Sunday, June 19, 2005

MVPCS '05 - Game #4

Wrap up the series in San Diego my ass!

Game #4:

Starting Pitchers: Brian Lawrence, SD vs. Aaron Harang, CIN
Lineup Notes: Jiménez started at 2B, Peña started in RF

Game #4 made for a do-or-die type scenario for my Reds, as dropping game #3 faced us with a 2-1 series and 2 more games in San Diego to try and escape. The way #3 ended certainly gave Boz's Padres the momentum in the series in homering twice of RP Ryan Wagner (naturally with the first of the 2 being bullshit!), but that was something I was going to have to get over in an attempt to bring the series back home 3-2 either way.

Harang pitched pretty fantastic. He wasn't able to strike out as many as my staff did in the previous game, but I used a lot of low, out of the zone fastballs to try and give the impression of hittable pitches. Alongside the low heaters, I was able to mix a slider to catch a few corners and drop out, and Harang's cutter had more success than any other cutter I've used in '05. Alongside the nominally average 92 mph fastball, I was able to run the cutter out of the zone to right-handers, and leave a 4-seamer over the outside edge for a few looking strike outs.

I switched up my lineup this game after getting pissed off at Freel and Kearns. The middle of my lineup hasn't produced shit other than a few hits in game #2, and I'm convinced there isn't much there anyway. Unless I guess right and get a meat pitch to hit out of the ballpark, no one's particularly hitting the ball hard enough to get anything. I've had this theory since Bases Loaded 2 for the NES - players go through streaks. In Exhibition mode, if a certain player is streaking and another isn't, they won't ever - just how the game is set up. Naturally during season play they get hot & cold, however in exhibition mode it's already set and there's not a whole lot you can do about it.

But hey, I could be wrong. Not likely - I mean, once I thought I was wrong 3 years ago about something, turned out I was only mistaken.

Anyway, I juggled the lineup to get rid of the horseshit 0-4's from the cleanup slot to the 7th, and I benched both Ryan Freel (for missing the cutoff on the Roberts HR in #3) and Austin Kearns (for making the bad throw and not hitting shit all series). I scored first in the 2nd inning when Ken Griffey Jr. smoked a line drive HR over the right field wall, but Boz came right back with each run I scored. His first came in the 4th inning when Ryan Klesko singled to score Brian Giles after a double, and when I took the lead again in the 7th off a 460' monster shot by Adam Dunn (which careened off the shelf above CF), Boz followed up with a pinch hit RBI 2B by Mark Sweeney to score Khalil Greene. Tied 2-2 in the top of the 9th, Griffey walked to start things off and subsequently marked the end of RP Scott Linebrink's reign of terror on my hitters. Down 2-1 in the count with 1 out, I sat on an inside pitch with Wily Mo Peña and belted a 390' 2-run home run into the upper deck of left field, giving me the lead in the game and eventually the win, sending us to game #5 all tied up.

Mission accomplished.

SD - Roberts 1-4; Loretta 0-4; Giles 1-4, R; Nevin 3-4; Klesko 2-3, RBI; Hernandez 0-4; Greene 1-4, R; Burroughs 0-4; Lawrence 0-2; Sweeney 1-1, RBI; Nady 1-1; Blum 0-1

CIN - Jiménez 0-3; López 1-4; Casey 0-4; Griffey 1-3, 2 R, RBI, BB; Peña 1-4, R, 2 RBI; Dunn 2-4, R, RBI; Randa 0-3; LaRue 1-3; Harang 0-2; Cruz 1-1

2B: SD - Giles, Sweeney; CIN - none
HR: SD - none; CIN - Griffey (1), Dunn (1), Peña (1)
RBI: SD - Klesko (1), Sweeney (1); CIN - Griffey (2), Dunn (1), Peña (2)
SB: SD - Klesko (1); CIN - none
E: SD - Greene; CIN - none

SD - Lawrence: 6.2 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 HR; May: .1 IP, 0 H/R; Linebrink (L, 0-1): 2 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 HR

CIN - Harang: 6 IP, 6 H, 1 R, 3 K; Weathers: 1 IP, 2 H, 1 R; Mercker (W, 1-0): 1 IP, 2 H, 1 K; Graves (S, 2): 1 IP, 0 H/R, 1 K

Series tied at 2-2

...oh, & just who the hell am I to not continue the babe/post trend?


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