Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Helping the Sox

I'm in upstate New York this week visiting my peeps so I'm stuck watching the Yes Network and the Yankees, and only being able to follow the Red Sox via the satellite radio in my car or via the internet. I've chosen to watch the Yankees and actively hope for their demise (which, by the way, is one of the worst ways to watch a sporting event). Last night, however, I had a secret weapon, but I'll get to that shortly.

I saw potentially the craziest thing I've ever seen on a baseball telecast that didn't involve Manny peeing in the Green Monster. In or about the 7th inning of last nights Yankees-White Sox game, the Yankee announcers -- Jim Kaat and Bobby Murcer -- were going through their normal routine of doing the play-by-play when one of them very nonchalantly says (and I'm paraphrasing here, but not by much): "...and the pitch is a little outside. And a fan just fell from the upper deck onto the netting behind homeplate."

And I'm not kidding. Some dope had fallen onto the netting behind homeplate. And if you need a better visual, think of it this way: if the netting hadn't been there, this idiot would have landed about 15 rows behind homeplate on some unsuspecting fat cat who'd dropped $300 on seats expecting only to see a baseball game. Instead, he got caught up in the netting and looked a bit dazed, which I guess is a typical reaction after sucking down 10 beers and falling 30 feet or so.

And then things got really interesting. Because Bart Connor landed about halfway down the netting, he had to decide if he wanted to climb back towards the luxury boxes, or towards homeplate and scale spidey-style down the backstop and onto the field. My first thought was, "you better enjoy this, because whatever option you choose, the stadium police are going to beat the crap out of you." So this doofus has 50,000 people cheering him on as he finally opted for the luxury box route. If Peter Parker got a couple of body shots of Novocain, I'm guessing he'd look like this guy trying to climb his way to freedom. After several awkward minutes, he finally reached the railing and three or four cops dragged his ass to safety Rodney King style. The cameras quickly returned to the field, but I can only imagine that some intra-stadium arrest records were set.

If you were a Yankees fan, that was the highlight of the evening. Joe Torre brought in the Red Sox secret weapon to basically secure the game for Chicago. And the secret weapon of course is Alan Embree. My wife actually pointed out that because Embree is now a Yankee, he has to be clean shaven. On the upside, he looked 15 years younger. On the downside, he still throws his fastball right down the middle of the plate with absolutely no movement. And with the White Sox leading 1-0 in the top of the 9th, Embree threw one of his patented meatballs to Paul Konerko, who promptly deposited into the left field bullpen.

Not surprisingly, the Yankees went on to score one run in the bottom of the 9th, only to lose the game three outs later. This all seems very familiar. Ironically, Embree is more helpful to the Sox when he's actually playing for the Yankees. Paging Millar, paging Kevin Millar.