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Nov 17, 2012 12:12am
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LOS ANGELES - The Dodgers used a five-man infield against the Boston Red Sox. Joel Dreessen Jersey . Too bad they werent
allowed to put a player or two in the Los Angeles Coliseum stands. Kevin Cash
and Kevin Youkilis hit cheap homers off Esteban Loaiza to account for five runs
in the first three innings, and the Red Sox beat the Dodgers 7-4 Saturday night
before an announced crowd of 115,300 – largest ever to watch a baseball game.
The previous record of about 114,000 attended an exhibition between the
Australian national team and an American services team during the 1956 Melbourne
Olympics. This exhibition game was part of the Dodgers 50th anniversary
celebration of their move west from Brooklyn in 1958. They played at the
Coliseum for four years before making Dodger Stadium their permanent home in
1962. In the last baseball game played at the Coliseum, on Sept. 20, 1961, Sandy
Koufax pitched all 13 innings in a 3-2 victory over the Chicago Cubs before a
crowd of 12,068. The Coliseum was built for track and football, not baseball.
Routine fly balls, even popups, soared over a 42-foot high screen in left field,
where the distance from home plate to the foul pole was just 251 feet.
Meanwhile, drives to right and center of more than 400 feet were easy outs. The
distance to the left-field foul pole for this game was 201 feet and the screen
was 60 feet high. And the fences around the rest of the field were far closer to
home plate than in the old days. Cash lined a two-out, three-run homer to
left-center in the second – a ball that might have split the gap elsewhere but
certainly wouldnt have gone out. Youkilis connected with two outs in the third,
popping the ball over the screen with a runner aboard. Surprisingly, there were
only two more homers, a solo shot by Dodgers first baseman James Loney in the
seventh off Bryan Corey, and a two-run blast by rookie Blake DeWitt off Jonathan
Papelbon in the ninth. While Loaiza struggled, Boston knuckleballer Tim
Wakefield excelled, allowing five hits and an unearned run in five innings to
make a mockery of catcher Jason Variteks pre-game forecast of doom. “Wakies a
fly ball pitcher. Thats great,” Varitek said some 3 1/2 hours before the game as
he walked down the Coliseum tunnel and glanced toward the left-field screen.
Then, in his best broadcast voice, Varitek he intoned: “Dodgers 85, Red Sox 81.”
He was way off. Torre joked beforehand about using a five-man infield, but the
Dodgers did so throughout the game. Centre fielder Andruw Jones played behind
second base on the skin of the infield at the start, with left fielder Andre
Ethier in center, leaving left field unprotected. When Jacoby Ellsbury was
thrown out trying to steal in the fourth, Jones was on the receiving end of
catcher Russell Martins throw – the unconventional putout from catcher to centre
fielder. The Red Sox went with a more conventional defensive approach, although
their left fielders were stationed in left-center, well off the line. Longtime
announcer Vin Scully, who moved with the Dodgers from Brooklyn to Los Angeles,
was honoured before the game. He referred to himself as “an ordinary man who was
given an extraordinary opportunity.” After being given a long ovation, Scully
told the fans: “Aw cmon. Its only me.” Wally Moon, a left-handed hitter who
earned lasting fame for his ability to slice the ball off or over the left field
screen, known as Moonshots, threw out the ceremonial first pitch. Before the
second inning, former Lakers star Kareem Abdul-Jabbar threw another ceremonial
pitch, flanked by 15 members of the 1958 Dodgers. Pre-game talk, naturally,
centred on the configuration of the field. Former Dodgers pitching ace Don
Newcombe had a difficult time looking at the screen, which clearly brought up
some unpleasant memories. “Thats terrible, isnt it? I know the hitters are
foaming at the mouth,” Newcombe said, his voice rising. “Its a monstrosity,
thats not a baseball thing. It was a monstrosity then. We knew that.” Boston
manager Terry Francona said he was just happy he wasnt pitching – or hitting.
“Sadly, my little flares would have carried to the left fielder,” he said.
Torre, who grew up in Brooklyn, recalled playing at the Coliseum as a rookie in
1961, and not faring very well. “I walked out on that field and I said, `Whoa,
this is really great for a right-handed hitter. I wasnt that right-handed
hitter,” he said. The Red Sox traveled to Japan for the first two games of the
regular season against Oakland before flying to Los Angeles and arriving late
Wednesday night. Theyre playing three games against the Dodgers before flying to
Oakland for another pair with the As that count. “For us right now, its play a
game and move on,” Bostons Alex Cora said. “Its been such a difficult week.
Hopefully its not like a USC (football) score.” Francona expressed a similar
sentiment. “The idea behind this is awesome,” he said. “I think flexible is the
word for the day. Were trying to respect the occasion. Its more of an event for
ThinkCure, a deserving foundation. The concept is tremendous. For one day, Ive
got to sit back, not complain, not worry.” The Dodgers scored in the first when
Rafael Furcal singled, took second on Wakefields wild pickoff throw and came
around to score on fly balls by Martin and Ethier. The lead didnt last long.
Third baseman DeWitt committed a two-out error in the second before Bobby Kielty
drew a walk, setting the stage for Cash and making all three runs unearned.
Kielty and Cora hit RBI singles in the sixth to extend Bostons lead to 7-1. Eric Decker Youth Jersey . Nadal wrote on his
Twitter account on Saturday: “8:30 in the morning!!!Just finished passing a
surprise antidoping test…it was expected after everything…but Im happy its
like this!” The Spanish sports ministry contacted its French counterparts to
complain over the satirical skits. Terrell Davis Jersey . Both are sure signs
the young Edmonton Oilers have wasted little time making an impression. The
Lottery Line. The Kid Line. The H2E Line. Call them what you will, the trio of
Hall, Nugent-Hopkins and Eberle has given fans at Rexall Place plenty to cheer
about, combining for 22 points and accounting for eight of the 16 goals the
Oilers have scored. http://www.nfldenverbroncosstore.com/wesley-woodyard-jersey
. The move was announced Thursday, one day after Johnson was removed from
Baltimores game against the Los Angeles Angels after one at-bat. J.D. Walton Jersey . A person familiar with
the arrangements said Rodriguez intends to make the announcement in Arlington,
Texas, where the Rangers start a homestand Monday against the New York Yankees.
Knowshon Moreno Jersey . PETERSBURG, Fla.ST.
PETERSBURG, Fla. – Mark Teixeira replayed the ground ball in his mind, then
reviewed it on video. And the slick-fielding first baseman still wasnt sure what
happened on his rare error that cost the New York Yankees a game. “I really dont
know. I tried to look, but it was one of those after it goes by you, you go what
just happened? I didnt even get leather on it,” Teixeira said after his first
error of the season allowed the winning run to score in a 4-3 loss to the Tampa
Bay Rays on Monday night. B.J. Upton and Carlos Pena homered and the Rays scored
twice in the seventh inning to rally past the AL East leaders and halt a
two-game slide that dropped them a season-high 7 1/2 games behind the Yankees in
the division. Pinch-hitter Brooks Conrad delivered a tying RBI double with two
outs in the seventh inning against David Robertson (0-3). Teixeira then
misplayed Elliot Johnsons sharp grounder over first base for his first error in
671 chances this year, enabling Conrad to score the go-ahead run. Teixeira shook
his head after the ball scooted under his glove, allowing Johnson to reach
third. “Usually you can knock it down. I tried to look at video, but I couldnt
really even tell what happened,” he said. “I just missed it. I dont know if it
hit the back of the base or the chalk or what. I still have to knock it down.
Thats the disappointing thing.” “Usually if you get a bad hop you can just try
to knock it down, but I didnt get it. I just missed it. I dont know what
happened,” he added. “The ball, obviously, didnt do what I expected it to do.
Its very tough. I take a lot of pride in saving runs for our team, but I gave
one back tonight.” Matt Moore (5-5) allowed three runs while scattering nine
hits over seven innings to win his fourth straight decision for the Rays, who
have defeated the Yankees eight consecutive times at Tropicana Field dating to
July 2011. Conrad has appeared in 11 games since being claimed off waivers from
Milwaukee. Manager Joe Maddon sent him to the plate, unaware that the
switch-hitting infielder had gone 0 for 24 in pinch-hitting situations since he
last came up with a hit in such a spot for Atlanta on Sept. 4, 2011. “Mostly
what Ive done at this level is going out there and being a pinch hitter with
Atlanta, so I have a lot of experience with it the last couple years,” Conrad
said. “Its fun. You get up there in those big spots, but also its a really tough
spot coming in there and facing some of the best arms in the game, the best
bullpen guys in the game. But I think its fun to be in those spots.” Upton and
Pena hit solo homers off right-hander Freddy Garcia, filling in for the injured
Andy Pettitte in a New York rotation also missing CC Sabathia. Joel Peralta
worked a perfect eighth for Tampa Bay, and All-Star Fernando Rodney finished for
his 23rd save in 24 opportunities. TTeixeira, Robinson Cano and
Curtis Granderson each drove in a run for the Yankees. Derek Wolfe Jersey. Grandersons
seventh-inning sacrifice fly made it 3-2. Robertson, who has received a loss in
his last two appearances against Tampa Bay, claimed responsibility for letting
this one slip way. “Ive got to come in and get one out. Ive got a runner on
second. I blew it there. I blew the game,” Robertson said, adding that he didnt
fault Teixeira for not coming up with the ground ball that would have gotten the
Yankees out of the seventh. “I feel like that one is not on Tex. Hes made
amazing plays behind us all year long,” he said. “Its going to happen, but I
still should have been able to get Conrad out. That one falls on me.” Garcia
made four starts before being moved into the bullpen after allowing six runs in
1 2-3 innings of a 7-5 loss to Detroit. The right-hander returned to the
rotation to fill in for Pettitte, who was placed on the 60-day disabled list
after he fractured a bone in his left leg when he was hit by a batted ball
against Cleveland on June 27. New York scored twice in the first with help from
Hideki Matsui, the former Yankees star who overran Teixeiras routine fly to
right field that dropped for a RBI double. Alex Rodriguez singled, sending
Teixeira to third before Cano lined a single up the middle to stake Garcia to a
quick 2-0 lead. Moore escaped further damage by getting Nick Swisher to hit into
an inning-ending double play. Yankees manager Joe Girardi said before the game
that Garcia, who had made 10 appearances out of the bullpen since being removed
from the rotation, would be limited to 75 pitches. Pena, who is 5 for 42
lifetime against the right-hander, homered on Garcias 74th—and last—pitch.
Garcia allowed two runs and five hits in 5 1-3 innings. “Really good job by
Freddy. For not making a start in a long time, I thought he did a tremendous
job,” Girardi said. NOTES: Matsui left in the second inning due to left
hamstring tightness. ... New York RHP Joba Chamberlain is progressing toward
pitching in a minor league game for the first time since dislocating his right
ankle bouncing on a trampoline in March. The reliever threw a pair of 20-pitch
segments Monday during a batting practice session at the teams minor league
complex in Tampa. He said hes scheduled to throw a simulated game on Friday. ...
Sabathia, who strained his left groin on July 24, felt good after he resumed
throwing Monday. ... Rays RHP Jeremy Hellickson, who left his most recent start
after being hit in the right shin by a line drive off the bat of Prince Fielder,
threw a bullpen session and expects to make his next scheduled start on Thursday
at Cleveland. ... Yankees RHP David Aarsdma is undergoing tests after feeling
discomfort in his surgically repaired right elbow. The reliever pitched in three
Gulf Coast League games before being shut down. ’ ’ ’ 

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