From the Cubicle

News flash: This is some jacked up weather. Does Lake Michigan suddenly want to be an ocean and produce hurricanes? Because it sure seemed like that yesterday. AND, it set in motion a chain of events that made me come in on my day off (canceled Sox game leads to day-night doubleheader, leads to no scheduled cubicler in the office, leads to Amanda in on a Friday. I know!)

I lost power around 9 last night, forcing me to miss…well, not much. Summer television kinda sucks. But I wasn't alone -- 245,000 without power? Jacked up!

Sadly, I did miss E!News and all the celeb updates. Lindsay Lohan is addicted and Nicole Richie served a whole 82 minutes in jail. See, they have it rough too.

So Thursday night, no power and a disappearing flashlight…what's a girl to do? That's right, Gameboy. I kill at Super Mario Brothers, although I need some tips on how to beat the ghosts houses (house-ies?). Boo. Ha!

Enough whining. Onto the game. Sox (White) are putting Jon Garland on the mound, while the Sox (Red) are throwing Josh Beckett out there. Let's hope they aren't wearing metal spikes. John Danks vs. Curt Schilling is your night match, unless of course, it rains/the world ends.

Boston holds a 5 game lead in the AL East while the Sox are just out of the Central race. 14 games? I could make that up in my sleep. Plus, the AL East is a way easier division. Hello, Kansas City Royals? That's a tough out.

Earlier this week, Ozzie Guillen said he'd consider batting Jim Thome in the leadoff spot to get his more AB's so he can hit 500 homers. Because everyone knows small ball and Jim Thome are synonymous. Right.

Here is your lineup. Thome is a late no-go because of his back.

Currently it's 73 degrees with wind out of the west. Tom Skilling says "some thunderstorms may produce heavy rainfall." Oh goody, something new.

200,000 gallons of water fell at U.S. Cellular Field yesterday, according to intrepid Comcast reporter Chuck Garfien. That's one big Slip 'n Slide. Oh no…where's Mark Buehrle?

Maybe if we're lucky, our rainout theater will feature a repeat of Len and Bob's Summer Bash. The horror, the horror. Shiver.

Message board is to the right. My email is here.

Baseball soon.

First inning

Curious reader: I've done a few Cubs FTCs, but it just works out that I'm here for the Sox games. It's all random. Lucky you! So good money says no night game as of now. Maybe they can hit up the Kanye West concert at the House of Blues. We've just gotten word that Peter, Paul and Mary have canceled their Friday event at Ravinia, but it's not weather-related. Hmmm. Comcast has technical difficulties so no picture, just Hawk's voice. Julio Lugo just reached on a single off Jon Garland to start things off. I've got no picture. This is bad. And now, no voice. Geez. OK, Hawk's voice is back. Kinda. I guess it's raining at the Cell -- DJ says Lugo won't be stealing because it's slippery. Coco Crisp works the 2-1 count before hitting into a double play. This is just weird without a picture on my TV. OK, sound is gone again. I'm gonna hurt someone. Comcast just went to a commercial, but MLB tells me that DH David Oritz hitting the ball to center field for the third out.

No score.

Comcast's truck is -- say it with me -- jacked up and won't be bringing us a picture. So now they are just in the studio, chatting. I have no clue what to do. Should I just tell you what MLB.com says? Jerry Owens was called out on strikes. That brings up Josh Fields. He grounds out to the third baseman. AJ Pierzynski hits a double. I plug in a dusty radio but no dice or signal on that one. OH BOY! A PICTURE! Give me a minute to re-group. And we're back. It's a 1-0 count for Konerko. Now it's a 3-1 count for Paulie, or as Hawk says, the "cat bird seat." Huh? Exactly. Erstad is on deck. This old radio kinda smells. I'll put it on Rahula's desk, since his whole desk smells. Paulie draws the walk after running the count to 3-2. Good thing Comcast is back, because now MLB.com is down. Mercy. It's really sunny at the Cell today. Also, no rain. So I think DJ lied earlier. Erstad takes the 3-2 pitch....and he walks too. Bases loaded, two outs. Jermaine Dye steps in; he's 2-for-5 against Beckett in his career. Lotta empty seats at the game today. Is it because the Sox kinda stink or because of the rain? Discuss. 3-0 count for JD. Three straight breaking balls thrown by Beckett. And that's ball four. JD walks, AJ scores, White Sox 1-0. Beckett was supposed to pitch last night...guess he didn't get a good night sleep. Maybe he's afraid of the thunder. Juan Uribe stands in...and Beckett finally throws a strike. Yahtzee! Beckett fires a fastball down the middle and Uribe fouls it off, 2-2 count. Full count; and Uribe stands there looking for strike three.

White Sox 1-0.

Second inning

Ah, now Comcast is showing us what we missed in the first inning. AJ's double was down the right field line. Then lotsa walks by Beckett. And here we are now. Curious reader: I tried to hide my mug so I can lead a normal life. Darn paparazzi. I guess Jerry Reinsdorf wanted to play the first game at 10 a.m. in hopes of getting both in tonight. But he was shot down. And I so do have a Gamboy, but I think it's called a "Gameboy Advanced." I got it for Christmas -- it's pink! Manny Ramirez grounds out to start off the inning. Mike Lowell takes strike one. Then he strikes out. Take that Mike Lowell! It's like half sunny/half cloudy at the Cell now. I believe that's what weather-types call "partly sunny." Or "partly cloudy." JD Drew strikes out swinging. 1-2-3 inning for Garland.

White Sox 1-0.

I do respond to "Schube," as well as "Hey you." People in college called me Kash-Cube. Don't you feel like you really know me now? Hawk's pick to click is Juan Uribe. HA! I think he'd have to swing to get that done. Danny Richar leads things off. He flies out to Manny Ramirez in left field. One out. Now it's Andy Gonzalez, who was a late addition to the lineup after the Thome scratch. Let's see, I think it's because Paulie is now the DH, so Erstad is playing first, so then Gonzalez took his spot in left field. That's my guess. Anywhoo, Gonzalez grounds out. Beckett has thrown 23 balls, 23 strikes. Not a good ratio. Here's Owens. He shows bunt a few times and it's a 2-2 count. Hawk and DJ are babbling about bat speed. Meanwhile, Owens rips a single to right field. Those wondering about Scott Podsednik: Sox are hesitant to put him on the DL, so he's day-to-day. Owens has 19 stolen bases on the year. And there he goes...and he's safe. That's number 20! Fields hits one just foul, down the third base line. Hawk: "Stay fair, dadgummit (growl)." Geez. 1-2 count for Fields. Hits another in the same spot, but still foul. And then Fields strikes out on a high fastball.

White Sox 1-0.

Third inning

I'm totally obsessed with "Hard Knocks". I want Herm Edwards to be my new best friend. First up for the Red Sox wil be Jason Varitek. I think people call him "Tek." He hits one right to Erstad at first, who records the unassisted putout. One out. Eric Hinske (with moderate facial hair) is .379 career vs. Garland. Impressive. Hinske pops out to Erstad in foul territory (unassisted out again!). Am I using that term correctly? Eh. Who cares, I make the rules. Two outs. Alex Cora hits one in the RF corner (Hawk: "Get foul, it won't"). That will be a double. I guess the third base coach was waving Cora over, but he stayed at second. No matter, because Lugo hits a single to score Cora. Tied 1-1. Coco Crisp now. I have Quaker Oatmeal Squares in my kitchen cabinet. Lugo tries to steal second, but AJ's throw is spot on and he's out. Nicely done.

Tied 1-1.

I'll refrain from quoting Hawk, since most of you can probably guess what he would say. My bad. There's another Mr. Bean movie? Is this necessary? AJ leads things off for the ChiSox. And it's a softly hit grounder to second for the first out. Why all the Adam hate? He's super cool. Paulie has a six-game hitting streak currently. He walked in the first, so that doesn't count. See? I know my baseball. That won't work either -- he grounds out to shortstop/third base for the second out. Quickly an 0-2 hole for Erstad. But "Stubble" hits a grounder just past SS Lugo for a single. And yes, the stubble beard is present today. Yippee. Quickly an 0-2 hole for Dye. Erstad tries to steal second, by Dye strikes out swinging. Oh well.

Tied 1-1.

Fourth inning

Fun, raw sewage in Lake Michigan. Raw sewage? I love it! Coco Crisp gets to bat again, since Lugo totally messed up his previous AB. Meanie. Crisp hits one off the end of his bat for a single in left field. Bloop. Big David Ortiz -- he's hit into 13 double-plays this season. Let's make it 14. Instead, he flies out to Owens, who makes a sliding grab for the out. Weeeeee! That's how he sounded when he starting sliding. Just go with it. Crisp stays at first. I think Manny has longer hair than I do. 45 pitches thus far for Garland. Manny skies one to LF for a single; Crisp goes into third with one out. Oh, Crisp went into third on an error by Gonzalez -- he tried to barehand it and it popped out of his reach. Lowell smacks one right back to Garland, but it gets past him. That will score Crisp; Red Sox 2-1. Seriously, right between his legs. But it was hit pretty hard. Runners on first and second. JD Drew. Oh my bad. J.D. Drew. That's better. He hits a grounder to Richar at second (and over a leaping Lowell). But Richar bobbles the ball, and can't get the force out at second or the putout at first. He threw to first but Drew was safe. Everyone is safe. Bases loaded with one out. "Tek" now. OK, now they are saying that Gonzalez doesn't get an error from about 4 plays ago. But Richar, he does. 1-2 for Varitek...now a 3-2 count...it's hit to LF for a loooong single. But that will score two, Red Sox 4-1. It hit off the wall out there, but Gonzalez was there to pick it up. Hinske also singles up the middle to score Drew, Red Sox 5-1. Varitek goes to third on the late throw from Owens. Alex Cora now. He grounds out to Uribe, who tags second and then fires to first to complete the double play. That error by Richar -- bad.

Red Sox 5-1.

Let's see. We've got Uribe, Richar and Gonzalez for now. Uribe hits it to the warning track in center field, but Crisp is there to make the catch/out. Richar grounds out to Cora at second. Who are these Bertucci boys on the Patio? And why are they going to take care of us? Here's Gonzalez. 3-2 count for him, let's see what he does. He fouls it off his foot. Ouch. Then he lines it to Lowell at third. 1-2-3 inning for Beckett.

Red Sox 5-1.

Fifth inning

Oh sad. No Reggie Miller comeback. Hold your tears, Bulls fans. I should re-do my mugshot in summer clothes. Maybe I'll wear a bonnet. Lugo flies out to a leaping Jermaine Dye. One out. Then Crisp grounds out to Erstad, who makes the unassisted putout. That's my new favorite phrase. Could you tell? David Ortiz now. He flies out to Josh Fields in the deep third base grassy area. 1-2-3 for Garland. Speedy.

Red Sox 5-1.

I hate that Heineken DraughtKeg commerical. It's just creepy and annoying. Josh Owens is the first batter this inning for Beckett. He's hurled 85 pitches. He takes the 3-2 pitch to left field for a single. He's 2-for-3 today. Fields tries to bunt him over, but it goes into foul territory. 0-2 count now. Then there's like 4 foul tips. Owens keeps running, and then he has to return to first base. He must be getting tired. Fields makes contact, and that's outta here. A two-run home run makes it Red Sox 5-3. That breaking ball was crushed to RCF. AJ hits the first pitch to Crisp in center field for the first out. Someone call the White Sox and tell them to pause the game so I can run across the street to Starbucks. Paulie pops up in foul territory to Hinske. Two out. Here's my boy Stubble Erstad. If you squint (like a lot), he kinda looks like Jason Statham. Erstad bunts down the first base line, and he's thrown out.

Red Sox 5-3.

Sixth inning

Manny is up first. Garland has thrown 75 pitches (50 strikes). 3-2 count, Manny fouls one off and hits his bat with his hand. He just missed it. He's not happy. Then he swings and misses the next pitch. He's not gonna be happen with that one either. Lowell singles to Gonzalez in LF, who plays it on the short hop. Then Drew lines out to Richar at second; Lowell stays at first. Garland nails Varitek on the elbow (or should I say, elbow pad), oops. Runners at first and second with two outs. Hinske grounds out to Richar, and those runners are stranded.

Red Sox 5-3.

Sox Win!: No, the Heineken commercial that bugs me is one with those techno-dancing-girls. It's new-ish. And SoxFanEthan: Adam and Rahula are both out of the office. I need an assistant. Send me your resume and I'll make my selection. Must enjoy fetching coffee and compiling KU basketball stats. JD hits one deep, deep to CF...but not deep enough. One out. Javier Lopez is warming in the Red Sox bullpen. Not the Javy Lopez I was thinking of, however. Uribe shatters his bat in grounding out to the shortstop. Two outs. It's up to Danny Richar now to save the inning. Or just keep the inning going. I'm so dramatic. He does...he hits a single just past the reach of Cora at second base. Gonzalez hits a single to Manny in LF, Richar runs super fast all the way to third base. Manny's throw was a bit late. Here comes Terry Francona -- 110 pitches for Beckett and he is done. Javier Lopez will be the new dude. Jerry Owens takes first pitch strike. Now 0-2 count. He hits the 1-2 pitch right to Manny for the third out.

Red Sox 5-3.

Seventh inning

Did you buy David Oritz's car? Me neither. Here's Alex Cora. Garland is still in there. And he strikes out Cora. One out. That's four strikeouts for Garland. Julio Lugo hits one off the end of his bat to Gonzalez in LF. Two outs. Coco Crisp looks at strike three. That's five strikeouts for Garland. My math skills are outstanding.

Red Sox 5-3.

Hideki Okajimi: 56 games, 3-1, 1.19 ERA in 60.2 innings. He's the new pitcher for the Red Sox. He'll face Fields, Pierzynski and Konerko. Okajimi has a crazy delivery -- he doesn't even look at the plate after he releases. It's goofy, but effective. He strikes out Fields for the first out. It's still sunny at the Cell. That's exciting. Okajimi is also wearing one of those big necklaces. I bet it brings him magic powers. AJ runs the count to 3-2. He pops it up to Lugo at shortstop. That ball went high, high up in the air. But it still counts for the second out. Paulie is up and "Harvester of Sorrow" plays. I heart that song, it's on my i-Pod. Konerko walks after running the count to full. Terry Francona stands up in the dugout; Erstad stands in the box. "Fear the Stubble." I think I'll put that on a t-shirt. Anyone know Erstad's song? 1-2 count for "Ersty." Hey, I didn't make it up. It was uttered by your fearless announcers. Erstad grounds it to second, but it gets past Cora...so everyone is safe at first and second. JD now. He lines it right to Lowell at third, who runs over and tags his base. Two stranded.

Red Sox 5-3.

Eighth inning

That Peyton Manning, he's a stickler. It seems to be getting a bit cloudier outside my windows. Grrrrr. Garland is still in there. Ortiz leads things off. The "Thome shift" is on for him. 0-2 count, then a 3-2 count. Manny is on deck. Oritz watches ball four; it looked like a strike. But no. Garland and his 104 pitches will be replaced by Ryan Bukvich. Arg, creepy Heineken commercial again. Make it stop. Bukvich has a 2.70 ERA in 30 innings pitched. Manny hits the first pitch for a foul HR; just foul by inches. Wowza. Then he singles up the middle. No outs. Message board dudes: why can't we all be friends? Mellow. Simmer. Chill. Lowell gets a full count from Bukvich after falling behind 0-2. That's never good. And then he draws the walk. Here comes Ozzie with bases loaded and nobody out...Boone Logan will be on the bump now. I'm still waiting for applications to be my assistant. That coffee isn't going to fetch itself. Bobby Kielty is the pinch-hitter for J.D. Drew. First two pitches are strikes from Boone. Then AJ runs out to talk to Boone. Oh, to be a fly on the wall (glove?) in that conversation. Ehren Wassermann is warming now. Kielty hits it deep to center field for a long out; all the runners will tag. Ortiz will score; Red Sox 6-3. Runners at second and third with one out for "Tek." Boone will intentionally walk him to load the bases and get to Hinske. Crowd doesn't seem to like that decision. Now Kevin Youkilis will pinch-hit for Hinske. Oh, perhaps the crowd is saying "Youuuuuu" for him. Boone leaves; Wassermann come in. Youkilis: First pitch ground ball to the hole at short/third; Ramirez scores. Red Sox 7-3. Alex Cora now; he's 1-for-3 today with a double. He hits it right to Fields, who throws home for the force out. Two outs. Lugo then grounds out to Richar at second. Chopper-two-hopper, in case you wanted to know.

Red Sox 7-3.

Hey message board dudes: everyone say something nice about the person posting above you. Or say something nice about me. Your choice. Mike (is that his first name?) Timlin is the new Red Sox pitcher. Uribe will lead things off; he's 0-for-3 today. He hits it hard to Crisp in center field for the first out. Right on the warning track again. Mike Myers is warming in the Sox bullpen. Richar gets a full count. Bless me, that old radio is making me sneeze. I forgot to take my allergy medication this morning. Stupid power outage. Richar then grounds it to the second baseman for the second out. Gonzalez takes the 2-2 pitch deep to left field, but there's a Red Sox person there who makes the out. I think it was Kielty.

Red Sox 7-3.

Ninth inning

Seriously? All of this for a Big Mac? I've never had one. Mike Myers is in. Shagadelic. Crisp pops up the first pitch he sees, Erstad makes the catch in foul territory. Ortiz now; he's 0-for-3. He walks on five pitches. Fourth walk allowed by Sox pitchers this afternoon. I don't like vegetables on my burgers -- that's why I've never had a Big Mac. And tomatoes are super yucky. Gross. Manny also walks on five pitches. That's gotta make Ozzie happy. Here's Lowell. He finds a hole in the outfield for a double; that will score Ortiz. Red Sox 8-3. Kielty gets a second AB today. I think he has red hair. In case you were wondering. Kielty flies out to Dye in right, but that will score Manny. Red Sox 9-3. Two outs. Here's "Tek." He smacks the ball a long way, all the way out past Gonzalez in left. Two-run home run, Red Sox 11-3. Myers, not so good. Ah, a "Let's go Red Sox" is now heard. Special. Youkilis hits it to the right field corner for a double. I'm bored now. Here comes Don Cooper. Myers will stay in there to face Alex Cora. He hits a chopper right in front of home plate, it stays fair and there's no throw made by Myers or AJ. Two on for Coco. He flies out to center field and the inning is finally over.

Red Sox 11-3.

Do the White Sox have to bat? I'm supposed to go to Chili's soon. AKA, the best restaurant EVER! Remember when the White Sox only trailed by two runs? Yeah, me neither. Timlin is still in there for the Red Sox. Here's Jerry Owens. Someone just yelled "Jerry, your shoe is untied." People are special. Owens strikes out for the first out. Fields takes ball four, thus setting up the game-ending double play ball. Yes, I'm cranky. Or not...AJ bloops one over the head of Cora at second. Two on. Here's Konerko. He's dropped his hands down low on the bat. Clever. No good though, Konerko strikes out. I'm not cranky, maybe just antsy. I love my FTC readers. Go team! And yes, after a strong start, I'm now 0-2 in Sox games. Pity. I should be able to pick my pitcher (Buehrle) and then I'd have a better record. Here's my boy Erstad. Hope he doesn't make the last out. Erstad fouls off about 15 pitches. Or 4. Something like that. It's been almost a four hour ballgame. Sadly, he flies out to center to end this one. Erstad, for shame.

Red Sox 11-3.

Final thoughts

Well, the rain stayed away (for now) but the Red Sox offense didn't. Clever, no? At least this doubleheader wasn't as bad as that Twins one from July. I'll be back here tomorrow to monitor our Bears message board in the big preseason tilt against the 49ers. Let the Rex bashing commence...

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