Now that's what postseason baseball is supposed to look like. It was like watching two completely different games. The Yankees jumped all over Schilling in the first 3 innings, scoring 6 runs. I was wondering what the announcers were smoking at that point - they kept wondering what was wrong with Schilling - even though we knew about his ankle injury, and even though he repeatedly bent down to retie the shoelace on that foot. He was clearly in pain - you could tell by the way he drove off his back leg, you could tell by the way he kept checking the foot - and you could tell by the lack of velocity and movement on the ball.
The other thing that kept the game interesting at that point was Mussina - for 6 1/3 innings, he had a perfect game going. Then suddenly, Bellhorn got a double. Things went downhill quickly for Mussina - 2 runs scored, and with two men on, out he went, replaced by Sturtze. This is the point where I started to get nervous - and Varitek's 3 run shot didn't help calm my nerves. At least the inning finally ended, with the score 8-5. That was the start of the "second game" - we had 6 innings of laugher with a near perfect game, followed by 3 innings of nail biting.
In the 7th, the Yankees brought in Gordon, the set up guy for Rivera. Now, I'm sure that Torre didn't want to use Rivera - he had just returned from a family tragedy - he only got to the stadium in the 3rd inning. Gordon got an out quickly, but then the trouble started. Two guys got on - this is the point where I was wondering why Gordon was still in - and Ortiz was up. Ortiz has power, but he's not the fastest guy on the planet. He hits a triple, making the game 8-7. This is where I had to run out for Tums.... it just looked bad.
Thankfully, Rivera came in and shut things down. Bottom of the 8th - another Red Sox moment. They have Timlin pitching, the set up guy. One out, and the Yankees get two straight hits - A-Rod and Sheffield get on. Matsui pops out (he had a great night though - 5 RBI's). Bernie Williams comes up. Here's the Red Sox moment - two on, Foulke warming up - and Timlin still in. Williams comes through with a double, and the score goes to 10-7 - which is great, because I can finally breathe again. One more chance for the Sox - against Rivera
The Sox insist on making it interesting. With one out, Varitek and Cabrera get on. Bill Mueller comes up - and this guy is no slouch. The tying run is up, and there's only one out. He hits a shot - foul, thank goodness. Then salvation - a roller back to Rivera, and we have a double play. The game ends, with NY on top. What a roller coaster!
Now, this leaves some interesting things for the next few games. Schilling - his ankle is not good. Based on how he looked, I think the Sox would have been better off starting Pedro, following with Wakefield. Sure, the yanks scored two runs off him tonight before the 5 run Red Sox rally - but last year in the ALCS, he utterly baffled them. That would have rested Schilling until game three, which will be in Boston. If they didn't know his ankle was that bad, they simply weren't paying attention. All good for me though - he threw a lot of pitches, and the Yankees are up 1-0. Bring on Martinez - I like the Yankees chances.