SOX/ASTROS: BLAME PHIL GARNER
Blame Phil Garner if you’re overly tired today. If you are an Astro fan, blame him for blowing game 1. No, it’s not that simple. But a few poor managerial decisions just might have cost them the game.
No outs and Biggio on 2nd base. Garner gives the Sox a free out by bunting with Taveras. This is the same player who was spraying shots at the Cell in games 1 and 2. It made absolutely no sense to me, especially in the 1st inning. It was the perfect scenario for them–get going with a big inning and your best starter on the mound. They could have dug their heel into the throat of the White Sox. But Taveras pops up a bunt and the Astros end up getting only 1 run. Garner gave away that opportunity. If I was a player on the bench I would have been fuming.
Ausmus walks to leadoff the inning. Everett is up next. I doubt with his speed he would hit into a double play. But Garner chooses to bunt again. He gives the Sox another out. Everett executes the bunt and Ausmus moves to second. Then Garner calls on Bagwell to hit for Springer. I found this to be strange considering he had left-handed bats on the bench. Not to mention that Bags is not exactly 100%–he is now 2-10 in the postseason. Bags pops up and then Garland whiffs Biggio. No runs.
The whole roof issue is kind of strange. A part of me leans toward giving them their home field advantage but a part of me equates it to shoveling the snow when your kicker is about to try a field goal. It is a home field advantage, but an unfair one. I think in the end MLB made the right call. McCarver differed. He said something to the effect of “The taxpayers built the stadium and they should be able to close the roof.” What exactly does paying taxes have to do with MLB rules?
Moments later in the 2nd inning, he let loose a classic “McCarverism”. They showed a shot of Oswalt and McCarver told the viewers that he is a drop and drive pitcher. He then added, “What is drop and drive? It’s a guy who drops…and drives.” Buck elaborated for him, but it was still hilarious. McCarver explains the rudimentary things to the fans but does not go into detail on drop and drive. He’s not the best in the business for nothing…
I cannot believe that Garner did not warm anybody up in the 5th until Crede was up–for the second time.
And finally, local Fox sports anchor Corey McPherrin was at it again. “Maybe one of the most memorable games in franchise history.” Maybe. Just maybe. I wonder if he has been eating dinner with McCarver in the press lounge.