This Week in Boston Baseballing, August 16 – 22

Boston dropped two of three to the Yankees at Fenway last weekend before heading to the West Coast. The Red Sox blew out the Giants, 12-1, on Wednesday afternoon to win their three-game series in San Francisco. Boston outscored the Giants, 22-4, in the series. The Red Sox begin a three-game series against some familiar faces tonight in Los Angeles.

Xander B

From SFGate.com

20-Year-Old Xander Bogaerts Gets Called Up
Shortstop Xander Bogaerts made his major league debut on Tuesday night in San Francisco, playing shortstop and batting seventh. He went 0-for-3 before being lifted by John Farrell in the bottom of the 6th as part of a double switch. The most memorable moment from the debut was his charging in to field a chopper just to the left of second base. The play was not exactly routine and required a quick transfer and hard, accurate throw to first that bailed Peavy out of a leadoff triple in the fifth inning.

Prior to that, Xander almost made a highlight reel catch on a blooper to shallow left-center:

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Boston held off on calling up Bogaerts long enough that he won’t reach 130 at-bats in 2013, thus he’ll maintain rookie status for 2014 while enjoying the status as the third youngest player in the league. In the meantime, Boston media will likely achieve veteran status deploying tired puns like “X-Factor” well before October.

Ryan Dempster: Vigilante
Sunday night’s Ryan Dempster vs. Alex Rodriguez showdown renewed some of the fervor lost in the Boston/NY rivalry. The Sox and Yankees play seven times during the month of September and Dempster, at the very least, has probably guaranteed that the Bombers will remain interested even if they continue plummeting in the standings. Meanwhile, the Improper Bostonian points out that Joe Girardi’s two-day crusade against Dempster for throwing a dangerous projectile at one of his players was a bit hypocritical since the main reason for his ire was that his team was robbed of the reasonable opportunity to retaliate with a similar dangerous projectile aimed at a Red Sox player.

Maybe the worst part of the whole thing is that Dempster spurred a series of A-Rod as sympathetic anti-hero columns. Former ballplayer Doug Glanville gets some:

…the most righteous Red Sox player will never be more of a friend than the most egregious rule-breaking Yankee to the Yankees. You hit our teammate, even as wrong as my teammate may be, we will fight for him.

Anyway, all parties can settle down a bit now: Dempster received a five-game suspension on Tuesday and likely won’t make his next start until August 30. Justice hath been served, etc., etc.

A 2004 Red Sox Has A Fun ‘Where Are They Now?’ Moment
Old friend Doug Mientkiewicz got his name in the local headlines by participating in a minor league brawl as a manager. The 39-year-old, who the Red Sox got from the Twins as part of the four-team Nomar Garciaparra deal, was mostly known for his defensive prowess during his playing days. He was one of those media darlings whose uniform got dirty even on his off days, so maybe this development doesn’t come as much of a surprise.

Fenway Park Screens A Baseball Cinema Classic, 1993’s ‘The Sandlot’
The Red Sox celebrated the 20th anniversary of the baseball movie The Sandlot with a screening at Fenway Park on Wednesday night. Earlier this season, some characters from the movie hung out with Red Sox players in Minnesota. At the time of the photo op, several sites ventured comparisons of Sandlot characters to Red Sox players. But is there really any debate? Dustin “Ham” Pedroia just has more ring to it and fits a whole lot better than Muddy Chicken ever will.

From NESN.com

From NESN.com

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