Sunday, October 21

ALCS Game 7: The Ballad of East and West (brook)

It’s time for Jose Melendez’s KEYS TO THE GAME.

1. The Ballad of East and West(brook) with apologies to Rudyard Kipling

Oh, East is East, and West is West, and never the twain shall meet,
Till DiceK meets Jake Westbrook and they both strive to defeat,
The other, East vs. Westbrook, and the Indians ‘gainst the Sox,
When these two men stand face to face, you’ll doubt that Cleveland Rocks.

The Dice man comes from far Japan, to Boston he was sent,
To ship a hefty sack of gold back to the Orient.
He came here just to be a man, just one of 25,
But now his shining golden arm’s what keep’s them all alive.

We know of epic battles that he has fought in his past,
Of innings one through seventeen he pitched from first to last,
And when 250 times he swiftly hurled the ball,
And led his school to victory, and made the whole East call,

His name as blessed miracle, as hero of Japan,
And from that moment Daisuke was more than just a man.
He blossomed as a symbol, like a star in yonder East,
And stood before the media as if to feed the beast.

And then he pitched for Seibu, was a Lion as it were,
But Japanese he still remained, and thus was quite demure.
He then pitched for his country, gainst the best from in The Show,
And won support from legends past like Sadaharu Oh.

He won the baseball classic that was played against the world,
And had himself named MVP, an honor that unfurled,
The eyes of men in Boston, in the Athens of the West,
Who thought this Matsuzaka was a man who they’d invest,

A fortune in, and buy the rights to bring him to their team,
And watch him rise up to the top like sweet and fatty cream.
They won the bid and brought the eastern hero to their park,
And signs in Japanese, showed up at Popeye’s after dark,

And restaurant reviews in Japanese were all the rage,
As merchants in the Fenway thought that this might help assuage,
The fears of hungry Easterners, who sought something to eat,
And happened by their restaurant while walking down the street.

This, DiceK pitched and often well, for our own Boston squad.
And yet, this eastern hero was not like unto a God.
He sometimes pitched like Pedro pulling strings from in his glove,
But other times, was just a rook, whom umpires gave no love,

The strike zone wasn’t big enough, the baseball not quite right,
And in the playoffs he has had some frustrating nights.
But now the hombre from the East will stride upon the mound
For seventh game, and hear the cheers that signal his renown.

And after he has pitched an inning, that goes one-two-three
He’ll walk away from yonder mound, and then he’ll surely see,
A man of West (brook) coming to the hill for Cleveland’s nine,
A man who’ll look towards heaven hoping he’ll receive a sign,

That in this clash of East and West, his culture can endure,
That he can pitch this evening without yielding a high score,
That fellowship that’s Christian can replace a tired arm,
And that his God, while he is pitching, can save him from harm.

But God, won’t intervene, he’ll find, in this ALCS,
Since God is great he’s got some bigger things he must address.
He doesn’t intervene to throw a strike or else a ball.
Upon his own two feet this man Jake will stand or fall.

He’ll look into his catcher’s eyes and pray his sinker sinks,
“For if it stays up in the zone, I’m surely doomed,” he thinks,
But just the fact that he had scored a win back in Game 3,
In no way guarantees that he again a hero be,

As Westbrook struggles with each pitch, Papi finds one he likes,
While over on the other side, DiceK throws naught but strikes.
And Westbrook gives up hits and hits and each run after run,
While DiceK’s getting bigger in the Land of Rising Sun.

With every pitch with every strike, with every single out,
The East is getting stronger while West (brook) is losing clout.
And in the land of Boston where the East collides with West,
There’s little doubt today concerning which one is the best.

Oh, East is East, and West is West, and never the twain shall meet,
Till DiceK meets Jakes Westbrook and they both strive to defeat
The other, East vs. Westbrook, and the Indians ‘gainst the Sox
When these two men stand face to face, you’ll doubt that Cleveland Rocks.

2. Game 7.

Game 7.

Game 7.

There’s something magic about the number 7 isn’t there? They could end series with Game 9, a fine and honorable baseball number. Hell, they used to end series at Game 9, and yet 7 is the number. Perhaps it’s the certain mysticism that goes along with it. There are seven wonders of the world, seven seas (note: except not really), seven is the most common roll on a pair of six sided die, and it’s the number of points on a sheriff’s star. It’s also Jose’s age when he first went to a Red Sox game.

But as much significance as that perfect prime number has for us Westerners, perhaps it has just a little more for the men of the East.

Bushido, the Japanese way of the warrior, has exactly seven principles. And while Jose is not much for ancient myths, or feudalism for that matter, Jose cannot help but believe, that if Daisuke can follow the seven virtues of Bushido tonight he cannot, he will not be defeated.

1. Gi: The right decision, taken with equanimity, the right attitude, the truth. When we must die, we must die. Rectitude.
• Choose your pitches wisely. Throw what must be thrown, and if is hit, so be it. Do not shy away from the fastball because Kenny Lofton gets lucky. Do not shy away from the curve because the ump is blind.

2. Yu: Bravery tinged with heroism.
• Trust in your breaking pitches. Have faith that even though they may not be hard or cruel, merely having the courage to throw to in the mid 80s to men of iron, is proof of bravery.

3. Jin: Universal love, benevolence toward mankind; compassion.
• Juniper flavored liquors are delicious and taste good with just a little vermouth, or if of lower quality, tonic water. Quaffed in large enough concentrations, this spirit leads to benevolence toward mankind. Or it makes one ornery. It depends. Anyway, when everyone else is doing shots of Jack, you know what to do,


4. Rei: Right action--a most essential quality, courtesy.
• When Kenny Lofton steps out of the box yet again. Bow humbly to him, bow deep and dignified. Then plant one in his ear.

5. Makoto: Utter sincerity; truthfulness.
• If you are out of gas, admit that you are out of gas. If Pedro had had more Makoto four years ago and told Grady to bleep himself history would be different.

รณ. Melyo: Honor and glory.
• The glory is yours for the taking. Look at DJ Dru. All season, he struggled and strived, yet failed and flailed, and last night, with one magnificent swing all was forgotten and forgiven. You have performed well this season; you have pitched with honor, but the glory? The glory is yours to seize.

7. Chugo: Devotion, loyalty.

• Tito has been loyal to you, as he has been loyal to DJ Dru and Julio Lugo, and as he was loyal to Mark Bellhorn and Johnny Damon before them, and they have rewarded his loyalty with performance. Loyalty is, it must be, a two way street, reward Tito’s loyalty with your own.

Tonight, Daisuke Matsuzaka is a samurai. If he were a boxer or a wrestler, he would enter on a horse, clad in the venerable armor of old Japan. But he is not, he shall not enter from the bullpen on a sacred steed, but on his own two feet, protected by naught but the sacred B on his cap and a right arm more magnificent than Masamune’s steel.

And thus, I predict, humbly and in the first person, that the Red Sox will win.

3. Musical Interlude

Turning Japanese

I've got a pitcher his name is Dice,
We eat potatoes; he’s fueled by rice
I saw him staring at his locker—Here’s advice.

Oh mix your pitches, don’t just throw speed.
Don’t over nibble. Here’s what we need.
Five innings and a one run lead

I've got a pitcher, I've got a pitcher
He’s worth a hundred million out on the mound
I want a catcher to call for curveballs
So all the batters will hit balls on the ground.

We’ve got him pitching high and pitching low
and pitching fast and pitching a slow and

Pitching Japanese
DiceK is pitching Japanese
I really think so
Pitching Japanese
DiceK is pitching Japanese
Pitching Japanese
DiceK is pitching Japanese
I really think so
Pitching Japanese
DiceK is pitching Japanese
I really think so

I've got a pitcher, I’ve got a pitcher
He threw a million pitches once in a game
I want Francona to use that pitcher, so he can get himself some U.S. acclaim.
You've got him throwing fastballs throwing curves
And throwing splitters, throwing slurves and

Pitching Japanese
DiceK is pitching Japanese
I really think so
Pitching Japanese
DiceK is pitching Japanese
Pitching Japanese
DiceK is pitching Japanese
I really think so
Pitching Japanese
DiceK is pitching Japanese
I really think so

No hits, no walks, no runs, no bases
No balks, no bags no you, keep it inside the park
Everyone at bat is Mario Mendoza
Then we get to Papelbon the Closah
Everyone.

And DiceK’s Pitching Japanese
DiceK is pitching Japanese
I really think so
Pitching Japanese
DiceK is pitching Japanese
Pitching Japanese
DiceK is pitching Japanese
I really think so
Pitching Japanese
DiceK is pitching Japanese
I really think so

I’m Jose Melendez and those are my KEYS TO THE GAME.

1 comment:

soccer mom in denial said...

I was there last night. It was amazing.

But Key #3? Now that I love!!!