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pudge (1)

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Journal of pudge (1)

Tuesday January 13, 2004
02:01 AM


[ #16796 ]

One of the best baseball games I have ever seen was Game 5 of the 1999 ALDS, Red Sox vs. Indians.

It was one of the greatest pitching performances of all time. Pedro Martinez was injured in the fifth inning of Game 1. The teams were tied at 8 runs each after only 3.5 innings. Bret Saberhagen gave up a few runs, and then Derek Lowe replaced him in the second, and after getting beat up himself, an injured Pedro asked to be allowed to pitch in the bottom of the fourth.

One of the ways to describe how well Pedro did is to say he, injured, pitched 6 nearly perfect innings. And he was injured at the time. He didn't have his velocity, and this guy who has a devastating fastball in the high-90s could barely get out of the 80s, and was in pain with every throw. And he was nearly perfect: 6 innings, 3 walks, 8 strikeouts, no hits.

Another way to describe how well Pedro did is to note that in the ESPN Classic broadcast -- which are shortened forms of the games, condensing ~3-hour games into 2 hours -- they breeze through the first 16 runs of the game in 15 minutes. They show some of the bottom of the 1st, and then just show highlights of the rest. Normally, you show the actual runs being scored, that's what's exciting. The more runs being scored, the more exciting.

But this pitching performance was so outstanding, so momentous, so perfect, that they don't even bother to show more than a dozen of the runs being scored. They show the pitches. They show people NOT getting on base.

Unfortunately, some of the greatness of the game is overshadowed by the inane commentary of Joe Buck and Tim McCarver.

The Sox won the game 12-8, and hence the series.

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