See, the best thing about Tuesday's game is that it replicated the game we all played in our head every day of the off-season: Beckett dominant and dealing, Masterson bailing out Oki, and then Paps closing the door. Tek hitting a blast and My Little Pedroia jumping on the first pitch he saw (was it a high inside fastball?). The game could have been 9-3, but the Sox didn't close the deal a few times.
Meanwhile, the MLB Network. Sorry, folks. The MLB Tonight experiment is not good. Apparently sensitive to the notion that it's hard to fill up 8 hours a night with aimless nattering, the show had a lot more drop-ins, "special moments" and other fluff to fill things out last night. But it's a concept rich in possibilities but lacking in execution.
A case in point: A gentlemen by the name of Causey was pitching for the Jays and sailed an intentional walk pitch to the backstop during a live cut-in last night. Finally something interesting happened. The baseball savants proceeded to "break it down" for the next 20 minutes, during which time the errant pitch seemed to be on a continuous loop on the screen. Too much time was devoted to a nothing event, but the MLB Network seemed desperate for something-anything-out of the ordinary that they beat it into the ground.
Meanwhile, Glenn Geffner will not shut up.
He was asked to talk about his current on-air partner Dave Van Horne, and we got vintage Glennski:
"He's unbelievable," says Glenn Geffner, entering his second year as Van Horne's broadcast partner. "The guy never takes a day off, never takes an inning off. It pushes me and it keeps me honest because I know this guy is working his tail off every day."
Oftentimes Geffner will unearth a tasty tidbit through his copious research, eager to share it with his listeners on the air, only to hear Van Horne — equally prepared — beat him to the punch.
"The guy hasn't lost 1 mph off his fastball," Geffner says. "This is a guy who works every bit as hard today as I'll bet you he did in 1969 when he got to the big leagues for the first time."
Now this observation by the writer is rather interesting, since in Game One of the season, I actually hear the following exchange:
Glenn: "[name of player] did [something moderately interesting], don't you think Dave?
Dave Van Horne: [silence]
Glenn: "2-2 pitch to Hanley Ramirez. It's a cutter off the plate"
Also, Glenn has developed a new verbal tick, stolen from Vin Scully. He pronounces "3" with a sort of Eastern European inflection, sort of like "Thrgee". It doesn't translate well in the written word, but it's annoying.