Sox 12, Cubs 1
Martinez alliteratly lines out to Lee in left. Wellemeyer draws a walk and Cubs fans actually cheer it. The G-Man grounds a single through the middle of the infield and the winning run is 10 batters away. Alas, Gonzalez flies out to center.
Valentin walks. And strong-side linebacker Kyle Farnsworth gets up in the bullpen to a huge hand. Wellemeyer fans Thomas. Farnsworth punk'd Paul Wilson harder than Tony Siragusa on Rich Gannon in the 2001 AFC title game. I'm surprised he didn't get flagged 15 yards for driving Wilson into the turf. Ordonez grounds into a double play and onward we move.
One more thing on the fight: Am I the only one disappointed that Dusty wasn't allowed to have his way with Ray Knight during yesterday's dust-up? "Little roller up around first. Behind the bag...it gets through Buckner! Here comes Knight and the Mets win it!" Ugh.
The struggling Paul Konerko replaces Thomas at first. Patterson rolls out and here's the situation where Sosa usually launches one. Nothing at stake. Not this time. Strike three. Alou grounds out. Zzzz.
Sixth inning--yes, it's only the sixth
Greg from Bloomingdale writes in with a correction: "You must be in a 13 run pool, as your live column has 13 runs and its only 12." Sorry about that, Greg, but Adam Caldarelli has gone home for the day. Honestly, I didn't think anyone was paying attention. Farnsworth strikes out Lee. Crede flies to right and Sosa battles the sun again, but this time squeezes it tight. Rowand bloops a single to center. Olivo grounds to Hernandez, who somehow sneaked into the game, and that ends it.
Karros gives it a ride to center, but not long enough. One out. Aaaannnnd... two outs. Valentin made a Jeter-esque play going deep in the hole to his left and throwing off balance to get Martinez. Paul Bako singles and Troy O'Leary doubles him home. Bobby Hill rips one to left and O'Leary goes to third. Dusty has emptied his bench. Jose Hernandez picks up where he left off in his last stop with the Cubs with a strikeout.
Sox 12, Cubs 2
Lefty Mark Guthrie enters for the Cubs and strikes out what looked like Brian Daubach. But I'm not sure. I was busy handling a technical issue. Graffanino grounds back to Gutherie and Eddie Vedder has appeared in the booth. Bobby Hill throws the ball away on a grounder to second, but Konerko flies out to Sosa in right.
Can someone please explain the logic behind getting a vanity license plate with your favorite team's nickname on it and then wearing said plate around your neck?
Chip and Steve now chatting up Evanston native Eddie Vedder. Hey, how's that crusade against Ticketmaster going? Considering Pearl Jam just played the United Center, a Ticketmaster only venue, I would say not good.
Someone named D. Sanders has come on to face Sosa. Fox has forsaken the game completely and is now alternating between shots of babes in the crowd, Eddie Vedder in the booth and a perplexed Ron Santo. Apparently, Kerry Wood and Vedder are hitting the bars together tonight. Hopefully it turns out better than Vedder and Jack McDowell's misadventure in the Big Easy years back. Sosa flies out to right and Patterson, whom I had no idea was on base, tags and takes second. Tom Goodwin rifles one up the middle and Patterson scores. Here's something else we've learned: Steve Stone plays golf with Alice Cooper. Gives new meaning to his song "18." Yes, I'm spent. Martinez grounds to third and we're 12 outs away from starting the weekend.
Sox 12, Cubs 3
Mike Remlinger is the new Cubs pitcher and gets Ordonez to fly out to left. Eleven outs away from the weekend. Lee grounds out. Ten away. And Crede grounds out.
Bako grounds out and that's five straight ground-ball outs for both teams. O'Leary lines a hit to center and that's not good for me. I feel a pitching change coming, just to prolong things. Hill fans and here's Jerry Manuel making the change. Come on. So, Willie Harris replaces Rowand in center, Rowan moves to right, Maggs puts his feet up and Rick White is the pitcher. The point? Not sure. Jose Hernandez digs in to eventually strike out. No, make that ground out.
The Sox need to take the baseball equivalent of a knee here. Of course, Rowand gets a hit. Joe Borowski is the pitcher, by the way. Olivo pops out to Lenny Harris, who long ago replaced Karros at first. Borowski walks Graffanino and Valentin comes up with two on. Harris makes a diving play at first and we're three outs away from the weekend.
The Cubs go three up and three down in the bottom of the ninth and the Sox crush the North Siders in the first game of the series. Thanks to everyone who read and wrote in. Have a great weekend.