Jose Reyes got more than just a kiss from Jason Varitek last night when the two met at home plate in the fifth inning. Reyes stayed on the ground for a few minutes before leaving the field in pain. He was booed.
Pedro Martinez, visiting Fenway for the first time since joining the Mets, got the scoreboard highlight treatment following the first. He was cheered.
Before the game, the Red Sox paid tribute to the 1986 team that lost to the Mets in the World Series. Of course, Game 6 of that series was decided by Moochie Wilson's ground ball -- you know, the one that went through Buckner's legs. They got around to Buckner's name when going through the '86 team's roster. Even he was cheered.
The Red Sox won the game, 9-4, to take their 10th straight -- all interleague. Tonight it was also-rans Mike Lowell and Alex Gonzalez that supplied the Red Sox with their firepower and rookie Jon Lester getting the win, raising his record to 3-0. This was undoubtedly a match up of baseball's two best teams, and in my mind a World Series preview. The Mets made a gaffe or two -- Lastings Milledge made a rookie mistake playing a deep fly in left -- but they made the Sox earn the win. Carlos Beltran went 2-2 with two walks and a home run, finally putting to rest claims from greedy New Yorkers that he hasn't earned his money with the Mets so far, and Carlos Delgado and Eli Marrero also went deep. Lester was tested -- he barely qualified for the win by just getting enough to go five innings, but had to work his way out of trouble twice -- striking out Chris Woodward (in the 4th) and David Wright (5th) to get out of bases-loaded jams. The Woodward strikeout came after Lester walked in a run to get the Mets within one run, 3-2. Fellow impressive rookie Alay Soler, who had only allowed four runs in his previous 3 games, gave up 8 runs, 10 hits, and 3 walks in 4 1/3 to take the loss (2-2).
The rest of the series should prove to be a little more evenly-matched, as we have great matchups of Martinez v. Beckett and Glavine v. Schilling to look forward to. The schedule gods have smiled upon us with this series. This is the type of entertainment interleague play was designed for -- teams from different leagues at the top of their respective game taking each other on. Unless interleague play was designed for cringe-worthy humor, in which case last month's Royals/Pirates series was more than enough to satiate our appetites.