Big relief


It was nice to finally get a couple of wins in Seattle. The losing streak there was an aberration but it?s one of those things that builds on itself. It?s not very significant in the longterm but it?s something everyone focuses on for a couple days. Much better to put it to rest.

The win on Saturday was huge, then to win again Sunday and take the series was even bigger. Plus, our bats seemed to come alive. It was good to break the streak and win the series.

This is our final West Coast trip of the regular season. It seems early but that?s the way it works out on the schedule. We spent a lot of time out here in June, including some Interleague play. Now we won?t have any of those three-hour time zone changes for a while, which is always welcome.

After this series, I think Chicago is the furthest West we?ll be until postseason. It?s a fun city that I look forward to visiting every year, anyway. A lot of us love to go there. Personally, I have a lot of family and friends I like to meet when we got to Chicago. Most of my friends, for whatever reason, have ended up in Chicago.

One drawback about this particular West Coast trip is that we don?t get to Oakland, where I could have stopped at my brother?s restaurant ? Maverick. It?s a small place on 17th Street in the Mission District of San Francisco. Scott is a serious chef. He trained at Johnson & Wales University, which is a pretty renowned culinary institute in Providence, RI.

Maverick has been getting great reviews, too. I think one of the magazines out, maybe San Francisco Magazine, recently rated them as having the best brunch in San Francisco. He?s doing a great job out there and now I think he?s in a position where he needs to add seating space.

We don?t want it to get too big. We?d like to get the seating up to about 80 people. If it gets too big, then it loses a little bit of its appeal. It?s a nice little place where people who like nice restaurants go to have a well-cooked meal and a glass of wine in a friendly environment. People scout out places like Maverick.

When I go, he opens up for lunch, which he doesn?t normally do. He?ll cook some barbeque and his famous fried chicken for me. The crab cakes and the fried green tomatoes are pretty popular, too. Maverick primarily serves updated American classics. Everything?s got a new twist.

Getting back to baseball, picking up Eric Gagne at the trade deadline is the big news around our clubhouse the last few days. Having a guy like that is a nice addition for an already outstanding bullpen. He?s one of the game?s great relief pitchers and when you consider we already have guys like Jon Papelbon and Hideki Okajima, it will take a little more burden away from the starting staff.

None of our starters are going to be in a situation where they have to pitch seven or eight innings. Our guys are strong enough to pitch that seventh or eighth inning, but why add that strain and let the pitch counts go up if you don?t have to? The decision-making gets a little easier with that level of depth, too.

There?s something to be said for being strong and well rested in the final two months of the season. Our objective isn?t to just get to the playoffs; we want to be in position to advance in the playoffs. My first two seasons with the Red Sox we made it to the playoffs and my first year we won the World Series, so last year was kind of disappointing for us. We?re a team that?s build to win a World Series every year and to not even reach the postseason was difficult for all of us. We have an opportunity to correct things this year.

It?s been an exciting week or so and I haven?t even mentioned Kevin Garnett coming to the Celtics. The city was buzzing before we left for Seattle. The Red Sox are No. 1 but this is a huge sports town and the Boston Celtics are an icon franchise, too. People love their sports teams in Boston year-round, whether it?s the Sox, the Celtics, the Patriots or the Bruins.

It?s fun for us players to see the Celtics putting together such an exciting team, too. When we go into Boston for off-season dinners and charity events, we can?t wait to go see them play. I?ll be very interested to see how Ray Allen, Paul Pierce and Garnett play together on a regular basis.

Posted by during the game on Youk’s behalf…



    Yay, first comment! And congrats on the wins in Seattle.

    And thanks for finally posting again!

    The next time I go to Oakland, I’ll definitly stop by Maverick! It sounds like a cool place. šŸ™‚


    Wow, I guess nobody else is up this early in the morning… And winning in seattle made my day šŸ™‚ even though the games are a little late for all of us. “Breakfast with the Sox” is coming on soon, and I heard you hit a big homer last night… šŸ™‚

    Maverick sounds pretty awesome. No chance of him expanding to boston, is there?

    Is it ever weird being “yoooouuuukkkk-ed” by the fans? The first time he heard it, my boyfriend asked, “Why are they booing him?” I explained, but did you know what was happening the first time?

    Not that you can answer. But I thought I’d ask anyhow.


    (big Youk fan)


    you are the best!!!!!!!!! Isaw the game last night and that was a awesome homer!!!!!

    How does it feel to have Schilling back? I’m gonna see him pitch in Baltimore. I hope we hav first base side tickets cuz i wanna see you up close first base is an awesome posittion.Again great game and nice homer last night.


    Hey Kevin:

    Watchout the Yankees are slowly gaining ground on Red Sox nation — remember, no lead is safe in the American League and Francona better stock up on plenty of R-O-L-A-I-D-S because he’s gonna need them in a hurry!


    I just saw a resume of the game, because of the time difference (Belgian fan), you made my rainy day…thank you: Keep the good job and make all your fans around the world proude to be Red Sox maniacs:

    Take care,


  6. Sid

    Mr. Youkilis,

    I’m sure you get enough of comments and questions about the Yankees in here (and everywhere you go, for that matter), but I have to ask, what goes through your mind when you come into Anaheim recently? When I was growing up, I’m sure teams coming into Orange County thought “Well, we get to spend a few days in the sun and pick up a few wins,” but the last few years having a team that will kill you with the details and a loud stadium, things are different. While you guys slaughtered us earlier this year, we’ve taken two from you at a time you can hardly afford it, and I can’t say I like your odds tonight…

    Anyway, thanks for giving us fans a peek into your life and thoughts. Good luck out there!

    -Sid McHenry



    1st time reading your blog. Good one. My daughter just graduated from JWU (great school) in Marketing and her roommate is working for the PawSox, hoping to make the job permanent this fall. Keep those wins coming. Sox fan from Vermont.



    I’ll bet that you and Francona slept like newborn babies last night…

    Admit it Kevin, your breathing easier today since the Blue Jays kicked the snot out of the Yankees last night in Toronto.

    For the stretch run your gonna need oxygen and a medical ventilator in the dugout…


    Hi Kevin;

    Like I said I made the three games in Angel stadium. I enjoyed the first but was overjoyed by last night’s game. The second game was a real break down for the team. I felt the soreness in Big Papi when he would swing.

    I don’t know if you all in the dugout could hear the Boston fans in the stadium but it was awesome. I have never missed an Angel/Red Sox series since living in Orange County in the 60’s and never have I experienced the Red Sox Nation like this before. Listening to the Angel wrap up after the game, Angel fans naturally disappointed were talking about all those Red Sox fans. One guy stated I thought I was in Fenway. The Angel broadcaster stated he didn’t like the fact so many fans were there. He thought they all came from Orange county. I have news for him and for you and your team mates; many of these fans had traveled from places like Newton, Somerset, Taunton, Boston, Mass. and from Agusta Maine, Vt. and NH. I went around asking the question where are you from? I also asked for them to vote for me for Red Sox Nation President and was surprised by the support from the young crowd.

    I’m reporting all this to you to share with your team mates. Many of these fans can’t get tickets to Fenway so they are traveling to parks where they can get tickets. Some are using vacation time.I was blown away at the number of Red Sox Fans in attendance.

    I hope with all this support you felt the energy we were sending the team.

    The couple from Maine are heading to Baltimore for that series before they head home. I’m sure there are more doing the same.

    To change the subject, some of your fans are telling you to use the term Golden Greek for your blog. As an older Red Sox fan, I would ask you not to do this. Harry Agganis, who played first base for the Red Sox in the early 50’s had this as his knickname. He died of pneumonia suddenly and I was a young fan then but I remember this like it happened yesterday. He came from Lynn Mass and was quite the athlete. It was so sad for his life and career to end this way. Ask Johnny Pesky, he will tell you what a wonderful ball player he was.

    Since this is well before your time, I thought I better clue you in before the fans from Lynn start calling in.

    I hope you all have a great series in Baltimore. They are fighting for third place and have been playing better ball of late. You will have to be on your toes.

    I will be listening to MLB on my computer and hoping for a series win.My grandfather and my Mom in heaven will be helping you as they did in 2004. I have already asked for their help.

    Yes we Red Sox Fans are an interesting group!!!!


    So, a precarious situation we (collectively and figuratively, since you guys are the ones actually playing the game!) find ourselves in, the second week in August and only 5 games up. I know a lead is a lead.. but with a hurt D. Ortiz.. and with our pitching staff, albeit great – having “issues”… it’s hard not to feel frustrated. Especially after watching last night’s game and Gagne sort of messing it up. Fortunately, you guys are hitting well (and GREAT play to third for the double play the other night!). I thoroughly enjoy watching, esp. players like you and Pedroia who really just sort of personify the heart of playing ball when you’re out there. Really, so much fun to watch… Looking forward to your next post (assuming this is you??)

    Have a great day/night/whatever it is if and when you read this!



    thanks for everything oyu do youk!
    we need more players who are rough on them selves and have a true passion for the game.

    my only wish is to hold off the yankees and the way you play certainly helps.keep up the good work!

    best of wishes



    I watch you play from Florida and enjoy you intensity.

    In July I took my Grandson to Fenway to see the Red Sox play the White Soxs. He bought a card from Curt Shillings wife of Dustin Pedrioa. I bought one of you.

    Make an elder fan happy and beat the Yankees so bad they crawl out of town.


    Mr. Youkilis: Thanks for the blogging. I live in the Bay Area and I look forward to brunch at Maverick’s. It has to be tough watching Mr. Gagne struggle – I know as teammates you need to stick together – but as a lifetime RS fan, it is very tough to watch. Like you said though – once you make the postseason, it’s a new ball game and we will be tough to beat – Becket, Schill & Dice K baby!


    Hey Yoouuk!
    Sitting here in Bowdoinham, Maine watching you guys play the 2nd game of the Tampa Bay series. You guys did a great job last night and are up 7-2 right now! I’ll be attending the Yankee game on Sept 15th with a good freind who is a Yankee fan. Should be fun and I am trying to convert him! We are both looking forward to it. Take it easy and swing away!


    Shalom! Keep up the good work. And kick some Evil Empire *** at the end of the month. I think Eric Gagne’ll come around, seeing as his last two outing were pretty strong. You don’t need to come around though, ’cause your ALREADY around!


    Great weekend in the windy city,,,youk,,after missing the hr by inches u made sure the one u slammed yesterday was wayyy baccck,,,lol,,here we come yanks


    Hi Kevin,

    What’s up? I was wondering what your thoughts are regarding the Sox’s offensive woes this season and what you guys are going to do to correct it. Drew, Lugo, Hinske, Keitly and Cora are terrible hitters that have no business playing at the MLB Level. With Manny and David Ortiz producing half of their normal offensive production do you think the Red Sox can survive in the Playoffs with such an anemic line up? Also where are you going to play when they being up Chris Carter?


    Hey Kevin,

    Been following you and made it to some of your games when you played in baltimore… keep up the great work. I know your family has to be proud and my whole family keeps tabs on your box scores. good luck, especially in the post season!

    -Matt McIntire


    Hey Kevin,

    Watching game 3 versus the Yankees. It is now the fifth inning and you have been on base twice. Way to go! Unfortunately the Sox lineup is again hitless… To bad too cause Schilling is pitching well. Maybe we can get Jerry Remy and Jim Rice temporarily out of retirement to play Short and Right field to upgrade the none existing Redsox offense. What are your thoughts??



    2 hits for entire Redsox offense in game 3 versus the hated Yankees equals extreme embarassment!! Is everyone on the Sox shoting up Estrogen or something?? Too bad for Schilling, he pitched a great game.. oh well, maybe the Sox Brass can make some moves and give Terry some players who can actually hit the ball out of the infield. PS you should have charged the mound after Joba threw at your melon head, maybe if you had some balls you would’ve.


    hi kevin how ru doing? just got home from ny, u were safe at third base kevin, and i donot like the yankees throwing at yer head, they r playing dirty baseball, takecare, the REDSOX still have a 5 game lead with 28 games to go, GOSOX!!!!!! joe


    hi kevin how ru doing? joe, that was a great article u wrote yesterday. i will always be a big REDSOX FAN and a BIG KEVIN YOUKILIS fan, i have confidence in u and yer ability, i see that u want to get a hit everytime up, that is great kevin, because ur very competive and even that pitcher who threw at u says he respects u. and says u , kevin play the game right plus ur a great guy kevin, i appreciate that alot, i will talk with u later, going saturday;s game against orioles, see u then, takecare kevin, all the best, yer bud, joe


    awww,,,isnt joe sweet,,,lol,,,he forgets kevin is taken,,lol,,,j-k..anyway ,,if u see the tv replays joe,,kev was out of baseline but they shouldve given it to him cause they called him safe,,hey joe,,,dont stalk the guy u might scare him,,lol


    Look bosox-dude, I met Joe at a youk signing. he’s a nice guy. he has health issues, and baseball is a good relief for him. leave the guy alone. youk is happy to have him as a fan and a friend. he travels the country following the sox, and they are lucky they have a fan like him. lay off joe!


    WELL,,,baseball ”dude”,,I’ve never said jOE WASN’T A GOOD GUY,,OR FAN,,i DON’T DOUBT HE IS,,so what he is a lil off,,,doesnt make him any different than any other fan,,in fact,,Ive talked to joe in email and he knows there r more people in here who seriously rag on him,,i just playfully taunt him he knows there is no harm intented,,so,,good luck to him spending all his money chasing players,,thats what he enjoys so be it..GO SOX,,


    Dear Mr. Youkilis,
    It is basically common knowledge that you thuroughly enjoy packing lips. It as also a hobby very dear to me. And, it has also come to my attention that this post is entitled “Big Relief.” So, Mr. Youkilis, I must inquire with which flavor of smokeless tobacco do you enjoy your “Biggest Relief?”


    The biggest supporter of your habit