I long ago ran out of superlatives to describe the pitching of Josh Beckett when he's on. Not to mention synonyms for "swagger" and "attitude". And it's really too bad practically all of the Chuck Norris Facts have already been ripped off on behalf of Jed Lowrie this season, because they are also a good fit for Beckett when he's mowing down our rivals like that, not to mention the way people talk about it while it's happening.
Josh Beckett can squeeze a glass ketchup bottle.
Josh Beckett can cut through a hot knife with butter.
Meteors didn't kill the dinosaurs, Josh Beckett just needed a new pair of boots.
That was exactly the Josh Beckett we needed against the boys in the Bronx last night, and to my everlasting gratitude, that's exactly the Josh Beckett who showed up. In two starts against Posada and Co. this season, Beckett's thrown up a cool 14 innings pitched, 6 hits surrendered, not one single solitary run given up, 3 walks and 19 strikeouts. Dominance.
At Yankee Stadium last night, that dominance was audible -- audible in the echoing silence that overtook the place as the pinstripes went 0 for 10 with runners in scoring position and Josh on the hill. When Beckett's on, the quieting crowd is every bit his trademark, as much as the swagger off the mound, the chin pubes, and that arrowhead necklace. As we saw in the 2007 ALCS and again last night, he can step onto a field, in front of a house full of hostile barbarians, and little by little, shut it all down until all you hear is one drunk douchebag yelling right next to the broadcast booth.
I move we start calling it the Beckett Effect. But we all know how morbidly fascinated with Beckett I am, so that could be just me.
What I know isn't just me is the sense of anticipation in the air about tonight's final game of the series. Once again, the Red Sox find themselves just a game away from .500. The Yankees are a mess, if the Jorge Posada Debacle last night is any indication; Brian Cashman was just on ESPN begging the Yankees as an organization to "stop fighting with each other and focus on taking care of opponents." Tens of thousands of their fans, in the words of Curt Schilling, have just been made to shut up. We've got 'em right where we want 'em.
What say you, Sox?