Not only was this the last SP78 game of May, and the last game to celebrate ‘Joe Walsh Day’ (the date in 1978 when his But Seriously, Folks… album went gold), but it was the game where Red Sox manager Don Zimmer finally lost his patience with the lackluster effort of his team. A team who’d already lost the past two games to the lowly Blue Jays, and were losing to them in this game 2-0 through seven…just two innings away from being swept in the three-game series by the cellar-dwellers of the AL East.
So Zimmer, in a fit of rage, yanked seven of his nine starters (Carl Yastrzemski and Butch Hobson were the only two to survive his wrath) and brought seven utility players off the bench to take their spots to lead off the eighth, including pitcher Bill Lee, who took over for Jim Rice as designated hitter. In the end, the move proved to be a pointless one, as the Bosox failed to score in the eighth and ninth, and lost 2-0.
Of course, it was my decision to make this unorthodox switch, but I did so imagining how Zimmer would’ve felt in the situation. I was hoping the backup squad would spark a miracle comeback, but it wasn’t to be. And who knows, maybe it was Joe Walsh singing ‘Time Out’ during the seventh-inning stretch that set Zimmer off.