A YOUKILISTIC EXPERIENCE
Kevin Youkilis was in the PawSox lineup on Monday night and is scheduled to be in again on Tuesday for a 12:05 p.m. game. Youk was slated to DH on Monday but he approached manager Ron Johnson and told RJ he preferred to play first base instead. RJ called Boston and got the OK to put the Gold Glover on the field. When Youk came up through Pawtucket in 2004,05, and 06 he was a third baseman. He moved over to first to accomodate Mike Lowell and promptly set a Major League record for consecutive games at first without an error.Kevin handled 2002 chances over the span of 238 straight games, winning a Gold Glove in 2007. To say he has developed into one of the finest all-around players in the game is no exaggeration. He started at first base for the American League in the 2008 All Star game and finished third in the MVP vote after hitting .312 with 29 homeruns and 115 rbi. We sat down and taped a pregame interview and got re-acquainted. Among the topics we discussed- Dealing with his fame in Boston ( it’s getting tougher all the time)- Manny Ramirez and his suspension (shocked by the revelation)- David Ortiz and his extended slump (Boldly preedicted that Big Papi would hit a home run in 2009)- Financial security (you’ll never see him doing anything lavish)- and being a cornerstone for the forseeable future for Boston- ( likes what he and Dustin Pedroia will be able to do on the right side of the Red Sox infield). Youkilis added that the oblique strain is much better and now he is just working on “getting his legs back”, meaning his conditioning. He is perpetual motion in the batters box and his BP (batting practice) looked effortless. You can hear the interview on Saturday during PawSox Insider, which airs at 2:00 p.m. on the PawSox radio network. Already this season Youk, Julio Lugo, Rocco Baldelli, Daisuke Matsuzaka and Mark Kotsay have rehabbed with the PawSox.
Coming into the Monday game at McCoy, the PawSox had won 8 straight at home to establish their longest such streak in 10 years. Overall, the Sox were 11-4 (at home) going into the game.
No fewer than 4 former PawSox players on the Buffalo roster. Wily Mo Pena, Bobby Kielty, Jon Switzer and Kyle Snyder all called McCoy home at some point since the 2007 season.