Thursday, June 23, 2011

6/23/11 Pawtucket Red Sox 4, Louisville Bats 3

Louisville Slugger Field, Louisville, KY
Game 4 of 4

Oh gosh, oh gee…can it be…KEVIN MILLWOOD?!?

My trip to Slugger Field for our annual church Men’s Club meeting at the game is always a weird one. We do this every year, it’s always on “Thirsty Thursday” (you know what that means) and we always meet at Browning’s for a beer first, then to the Overlook Grille for more beer. Our system for beating the 2-beers-per-transaction rule is flawless, as there is always a picnic table filled with $1 beers, plenty of cold ones when you need them, and a bucket full of baseball smack talk camaraderie. The only understanding is that sooner or later, it will be your turn to stand in line…do it gracefully.

This year’s trip got weirder, as I arrived later than usual (after dinner at Zanzabar with my boss, who I was most happy to bring to the game and the “meeting”) and took my proper place at our picnic table, I craned my neck around to check out who the starting pitchers were…


Yes, that’s right. It really was Kevin Millwood. You already know his career…since being drafted in the 11th round by the Braves in 1993, he has been on 6 teams. Now with the Red Sox for his 7th organization landing (including the Rangers in 2006 and the Red Sox now, he’s pitched for 4 clubs), and really not having seen him work since 2009, but having seen his 4-16 win-loss record for the Orioles in 2010, the thought in my mind was…what now?

See update at the end of this post for “what now” with Kevin Millwood!

Scott Carroll, of course, is one of my favorite pitchers. He started for the Bats, and after allowing 1 run each in back-to-back innings, settled down to only allow one more as he left the game in the 8th inning. At that time, the game was tied 3-3. Scott was leaning quite a bit on his fastball tonight.

Millwood, on the other hand, also pitched well, pitching 6 innings with only 2 runs (earned), 3 BB and 7K.

As I had hoped, we got EXTRA INNINGS…bonus baseball. But not for long.

Top of the 10th, game still tied, RHP Brandon Hynick enters for his second inning of work. A leadoff walk to Pawtucket RF Matt Sheely and a consecutive walk issued to CF Che_Hsuan Lin ends in a remarkable PIDP (Popped into Double Play), which means 1 on, 2 out and 3B Daniel Nava at the plate. Hynick throws 2 outside, then Nava tags him for an RBI double to left field…the speedy Sheely easily scores from second. Star 1B Lars “Lumberjack” Anderson flies out to end the inning with Pawtucket up by a run.

Pawtucket needs two pitchers to nearly handcuff the Bats; Todd Frazier nails a screaming double to LF with 2 outs to instigate a Bats rally. Rally falls short as Pawtucket brings in LHP Randy Williams to induce a first-pitch groundout to 2B to leave Frazier stranded and end the game.

If I took pictures tonight, I have no idea what happened to them. That’s “Thirsty Thursday” for ya.

”What Now?” Kevin Millwood UPDATE
On August 6, 2011, Millwood was released by the Red Sox after a (5-1) win-loss record and a 4.28 ERA with Pawtucket. He never got called up to Boston during his time with the Red Sox organization. 2 days later, he signed as a free agent with the Colorado Rockies. As of 8/11/11, he’s had one start with the Rockies, a loss, and an ERA of 3.86.

Official Scorecard and Bat Chat

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