First it was my cable that was ailing. From Wednesday through the late afternoon on Saturday, it suddenly decided to stop receiving several channels, including NESN. This, as you can imagine, was unacceptable, but by the time I got the cable back on Saturday, the game was already over. Without receiving the channel, the TiVo obviously couldn't record...and I missed another game.
Naturally, I was geared up to watch Josh Beckett -- finally! -- pitch in a televised game yesterday afternoon. And then it was Beckett's turn to get sick, scratching due to an illness that has been reported as mild. I caught some of AA prospect Ryne Miller's spot start, which was...as you'd expect for a kid making a surprise start against major leaguers, Spring Training or no Spring Training.
The Sox would overcome Miller's struggles with booming bats from Dustin Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis, among others. But that's almost neither here nor there, except that it improves the Sox' standings in the Mayor's Cup to 3-1 so far.
Meanwhile, in other news of health and wellness (or lack thereof), Daisuke Matsuzaka was scratched from pitching live BP because of stiffness in his neck. I wonder if they're being extra, extra, extra, EXTRA careful with Dice after last year, or if it's going to turn out he's made of glass.
Even Jed Lowrie has been away from camp with a mysterious illness, this one a seemingly more serious case than Beckett's or Matsuzaka's, as he was sent for tests over the weekend after trainers detected an elevated heart rate in the young infielder.
But the most worrisome news out of camp in the last few days has been the announcement that Sox prospect Ryan Westmoreland will need brain surgery. And not just any brain surgery (as if there is such a thing) -- but surgery near his brain stem for a cavernous malformation, which according to a Globe report "could leave severe neurological damage. The serious medical implications transcend concerns about Westmoreland’s playing career."
Naturally, like any other person with a beating heart, my thoughts are with Westmoreland and his family at this difficult time, with every wish for the best possible outcome, whether that includes Westmoreland in Sox home whites someday or not.
Finally, there has also been at least some news of convalescence today as well -- Mike Lowell played in an 8-4 loss to the Baltimore Orioles, his first game this year. Let's hope this trend continues.