So I’ve been getting up early all week, and as I'm generally an insomniac night-owl type, it has not been going particularly well. Last night I made the mistake of lying down for a few minutes while watching the game; I fell asleep around 8 PM, and woke up long, long after it was over. The thing is, I was absolutely, 100% positive that I’d seen the Yankees win it, on a Johnny Damon home run… and it wasn’t til this afternoon that I realized I must have just dreamed it.
Today, however, I was wide awake when the Yankees beat the Sox 3-2, in dramatic fashion, with Jason Giambi singling in the winning run off Michael Flatley Jonathan Papelbon. (Have I really been reduced to making stale, cheap “Lord of the Dance” jabs out of pure bitterness? Yes. Yes I have. Try and stop me). This is one of those seasons where you just have to appreciate the small victories: so yes, the Yankees lost two of three to the Sox (though I could have sworn… man, that was a vivid dream), and are almost certainly not going to make the postseason this year; but it was a good game, and the last that Boston will ever play in the old Stadium.
Mike Mussina was excellent, again, but when he left the game was tied, and he didn’t get the win. I don’t think he can make it to 20 now -- and because the BWAA changes its thinking at roughly the pace of a frail, elderly snail, that may well hurt his Hall of Fame chances, etc, etc. But it’s been such a pleasure to watch him do his thing this year. Today his fastball was actually quicker than usual (a whopping 89 mph at one point! Heavens!), and he allowed two runs on five hits in seven strong innings. The Sox only scored in the fifth, when they strung together a single, a hit by pitch, another single (an RBI for Varitek), and a fielder’s choice.
Meanwhile, the Yankees couldn’t do much more than peck at Jon Lester until the 7th, when Cody Ransom (he of the awesomely badass name) doubled, and Jason Giambi (he of the awesomely badass Porn ‘Stache of Doom) homered. That was it until the bottom of the ninth, when – on a night when the Yankee bullpen really couldn’t have handled many extra innings – the Yanks loaded the bases, the Sox summoned Papelbon from the pen, and the ‘Stache took matters into its own hands.
Anyway, I'm really looking forward to blogging about the playoff games I'll dream about this fall. Will the dream-Yankees be able to beat the dream-Twins in the ALDS? Or will dream-Abreu morph into a giant aardvark and swallow my high school English teacher whole, as he did in the fall of '06? Tune in and find out. There's only one October!