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WSI News - Totally Biased Game Recaps

9th Inning Comeback

August 11, at Seattle

KW's Daily Special:
Cold Pizza

That's all KW's staff has left during these late night games.

Short Take: 8-inning offensive sleepwalk almost costs John Danks a win, but 9th inning homer by Alexei Ramirez sends Sox home happy.

If there was anyone happier at Safeco Field tonight than Alexei Ramirez, who hit a 1-out, 3-run homer in the 9th to give the Sox a 3-1 lead, it was John Danks, who pitched superbly for 8 innings but was starring down the barrel at his 9th loss of the year after being outdueled by 25-year-old Doug Fister, who was making his 1st MLB start.  Instead, Ramirez's blast ended 8.1 innings of shutout baseball, rewarding Danks for his masterpiece, and giving the Sox their first 9th inning comeback win of the year, a win that hopefully will propel this team on a nice win streak.

There's not much to say about today.  The Mariners scored their one run in the 4th inning when, with Adrian Beltre on 2nd, Russell Branyan singled to right field.  Aside from that, Danks was near flawless, needing 99 pitches to strike out 8, scatter 7 hits, and allow just that single run in the 4th over 8 innings.  The problem, of course, was Fister, who had exactly 1 IP under his belt in the Majors and some ridiculous stats at AAA Tacoma, who was absolutely obliterating the Sox lineup.  In 6 innings of work, he allowed 1 hit, an infield single by Jim Thome, that's how bad it was.  In fact, until the 9th inning, the Sox's only 2 hits were infield singles.

It's not as if they had no chances, as Seattle's pitching (Fister, Miguel Batista, and Mark Lowe) combined to walk 7 batters in their 8 combined innings.   But every time the Sox had even a mild threat, like in the first, with Gordon Beckham at 3rd and Thome at 1st, they were unable to get the hit to bring home the run.

Until the 9th, that is.  Facing David Aardsma, who had become a dominant closer in Seattle, Konerko lead off the inning taking him to the deepest nook of center field at Safeco, but fell just a foot or two short of being anything more than a long out.  Aardsma then walked A.J. Pierzynski and allowed a single to Carlos Quentin which set Alexei Ramirez up for the drama.  He took a 2-2 pitch up and tight into the Sox's bullpen over the left field wall.  Not much drama in Seattle's 9th, as Bobby Jenks did allow a 2-out single which brought the tying run to the plate, but Russell Branyan just popped out to Dewayne Wise in center.  Sox win, 3-1.  Yes!  Hell yes!

The win, coupled with losses by the Tigers and Twins, pulls the Sox a game closer to the division lead and a game further ahead of the sinking Twins.  At 58-56 the Sox remain just 2 games out of 1st place.  In the rubber game of this 3-game set, the Sox will send Mark Buehrle to the hill against King Felix Hernandez for Seattle.  First pitch is at 9:10 PM at the game will be broadcast on Comcast Sports Net.

WSI's Critic's Corner:  5 stars.  I don't care how dead they looked, a 9th inning comeback is always good stuff.

submitted by doublem23

Sox Clubhouse "Pick to Click" Winner

John Danks & Alexei Ramirez

Danks dominated the M's for 8 innings, allowing just 1 run in his start, but would have been saddled with the loss if not for Alexei's 9th inning heroics.

Play WSI's Pick to Click Contest!


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September 29... The Last (And Lost) Weekend

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September 18...Klubered, but Not Clobbered

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