. But I got a lot of ground balls, which is what I’m looking for, and it shows me I’m getting the angle I’m looking for” said Cobb. Another pitcher contending for a spot on the roster was Jamey Wright. The 38-year-old is looking for a spot in the Rays bullpen.
The Red Sox quickly took a lead in the 1st inning when Dustin Pedroia hit a homerun. The Rays answered back after Desmond Jennings and Matt Joyce drew walks, followed by newcomer Yunel Escobar hitting a double to score two runs. The Red Sox tied the game up in the 2nd due to Mike Carp hitting a double, bringing Ryan Sweeney home. The Rays did most of their damage in the 4th thanks to Ryan Roberts hitting a double, driving Jose Molina and James Loney home. Ben Zobrist hit a single, causing Roberts to score and making the score 5-2. In the 7th, the Rays score their last run of the game after Cole Figueroa scores on Jose Lobaton’s groundout. The Red Sox manage a run in the 8th, but lose 6-3.
- Red Sox had a split squad today; the other half of the team beat the Toronto Blue Jays 4-2.
- David Price makes his pitching debut Tuesday February 26 against the Houston Astros.
- Evan Longoria will be making his debut Tuesday February 26 against the Houston Astros.
- In five years since becoming the Rays in 2008, Tampa Bay owns the third-best record in the Major Leagues behind the Yankees and Phillies. Also during this span, the Rays have won five major Baseball Writers’ Association of America awards, more than any other team. David Price (2012 AL Cy Young Award), Joe Maddon (’08, ’11 AL Manager of the Year Awards), Evan Longoria (’08 AL Rookie of the Year Award) and Jeremy Hellickson (’11 AL Rookie of the Year Award).
Remember Bobby Valentine? The 2012 Boston Red Sox manager who was able to destroy Red Sox Nation in only one season? He was able to make several players “disappear” (Carl Crawford, Kelly Shoppach, Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett) and his fight with Mr. Red Sox Kevin Youkilis is one reason why Youkilis is now a New York Yankee. Valentine was never afraid to speak his mind, even joking about punching radio hosts in Boston. Though he had to deal with injuries throughout the year, the way he would bad mouth players on the radio probably played a huge factor in the reason why he was fired released by the Red Sox after the season ended. The Red Sox ended the season 69-93, the worst in 46 years and are predicted to have trouble selling tickets this year, according to the Red Sox President.
Well, Valentine has moved on with his life and was hired as the Sacred Heart University Athletic Director. Sacred Heart University is in Fairfield, Connecticut, about 20 miles away from Stamford where Valentine grew up. On Tuesday, February 26, there will be an official news conference to introduce Valentine, who takes over the position in July. “This is what I do. I accept challenges, and I enjoy life. And to hell with public perception.” O Valentine, he still has that lovely mouth.
While half of the team was in Port Charlotte playing against the Pittsburgh Pirates, the other half was battling the Boston Red Sox in Fort Myers. The lineup:
- Ben Zobrist (RF)
- Desmond Jennings (CF)
- Matt Joyce (LF)
- Jack Cust (DH)
- Ryan Roberts (2B)
- Sean Rodriquez (3B)
- Shelley Duncan (1B)
- Jose Lobaton (C)
- Hak-Ju Lee (SS)
- Alex Colome (P)
Though it is only Spring Training, the Red Sox are the Ray’s #1 Rival so it is always a good game between the two, especially when the Rays win. The Rays scored the first run against John Lackey (who I am told did not look good). Ben Zobrist walked, Desmond Jennings singles, Matt Joyce was hit by pitch, and Ryan Roberts hit a sac-fly to take the lead. In the 3rd, Jennings doubled, stole third base, and scored due to a throwing error by catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia.
The Rays Pitchers were Alex Colome (1 IP), Brandon Gomes (1 IP), Felipe Rivero (1 IP), Josh Lueke (2 IP), Marquis Fleming (2 IP), and Matt Buschmann (2 IP). Fleming gave up a homerun, leading to the Red Sox tying the game. Fleming also hit Daniel Nava – two hit batters in a game between the Rays and the Red Sox is always good entertainment. With Shawn O’Malley on 2nd, Leslie Anderson homers to bring the game to 4-2. Buschmann would give up a run in the 9th, but holds onto the win to earn a save. Rays beat Red Sox 4-3.
Desmond Jennings was the most impressive player of the day, scoring a run all by himself. Also happy to see a Red Sox player get hit after Joyce was hit by a ball. The hero of the game, Leslie Anderson, is a left-handed first baseman/outfielder from Cuba.
Spring Training has started and already several players (and one team) is making news. Here are the top five baseball news stories of the day.
- Carl Crawford: Crawford is currently in the Los Angeles Dodger’s rehab facility for his elbow., where he is recovering from elbow surgery. Crawford is happy with the Dodgers, but admits how awful his two years with the Red Sox were. Crawford says “I knew with the struggles I was having, it would never get better for me. I just didn’t see a light at the end of the tunnel. It puts you in kind of a depression stage. You just don’t see a way out.” Crawford also said he regretted signing with the Red Sox “ a lot of times” and how he thought his career was over since he did not believe any team would take over his expensive contract. Can’t believe a team organization nearly drove a player into depression.
- Kevin Youkilis: Mr. Red Sox is now with the New York Yankees, due to Alex Rodriquez missing half the season due to surgery. The Red Sox traded Youkilis away due to disagreements with Coach Bobby Valentine. Youkilis’ message to the Yankees fans “I’ll always be a Red Sock.” Though Youkilis met all his fellow teammates, he and Joba Chamberlain had yet to talk face-to-face due due to a previous feud in 2007 when Chamerlain threw two pitches over the head of Youkilis. Chamberlain was ejected for the first time in his career and suspended for two games. The “feud” is being overblown by the media, but Youkilis being a Yankee should make an interesting year.
- Grant Balfour: Oakland Athletics closer had arthroscopic surgery on his right knee to repair a torn meniscus. The recovery time is 4-6 weeks, meaning Balfour will just probably just miss Spring Training.
- The Red Sox 793-game sellout streak at Fenway will likely come to an end, said the team president Larry Lucchino. No one, but Red Sox fans, take the streak seriously since the Red Sox organization would actually buy and give away free tickets just to keep the streak alive. Also, judging by the amount of empty seats at the stadium toward the end of the 2012 season, it seems as though not every game was a sell-out. Anyways, the fact that the team president believes he can’t count on Red Sox fans to attend games shows how the Red Sox will start off another “great” year.
- Alex Rodriguez: Last week a report came out that Rodriquez was doping in Miami, just in time for spring training. Rodriquez was due to miss half the season due to hip surgery, but the allegations that he is using steroids made sure that his name will continue to be in the news. Now some baseball fans, mainly non-Yankee fans, are wondering if A-Roid is the only Yankee player using steroids. Due to years of steroid abuse, I believe Rodriquez no longer has testicles. Quite possible that he also has man-boobs since that is also an effect of steroids. Stay away from drugs kids!
On April 20th, 2012 the Boston Red Sox celebrated Fenway Park’s 100th birthday. Over 200 former players, players, coaches, managers returned to Fenway Park to celebrate this special occasion; but after the game, no one except for the New York Yankees was smiling. After all, the Yankees just beat the Red Sox 6-2 on Fenway’s birthday. This was a much different outcome from what happened 100 years ago when the Boston Red Sox beat the New York Highlanders (renamed the Yankees). But that was 100 years ago; the Titanic sunk 100 years and things have changed a lot since then. Though in reality, most of the changes to the Red Sox happened within the past year.
A little more than a year ago, the Red Sox were predicted to win the A.L. East and the World Series after signing 1st baseman Adrian Gonzalez (7-year, $154 million) and outfielder Carl Crawford (7-year, $142 million). But due to injuries, pitching woes, lack of hitting, and the fact that money can’t buy everything, the Red Sox failed to live up to the expectations. Everyone knows how the Red Sox were 9 games ahead of the Tampa Bay Rays in the beginning of September and failed to make it to the playoffs. Everyone knows how Red Sox manager Terry Francona was blamed for the loss and after being embarrassed by talks of family problems and pain medication addiction (leaked from someone within the Red Sox organization), he retired from coaching. And everyone knows that the Red Sox pitchers ate fried chicken and drank beer during games that they were not pitching. But no one knew what was going to happen to the Red Sox in 2012. Would they be able to rebuild Red Sox Nation or burn it even farther into the ground?
Well so far, Red Sox Nation is still not in business. The Red Sox started the season with a few injuries, including Crawford (recovering from left wrist surgery and inflammation in the left shoulder), and pitchers John Lackey and Daisuke Matsuzaka. Then in the 2nd week of the season, Jacoby Ellsbury slid into Rays’ player Reid Brignac in an attempt to break up a double-play. He might be out with a shoulder injury until June. Besides the injuries, the Red Sox have not been off to a great start on the road. In the first series against the Detroit Tigers, the Red Sox lost all the games, including a 10-0 lost and a 13-12 lost in extra innings. In Toronto, the Red Sox lost 2 games to the Blue Jays and in Texas, the Red Sox lost 18-3 against the Rangers. Thus, it was not surprising when the Red Sox returned home that some of the Red Sox were actually booed by their fans (new manager Bobby Valentine and pitcher Josh Beckett).
The home opener brought hope to the Red Sox after they beat the Rays 3 out of 4 games, only losing the game on Patriot’s Day. Their 3-game winning spree was overshadowed by Valentine’s comments about Kevin Youkilis. On Sunday, Valentine said that Youkilis was not as emotionally or physically into the game as he used to be. Youkilis confronted the new manager, who apologized, and fellow teammate Dustin Pedroia told the media that he and the team has Youkilis’ back. Already, Valentine was creating enemies with the fans and players.
On Fenway Park’s 100th birthday, the Red Sox lost to the Yankees 6-2. Though it was embarrassing for the Red Sox, it only got worse on Saturday. The day after the big celebration, the Red Sox were seeking revenge against the Yankees. After 5 innings of baseball, the Red Sox were winning 9-0. After a single homerun by Mark Teixeira in the 6th, the Red Sox were still winning 9-1 when the Yankees entered the 7th inning. Red Sox relief pitcher Vicente Padilla managed to load the bases and gave up a grand slam to Nick Swisher. The next relief pitcher Matt Albers gave up a 3-run homer to Teixeria. After the 7th inning, the Yankees had scored 7 runs and now the Red Sox only led 9-8. In the 8th inning, the Yankees managed to score 7 more runs. Somehow, the Red Sox bullpen managed to give up 14 runs in 2 innings!
So what is going to happened to the Boston Red Sox? Well since September of last year, they have lost 28 out of 39 games. They are currently in last place in the A.L. East and the only team worse than them in the A.L. is the Kansas City Royals. Youkilis left today’s game with some kind of soreness, further adding to the injury problems for Boston. The Red Sox starters currently have a 6.15 ERA, one of the worst in baseball. Let’s just say no one in Boston will be singing “Sweet Caroline” for a while.