OK, so it's just Bill Lee climbing out of a bullpen cart back in '77. If you look closely, you might be able to see Fergie Jenkins curled up all fetal-like in the back of Lee's ride, sleeping off the remnants of the previous night at the Cask 'n' Flagon.
And with that nonsensical intro -- and back by absolutely no demand whatsoever- it's another round of Random Lists of Five:
The five best-pitched games of Bill Lee's career (the first four according to Game Score):
1. April 16, 1979. In his second start as an Expo, he threw a two-hit, two-walk complete game shutout of the Cubs at Wrigley. One of the hits belonged to a player Sox fans would later become more acquainted with: Bill Buckner.
2. May 20, 1975. Lee earns his fifth win of the season with another complete-game two-hit shutout, outpitching fellow lefty Vida Blue in a 7-0 win over Oakland, the team the Sox would meet and defeat in the ALCS that October. The most interesting note from this game was, in retrospect, the brief mashup of the generations: Jim Rice and Tony Conigliaro both homered for the Sox.
3. August 19, 1975. Lee earns his 16th victory with a four-hit shutout of the Royals. George Brett, Al Cowens, Frank White, and Hal McRae had the hits. No slouches there.
4. May 30, 1979.His fourth of five career shutouts, and his second with Montreal. Odd that two of his top four performances would come with the Expos, for whom he made 58 starts, compared to 167 with the Red Sox.
5. September 5, 2010. The veteran lefthander's masterful 5.1-inning, 2-run performance for the Brockton Rox Sunday. Yeah, this one. I mean, don't you have to include it? The man is 63 years old!
Five possibly decoded aliases from Dirk Hayhurst's hilarious, heart-wrenching, can't-recommend-it-enough book, "The Bullpen Gospels."
2. Handsome Rob.
3. Jon Dalton
5. Trevor Hoffman
Five all-time leaders in adjusted ERA:
1. Mariano Rivera, 206. I wonder what would have happened to his career had he been a starter.
2. Pedro Martinez, 154. I miss his heyday.
3. Jim Devlin, 151. Pretty sure he was one of Old Hoss Radbourn's cronies.
4. Lefty Grove, 148.
5. Dan Quisenberry, Walter Johnson, and Hoyt Wilhelm, 147. Now that's a diverse trio of repertoires right there.
Five random 1975 St. Louis Cardinals:
1. Bob Gibson. Went 3-10 with a 5.04 ERA in his final season.
2. Mike Tyson. Not that one. This one.
3. Keith Hernandez. Without the mustache, or much pop (.671 OPS at age 21).
4. Bake McBride. His real name was. . . who cares? They called him Bake!
5. Danny Cater. Insert the obligatory Sparky Lyle mention right here.
Five receivers drafted after Terry Glenn (seventh overall to the Patriots) in the 1996 NFL Draft:
1. Marvin Harrison (19th overall, Colts)
2. Eric Moulds (24th overall, Bills)
3. Alex Van Dyke (second round, 31st overall, Jets). Missed on second receiver they chose in this draft -- Keyshawn Johnson was the No. 1 overall pick.
4. Muhsin Muhammad (second round, 41st overall, Panthers)
5. Terrell Owens (third round, 89th overall, 49ers). Went three picks after the Patriots took Tedy Bruschi. Legend has it that Bill Parcells wanted to take Tony Brackens or Cedric Jones in the first round, figuring he could grab a receiver in Rd. 2 or 3.
Five athletes I wish never left Boston:
1. Fred Lynn. His career OPS at Fenway -- 1.021. Only six players in history have a career OPS higher than that.
2. Curtis Martin. History will remember him as a Jet. Which, frankly, *$*#s.
3. Bobby Orr.
4. Dwight Evans. The Oriole orange looks so wrong, I'm glad this image is blurry.
5. Carlton Fisk
The five best episodes of "Mad Men," and of course I'm willing to debate this, because frankly, pretty much every episode feels like the best movie you've seen in years:
1. "Shut the Door, Have a Seat," Season 3. Supplanted the Season 2 finale of "The Office" as my favorite episode of any television show my beady eyes have ever seen.
2. "Guy Walks Into An Advertising Agency," Season 3. "And just when he was getting his foot in the door ..."
3. "The Suitcase," Season 4. -- I'd say this should be Jon Hamm's Emmy submission, but that would be to suggest he's not going to top himself again in what has been a breathtaking, brilliant season so far.
4. "Babylon," Season 1.The first episode where you start getting the sense where Peggy and Joan will be headed as the '60s become tumultuous.
5. "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes," Season 1: After the first season aired, to rave reviews but unspectacular viewership, AMC did a shrewd thing, rerunning every episode of Season 1 in succession I believe the day (or a few days) before the premiere of Season 2. On a whim, I DVR'd all of the episodes. After tricking my wife into marrying me, it's very possibly the smartest thing I've ever done, and I was hooked with the very first scene.
Five reasons I cannot believe Don Zimmer is being inducted into the Red Sox Hall of Fame:
1. He ran off the Buffalo Heads, most damagingly, Bernie Carbo and Fergie Jenkins
2. He never made the postseason. Yeah, yeah, tough division. Look at the talent from 1977-79. They underachieved because of the manager.
3. Playing Dewey down the stretch in '78 when he was still suffering the effects of a beaning.
4. Playing Butch Hobson when his elbow was so shot he had to adjust bone chips before throwing.
5. Turning Pedro into a matador and himself into a martyr in some circles during Game 3 in 2003.
Five rookies who played for the Red Sox this season despite not being ranked among their top 25 prospects by Baseball America:
1. Robert Manuel (unranked, third among righthanded relievers)
2. Fabio Castro (unranked, second among lefty relievers)
3. Daniel Nava (unranked, seventh among right fielders)
4. Dusty Brown (unranked, fourth among catchers)
5. Dustin Richardson (27th, first among lefthanded relievers)
The last five songs to pop up on the iPod while writing this:
1. "Crossfire," Brandon Flowers.
2. "Operator," Jim Croce. She's living in LA/With my best old ex-friend Ray/A guy she said she knew well and sometimes hated. C'mon, that's a timeless story in, what, 20 words?
3. "Yellow Ledbetter," Pearl Jam.
4. "Modern Love," David Bowie. Most '80s music holds up surprisingly well, you know.
5. "California Love," Tupac, Dr. Dre, Roger Troutman. Out on bail/fresh out of jail/California dreamin' . . . Tupac raps it, but I lived it, brother. (Who am I kidding. I'm so white you could count my capillaries.)
Five AL pitching leaders in WAR (Fangraphs version), or why Clay Buchholz (17th in WAR) had no chance at the Cy:
1. Francisco Liriano, 6.1.
2. Cliff Lee, 6.0
3. Felix Hernandez, 5.9
4. Jon Lester, 5.0
5. The Good Weaver Brother, 4.7
Five Players Selected Ahead of Darnell McDonald in the 1997 MLB Draft. (D-Mac was chosen 26th overall by the Orioles:)
1. J.D. Drew, OF, Phillies (second overall). Shhhh. Listen. You can almost hear Philly booing from here.
2. Vernon Wells, CF, Blue Jays (5th)
3. Lance Berkman, OF, Astros (16th)
4. Jon Curtice, LHP, Red Sox (17th). High school teammate of fellow '97 first-rounder Michael Cuddyer never made it out of Single A with the Sox. Reportedly an avid donutsman.
5. Jayson Werth, C, Orioles (22d). Has any athlete ever changed his look more? Rodman, I suppose. Birdman Andersen. Rene Richards does not count.
Five relatively prominent 2010 Red Sox who should not be back in 2011:
1. Mike Lowell. His effort is admirable, his production since Youkilis got hurt is abysmal.
2. Jason Varitek. After his amazing April (1.138) and May (.914), he faded fast in June (.570). Time to go with V-Mart and Salty.
3. Tim Wakefield. An appropriate ending? Five eaten innings of three-run ball, followed by walk-HBP-bomb to start the sixth. [Exeunt knucksie and his doffed cap. Fade to black.]
4. Hideki Okajima. It's been lights-out for the former hero in the dark.
5. Tim Bogar. OK, a cop-out -- what can I say, I like this team and want to see the core return. But with his twitchy wind-milling arm, he's sure made us appreciate DeMarlo Hale, hasn't he?
About Touching All The Bases
Irreverence and insight from Chad Finn, a Globe/Boston.com sports writer and media columnist. A winner of several national and regional writing awards, he is the founder and sole contributor to the TATB blog, which launched in December 2004. Yes, he realizes how lucky he is.