Extra Bases

No fireworks for the Sox today

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Happy 4th of July.

Here’s what happened in the game: The Sox were awful at the plate and in the field. John Lackey was just OK. Apparently J.D. Drew got into some bad venison. Yikes.

Somehow the Sox are 6-6 against Baltimore. The Birds are 19-50 against everybody else. Double Yikes.


So much for that. The topic of the day was the All-Star team.

If you break down the numbers, it’s a little silly that Kevin Youkilis isn’t on the AL team. The man has a .416 OBP and if you’re of an advanced statistical bent, a 3.2 WAR.

But the All-Star team isn’t necessarily about who the best players are. Fans vote, players vote, every team has to be represented, the positions need to be balanced, etc. There are bound to be mistakes.

Youkilis is one of the candidates for the Final Vote. You have four days to vote him in on MLB.com.


“I hope our fans find a way to get Youk on there too because I think he’s also deserving,” Terry Francona said.

Youkilis joked that he hoped at least his family and friends voted for him.

At this point, it’s up to the marketing. The White Sox (Paul Konerko), Yankees (Nick Swisher), Twins (Delmon Young), Rangers (Michael Young) and Sox will plaster their TV and radio broadcasts with advertisements for their candidates.

As for those Sox who did make it, it was fun to see the reactions of Adrian Beltre, Clay Buchholz and Jon Lester at making it for the first time. It’s hard to believe Beltre hadn’t made it before.


Dustin Pedroia and Victor Martinez won’t be able to play because of injuries, which also will be true of Buchholz once he is placed on the DL. Pedroia told me he plans to go to Anaheim regardless. “I hope I’m walking without crutches by then,” he said. “That’s my goal.”

Then there’s David Ortiz, the guy everybody (including me) thought was finished in April.

“That was a tough first month. He said all along, ‘It’s a long year, stay with me.’ I know there were days he was irritated with me and there days he was more than irritated with [the media]. He’s right,” Francona said. “He’s been a terrific player and continues to be and I think it’s great he was recognized for that.”


Big Papi was proud that the players voted him onto the team.

“It’s just one of those years that people appreciate the job that you’re doing on the field, and it gives you an opportunity to be in the All-Star Game,” he said. “I really appreciate it, what the players think about a guy like myself. Like I say, I’m a guy that tries to respect everyone.”

A few other notes from today:

* The Mike Lowell Mystery was solved. The reason he’s not going to Tampa with the team is that he was given permission to go home for a few days. He’s not getting released, at least not yet.


* That Youk is one great American. He has hit safely on July 4 for four straight years at 5 of 16 with three RBIs. Washington, Lincoln, Jefferson, Youkilis.

* Meanwhile, Dr. Ronan Tynan, the one-time Yankees good luck charm, sang God Bless America in the seventh inning. Tyan, an Irish tenor, was a staple at Yankee playoff games for years, belting out his rousing version of the song then high-fiving Rudy Giuliani and giving Joe Torre a thumbs-up.

But he fled New York over the winter, moving to Boston after being accused of making an anti-Semitic remark. The Yankees had banned him singing after the incident.


Kevin Cullen wrote a column for the Globe about Tynan coming to town.

Clearly somebody with the Sox enjoyed tweaking the Yankees a little today with Tynan belting out his trademark tune at Fenway Park on George Steinbrenner’s birthday. The only thing that would have made it better would have been if the Yankees were in town.

So, Sox fans, are you OK with Tynan singing at Fenway?

I think the guy has a terrific voice. But finding an actual Red Sox fan with good pipes can’t be all that hard, can it?

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