Sunday, August 1, 2010

Slightly Past the Deadline Sports Chowdah Update- Who is Salt(alamacchia)? Crouching Tigers, Hidden Drag Bunt

(Getty Images-Elsa)
RED SOX: Big Papi and Marco Scutaro seemed to be locked in a contest to try and rack up the game-winning hits this week, including some walk-offs in the last two home games against the Tigers. With the Sox trailing 4-2, runners on 2nd and 3rd with one away in the bottom of the 9th and Phil Coke trying to close the game out for Detroit, it was decided to walk Kevin Youkilis to get to Big Papi, who had gone 1-4 on the day with an ultimately harmless single. However, looking like the Papi of old instead on an old Papi, David Ortiz would drive a 2-1 Coke offering into the gap in left center field to clear the bases and give the Sox the win.

Outfielder Ryan Kalish got the call-up from Pawtucket and had a pretty memorable debut Saturday, going 2 for 4 on two singles and getting Boston's first RBI on the day in the bottom of the 7th. Hideki Okajima got the win with a 1-2-3 top of the 9th and Coke was hung with the loss.

Today's game got off to a better start for Boston, but they would still need some walk-off mojo. Although Kalish would go 0 for 3 on the day, one of those outs was a sac-fly that plated Adrian Beltre to put the Sox up 3-0 in a pitcher's duel that had Clay Buchholz going against Justin Verlander. Buccholz gave up a leadoff single followed by a walk in the top of the 9th before giving way to Papelbon. Right away, Papelbon faced Miguel Cabrera and gave up a booming double to straightaway center that made it a 3-2 game with nobody out. Don Kelly pinch-ran for Cabrera and was driven home on a Jhonny Peralta single after Papelbon got Brennan Bosch to strike out. Paps then managed to get Jeff Frazier to ground into a double play to end the inning with the 3-0 lead evaporated.

Brad Thomas would come on for Detroit and would promptly give up a single to Jed Lowrie (who had Darnell McDonald pinch-run for him) before walking Eric Patterson (who tried bunting) with Robbie Weinhardt coming out of the Tiger's pen to face Marco Scutaro. The Boston shortstop laid down a soft bunt up the 3rd base line that Weinhardt picked up but rushed the throw to 1st, sending it into the outfield and McDonald charging home from 2nd for the Red Sox 2nd walk-off win in 24 hours and taking 2 out of 3 from the Tigers (Detroit having to hold off a 4-run rally in the 9th on Friday night to win by a 6-5 final). Papelbon gets the win while Brad Thomas gets the L.

The Red Sox will next host the Cleveland Indians for a 4-game series at Fenway tomorrow night with John Lackey (10-5; 4.26 ERA) going against Fausto Carmona (10-8; 3.92 ERA).

OTHER RED SOX NEWS: Boston picked up struggling catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia from the Texas Rangers and two minor-leaguers for cash and a player to be named later while sending Ramon Ramierez to the San Francisco Giants for prospect Daniel Turpen. Saltalamacchia's been averaging a .244 batting average with 11 home runs and 33 RBIs on the season for the Oklahoma City Redhawks, the Ranger's AAA affiliate (and only a .200 batting average in 2 games with the Rangers this season).
Speaking of AAA teams, outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury made his appearance with the PawSox in their weekend series against the Durham Bulls, getting 4 hits in 9 official at-bats. Boston manager Terry Francona said that he'd prefer that Ellsbury get whatever remaining soreness out of his body in AAA rather than Boston. Ellsbury is expected to be reevaluated on Monday.

The Red Sox also designated outfielder Jeremy Hermida for assignment.
ELSEWHERE: The St Louis Cardinals sent Ryan Ludwick to San Diego and picked up Jake Westbrook from the Indians at the trade deadline. The Cards get prospects from San Diego and cash from Cleveland.

The Indians also dealt Kerry Wood to the Yankees for $500,000 or a player to be named later the same day Astros completed a trade sending Lance Berkman to the Bronx. The former Houston 1B went 0-4 in his Yankees debut Saturday night.

The Cubs were sellers, not buyers, at the trade deadline this season, sending starter Ted Lilly and infielder Ryan Theroit to the LA Dodgers for 2B Blake DeWitt, two minor-league pitchers and an agreement to pay $2.5 million of Lilly's salary.
I'm actually about a week late with this, but Milwaukee Brewers hall of fame broadcaster Bob Uecker has returned to the broadcast booth after undergoing heart surgery earlier this year. Surgeons had replaced Uecker's aortic valve and performed a bypass at the end of April. Uecker expects that he'll be calling the remaining home games for the Brewers and will limit his travel to 'nearby' cities such as Chicago or Cincinnati- although he has expressed an interest in joining the team on their road trip to San Francisco.

NFL: Good news everyone. Pats WR Wes Welker was removed from the Physically Unable to Perform and put on the active roster on Sunday. Welker was injured in the regular-season finale against the Houston Texans on Jan 3rd, tearing his ACL and MCL.

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