Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Lester Returns Home, Claims Territory, Inhabitants

Jon Lester crowds righthanded hitters. He gets all up in their grills, or their kitchens, or wherever they prepare foodstuffs.

His cutter is relentless, and territorial. Lester lays claim not just to the inside part of the plate, but inside off the plate, even spilling into the righthanders' batters' box. There's nowhere to go. Lester's cutter invades hitters' personal space.

Just watching him makes my studio apartment feel smaller. Lester's a close talker, and he's saying 'broken bat.'

Personal space is about boundaries, and exclusion. If matter is impenetrable, two things can't exist in the same place and time. But Lester's cutter gets in there. And something's got to give. Those maple bats sure look penetrable.

In going 7 1/3 scoreless, Lester was dominant, and efficient. Only 3 three-ball counts, and no walks. A hitter's count implies possession, but tonight hitters had no title, no claim, no land, no property. The batters box provided no sanctuary. Lester owned, moved in, and planted his flag in the righthanders' batter's box.

Lester won his 8th, lowering his ERA to 3.20, good for 7th in the league. The Sox looked at home against a second-division Mariners club, shutting them out 4-0. The Sox' struggles on the road this year are well known. Regaining their imperialistic tendencies- claiming soil foreign to Fenway and annexing exotic batters' boxes- would go a long way towards capturing glory and treasure.


Peter N said...

He is becoming a veritable Sox stopper, someone you want on the hill after three losses. Great job, Jon.

Peter N said...

Great job you!

Soxlosophy said...

You're right, Peter. Especially with Beckett having a mediocre year, and Dice-K's not going deep into games, Lester has been extremely valuable, more so than I think most people expected, for this year, at least.

And thanks!

Rooster said...

Lester was in command yesterday, until the 8th inning. At one point, with two strikes on a left handed batter, Varitek called for a fastball low and away. Lester shook him off, then Tek called for a fastball inside and low. Lester agreed, hit the spot perfectly, and teh batter (I forget who) swung and missed for a K. He was just all over them - so great to see.

Well written!

Soxlosophy said...

Good call, Rooster. i don't remember the hitter either, but Lester has been throwing the sinking fastball down and in on lefties effectively.

and thanks for the compliment!