With my graduation from Northeastern approaching at an alarming pace, my visit to Fenway Park last night to watch the Angels was likely my last trek to that godforsaken park for a major league baseball game. Aside from the potholed concourse with no view of the field, the $8.50 beer, the minuscule $5.00 hot dogs, and the hordes of unwashed Connecticutians, watching the Angels in Fenway Park has rarely been a positive experience. This game was no different, with the Angels failing to capitalize on a 2nd and 3rd, 1 out situation in the eighth inning of a tie game, followed by a miserable Juan Rivera drop of a routine fly ball to give the Red Sox the go-ahead runs.
Meanwhile, of course, Boston "fans" were threatening myself and the rest of the small Angels contingent with violence and general hooliganism. Well after the Angels had lost and the crowd was attempting to file out of the minuscule bleacher stairway, I was talking with a guy who seemed civil, yet ten seconds later told me he was "going to kick my ass." I left the field and found a shockingly large pool of congealing blood next to the famous Ted Williams statue. As the Doghouse says in Merrimack's arena, "this place sucks!"
As far as the game was concerned, the game turned on two plays: Abreu's double play groundout in the top of the 8th, and Rivera's inability to catch a popup in the bottom of the inning. Abreu, in my mind, needed to be able to hit the ball in the air, both for the sake of the game and as a professional baseball player. How many warning track flies does he produce in a season? Lengthen your swing and accept a strikeout over a ground ball. Rivera, on the other hand, earned praise for his defense last season. Don't believe it. He ran 30 yards to move 15 linear yards, slowed down before he needed to, and watched a ball hi the ground in front of him and bounce off the wall. This is unacceptable, and for all of Reggie Willits' faults, he would've made that catch.
I would write about Kevin Jepsen's "relief" effort, but talking about anyone who walks three batters in an inning is wasting words.
It is important to remember that it's May. The Angels, despite a 5-game losing streak (soon to be 6, with Lackey facing Piniero tonight), are only 2.5 (maybe 3.5) games out of first in the AL West with over 130 games remaining.
Finally, I take comfort in the Lakers. Despite my massively reduced interest in the NBA this season, mostly because the NBA sucks, I still love the Lakers for the worry-free entertainment they bring. Rarely am I concerned about them losing a game, I have faith that one of Bryant or Gasol will show up in any given game, usually both, and the regular season remains irrelevant for the team. It's a calming sense of security.
When does hockey season start?