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Sox Therapy
— Where Thinking Red Sox Fans Obsess about the Sox

Thursday, November 15, 2007

ARod to the Yanks: Not a Good Day for Sox Fans

I have to say that I am totally stunned that ARod has decided to go crawling back to the Yankees. I really thought that he would have been turned off by being booed and blamed despite playing at an all-time great level. But in the end, that seems to be what he did (although for someone crawling back he somehow managed to get a big boost to his contract). Is it about money—was no one else willing to pay that much? Is it about his family wanting to stay in NY and the Mets not making a legit ...

Darren Posted: November 15, 2007 at 03:14 AM | 121 comment(s)
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Saturday, November 10, 2007

Lessons Learned: Why the Red Sox Will not Give Up on Lugo

If you could have changed anything about the Red Sox in 2007, it probably would be to go with a different shortstop than Julio Lugo, right? Sure, JD Drew was a disappointment, but in the end he put up an OPS of ~800, so he wasn’t THAT bad. And yes, Pineiro and Wily Mo flopped (although neither was given much of a chance), but those guys were cheap and playing small parts. Lugo was basically a replacement-level player who is signed for 4-5 years and placed at the top of the lineup. With that in ...

Darren Posted: November 10, 2007 at 03:33 PM | 74 comment(s)
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Wednesday, November 07, 2007

That Other Big Question: Coco to Go?

By a show of hands, who didn’t fall in love with Jacoby Ellsbury during his brief times in the Major Leagues? Okay, yes ladies, calm down, that’s not exactly what I meant. Settle down, now. Please stop throwing your undergarments! And do I see any hands raised? Just one, who is that? Some guy wearing a “Duquette Rules, bring back Darren Lewis T-shirt”? Magnus, quit goofing around!

The emergence of Ellsbury puts the Red Sox in the rather nice position of having an extra starting-quality CF. And ...

Darren Posted: November 07, 2007 at 03:42 PM | 80 comment(s)
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Sunday, November 04, 2007

Terry Francona: Postseason Genius?

Terry Francona’s contract is up at the end of 2008, meaning he is likely to get an extension this offseason. His credentials are pretty impressive and he looks like he is headed for a big payday. Consider:

—He’s won 2 World Series in 4 years.
—He’s led the Sox to their first sole division title in a decade (and another one that they shared)
—His teams are 22-9 in the postseason.

It’s that last number that I want to look at. It seems that whatever else people think about Terry Francona, they ...

Darren Posted: November 04, 2007 at 03:54 PM | 65 comment(s)
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Saturday, November 03, 2007

Minor League Thread: Red Sox Minor League FAs

According to BA, here are the Red Sox minor league FAs:

Boston Red Sox (18)
Righthanders: Carlos Almanzar, John Barnes, Mike Burns, Felix Diaz, Jeff Farnsworth, Travis Hughes, T.J. Nall
Lefthander: Adam Cox
Catcher: Salvador Paniagua
First baseman: Jeff Bailey
Second basemen: Joe McEwing, Bobby Scales, Junior Spivey

Tony Granadillo

, Ed Rogers
Outfielders: Brad Correll, Steve Garrabrants, Cory Keylor

Do any of these names jump out at anyone?

Darren Posted: November 03, 2007 at 03:05 PM | 29 comment(s)
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Thursday, November 01, 2007

Elias Rankings of Sox Players

Completing cribbing this from Temple over at SOSH:

AL Elias Rankings from USA Today

Type A: Schilling, Lowell

Type B: Gagne, Timlin, Wake

Yep, Gagne is Type B. No two picks for him, just one supplemental. The trade was a disaster in soooo many ways.

The good news is that another team wouldn’t have to worry about giving up a #1 pick to sign him.

Sidenote: Highest ranking went to Ortiz: 100.00.

Darren Posted: November 01, 2007 at 01:47 AM | 31 comment(s)
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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The Big Question: Lowell—How much for how long?

So… the offseason is upon us and there’s no point in wasting time. What do you think Mike Lowell is worth? What do you think he will cost? Would you lock him up before he hits free agency?

If the Red Sox left it up to me (and I haven’t heard that they are going to), I’d sign Lowell before free agency. Remember, there’s another team in our division that desperately needs a starting 3B. It might feel good to go out and get ARod and feel like you took him away from the Yankees, but it would be a ...

Darren Posted: October 30, 2007 at 11:25 PM | 223 comment(s)
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Monday, October 29, 2007

Red Sox a Mile High after Sweeping 07 World Series!

The Red Sox complete an amazing year, sweeping the World Series. Off the top of my head, the MVP of the series goes to Lowell for his great hitting and baserunning. What an amazing year!

Hey, this beer is warm!

Darren Posted: October 29, 2007 at 04:12 AM | 209 comment(s)
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Sunday, October 28, 2007

World Series Game 3 Reaction: Resurgent Dice K + butt-kicing offense = 1 win away

Dice K looked really good today for the first 5 innings. It was even encouraging that he didn’t seem to hit that wall that he usually seems to hit around the 5th. I wonder if the somewhat compacted balls in Colorado make it feel more like the smaller Japanese ball. Whatever the case, great game for him. Also a great game for Ellsbury, who I’ll admit I thought should not have started today. Overall, the offense is really clicking for the Sox.

Some of the managerial moves were pretty baffling. ...

Darren Posted: October 28, 2007 at 04:59 AM | 63 comment(s)
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Friday, October 26, 2007

World Series Game 2 Reaction: Nice Game Tito

A real nailbiter tonight. The Red Sox couldn’t get that hit to put the game away, but the pitching was so good that they held the line. Great job by Terry Francona in getting Curt Schilling out of the game at a critical juncture and sticking with Hideki Okajima just long enough but not being tempted to push him too far. Papelbon’s fun to watch.

Darren Posted: October 26, 2007 at 04:15 AM | 72 comment(s)
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Thursday, October 25, 2007

World Series Game 1 Reaction: Beckett

Is there anything else to say? Josh Beckett was just awesome once again, under less than ideal circumstances, and the offense was great too. The only beef I had was with Beckett going 7 IP for no discernible reason. I’d have pulled him after the long bottom of the fifth or at least after the 6th. The only reason I could think for leaving him out there was so that they could completely rest the pen. But if he was looking to rest the pen, he wouldn’t have warmed Delcarmen or used Timlin.

All ...

Darren Posted: October 25, 2007 at 04:38 AM | 84 comment(s)
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Wednesday, October 24, 2007

World Series Preview

It seems like it’s all been said, but I thought it would still be nice to have a Sox Therapy World Series preview thread. A couple points of interest:

—Ortiz/Youk/Lowell: Who sits in Colorado? I’m really worried about Ortiz’s knee. If it’s bothering him as much as it seems to be, they may not want to risk him in the field. Plus, having his bat ready for a super-important AB would be nice too.

—Coco/Ellsbury: Who sits? I could see Francona going with Ellsbury in Fenway and Crisp in the vast ...

Darren Posted: October 24, 2007 at 02:03 AM | 29 comment(s)
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Monday, October 22, 2007

Red Sox win AL Pennant; Headed to the World Series

I’ve been pretty good about taking this postseason in stride. Until today, I wasn’t living or dying with every pitch. I was happy the Sox had won the Division and I figured that any postseason success would be gravy. But when they took a 3-0 today, I finally gave in. When it got to 3-2 with Dice-K on the mound, I was screaming at the TV, hoping for him to get out of the 5th. I felt the same way as the team seemed hopeless against Westbrook for the next couple innings. 

But they came through ...

Darren Posted: October 22, 2007 at 04:06 AM | 126 comment(s)
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Sunday, October 21, 2007

ALCS Game 6 Reactions: Drew Comes Through (and Schilling too!)

The Red Sox absolutely dismantled the Indians tonight. Throughout the series, the Indians had been the ones coming up with 2-out hits. This time, it was JD Drew blasting a HR to center with 2 outs and the bases loaded in the first. This after two very fortunate infield hits.

The game was far from over when David Ortiz grounded into a DP to end the 2nd. Trot Nixon and Casey Blake, the #8 and 9 hitters got on to start the 3rd. Curt Schilling recovered admirably and then cruised after the Red ...

Darren Posted: October 21, 2007 at 03:57 AM | 68 comment(s)
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Friday, October 19, 2007

ALCS Game 5 Reactions: Beckett Comes Through… Again

Josh Beckett once again comes up huge in the postseason. His 8 IP, 11 K, 1 BB 1 ER performance puts his 07 postseason totals at 23 IP, 1 BB, 26 K, 1.17 ERA. He’s been more than amazing. On the offensive side, I’ve given up on the bottom of the lineup, but if Pedroia is actually bouncing back, the Red Sox have a fighting chance.

Going back to Boston, Cleveland has an edge in game 6 with Carmona on the mound but I think it shifts the other way if we get to game 7.

Darren Posted: October 19, 2007 at 04:15 AM | 101 comment(s)
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Wednesday, October 17, 2007

ALCS Game 4 Reactions: Panic!

Well, that was pretty lousy. I missed most of the game, so I don’t have much to say. From what I saw, the Indians outplayed the Red Sox pretty convincingly. Only a few hitters are actually doing anything for Boston and their starters are not getting the job done. Would have been nice to have two starts from Beckett in the last 4 games instead of one.

Darren Posted: October 17, 2007 at 03:40 AM | 85 comment(s)
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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

ALCS Game 3 Reactions: Dice-OK and the big question

You know, Daisuke Matsuzaka has pitched two games during this postseason and gotten lousy results, but I still think he’s looked pretty good. A lot of balls found holes tonight. The bats went to sleep for most of the evening against a rather unimpressive-looking Jake Westbrook. Really, his stuff looked pretty hittable but the Red Sox seemed to just be missing it.

The big question now is who will pitch game four. From everything I’ve heard, it’s going to be Tim Wakefield instead of Josh ...

Darren Posted: October 16, 2007 at 04:14 AM | 64 comment(s)
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Sunday, October 14, 2007

ALCS Game 2 Reactions: What a Battle

As nerve-racking as it was to watch, game 2 was a game for the ages. Both teams got to the starters early and found their way into the opposing bullpens. The Red Sox managed to get to Perez pretty well but were shut down thereafter. Meanwhile, the Red Sox bullpen did a pretty good job of holding the Indians in check until the inning that shall not be mentioned.

Overall, there are a million ways you could second guess decisions or curse a bad break here or there. Should they have stuck with ...

Darren Posted: October 14, 2007 at 01:15 PM | 52 comment(s)
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Saturday, October 13, 2007

ALCS Game 1 Reactions: More Manny Ortez

Manny Ramirez and David Ortiz combined for the following line today: 4-4 with 5 BBs and 1 HBP. They batted 10 times between them and reached base every time. Those guys are simply amazing. Meanwhile, Josh Beckett was efficient and effective, giving up just 2 runs in 6 IP. His low pitch count (80) means that he’d like be available for game 4 on 3 days rest, if needed.

Plus Gagne held them scoreless too!

Darren Posted: October 13, 2007 at 03:30 AM | 71 comment(s)
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Friday, October 12, 2007

ALCS Preview

Sorry guys, been pretty busy so this is late and there’s not much too it. The Red Sox have a big advantage in this series in goofy facial hair, with Kevin Youkilis’s stupid goatee easily defeating Casey Blake’s Grizzly Adams beard. However, the Indians make up for that by having the most bizarre and frightening name on their roster—Fausto “deal with the devil” Carmona. Pretty evenly matched overall, but I’ll give Boston a slight edge.

Darren Posted: October 12, 2007 at 10:36 AM | 39 comment(s)
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Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Now I Really Wish They Pitched Sabathia

The victory by the Indians tonight means there will be no Yankees/Red Sox ALCS, which as I’ve expressed before, is just fine with me. Unfortunately, it also means that Cleveland will come in with CC Sabathia and Fausto Carmona will come into the series on full rest and ready to pitch games 1 and 2. Should make for a great matchup with the Red Sox as a slight favorite.

Darren Posted: October 09, 2007 at 03:54 AM | 50 comment(s)
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Sunday, October 07, 2007

ALDS Game 3 Reactions: Not Much of a Series

Well, that was pretty anticlimactic. The Angels had a nice regular season and they have a good team. They were banged up, the Sox were on, and the series got out of hand quickly. Early Game 3 was pretty tight but fell apart late. Sox head on to the ALCS able to rest up their injured players and line up their pitching.

Stat of the series: Ortiz was 5-7 with 6 walks and 2 HR. He’s doing well.

Darren Posted: October 07, 2007 at 11:00 PM | 48 comment(s)
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Weekly Minor League Thread: Pineiro Deal Completed

According to, the Red Sox received Sean Danielson from the St. Louis Cardinals to complete the Joel Pineiro deal. Danielson looks like just about the type of player you’d expect to get in such a deal. An older player for his level, he put up a .291/.370/.384 line in AA at age 24 this year, with a very nice 38/41 BB/K. According to SP, he plays all three OF spots and and apparently has good range, speed, and arm. Looks like a 4th/5th OF of the future, with some small chance of ...

Darren Posted: October 07, 2007 at 02:14 AM | 9 comment(s)
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Rooting for the Indians: Good Fun or Bad Fan?

As I was watching the Yankees/Indians marathon Friday night, I was rooting hard for the Indians to put some runs on the board and take game 2 of the series. I cheered Grady Sizemore’s leadoff triple and cursed that he was stranded. I jumped for joy when Joba Chamberlain’s wild pitch, despite a very fortunate bounce, scored Sizemore from third to tie it. I was ecstatic when Travis Hafner finally came through and ended it with a liner to right in the 11th. One more game and the Yanks would be ...

Darren Posted: October 07, 2007 at 02:07 AM | 157 comment(s)
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Saturday, October 06, 2007

ALDS Game 2 Reactions: The Manny Show

Manny certainly had quite the adventure today. He looked ridiculous in LF, costing the team at least 1 run and possibly 2. But that shot in the ninth made up for it on this night. What a complete, monstrous bomb. Not only did the homer win the game for them, it also made the Angels pay for constantly walking Ortiz. This will pay dividends in this series and beyond, as teams will not be nearly as tempted to view Manny as a singles hitter working himself back into shape.

Matsuzaka didn’t have ...

Darren Posted: October 06, 2007 at 05:19 AM | 108 comment(s)
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Thursday, October 04, 2007

ALDS Game 1 Reactions

Wow, that game really flew by. The offense looked good early and then went to sleep. Beckett was amazing. After he got through the first unscathed, I felt pretty good, but I didn’t expect a shutout. With a 4-0 lead going into the 9th, I think sticking with him was the right move. He was pitching well and taking him out would risk finding someone who wasn’t pitching well. A great game in spite of several terrible calls by the umps.

Darren Posted: October 04, 2007 at 02:36 AM | 63 comment(s)
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Monday, October 01, 2007

Red Sox v. Angels ALDS Preview

The Red Sox are preparing to take on the Angels in the American League Divisional Sub-mini Semi Series (I think that’s what it’s called) and it will be a long two more days before the series starts. Plenty of time for arguing over what’s to come, who should be on the team, and how they should approach the series. Here are some of the more interesting subplots of the matchup from my perspective. Feel free to add your own or eviscerate mine.

—A lot is being made of John Lackey’s past poor ...

Darren Posted: October 01, 2007 at 11:57 PM | 87 comment(s)
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Saturday, September 29, 2007

The Amazing Year of David Ortiz… Again

Every time you think David Ortiz has reached a plateau from which he cannot possibly improve, he goes out and does the impossible. For the seventh straight year, his OPS+ will have gone up. His OPS+ this year was a striking 174 before his 3-4 with a HR and double last night.

And in 2007, his achievements are all the more impressive because his ailing knee and shoulder caused him to alter his style considerably. No longer could he simply muscle the ball out of the ballpark with ...

Darren Posted: September 29, 2007 at 01:47 PM | 57 comment(s)
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The Red Sox win the AL East outright for the first time in over a decade. What a great way for it to end. Dice pitches well, Ortiz is still on fire, and Pap close it out! The Red Sox win the AL East!

Darren Posted: September 29, 2007 at 03:22 AM | 51 comment(s)
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Monday, September 24, 2007

The wild card playoff idea, again

Another year, another attempt to trot out the wild card playoff idea. I put this in Sox Therapy because that’s where I have keys, but the idea really is worth general discussion, IMO:

Each league has two wild-card teams.

The wild card teams play a one-game playoff, with the team with the better record hosting.

The playoffs then proceed as they currently do.


1. One-game playoffs are awesome.
2. Division races become more significant, because the division winner avoids the huge risk of ...

Toby Posted: September 24, 2007 at 04:40 PM | 42 comment(s)
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