Monday, October 06, 2003

Boston Battles On

The Red Sox played long ball, getting a solo shot from Jason Varitek and a three-run tater from Manny Ramirez, and Pedro Martinez and the beleaguered Boston bullpen made it hold up for a series-deciding, 4-3 victory over Oakland at Network Associates Coliseum. A huge display of stones by Derek Lowe, who twice against left-handed hitters came inside with fastballs that tailed back over the plate for called strike threes, preserved the victory. Lowe, pressed into service when Scott Williamson walked the first two A's in the ninth, allowed a sacrifice bunt, then whiffed Adam Melhuse, walked Chris Singleton, and punched out Terrence Long to earn the save.

Now, then, is the time to invest in Bounty. Millions of rolls of paper towels will be needed to clean up the drool of Fox executives who had been eagerly anticipating an American League Championship Series between the Sox and the Yankees. It starts Wednesday.

In the National League, the only thing between the Cubs and the World Series is, yes, the Florida Marlins. The NLCS begins Tuesday night.

Thoughts on those series from Shallow Center after a full (or, at this hour, partial) night's sleep.


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