And just like that, the Red Sox season is over- on the wrong end of a first round sweep of the Angels for a change. Although Boston was able to generate some offense Sunday (6 runs on seven hits), Johnathan Papelbon gave up the go-ahead 2-RBI single to Vlad Guerero in the top of the ninth. The Angels held on to win 7-6 and will advance to the ALCS. And before the champagne corks hit the floor in the visitors locker room, there was already talk of unloading Papelbon. So I guess now would be the time for the recriminations, finger-pointing and second-guessing. I had a feeling Red Sox Nation would be in for something like this as recently as the forgettable series split at Kansas City. The following series against the Yankees and Blue Jays (0-6) did nothing to reassure me. Now all that's left between now and Febuary in Ft. Meyers is to speculate on who's coming in as a free agent, who's in the pipeline in the minors and who's going to be leaving, traded or retiring.
With that said, I'd like to offer my congratulations to the Angels organization. Don't let up now- Win it for #34.
(Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
After Saturday's game at Coors Field was postponed due to Global Warming, the Phillies and Rockies got underway Sunday Night. Neither Philly starter J.A. Happ or Rockies starter Jason Hammel made it through the 4th inning. Colorado blew a 3-1 lead in the 4th and the Phillies hung on to win 6-5 after Brad Lidge's first postseason save of 2009.
And, alas, baseball under the Metrodome is over and done with as the Twins were eliminated from the ALDS when they lost to the Yankees 4-1 [who didn't see that coming?]. I wonder how eager people will be for outdoor baseball in the Minnesota come April 2010.
And since I didn't really have time to update on Saturday, the Cardinals were eliminated by the Dodgers in Game 3 at Busch Field.
Elsewhere in the Mile-High city, the Patriots gave up a 17-7 halftime lead to lose 20-17 in OT on a 41-yard Matt Prater Field Goal. The game more or less lived up to its billing [Josh McDaniels against his former mentor, blah blah blah] although not exactly the desired outcome (of course, I'm biased). Would've been nice to see some more first downs from the Pats offense in the 2nd half. Oh...and memo to Brandon Merriweather. Save the strutting and trash talking until.....oh...I dunno....maybe some time after the game! I'm sure that crap would be okey-dokey at the University of Miami, but try acting like you've made a big play before- might not give the other team extra downs inside the red zone late in the game, mmkay?
Not completely off-topic, but I've been getting all kinds of folks coming up to me unsolicited at the bar and telling me how cool they think the Patriot Pat/AFL throwback Pats uniforms are. Some of these people are also Pats fans, some of them self appointed NFL Throwback Fashion Police. Still, my response is usually something along the lines of 'Are you freakin' kidding me? Am I the only one who remembers them finishing 1-15 or 3-13 while wearing those uniforms?'. Don't get me wrong- I actually like the look and everything, but it's not as though it's harkening back to the franchise's glory days.
So as it stands right now, the Broncos are 5-0 and the Patriots are 3-2. Next week, New England hosts the winless Tennesee Titans.
One bright spot- perhaps the only bright spot as far as I'm concerned- this weekend was the Bruins game against the NY Islanders on Saturday. Leading 3-0 in the third period, the Islanders had yet to record a shutout against Boston in their 37-year history. At the end of regulation, that still held true as the Bruins would get on the board with goals from Marc Savard, Byron Bitz and Matt Hunwick. Blake Wheeler and Marc Savard managed to get the puck past Dwayne Roloson in the shootout, while Tukka Rask was beaten by a shot from Rob Schremp but stopped a Kyle Okposo shot to clinch the shootout win. Rask faces 38 shots, stopping 35 in his first start of the season.
On Saturday afternoon, Boston College lost to #5 ranked Virginia Tech 48-14, which makes them 1-2 against the ACC. The Eagles will host North Carolina State this week.