Baseball Thinking

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Kevin Millar did what?

I am in the process of putting together a little su'um su'um about Anthony Nomar Garciaparra and had to put it aside when Kevin Millar did something he hasn't done in almost 3 months. Yes, he DID hit a home run! It was barely a long ball as it grazed off the left field foul pole. Talk about squeaking one in. With a slight breeze coming out of the south, well, it would have been just another loud strike. As soon as he connected his eyes lit up like deer in the headlights. I am pretty sure he asked the Kansas City first baseman, Mike Sweeney, how to run the bases because he hadn't done that in a long time. Unlike HR hitters like David Ortiz, he literally flew around the bases like he was chugging to stretch a single to a double. And he was as graceful and coordinated as a two legged antelope! As he was running the bases, there was scrambling in the dugout. Manager Frito Francona was instructing everybody to take a seat and give Kevin the silent treatment when he came back into the dugout. I'm pretty sure Millar was keen to it because as he jogged down the steps of the dugout, he placed his batting helmet on backwards and covered his eyes. For a few seconds his teammates ignored him, until the 230lb captain of the Sox, catcher Jason Varitek, jumped on his back as he was walking by. If the homerun didn't wake up Millar, the monkey on his back did. I have been a fan of Kevin Millar ever since he was taken off an airplane headed for Japan and was literally bought for cash from the Florida Marlins in 2003. He has been such a great teammate everyone in the Red Sox organization. He has had some big hits for the Sox during his 3 year stay in Boston. And we all know how much he has struggled in 2005. Francona has stuck with him during much of the season, to the dismay of many in The Nation. With the emergence of veteran John Olerud, Millar was delegated to ride the pine over the past 3 days. During an interview on WEEI Wednesday afternoon, Francona stated he had spoken with Millar and that Kevin would continue to be a positive influence in the dugout. That characteristic of Kevin Millar is invaluable. So hang your cups high for tonight we toast Red Sox first baseman, Kevin Millar! May you hit a homerun in every at bat!!
This date in baseball history: 1905 In Philadelphia, the Cubs defeat the Phillies in 20 innings, 2-1, with Ed Reulbach going the distance for Chicago. 1940 In the Tigers 12-1 victory at Fenway Park, Red Sox outfielder Ted Williams pitches the last two innings against Detroit allowing one run on three hits. 1941 A rag tag group of five musicians, dubbed the Dodger SymPhony, by announcer Red Barber, make their Ebbets Field's debut. This band, none of which could read music, perform their zany antics at all evening and weekend games. 1951 A thousand fans behind the Browns dugout are given yes and no signs to vote on decisions to be made by the coaching staff. Owner Bill Veeck's idea appears to work as his team beats the Phillies, 5-3. 1963 The Little League World Series is televised for the first time . With ABC's Wide World of Sports providing coverage of the championship game, Grenada Hills (CA) beats Stratford (CT), 2-1. (Photo courtesy MLB / Historical data courtesy


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