BALTIMORE – Thoughts while watching Josh Beckett hurling here in the second inning….
1. The Red Sox have the best day record in the majors – 30-13 (.698). So why won’t they schedule more day games? There should be one weekday game per homestand at Fenway, shouldn’t there?
2. Spoke to Oakland A’s GM Billy Beane last night. He’s watching over his sick grand dad in Sacremento. Our prayers are with him. Beane said he has not yet received any official confirmation on the A’s-Sox opening the 2008 season in Japan.
3. The Sox have three of the top eight batters in the AL. Lowell, sixth at .324; Pedroia, seventh at .322 and Ortiz eighth at .320.
4. It was fun spending some time with Hanley Ramirez earlier in the week. As Duston Pedroia just stroked his second hit, it was fun to see the affection both giys have for one another.
“I hope he gets rookie of the year,” said Ramirez, the reigning National League rookie of the year on Pedroia. “He works so hard. He’s a good hitter and he did a good job moving to second base.”
“I used to kid with him that we could become the new Alan Trammell-Lou Whitaker,” Pedroia said. “We used to kid about playing in the big leagues together. He was the most talented guy I’ve ever played with. Nothing he’s done has surprised me really. He got his opportunity in Florida and he’s made the most of it. Quite a player.”
5. What a stat from PR man John Blake: Jonathan Papelbon has retired the last 30 left-handed batters he’s faced, third longest streak in the majors. Pittsburgh’s Damaso Marte and Yankees’ righty Chieb Ming Wang retired 32 straight.
6. Mike Lowell just produced a two-run single in the third as the Sox take a 2-0 lead. The place erupted. It’s a home game at Camden Yards. Lowell, by the way, has 103 RBI.
7. Jason Varitek has struck out four straght times after fanning in the second inning.
8. Francona really likes Kevin Cash. He calls a good game and he can catch Tim Wakefield, but can’t hit a lick.