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Preview: The Top Of The Ninth

The Top Of The Ninth

Everything From The Ninth Inning On....

Updated: 2012-04-15T20:52:12.099-04:00


Arroyo for Pena


Good baseball trade, but it hurts a little. The Sox have just sent Bronson Arroyo, he of the hometown discount, to the Cincinatti Reds for young slugger Wily Mo Pena. The move makes perfect sense: one of the starters had to go, and Boston needed power-hitting depth. People say Arroyo was a great fit for long man in the bullpen, but let's be realistic. How often does a rotation with 5 quality

Practice Portions


Sox or C's, Sox or C's? Which to discuss? Both so interesting. Let's have a practice portion of each...- The Celtics are actually beginning to show the promise Danny Ainge has been talking about since, well, the Cold War. The way they've done it is, somewhat disheartingly, the only way to improve in today's NBA: luck. A trade of Wally Szczerbiak and bad contracts for Ricky Davis and bad players

What A Fun Time


Even bears wake up every now and again.It's Valentine's Day, a day of romance, love, and admiration, also coincidentally the two-year anniversary of Alex Rodriguez's move to New York. Some people look back at such times and remember the great loves they may have had or the emotional thrills they've felt when it turned out their girlfriend actually liked stuffed bears. But not The Ninth. No, The

Manny Possibilites


If you are, as the Ninth has been, attempting to do work while reloading every five minutes, here's something a bit more interesting than the Worldwide Leader claiming AJ Burnett to the Jays as breaking news for the 5th time today. It's an idea born completely by the Ninth and is a result of zero industry sources, other than a half-empty pack of Camel Ultra-Lights. It's simply an idea

Predictive Text


After a particularly delicious Patriot victory over Indy last season, the Ninth wrote the following:The Ninth would like to know if now, finally, people get what's going on in Indy. Next winter, when inevitably they find themselves in another playoff game at Gillette, are we at last going to accept that they don'’t have a chance? Or is it going to be the same old nonsense about a high-powered

We'll Always Have St. Louis


To paraphrase Theo's Grandpa, of course. So Epstein is out and Boston is wavering somewhere between apoplectic and suicidal. Upon dictionary check, there is little literal difference between those two states. So sorry. But there are two articles I wish you to read before you finish your seizure: Peter Gammons and Bill Simmons. They're both fairly close to right, and you should listen to them.

Ok, Panic If You Want


Light your hair on fire, spray paint the furniture, toss all babies out with bathwater. It's an ugly Red Sox loss, and you can panic if you'd like, but do it for the right reasons. Losing the first playoff game, especially on the road, means very little. Someone has to go up 1-0, and it might as well be the home team. Consider how much trouble Chicago would be in if the decision went the other

Tuesdays With Ozzie


Well, they made it. Too bad Cleveland let the air out of the balloon and robbed us of a shot at the division. Hey, don’t say I didn’t warn you. But do the Red Sox really have a chance to repeat? Well, let’s talk about it. Ok, fine, I’ll begin.You’ll remember that about this time last year (who am I kidding, you don’t remember) The Ninth insisted that Boston was as good as any team in the playoffs

Boys Are Back In Town


The Ninth Editorial Office is in a tizzy. All writers have been pulled off other topics, meaning another delay on our long-awaited romance novel, and put front and center on the Sox. We have an open tab at Dominoe's (now they put steak on pizza!), we're using Zima bottles for ashtrays (I employ a lot of 14 year-old girls from the 90's), and the Official Ninth Dog hasn't been fed for weeks.



That's all I got time for, one paragraph, but I couldn't let today pass without remark. Must-Win games in June? Nope. July? Eh. August? Not really. But this, this is a must-win game. It is not critical that New York also loses, although it would help, but the Sox can't risk going down two games. So Matt Clement, welcome to the biggest game of your life. Pitch well, pitch deep, and prove to Dusty

Last Call For Alcohol


How to start a thing like this? Someone should be giving Bud Selig a dorky high-five right now. The trick worked. Another division added, a wild card introduced, and several years later we have the tightest last week, maybe, ever? I could look that up, but my Internet is down, and yours isn’t, so go for it. There’s a bit of intrigue left in the NL, but it’s looking mostly set at Atlanta, St.



Well we really knocked it out of the park last week. Kevin Faulk, perhaps feeling the pressure of the Ninth One selection, gained a massive 30 total yards and as a non-factor. Ninth One Curse? Absolutely. Oh the power a rarely read blog can wield.This week is a tough game to read, not a challenge the Ninth One selection committee really needed. It would be nice to say that Corey Dillon is going

Pen Not Mightier


Terry Francona is killing this team. Those who have followed the Ninth know that I am not a big manager critic. Very rarely are they presented with decisions that have clear right or wrong options. You can look at different numbers in any situation and defend a variety of choices, so I try not to attack any one move. But right now, Francona is making a big mistake. Wakefield should have been

Oscar Oscar


Huge win on Friday night for Boston. H-uge. For the Red Sox to fall out of first place at this point would have to be considered a major failure, and it would take a toll on the team psyche. Presuming they have one. Also, getting involved in a Wild Card race with the best team in the AL right now, the Cleveland Indians, doesn’t seem like a great idea. And for those eagerly raising your hands and

Patriotic Sox


To paraphrase John McClane, the Red Sox seem to have themselves some starting pitching. The last trip through the rotation was a fun one, with each fellow looking about as good as he has all season. No better time than September. And it sure makes the bullpen look good when you never have to use it. Combine this all with the red hot Millar-Olerud tag team and all of a sudden we have a contender

Schill Report


Curt is probably disappointed, and the WEEI callers are sure to be annoyed, but tonight's appearance was a distinct step forward. Schilling got in trouble with one bad curveball, a few bad splitters, and mediocre control, but turned the start around with his two buddies, location and velocity. After the second inning, Curt switched to sliders and fastballs and seemed to find his command. From

Care About Democracy?


The Ninth does, and that's why I vote regularly in Internet-based reality TV polls. And so should you. As we mentioned earlier in the season, Bravo's "Situation: Comedy" features an official Childhood Friend of the Ninth and (ahem) loyal reader. As I know all of you have been watching, there is little need for a recap, so I'll keep it brief. Two teams are trying to make a sitcom. There, how was

Luck Be A Lady


An interesting thing these Red Sox. As of Wednesday afternoon they have the second-best record in the American League and the White Sox, their lone betters, have been in a tail spin for weeks. Boston's held first place for months with the Yankees unable to make any real push, a fact which doesn't seem likely to change. But after all this, even with a record 21 games over .500, it's hard to say

Just Dropped In


Just flipped on the game to notice that Matt Clement has made a slight change to his pitching wind up. Hadn't read anything in the paper about it, but his leg kick seems to smaller and more deliberate. Clement's knee used to come quickly up almost parallel to his hip, and then he would drive to the plate. It looks like Wallace has slowed this process down some and shortened the height of the kick

Riches, You Embarrass


Trading deadline and the John Pabelbon debut all in the same afternoon! It's enough to make you forget the emptiness you have inside. And he almost struck out the side in the first. Pleasure, thy name is Pabelbon.How do you get a girlfriend if your name is Terry Tiffee? Hello Miss, I'm Terry Tiffee and I will be your date for the evening. Why are you crying?So far this is shaping up as the

Six Gun Gunner


It is so hot in New York that Alex Rodriguez's ego has actually started to melt.The best day in sports, baseball's trading deadline, is fast approaching. For those of you who haven't marked your calendars, it's this Sunday the 31st at 5pm. And if your calendar is marked with the trading deadline, chances are it isn't marked with much of anything else. Boom. Anyhoo, the Sox have been mentioned in

Something's Happening Here


Ok, the Sox made a few moves this afternoon, and they're a little strange.1) Designated Alan Embree for assignment.2) Acquired 2B/3B Tony Graffanino from the Royals for essentially nothing.3) Acquired OF Adam Hyzdu from the Pirates for less than essentially nothing.Alright, easy stuff first. Theo got Hyzdu because Boston is facing three left-handers in a row (Fossum, Hendrickson, and Buehrle) and

Couldn't Happen to a Better Bunch of Guys


For those who haven't heard the news, Yankee starter Chien-Ming Wang has been put on the 15-day DL and will miss tomorrow night's start. WFAN's Michael Kay however is reporting a rumor that Wang's shoulder is shot and he is lost for the season. If that turns out to be true, and say what you will about Michael Kay, but he does have plenty of Yankee connections, it will be a BIG loss for New York.

Bulleted Points


If you're the kind of person that loves it when your buddy picks up his old guitar and soulfully strums classic Pearl Jam songs while cleverly mimicking Eddie Veder's voice, then you'll love Bronson Arroyo's new album. What possibly makes Johnny Damon think we want to hear his opinion on every topic Red Sox and otherwise? Sure, you hit baseballs, I 'd love to know what you think of the upcoming

Schilling to Close?


Finally, something to write about.News came out today that Terry Francona is going to use Curt Schilling in the bullpen to help him "work himself back into shape." Theo Epstein insists this is just what the club needs, which is quite a surprise to The Ninth who thought a #1 starter is just what the club needs. Clearly we are missing some information. If Curt, as we have been lead to believe, is