I was coming home on the train yesterday and a woman, sitting across the aisle from me, kept looking at me. Finally, overcome by my awesomeness, just kidding, she asked me an odd question.
“Excuse me, did you hang at NEO’s?”
“Yeah. Worked there for a bit too.”
“Did we .... ummmmmm .... date?”
“Date?l No. I only dated a couple of girls back then. I was too busy having sex to commit to anything.”
“That’s kind of what I meant by ‘date.’”
So I look at her, really for the first time, and memory flashed into place.
“Oh yeah, you liked anal in the stalls.”
She smiled, blushed and nodded.
“Only for you though. You asked politely.”
“Well, then my granny was right, good manners do lead to good things.”
We both laughed and the conversation wandered for a bit. Then I asked her what she was up to these days. After all, if politeness accomplished all that, I was curious what politeness plus dinner might garner.
“I’m on my way downtown to catch the Amtrack to New York to join the Sisters of Saint Dorothy, I take my vows next week.”
Okay, color me stunned.
“You’re a nun?”
She nodded, smiled and blushed again. “As of next week.”
“Anyway,” she continued, “I’m glad I saw you. You always looked kind of guilty when we got done and I wanted you to know that I never felt anything but pleasure. You were a lot of fun.”
I smiled and wished her well when the train got to Union Station. I didn’t have the heart to tell her I didn’t look guilty, or feel it either. I just did a lot of coke back then and that’s how people look when they’re stoned.
Well, that wasn’t the only unexpected thing that happened yesterday. Carrie Muskat says that Ryan Dempster got a win and Carlos Marmol got a save.
Really. I never saw that coming.
Ryan Dempster finally had a home-field advantage, although it may have been one of his last games at home.
Dempster threw seven strong innings and had two hits, including his second career triple, and Carlos Marmol returned as closer to lead the Cubs to a 3-0 Interleague victory over the Red Sox on Friday in front of 40,073 at Wrigley Field.
Dempster (3-3), the subject of trade rumors, won his first game at home in six starts and has not given up a run in his last three outings, covering 22 innings.
“I don’t know how that happens, really,” Dempster said. “It’s inevitable that you miss a pitch and somebody hits it in the stands or whatever. A guy gets on second with none out, and all you’re thinking about is trying to preserve the win. To think about something like that is pretty mind-boggling.”
“Incredible win,” Cubs manager Dale Sveum said. “He’s got so many different ways to get people out, and he’s been pulling it off day in and day out.”
However, it may also be one of Dempster’s last games at Wrigley. He recently talked to Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein about the possibility of a trade. If the right-hander was aware of the scouts in the stands, he didn’t flinch.
“He’s one of the most professional, hard-working people you’re ever going to be around,” Sveum said. “When he steps out on the mound, it’s all ‘Game on’ with him. It’s not trade rumors or, ‘Where am I going to go?’ It’s, ‘How am I going to get the next pitch?’”
Dempster kept the Red Sox off balance.
“He was pretty tough,” Boston manager Bobby Valentine said. “Guys weren’t picking up his ball pretty well. When we hit the ball, it seemed to be right at one of their outfielders. You know, those balls have to drop a couple of times a game in order to put some runs on the board.”
Marmol has been thinking about when he would get a chance to close again. Sveum told the right-hander a couple days ago that he had his job back in an effort to stabilize the bullpen. Marmol did make it interesting. With one out, Ryan Sweeney singled and Mike Aviles reached on an error. One out later, Marmol walked Scott Podsednik to load the bases. Sveum came out for a chat.
“It wasn’t a lot of nice things—nice words, I should say,” Sveum said of his conversation.
“He didn’t tell me good things,” Marmol said, laughing. “I appreciate what he said to me. He said, ‘Throw strikes; I don’t want to take you out of the game. Let’s go.’”
Marmol got Dustin Pedroia to hit into a force at third to end the game. It was the right-hander’s first save since May 2 and third of the season. Rookie Rafael Dolis had taken over the duties but struggled with his command and has been pitching at Triple-A Iowa since the end of May. Since then, James Russell and Shawn Camp have shared the workload.
“We told [Marmol] he’s done everything we’ve asked him to do and his side sessions and his work, and he’s been throwing his fastball more,” Sveum said. “He came back and made pitches with his fastball, and he got the ground ball. We made a concious effort a couple days ago, the way things have been going, to try to solidify the bullpen.”
The problem has been fastball command, or the lack of.
“He has at least some conviction with his fastball now,” Sveum said. “It’s not, ‘I’m going to waste it and go back to my slider.’”
This is the second regular-season meeting between the two historic teams at Wrigley Field, and the first since June 2005. In that series, Dempster was Chicago’s closer and picked up a save. On Friday, he pocketed $500, winning a wager with speedster Tony Campana as to who would hit the first triple.
Rookie Steve Clevenger hit a two-run double with the bases loaded in the first against Daisuke Matsuzaka (0-2), who was making his second start since Tommy John surgery about one year ago. Dempster tripled with one out in the second, his first since May 12, 2002.
“I thought it was the easiest bet I ever made,” Campana said.
“I try to spread my triples out every 10 years,” Dempster said.
Dempster dropped the ball in right past a diving Adrian Gonzalez, who may have had trouble with his footing. The grounds crew has spray-painted the outfield after weekend concerts destroyed some of the grass.
“I’d had almost the same play the other day, where it’s in that corner and you go looking for it and it’s an automatic triple,” Cubs right fielder David DeJesus said. “It’s tough, and I don’t wish that on anybody. We’ll take the triples on our side.”
One out later, Starlin Castro was hit by a pitch and Dempster scored on DeJesus’ single. It was enough to give the Cubs their seventh win in the last 29 games, and it improved them to 3-7 in Interleague Play. How much longer Dempster will be in the rotation remains to be seen.
“You don’t want to lose your No. 1 starter,” DeJesus said. “We understand it’s part of the game, and we’d love to have him here. If it happens [and he’s traded], we’ll move on. It’s the nature of the beast.”
Good for Demp. A class act and a hell of a pitcher. I hope he ends up on a true contender if the Cubs do trade him.
Another thing I didn’t expect yesterday was seeing Chris Sale cough up a five run lead and then watch as Matt Thornton tried to bean a mascot. Sarah Trotto, no, this is a different Sarah Trotto, has the whole story.
In a matchup of ace left-handers Chris Sale and Clayton Kershaw, neither starter lasted past the sixth inning.
Both pitchers endured atypical off nights while their offenses thrived. The Dodgers rallied for five runs in the sixth inning and scored the winning run on a wild pitch in the eighth in their 7-6 victory over the White Sox in the Interleague series opener Friday night at Dodger Stadium.
James Loney scored the go-ahead run from third with two outs on Matt Thornton’s wild pitch in the eighth with Bobby Abreu at the plate, sending the White Sox to their third consecutive loss and fourth defeat in their last five games. The White Sox (34-30) saw their lead over the Indians in the American League Central dwindle to half a game.
Sale allowed more than two runs in a game for the first time since May 12. Snapping his five-game winning streak, he gave up a career-high five runs in 5 2/3 innings.
“Have to be better. It was everything this team did not need from me tonight,” said Sale, whose ERA rose from 2.05 to 2.46. “I was all over the place early, got banged up late. I’ve just got to be better.”
Sale allowed seven hits, issued a career-high four walks and struck out six.
“Walking the first guy of the game, walking a few more guys after that, throwing the ball all over the place, they took advantage of that,” Sale said. “They got the pitch count up there.”
Sale didn’t show his usual command, White Sox manager Robin Ventura said.
“Walking the first guy or a guy leading off an inning, he doesn’t do that,” Ventura said. “He’s going to let them put it in play and see what happens. Today was just one of those days.”
“He’s good. His stuff is good,” Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said about Sale. “It looked like he was a little bit erratic with his command tonight more than we’ve seen usually, but he was the same guy we’ve seen in Spring Training. He’s one of those guys who’s long and lanky and he gives you that little whip in the arm. He changes speeds well. He’s tough.”
The White Sox gave Sale a 5-1 cushion heading into the bottom of the sixth. The National League West-leading Dodgers (41-24) rallied for five runs in the inning via five hits and a walk. After Jesse Crain replaced Sale with two runners on base, Elian Herrera hit a two-run double to tie the game, 5-5, before Juan Rivera’s single drove in the go-ahead run.
Meanwhile, Kershaw, the 2011 NL Cy Young winner, was also struggling. He tied a season high by allowing five runs (four earned) in six innings. He struck out seven, walked two and gave up eight hits, including two home runs.
“You get five off him, you feel pretty good about it,” Ventura said.
Adam Dunn hit his Major League-leading 23rd home run, a two-run shot off Kershaw in the first inning. Dunn has homered in five of his last six games. He entered the game batting .636 (7-for-11) with three home runs in his career against Kershaw.
Dunn now has 52 RBIs after driving in 42 runs last season.
“[I’m] not surprised, but you’re happy for him after everything he went through last year,” Ventura said. “It’s just nice for him to do it. But it’s not surprising.”
Alex Rios hit a solo home run against Kershaw in the fifth inning, the first of his two home runs of the night.
After the Dodgers rallied to take a 6-5 lead, Rios tied the game with a solo shot off Ronald Belisario in the eighth for his eighth home run. It was Rios’ fourth career multi-homer game and his first since 2008.
“He’s been swinging it really good for us, showing some power as of late,” Ventura said.
The Sox are still a half game in first.
Let’s keep things that way, shall we boys?
Follow us on Twitter!
Page 1 of 1 pages