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September 8, 2007
BALTIMORE – Reliever Eric Gagne threw a 40-pitch bullpen session early yesterday afternoon, and pronounced himself “perfect” and ready to return to action.
Gagne, who hasn’t pitched since Aug. 26 because of tendinitis in his right shoulder, said he threw all of his pitches during his workout and didn’t feel any discomfort. He said the plan for him now is to take today off and then he’ll be available to pitch in a game beginning tomorrow.
He said he thought the Red Sox might be careful about when they use him the first time, likely in a situation where the game is not on the line, but he’s encouraged by how he feels.
“I’ll be able to give some innings to the bullpen (corps) so they’re not overworked. That has been the most frustrating part of it, not being able to give the guys down there some rest,” said Gagne after his session in steamy conditions at Camden Yards.
“But the Red Sox really took their time with me. We didn’t want to rush it because we had a good lead. There’s never a good time to get hurt, but this was a better time. They wanted me to be healthy (when he returned rather than be rushed back),” he said.
There was little follow-up, at least on the Red Sox’ side of things, from Friday night’s spirited banch-clearing gathering that resulted from Daniel Cabrera’s fastball behind Dustin Pedroia’s head one pitch after a fake dash down the third-base line by Coco Crisp had rattled the Orioles starter into committing a run-producing balk.
One member of the Sox wondered if Baltimore was taking “ducking practice” as they set up for batting practice, but Boston was more concerned with the fact it had won Friday night’s game and was trying to win again last night.
Baltimore manager Dave Trembley addressed the situation in a pregame radio show, saying, “He (Cabrera) lost his poise, embarrassed himself and it’s not going to happen again.”
Cabrera had said, apparently with a straight face after the game, that the pitch had “slipped” out of his hands, that he was trying to pitch inside and it simply got away from him.
Upon hearing that, one member of the Orioles reportedly said, “Yeah, and the dog ate his homework, too.”
Pedroia wasn’t too pleased at being the target.
“The guy is an idiot,” said Pedroia after the game. “It kind of freaked me out. I was upset they took him out of the game. He is good to hit. He’s 9-15. The guy (stinks).”
“I’m just glad Pedroia didn’t get hurt, to be honest with you,” said Trembley.
Kevin Youkilis set a record for American League first baseman by playing in his 179th consecutive game without committing an error on Friday night. The previous mark of 178 had been set by Mike Hegan with Milwaukee and Oakland from Sept. 24, 1970 to May 20, 1973.
Youkilis handled 1,510 chances, starting 167 of the 179 games. Hegan had only 52 starts and 787 chances in his 178 games.
Youkilis wasn’t impressed with the record.
“I didn’t even think about it,” he said. “I just go out and play every day.”
David Ortiz’s homer in the first inning was his 28th of the year and his seventh in his last 15 games. The two-run blast to center in the first increased his season’s total to 98 RBI . . . J.D. Drew smacked a double to left-center in his first at-bat for the second game in a row. He has had an extra-base hit in back-to-back games only six times all year . . . Jacoby Ellsbury slammed an RBI double off the first-base bag in the second inning. He has had at least one hit in each of the eight games he has played in since being recalled from Pawtucket on Sept. 1.
Posted by Corey Bourassa at 9:05 PM to Krasner