What a god-awful stinker thrown by Matt Clement on Sunday afternoon. Sure, the box score shows that he only gave up 2 earned runs in 5+ innings, but having watched the game taking place on the carpet in Toronto it was obvious that Clement is still not where everyone hoped he would be after being signed by the Sox after the 2004 season. Fastballs were up and over the plate, his control was erratic, even outs were made loudly.

What has been the saving grace of the Sox this season has continued to be the team defense. Mike Lowell (other than that airmail toss to first base that Manute Bol would have never been able to reach) and Alex Gonzalez (pretty soon they will start awarding errors to the guy on ground balls up the middle: Lookit dat, Vinny! Gonzalez shoulda had it. E-6. Boo!) have been airtight as advertised. Trot Nixon can actually move in the outfield these days. Manny is under-rated in left field, Youk is improving at first base, and Mark Loretta is slicker than a Sha-Na-Na concert on the double play.

Trot-trot, who has been nothing short of great this first month (despite missing five games), creates another one of those wonderful Mark Blount-Greg Spires conundrums. Do the Sox sign Trot to that huge contract since he is playing so well in his walk year, or do they let him walk and roll the dice that it was a one year wonder and he will turn back into the 100 game disabled list regular of previous seasons? Personally, I believe he is gone, and could be gone by July 31. For all the Trot Nixon love out there in the greater Boston area (yes, Jenn, that includes you.), Nixon is not one of the new management teams guys, nor was he even one of the Duke boys. Nope, Trot-Trot to London is the last holdover of the heady Lou Gorman days.

Speaking of Toronto and the SkyDome, remember the heady days of Joe Carter, Robby Alomar, and young stud closer Mike Timlin and the SkyDome was the next big thing in what was needed to bring fans to a ballgame? Hotels and malls in the bleachers, 4 million attendance figures, and that beautiful artificial surface. All those Larry Lucchino bashers need remember only Camden Yards at Oriole Park as his contribution to the game of baseball. Without Camden Yards, there could be Riverfront Stadium clones popping up all over baseball: even, gasp, in historic Brahman Boston!

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