In one game, the dynamic of the AL East has changed. Demspter drilled A-Rod to the joy of the fans and satisfied whatever personal vendetta he had, but the plunking backfired. At the time of the HBP the Sox were up 2-0, at the end of the inning the game was tied up. But the Yankees had all the momentum in the world. Manager Joe Girardi exploded from the dugout, justly defending his player, screaming red-faced, and slamming his hat to the ground. Girardi would be ejected, but the Yankees rallied around the emotional tirade and would go on to take two of three games in a hostile, playoff-like Fenway.
Dempster’s focus should not have been on plunking A-Rod, but getting him out; especially in the heat of a pennant race. Win, above all else.
The Sox are on thin ice. The Yankees were surging before the intense Sunday night game, now they are looking to make a late season run. All the momentum has swung to them. The Sox are 4-6 in their last ten and the Yanks are 7-3.
But the Yankees are the least of our worries. The Rays pose a much more imminent threat for the division lead being only a game.
The Sox are scuffling and about to embark on a dangerous six game west coast swing. The Giants aren’t the team they’ve been the past two years, but the Sox will face a hot Tim Lincecum in the series opener. Then they must deal with the scorching, blazing, smoking, white, red, hot Dodgers. They are on a dominant 42-9 run. The Sox are vulnerable right now; they must not take the Giants lightly, and then bring everything they have against the Dodgers.