She’s a maniac, maniac on the floor

The Boston Red Sox have won eight of their last nine; 14 of the last 18. The losses include an 8-3 loss by Curt Schilling to the Devil Rays, a 8-7 squeaker to the White Sox (done in by leaving nine runners on base), a 3-2 loss to the White Sox again in which Youkilis got hurt, and lastly, the 3-0 drop to Toronto in which Lilly baffled us all.
But as Pedro Martinez was so aptly singing two nights ago, the Red Sox are maniacs. The Red Sox are now the best offensive team in baseball, passing the Cleveland Indians for first on the runs scored tab. They’re still nowhere near last year’s offense which is the best in MLB history, but they’re pretty close to scoring as many runs as they did last year. The pitching has perked up lately and The Trade has given us solid defense. A midly upset David Ortiz (who really prefers hitting third) blasted two homeruns last night and hopefully is getting used to being the cleanup hitter.
With everything clicking and Jason Varitek due back tomorrow, the Red Sox are in good shape as the pennant race is about to heat up. With the Red Sox five and a half games back of the slumping Yankees (who were two ninth-inning heroics away from a lead of 3.5 games) and tied with Anaheim for the Wild Card lead (Rangers two back), Boston needs to come out of the little “AL West” stretch in good shape. After Detroit, the Red Sox host the Angels to a three-game affair. They will then heartily open their doors to the Texas Rangers for a three game foray before flying cross-country (with no off-day scheduled) to take on the Athletics. Don’t worry though, the A’s will have jet lag also, flying home from a little affair with the Blue Jays. After that three-game stretch, the Sox will fly to Seattle and try to avoid a little devious coup d’etat by the Mariners, who would relish beating up on the likely to be burnt-out Red Sox.
Nine games in nine days versus the top three AL West teams. From Boston to Oakland to Seattle. Jet lag, anyone? Fortunately, we will be into September by the time the players will need to take off their shoes at the airport lest they be packaging bombs. Therefore the relief corps will be on the way, in the shape of (you heard it here first) Colonel Andy Dominique, Lieutenant Brian Daubach, Captain Mark Malaska, and Private Earl Snyder (assuming of course Pawtucket no longer needs their services).
What about those pesky Angels, Rangers, and Athletics? Well…

  • The Angels have an off-day today, after sweeping the Royals. They will use this off-day to rest, as they are already home, then have a battle with the Twins, then have an off-day to fly to Boston, where they should be easy pickings by the vultures that be the Red Sox rotation. (Schilling, Arroyo, and Lowe will draw Anaheim.) “Oh yeah?”, Angels fans counter. “Well, we have Ramon Ortiz, John Lackey, and Aaron Sele … um, nevermind.”
  • The Texas Rangers are wrapping up a four-game set with the Twins tonight, needing a win to split the series. They then welcome Baltimore and ex-Ranger Rafael Palmiero to their humble abode, then have an off-day to fly to Hockey Country otherwise known as Minnesota. After battling Minnesota and first-baseman Justin Mourneau (who replaced Doug Mientkiewicz and already has drawn the wrath of Twins fans for taking himself out of the game because he was not well, something ‘Dougie Baseball’ would have never done, in the words of a Twins fan) they then meet Boston and the triumvirate of Martinez, Wakefield, and Schilling…a very nice pitching matchup that will be opposed by Kenny Rogers, Chris Young (a young’un) and Ryan Drese, captain of the “Where the hell did you come from?” team.
  • Our wonderful Athletics are going to start September in the middle of a three-game rendezvous with the White Sox, followed by a brisk three-game set in the lovely Skydome, and then shall be whisked home to face the esteemed Red Sox. The Red Sox will throw Arroyo, Lowe, and Pedro Martinez. Who knows who the A’s will throw. I find it meaningless for the three will fall down, slayed by the maniacs that be Boston. Then again, let’s journey over to Athletic Supporters and see what Melissa Lockard has to say today. Oops, looks like she says this:

    How about the A?s starting pitching over the past 10 days? Since the start of this stretch of games against Baltimore and Tampa Bay, A?s starters have given up two runs or less in every start except two (Mulder?s 5-4 win against Baltimore last week and Harden?s 9-5 win versus Tampa Bay last Saturday). The A?s have had three shutouts, one game where they allowed one run and two games where they allowed two runs. The pitching staff as a whole has posted a sick 1.66 ERA during that span. While the Devil Rays aren?t going to win any batting titles, the Orioles are a good hitting ballclub that had been red-hot before the A?s met them last week and put their bats in a deep freeze.

  • Let’s check out what Pedro was singing:

    Just a steel town girl on a Saturday night
    Looking for the fight of her life
    In the real time world no one sees her at all
    They all say she’s crazy
    Locking rythms to the beat of her heart
    Changing movement into the light
    She has danced into the danger zone
    When the dancer becomes the dance.
    It can cut you like a knife
    If the gift becomes the fire
    On the wire between will and what will be
    She’s a maniac, maniac on the floor
    And she’s dancing like she’s never danced before
    She’s a maniac, maniac on the floor
    And she’s dancing like she’s never danced before
    On the ice blue line of insanity
    Is a place most never see
    It’s a hard won place of mystery
    Touch it but can’t hold it
    You word all your life for that moment in time
    It can come or pass you by
    It’s push, shove world but there’s always a chance
    If the hunger stays the night
    There’s a cold kinetic heat
    Struggling, stretching for the peak
    Never stopping with her head against the wind
    She’s a maniac, maniac at your love
    And she’s dancing like she’s never danced before
    She’s a maniac, maniac at your love
    And she’s dancing like she’s never danced before
    It can cut you like a knife
    If the gift becomes the fire
    On the wire between will and what will be
    She’s a maniac, maniac at your love
    And she’s dancing like she’s never danced before
    She’s a maniac, maniac at your love
    And she’s dancing like she’s never danced before
    Maniac, maniac at your love
    And she’s dancing like she’s never danced before
    She’s a maniac, maniac at your love
    And she’s dancing like she’s never danced before.

    Sounds like the Red Sox, doesn’t it?