The “Epic-ness” of David Wright

David Wright 1.jpg

Team USA vs Team Puerto Rico

Even if you aren’t a fan of the WBC, you have to admit that watching that game was pretty epic. It was a pitcher’s duel throughout (okay, maybe Jane didn’t like it) and I happen to really enjoy pitcher’s duels. Neither pitching staff was substantial as a total of seven pitchers was used by each side. It was the defensive plays and small ball that this game centered around.
For example, though many of you may have glanced over it, David Wright’s steal in the second inning was pretty important. Admittedly, I would have glanced over it myself if my friend hadn’t mentioned it when we were talking about it. Though I fell asleep in the top of the ninth (what can I say, long day + couch + no lights=sleep) I was up and ready for the bottom of the ninth. 
I had essentially called David Wright’s walk-off hit since Game 1 against Canada. In that game, I said that he was going to hit a home run. It didn’t happen. 
‘Fine,’ I said, ‘You owe me one”. When it didn’t happen in the next couple of games, I began to get frustrated. We had made a subconscious agreement! Finally, I compromised after he didn’t hit one against the Netherlands. 
David Wright 2.jpeg
‘You owe me a very important hit, and you will get it at a crucial moment,” I said. Even at the beginning of the game against Puerto Rico, I said, ‘Wouldn’t it be funny if David Wright got the most important hit of the game tonight?”
Well, when it got to the bottom of the ninth, I knew. The bases were loaded with one out, and Kevin Youkilis had just walked to bring in a run to make it a one run deficit. David Wright was up. 
I knew. I just KNEW. I had even made it my status on Facebook. Just ask Melissa! Then it happened, a bloop single to right field that scored Brian Roberts and Jimmy Rollins! I was jumping up and down like a fool, and every trace of exhaustion had left my body. I was ecstatic. Does it feel like the playoffs to you guys? 
The Red Sox
Dustin Pedroia 1.jpg
They call it a “ferocious swing” so it looks like Dustin Pedroia’s injury wasn’t as bad as we thought it could be, but I’m glad that there was some concern. He was back in the lineup today against Pittsburgh, and went 1-2 with an RBI single. Maybe I will see him tomorrow at Spring Training (oh yes, that means pictures). 
Josh Bard 1.JPG
The biggest news I think, is that the Red Sox released Josh Bard. At first, I was very skeptical of this. ‘Why would they do that??’ I thought. He was hitting something like .429 and was doing a pretty nice job behind the plate. Doesn’t it seem right that he would catch Wakefield? 
Well, instead of just dwelling on stats, as we all normally tend to do (just out of our crazy baseball fan nature), we have to look at why we acquired Bard in the first place. The Red Sox got Bard over a month before re-signing Jason Varitek. I think that the Red Sox picked up Josh Bard as a safety net– in case agreements with Jason could not be made. 
From Bard’s perspective though, it must be though being let go– again. He is now where Ivan Rodriguez was just last week. I think that he would still serve as a great backup catcher for another team, and I wish him luck in his endeavor to find a job. 
George Kottaras 1.jpg
So, who is the backup catcher now? Who is catching Wakefield? The candidate most likely to fill those shoes is George Kottaras, who went 2-2 today against Pittsburgh with a double. He is young, and was out of minor league options (I don’t even know what that means?). Now, he is getting the chance of a lifetime. 
He did a decent job of catching Wakefield against the Yankees. Apparently, the trick is to let the knuckleball come to you, not try to go get the knuckleball. I can’t imagine how hard that must be to catch– or hit for that matter. It has no spin, and it’s already hard enough to hit a baseball. His hitting is a bit mediocre, I think he had something like a .243 average in Pawtucket. But, as we all know, a catcher’s important comes behind the plate, not next to it. Though, I don’t think Erin minds Joe Mauer’s numbers. 
Kevin Youkilis 3.jpg
Kevin Youkilis is having this problems with his left ankle– including Achilles tendonitis (whatever that means). I don’t think it’s something to worry about. I think it’s more of a small injury that comes with getting back into the groove. I don’t blame the Classic at all, and neither do any of the injured players. 
I know that the Classic comes at an annoying time, but to be honest with you, I LOVE it. I love the pride that these players feel in representing their country, I think that’s really important, and it provides an opportunity for some of the forgotten veterans to say, ‘Hey, I’m still here!’. This is the case of Ivan Rodriguez, who signed a deal with the Houston Astros. I am really happy for him, he really deserved this deal after his astounding performance in the Classic. 
Around the League
Well, with the entire USA team basically becoming an accident waiting to happen, a few other members have been added to the roster. This includes Evan Longoria, Derek Lee, Ryan Ludwick, and AJ Pierzynski. These are all great additions to the roster, and they will provide strong depth as the US heads into the semi-finals. The first matchup is going to be incredible: Oswalt vs Dice-K!
Joe Mauer 1.jpg
It looks like Chase Utley is making a very speedy recovery, much speedier th
an most expected. He could very well be ready for Opening Day. It’s great when guys like this recover successfully from surgery. Hamels being ready for Opening Days, is uncertain, as is Joe Mauer’s situation. 
Baseball in my Life
This week was a great week for talking about baseball for me. The day after the epic WBC game, everything productive that came out of my mouth was about the World Baseball Classic. And on Wednesday, my math teacher and I had a long discussion about the Red Sox and Yankees and how their lineups and pitching staff looked. 
In my debate class, I am writing a piece on the problem with steroids, and how we can fix the problem (plus, I’m relating it to school). Basically, I just get to rant for ten minutes about steroids, it should work for me.
The most important thing though, is that I got my research paper back. No grade though (my teacher doesn’t role that way), but lots of nice comments! He thought that my thesis statement was ‘great’, and he loved the quotes, and I got lots of ‘goods’ and ‘interestings’ and checkmarks. Most importantly, he liked the way that I was able to draw the parallel ideas between baseball and America, though maybe I was ranting a little bit at the end.
For the re-write, I’m going to organize it thematically rather than chronologically. Wish me luck for the game tomorrow, I’m going to have to go there and get tickets since I can’t find any online! 


  1. mlbtribefan

    About Bard, I told Julia that Bard was traded to SD because he wasn’t effective catching the knuckleball with Wakefield. With the Captain back and signed, perhaps Kottaras was a cheaper alternative and as effective as Bard. As you pointed out, and I agree, Bard was used as leverage in case Varitek was not signed.

  2. scofid

    Julia mentioned tonight that she heard Bard has signed a minor league deal with the Yankees. That was my immediate thought when the Sox cut him. But I don’t think he’ll make the major league roster if it’s true. Francisco Cervelli is playing well enough to nail down the third catcher slot. The injuries in the WBC are wild. I read something tonight about Wright playing hurt. Why don’t these guys come clean when they are injured? I know, the competitive spirit. I think Venezuela takes the WBC…


  3. juliasrants

    Elizabeth – as much as I am enjoying the WBC – the number of injuries is becoming quite concerning. And I am afraid that the number of injuries is so large that Team USA might not have a chance! Good luck in the debate and congrats on the paper! GO USA!!!


  4. xcicix

    It was a playoff…the WBC is all a giant playoff and the winner is the winner…I’m saying it’ll be Korea. JJ Putz looked really amazing for the USA, I must say…the Mets have the most talented closer in the game…wow. His pitches were all so beautiful…like Carlos Zambrano’s are.

  5. Elizabeth D.

    Aaron: Yes, cheaper alternative, I still feel bad though.

    Kaybee: He is a great guy, and I’m sorry to see him leave.

    Scott: Venezuela eh? I could see that. These guys have great hearts, they’ve just got to think about the future.

    Julia: We are kind of a walking DL aren’t we?

    Caroline: I could see Korea. Didn’t they do really well in the Olympics last time? And yeah, Putz looked good. Nice comparison to Zambrano!

  6. Jane Heller

    Elizabeth, I can’t believe your math teacher talks about the Yankees and Red Sox with you! I think I’ve said this before, but I don’t remember ever having a teacher who even mentioned baseball. You’re lucky!

  7. jimmy27nyy

    Hey, Elizabeth …

    The whole WBC series has been very exciting, except, of course, the injuries … I look forward to the final three games of the series with the Team USA taking home the Championship on Monday night !!! … But, they have a tough game against Team Japan on Sunday night; and, the Venezuela vs. Korea game Saturady night should also be a great game !!! … I am really impressed with all four teams remaining in this Series !!!
    Good Luck with the re-write on your research paper; and, I hope you get tickets to the game this weekend !!!
    Have a fun time at the game !!!
    — Jimmy [27NYY], “BY&L”

  8. Erin Kathleen

    Elizabeth,Good luck on your paper, though it sounds like your teacher likes it so you shouldn’t have too much re-writing to do. Have fun at the game, too!! And go Team USA, maybe David Wright can come up with another clutch hit!By the way, you’re right that I don’t mind that Mauer puts up such good numbers. Though it also helps that he’s one of the best defensive catchers in baseball, too.-Erin

  9. Elizabeth D.

    Jane: When we were talking during class, this kid asked me:
    “Do you ever do your homework?”. lol

    Hyun Young: Thanks! Maybe you can too soon– I couldn’t last year, but this year I’ve gotten pretty lucky.

    Happy: Good to hear Ryan Braun will be back in action. And your autograph tips DID help! I got six or seven today!

    Jimmy: Thanks! And I am every excited for the WBC as well!

    Erin: The Twins are very lucky to have Joe Mauer– I would hope that they hang on to him!

  10. redsoxathinon

    Kottaras will be great this year! Bard was just an insurance policy if Tek wasn’t signed. Look for him to hit around .260 (+/-) and have a solid year behind the dish. David Wright was pretty clutch in that game. Did you see that pitch!? It was at about his ankles and he still put it in a great spot!

    Great Job Elizabeth!


  11. Elizabeth D.

    Jenn: I hope you’re right about that!

    Christos: Yeah that pitch was way in. Pedroia can hit anywhere too!

    Tom: I’ll look into my crystal ball lol

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