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   1. Darren Posted: September 04, 2011 at 06:01 PM (#3916650)
Good post. I was going to put something up about the #3/#4 starter thing, but a different issue. I had been reading and hearing about the question of who would get the third starter position between Bedard and Lackey. Bedard is essentially the same excellent starter he's always been. I can't figure out what would lead anyone to think he should be behind Lackey.

On Lackey vs. the rest of the dreck, I think you have to go with him and hope he can give 6 IP, 3-4 runs. He does seem to be doing that reasonably well... I guess. One of the younger guys seems a lot more likely to give you a real nightmare start.

As I write this, Lackey just again failed to get 2 straight scoreless innings. Sigh.
   2. Darren Posted: September 04, 2011 at 06:03 PM (#3916653)
One nice thing: I was concerned that they were going to start buying into Miller as a decent starter, but that last start seems to have woken everyone up.
   3. Drew (Primakov, Gungho Iguanas) Posted: September 04, 2011 at 06:04 PM (#3916654)
Ortiz is having a season right out of his peak, and nobody's noticed.
   4. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 04, 2011 at 06:05 PM (#3916656)
Jinx jinx jinx. Too superstitious to comment until we've clinched something.

Love the update to the MLB AtBat app for the iphone
   5. villageidiom Posted: September 04, 2011 at 06:17 PM (#3916664)
I'd think those ERA+ splits for Lackey would match up pretty well when compared to the #4 starters of any other playoff team in the AL, save maybe Texas.
   6. Drew (Primakov, Gungho Iguanas) Posted: September 04, 2011 at 06:19 PM (#3916668)
Conor Jackson getting the wind knocked out of him.
   7. nick swisher hygiene Posted: September 04, 2011 at 06:33 PM (#3916677)
As a somewhat pessimistic Yankee fan, I will observe that three good starters and two really good relievers are basically all the pitching one needs to win in today's rest-filled post-season. And you guys have that, plus Aceves.
   8. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: September 04, 2011 at 06:36 PM (#3916683)
Not having looked at the playoff schedule, is there any chance we can just say ### it, and go 2009 Yankees? Three starters all the way?
   9. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: September 04, 2011 at 06:51 PM (#3916690)
vi -

Sabathia, Colon, Nova, and Garcia all blow those splits out of the water.
   10. Darren Posted: September 04, 2011 at 07:24 PM (#3916710)
@8--We could, but the Red Sox won't. They've had chances to do this with Beckett, who'd already proven he could dominate on 3 days rest, and didn't.
   11. Darren Posted: September 04, 2011 at 07:26 PM (#3916712)
Maybe they should just use Wake for 80 pitches, if only they could figure out to pull him at the right time.
   12. Darren Posted: September 04, 2011 at 07:27 PM (#3916713)
During today's game Don and Jerry were again discussing how Lackey and Bedard were competing for the #3 spot in the playoffs. Unreal.
   13. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: September 04, 2011 at 07:44 PM (#3916725)
Maybe not Doubront...
   14. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 04, 2011 at 08:57 PM (#3916755)
Today the Red Sox playoff odds on the BP postseason report broke over 99.95% and are listed at 100%.

Odd result. The Yankees have a higher exp W% and exp Ws, are ahead of the Sox, and have a much higher % of winning the Div., but the Sox have a higher playoff %.
   15. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: September 04, 2011 at 09:33 PM (#3916758)
Odd result. The Yankees have a higher exp W% and exp Ws, are ahead of the Sox, and have a much higher % of winning the Div., but the Sox have a higher playoff %.

That's because the guys calculating those percentages saw that ninth inning camera scan of Scott Proctor in the Yankees bullpen.

Yes, THAT Scott Proctor.

And in a Yankees uniform, not in civvies.

Jesus, I thought he was dead and buried somewhere out there in Forest Lawn, next to Joe Torre and Mel Stottlemyre. Guess not. But anyway, I'll bet that explains that lower playoff %.
   16. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: September 04, 2011 at 09:56 PM (#3916760)
@8--We could, but the Red Sox won't. They've had chances to do this with Beckett, who'd already proven he could dominate on 3 days rest, and didn't.

Yes, but in the past, the dropoff to our fourth starter has been nowhere near as apocalyptic as it is now. You would hope that this would encourage them to at least look into the possibility, especially with the Yankees demonstrating that it can be done successfully.

Also, you need more than just one starter who can go short rest to pull it off. Having Beckett alone isn't going to cut it. But Lester is now much more established as a workhorse, and Bedard is a rental anyway, so who cares...
   17. villageidiom Posted: September 04, 2011 at 10:19 PM (#3916767)
Odd result. The Yankees have a higher exp W% and exp Ws, are ahead of the Sox, and have a much higher % of winning the Div., but the Sox have a higher playoff %
1. Most of the scenarios that involve Tampa taking the WC would also have them beating up on both teams, probably tilting things slightly in favor of the Yankees because they're currently ahead.

2. Some scenarios that involve the Angels taking the WC would have them doing so by beating up on the Yankees, who play 3 in Anaheim. (As of this moment, Boston's entire remaining schedule is against just the AL East. The Yankees have a west coast trip.) This tilts things back in favor of Boston.
   18. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: September 04, 2011 at 10:22 PM (#3916769)
You're forgetting someone.
   19. Darren Posted: September 05, 2011 at 12:25 AM (#3916796)
Yes, but in the past, the dropoff to our fourth starter has been nowhere near as apocalyptic as it is now. You would hope that this would encourage them to at least look into the possibility, especially with the Yankees demonstrating that it can be done successfully.


That's all true. But they were down 2-1 and had a chance to get 2 more starts out of Beckett without messing anyone else up in the 2007 ALCS. You may be right, though, they may rethink it based on the current circumstances.
   20. Textbook Editor Posted: September 05, 2011 at 12:53 AM (#3916804)
I think at the moment Bedard is likely to be the Game 3 starter. As for Game 4, I suppose it would be Lackey, but if he goes in the tank over the last month, the guess would be Wakefield on a short leash/Aceves for a Game 4 start.

The question is: Does Wakefield get a roster spot? He has his uses--in a blowout loss, he soaks up the innings you'd prefer not to give to Aceves, who you may need for 6th/7th inning duties... But where would that leave the staff?

Beckett
Lester
Bedard
Lackey
Wakefield
Aceves
Morales
Wheeler
Bard
Papelbon

Would they go with just 10 for an ALDS roster? Or would they throw Miller in there to make it 11? There is, after all, a decent chance Bard/Papelbon are looking at working either all 5 games or 4 of 5, depending on circumstances.

I think you almost have to have Wake on the roster, as the chance of a Disaster Start for Lackey is so high you can't risk blowing through a short pen in a Game 4 with an all-or-nothing Game 5 looming. Having Wake soak up those Game 4 innings helps rest the pen for an all-hands-on-deck Game 5.
   21. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: September 05, 2011 at 02:21 AM (#3916835)
Odd result. The Yankees have a higher exp W% and exp Ws, are ahead of the Sox, and have a much higher % of winning the Div., but the Sox have a higher playoff %.
Does anyone know how the BPro playoff odds accounts for ties? Here in reality the Sox would win the division, but I'm not sure what the projections make of that. Of course, the chance there's a three way tie for the AL East/Wild Card (or something truly wacky like a four-way Boston/NY/TB/LA tie) is pretty much zero but in might emerge in a million simulated seasons.
   22. ray james Posted: September 05, 2011 at 02:34 AM (#3916839)
It might have to do with the remaining schedule.
   23. John DiFool2 Posted: September 05, 2011 at 02:55 AM (#3916848)
And the Sox winning the season series already, hence a tie gives them the division.
   24. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: September 05, 2011 at 12:37 PM (#3916944)
Soaking up innings is Aceves' job. Someone like Bowden or any of the AAA starters could do it, too. And they'd have uses beyond the extremely limited "eat bulk zero-lev innings". I don't see any room for Wake on a playoff roster, and I'll be very surprised if he's named.

I also think a three-man staff has a lot to recommend it for the Red Sox. Obviously it depends on the specific pitchers, but we know Beckett can work well on short rest, and a somewhat less effective Lester or Bedard is still a lot better than Lackey.
   25. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: September 05, 2011 at 12:52 PM (#3916949)
I wanted to ask you long time Sox watchers if you've ever seen a ball go where Napoli's went? Criminy, that was a shot. I've seen many and many a game at Fenway and don't remember one hitting the back wall of CF before, though I'm guessing it has happened.
   26. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: September 05, 2011 at 01:14 PM (#3916953)
I also think a three-man staff has a lot to recommend it for the Red Sox. Obviously it depends on the specific pitchers, but we know Beckett can work well on short rest, and a somewhat less effective Lester or Bedard is still a lot better than Lackey.

Matt, what's the confidence factor that Red Sox fans have in Bedard? Is he someone they think could hold down offenses like the Yankees or the Rangers? From his record since the trade, he looks like a pitcher who doesn't implode, but OTOH he's only averaging 5 1/3 innings a start. Does that indicate managerial strategy or just a lack of endurance? He's clearly better than Lackey, but do you really think that he'd be capable of handling short rest against the best offenses in baseball? Wouldn't that likely put a strain on the bullpen?

BTW that's not a "concern troll" question, because believe me, the Yankees have similar questions about their rotation once you get past Sabathia. Nova / Garcia / Colon have been pretty reliable and effective, but among them only Nova has averaged 6 innings per start, and he hits it right on the nose. Sabathia's the only one who gives the bullpen a breather.
   27. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: September 05, 2011 at 01:54 PM (#3916959)
No matter what happens from here on out there is little doubt in my mind that on Day 1 of the playoffs the Red Sox will be the clear Vegas favorites for AL Champ.
   28. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: September 05, 2011 at 02:07 PM (#3916964)
By the way, if I'm the Sox FO, I'm all kinds of pissed off at the Blue Jays, who laid down and took it at the Stadium while Texas came to Fenway and played hard.
   29. Darren Posted: September 05, 2011 at 02:16 PM (#3916967)
I think Bedard's endurance is okay. They have likely taken it rather easy on him as he comes back from his DL stint and he did have that one start shortened by rain. I'd say he's a good bet to go 6 IP and to do well against good teams. He looks like he'd be alright against good teams.
   30. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: September 05, 2011 at 02:42 PM (#3916979)
Matt, what's the confidence factor that Red Sox fans have in Bedard? Is he someone they think could hold down offenses like the Yankees or the Rangers? From his record since the trade, he looks like a pitcher who doesn't implode, but OTOH he's only averaging 5 1/3 innings a start. Does that indicate managerial strategy or just a lack of endurance?
There's kind of a lot of different questions in there. To piece them apart:

-Bedard has pitched very well with the Red Sox and I'm confident in him as a 3rd starter
-Bedard has top quality stuff and does not look like a guy who will have particularly more trouble against good teams
-Bedard has a tendency to lose control of the zone in an inning every now and again, which destroys his pitch counts and forces shorter outings
-His problem, as such, isn't endurance in that he loses it early, but efficiency in that he throws too many pitches early in games
-The Red Sox have been very careful with Bedard, and he could probably push his pitch counts a bit more in the playoffs

So, I'm confident in Bedard as a guy who can give a good 5-6 innings in the playoffs, and clearly has the capacity to dominate any offense if he shows up firing on all cylinders. He's unlikely to work deep into a game, and he'll walk a few guys, but I like having him behind Beckett and Lester a lot more than I liked having Lackey there.
   31. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: September 05, 2011 at 03:03 PM (#3916987)
By the way, if I'm the Sox FO, I'm all kinds of pissed off at the Blue Jays, who laid down and took it at the Stadium while Texas came to Fenway and played hard.

I think it's more like that the Blue Jays aren't in the Rangers' class at this point, and that the Yankees are now playing their best ball of the year. Also, the first two games of that series were very close, and the last one didn't break wide open until the late innings.

--------------------------------

Thanks for your take on Bedard, Matt. I remember him as an ace on the Orioles, but I've lost track of him since then. From what you say, when he's up against the Yankees his key is going to be getting ahead in the count and then not trying to nibble. The Blue Jays pitchers did that against Cano and Swisher both Saturday and yesterday, getting two quick strikes and then wasting two pitches, and they paid for it dearly every time. Not that this is exactly news to anyone familiar with both the Yanks and the Red Sox, but it's always kind of amazing to me the way that so many pitchers seem to think that they can outlast the likes of Cano and Pedroia.
   32. Chip Posted: September 05, 2011 at 03:06 PM (#3916989)
-The Red Sox have been very careful with Bedard, and he could probably push his pitch counts a bit more in the playoffs



Bedard was coming off the DL when the Red Sox traded for him, and was on some strict pitch limits for his first couple of starts. That more than anything is what has limited his innings per start so far with the Sox. I believe his last start was the first where he was not on a limit, although they're still going to be careful with him down the stretch.
   33. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: September 05, 2011 at 03:15 PM (#3916992)
I didn't know this - only one current Yankee with significant ABs against Bedard is even hitting .300 against him.

chart
   34. RobertMachemer Posted: September 05, 2011 at 03:26 PM (#3916999)
No matter what happens from here on out there is little doubt in my mind that on Day 1 of the playoffs the Red Sox will be the clear Vegas favorites for AL Champ.
For real reasons -- i.e., because the Sox seem the most likely to win the AL pennant -- or for silly ones -- the voting pessimism of Yankee fans/optimism of Red Sox fans, both of whom ought to know that the Yankees have been the best team in the AL but forget this because the Red Sox have gotten lucky in head-to-head games? And if the current standings hold up, the Red Sox have to play the significantly better Texas while the Yankees play the winner of the Central.

I can't imagine the Red Sox ought to be favored for legitimate reasons unless Buchholz pitches well in a couple of games before the end of the regular season.
   35. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: September 05, 2011 at 03:31 PM (#3917002)
I have no idea why you think Texas is "significantly better" than Detroit. Miguel Cabrera is a better hitter than Texas can put in the batting order at this point. And Verlander is about twice as good as any Texas starter, if not better than that. In a five-game series, topline talent like that has to enter into the thinking - if you want to beat Detroit in the first round, you need to beat Verlander twice.
   36. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: September 05, 2011 at 03:32 PM (#3917003)
I didn't know this - only one current Yankee with significant ABs against Bedard is even hitting .300 against him.

chart


Here's something else you might want to know about Bedard and the Yankees: He's faced them only twice since he left the Orioles at the end of 2007, and in those two starts (both in 2008) he gave up 10 earned runs in 11.1 innings. His career W-L / ERA against the Yanks is 4-5 / 4.32.
   37. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: September 05, 2011 at 03:41 PM (#3917008)
I have no idea why you think Texas is "significantly better" than Detroit.
The Rangers have outscored their opponents by a much greater margin than the Tigers have, amounting to a nine-game difference in expected records.

The Tigers have Cabrera, but they also have the sub-300 OBPs of Delmon Young, Magglio Ordonez, Brandon Inge, Ryan Raburn, Don Kelly, and Ramon Santiago taking up 3-4 spots in their batting order. Unlike a club with poor back-of-the-rotation starters, those guys have to play just as many games as Cabrera and Martinez.

Verlander's great, but the other three games will be divided between Doug Fister, Max Scherzer, and either Brad Penny or Rick Porcello.

I think you can make the case that the top-heavy nature of Detroit's roster makes them a better club for the playoffs than their expected record projects, but it's really hard for me to see how they aren't worse than Texas.
   38. ray james Posted: September 05, 2011 at 03:44 PM (#3917009)
I wanted to ask you long time Sox watchers if you've ever seen a ball go where Napoli's went? Criminy, that was a shot. I've seen many and many a game at Fenway and don't remember one hitting the back wall of CF before, though I'm guessing it has happened.


I saw Eddie Murray hit one there off Mike Torrez in the early 80's. The ball carried better in Fenway then though, especially in mid-summer.
   39. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: September 05, 2011 at 03:56 PM (#3917013)
I think you can make the case that the top-heavy nature of Detroit's roster makes them a better club for the playoffs than their expected record projects, but it's really hard for me to see how they aren't worse than Texas.


Not just playoffs, but 5-game series. I don't know how to research this best, but I think Detroit would be a more formidible adversary in the first round than in future rounds.
   40. RobertMachemer Posted: September 05, 2011 at 03:57 PM (#3917014)
if you want to beat Detroit in the first round, you need to beat Verlander twice.
Um, why not just once?
   41. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: September 05, 2011 at 04:01 PM (#3917016)
I would expect that the Tiggers are going to be able to set up the rotation so that Verlander pitches twice. I don't have the DS schedule for this year handy, but there are usually sufficient days off to more or less ensure that without a sweep, a given starter will be able to throw twice.
   42. RobertMachemer Posted: September 05, 2011 at 04:06 PM (#3917018)
Well, that's my point. Beat Verlander once and you think he'll pitch game 3?
   43. RobertMachemer Posted: September 05, 2011 at 04:07 PM (#3917019)
And that's assuming the Tigers get to use him in Game 1 -- if the division race stays close, they may not have the luxury of setting up their rotation.
   44. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: September 05, 2011 at 04:11 PM (#3917020)
Um, why not just once?


For that matter, you can beat the Tigers without beating Verlander at all.
   45. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: September 05, 2011 at 04:17 PM (#3917023)
For that matter, you can beat the Tigers without beating Verlander at all.
Or Verlander might get his head handed to him, stranger things have happened. Randy Johnson had a ridiculous 2002 season and didn't pitch into the seventh in his one playoff start.

Twice I've had a strong preference for who the Yankees play in the first round (the Angels in 2002 and Tigers in 2006) and the Yankees were a collective 2-6 in those Series. I've given up any notion that one team is a better match-up for another, especially in the first round.
   46. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: September 05, 2011 at 04:17 PM (#3917024)
You're being a bit too literal, SoSH. I didn't mean "score more runs than the Tigers while Verlander is still pitching, at the manager's whim". I thought it was fairly clear that I meant "beat the Tigers with Verlander starting the game".
   47. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: September 05, 2011 at 04:20 PM (#3917027)
Twice I've had a strong preference for who the Yankees play in the first round (the Angels in 2002 and Tigers in 2006) and the Yankees were a collective 2-6 in those Series. I've given up any notion that one team is a better match-up for another, especially in the first round.


Same feeling with the same influences, by the way. My point is not to express a preference for my team to play and beat, but to point out that there are no creampuffs in the playoffs, particularly in a very short series. Your team's wonderfulness does not result in a walkover.
   48. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 05, 2011 at 04:21 PM (#3917029)
No matter what happens from here on out there is little doubt in my mind that on Day 1 of the playoffs the Red Sox will be the clear Vegas favorites for AL Champ.

Because people are still betting based on Spring Training expectations?

What kind of odds are you giving on a BRef sponsorship bet?
   49. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: September 05, 2011 at 04:22 PM (#3917030)
You're being a bit too literal, SoSH. I didn't mean "score more runs than the Tigers while Verlander is still pitching, at the manager's whim". I thought it was fairly clear that I meant "beat the Tigers with Verlander starting the game".


And you're misunderstanding me. You can lose both of Verlander's starts and still beat the Tigers. It undeniably makes it more difficult, but you don't actually have to beat Verlander at all to win the series, and you most definitely don't have to "beat him twice."
   50. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: September 05, 2011 at 04:26 PM (#3917032)
if you want to beat Detroit in the first round, you need to beat Verlander twice.

Um, why not just once?
...
For that matter, you can beat the Tigers without beating Verlander at all.
Then:
You're being a bit too literal, SoSH. I didn't mean "score more runs than the Tigers while Verlander is still pitching, at the manager's whim". I thought it was fairly clear that I meant "beat the Tigers with Verlander starting the game".
I'm honestly confused, and I must be missing something.

Verlander starts Game 1, Tigers win
Non-Verlander starts Game 2, Yankees win
Non-Verlander starts Game 3, Yankees win
Non-Verlander starts game 4, Yankees win

Series over, Verlander undefeated, Tigers defeated. If the Tigers push Verlander up to game 4, then he can win that game and the Tigers can lose the series in the fifth game.

The difference between facing the Tigers (w/ homefield) and facing the Rangers (w/o homefield) probably amounts to 5-15 percentage points in series win expectation. It's a real difference, and no one gambling money on, or setting odds for who will win the American League should ignore it. That doesn't mean this difference is determinative, that we can know who will win the Divisional Series matchups based on such calculations. The Rangers are clearly better, but that doesn't mean they will win their series or that the Tigers will lose theirs. Baseball's too good a sport for that to be the case.
   51. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 05, 2011 at 04:42 PM (#3917045)
Here are the latest (as of this morning) Monte Carlo projections from SG over at RLYW.

American League
TM W L RS RA Div WC PL
Yankees 99 63 870 657 63.0% 36.7% 99.7%
Red Sox 98 64 860 694 36.9% 62.3% 99.3%

http://www.rlyw.net/index.php/RLYW/comments/monte_carlo_standings_and_postseason_odds_through_september_4_2011
   52. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: September 05, 2011 at 06:30 PM (#3917104)
I'd love to see a day in the NBA or the NFL that had the equivalent of what we're seeing today in baseball: One game (Boston-Toronto) with a scoreless tie in the 4th, and another game (Yanks-O's) with 15 runs on the board going into the bottom of the 3rd.
   53. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 05, 2011 at 06:40 PM (#3917117)
And now Beckett leaves the game with an injury, MCoA=cousin Oliver grrrrr (edit - or was it Bobby the kids were calling a jinx?)
   54. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: September 05, 2011 at 06:55 PM (#3917129)
No trolling, though it may read like that. I just saw it, and it doesn't look good for Beckett. So many pitching injuries have such subtle symptoms that a less-than-close viewing doesn't reveal them, but this one was unmistakeable.

*EDIT*

"Sprained Ankle* appears to be the diagnosis, which doesn't tell us what we really want to know.
   55. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: September 05, 2011 at 08:04 PM (#3917187)
Youse guys is still fergettin someone.
   56. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: September 05, 2011 at 08:46 PM (#3917212)
Who?

Buchholz? I mean, sure, great, everything will be great if Buchholz comes back healthy. That fact should influence the Red Sox in not one way at all down the stretch.
   57. Darren Posted: September 05, 2011 at 08:49 PM (#3917215)
Matt, I think you ran the #s on the injuries last year. Care to do it again?
   58. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 05, 2011 at 09:06 PM (#3917228)
We're ######, monumentally ######. If we don't win tomorrow we aren't going to win for awhile;

Tuesday - Lester
Wed - Wake
Thursday - Miller
Friday - Lackey
Saturday - ???
Sunday - ???

People keep acting like the playoffs are a certainty and it's not. This ####### team can't hit with any consistency and the pitching is a mess. Other than Papelbon and Bard there isn't a reliever to be relied on.

I know, I know, I'm pants pissing with a 7 game lead but after Toronto we have 3 with Tampa, 3 more with Toronto, and 4 with Tampa. There is a decent chance the WC lead is 3 games by the time the weekend is over and then it's game ####### on. This group of players needs to get their heads out of their asses ####### soon.
   59. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 05, 2011 at 09:07 PM (#3917229)
Just as an aside the last time I was this riled up was after the game one loss in Texas and that worked out.
   60. tfbg9 Posted: September 05, 2011 at 09:29 PM (#3917238)
Haxby, You're Dr. Cliff Jinxtable.
   61. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: September 05, 2011 at 10:23 PM (#3917273)
Tuesday - Lester
Wed - Wake
Thursday - Miller
Friday - Lackey
Saturday - ???
Sunday - ???


Any word yet on Beckett's ankle / foot?
   62. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: September 05, 2011 at 10:49 PM (#3917303)
Beckett is going back to Boston for an exam, apparently.
   63. Mayor Blomberg Posted: September 05, 2011 at 11:39 PM (#3917347)
from the article in 62
How concerned is he?

"I don't know," he said. "It's always concerning. That's my power leg. With the way I pitch, if you cut my leg off I don't think I can pitch."


that's why you need guy like Tim Wakefield on your staff.
   64. The Yankee Clapper Posted: September 06, 2011 at 12:07 AM (#3917375)
That's my power leg. With the way I pitch, if you cut my leg off I don't think I can pitch."

Can't be good if they're talking amputation so quickly.
   65. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: September 06, 2011 at 12:16 AM (#3917384)
More musings from the wounded warrior:

"It's pretty bad timing," Beckett said. "But I could be back out there in six days. We'll see. Let's not put the cart in front of the horse. Let's do our due diligence."
   66. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: September 06, 2011 at 01:25 AM (#3917423)
The latest reality check, as of the morning of September 6th:

The two teams have 22 games to go, and the Red Sox are 7 games up.

If Boston goes 7-15 the rest of the season (and finishes 91-71), Tampa will have to go 15-7 to beat the Red Sox.

If Boston goes 11-11, Tampa has to go 19-3.

Bottom line: If the Red Sox can finish close to .500 the rest of the way, and they avoid getting swept by Tampa in each remaining series, they'll be in the playoffs.
   67. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 06, 2011 at 01:50 AM (#3917430)
If Boston goes 7-15 the rest of the season (and finishes 91-71), Tampa will have to go 15-7 to beat the Red Sox.

Looking at it that is almost irrelevant with 7 head to head games in there.

To have a realistic chance TB needs to go 6-1, esp. since they've got an extra 3 vs. the Yanks, though the Yankees probably won't care by the last series.
   68. Mayor Blomberg Posted: September 06, 2011 at 02:20 AM (#3917440)
“I could wake up tomorrow and feel like playing basketball,” he said. “We'll just see.”


that ought to make Tito feel comfortable.
   69. Textbook Editor Posted: September 06, 2011 at 02:27 AM (#3917449)
In the article, a "popping" is mentioned in regards to the ankle, which does not sound good at all. Sure it may be nothing, but if I had to guess, 90% of the time when guys feel something "pop" it isn't good.

John Lackey, Game 2 starter...
   70. Dale Sams Posted: September 06, 2011 at 02:43 AM (#3917454)
The club does have that 'beginning of the year/going into a 2006 5 game series with the Yanks' vibe about it. I think a small measure of pants-pissing is warranted.
   71. Nasty Nate Posted: September 06, 2011 at 03:23 PM (#3917696)
Off topic, but Boston.com has an article about tickets, re-selling/scalping, and potential new legislation: here.

The Red Sox ticket scene is probably unique, in that face value is very high, but still below what the market could bear in general. The current secondary market situation is frustrating for many people, although I'm skeptical that any new regulations would do much besides shift the profits around and probably towards the lawmakers' allies. The article leads with a couple of fans who willingly paid $130 per ticket for bleacher seats for a recent Sox/Yankees game. Their story can't be typical, as only someone blessed with a big combination of gullibility and laziness would agree to that deal (not very hard to beat that price).
I believe that the people who cry "It's not fair that I don't get tickets for really cheap" and those that retort with "it's just simple supply and demand that determines ticket price" are both looking at the situation naively. I think a secondary market should exist, but one in which 10-20% (or more) of the tickets flow thru is grossly inefficient and riddled with potential corruptions. I wonder if the Sox' season-ticket holders should be paying more per ticket (face value) when buying from the Sox compared to someone buying individual games from the Sox (face value). Right now, season tickets are a steep discount because they are cheaper face value AND people buying individual games over the phone or online have to pay big transaction fees. Or, the Sox could follow the Patriots' lead and revoke tickets for season-ticket holders who sell for profit.
   72. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 06, 2011 at 03:40 PM (#3917706)
I wonder if the Sox' season-ticket holders should be paying more per ticket (face value) when buying from the Sox compared to someone buying individual games from the Sox (face value). Right now, season tickets are a steep discount because they are cheaper face value AND people buying individual games over the phone or online have to pay big transaction fees. Or, the Sox could follow the Patriots' lead and revoke tickets for season-ticket holders who sell for profit.


I can't tell you how frustating it is to me to see how little they do to combat the scalping. I see the same guys in the same spot every game but meanwhile I follow the rules and only sell to friends and family at face value. Technically I believe my contract with the Sox says I'll lose my tickets if I sell above face value.

Nate, I think the great majority of season ticket holders do what I do. I get why you are suggesting what you suggest but I think you'd be punishing many for the transgressions of the few.

Speaking of my season tickets, is there anyone else out there who has paid for post-season tickets with a debit card? The transaction went trhough last week but now the money is back in my account even though a call to the Sox this morning says my bill is indeed paid up.
   73. Nasty Nate Posted: September 06, 2011 at 04:03 PM (#3917731)
Nate, I think the great majority of season ticket holders do what I do. I get why you are suggesting what you suggest but I think you'd be punishing many for the transgressions of the few.


Maybe, but I'm skeptical. How else are there literally thousands of tickets on stubhub for most games (not to mention craigslist/ebay etc)? Stubhub makes it so easy to sell the games that you can't use - and while selling them you might as well profit. There's no work to it, no meet-up with a stranger, it is all over the phone. And I don't blame the season ticket holders who do this. The profit margin is so good; I'm pretty sure a pair of bleachers for a season-ticket holder costs $25 per ticket, but if I buy it from the Sox I pay an increased face value and service fees so it ends up being $35 per ticket. (I am assuming here that season ticket holders don't pay service and transaction fees when paying for their plan). So the season ticket holders get below-below market rates for tickets, AND guaranteed playoff tickets. Lots of people would take that deal if more plans were available
   74. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 06, 2011 at 04:22 PM (#3917755)
How else are there literally thousands of tickets on stubhub for most games


Are there really that many? Wow.

Even so just looking at the current stubhub list there are 3,314 tickets available for the 9/21 game against Baltimore (the high game on a quick glance). Figure stubhub is the most common reseller and add 50% to that number to get to about 5,000 tickets you're still talking about ~25-33% of the season ticket base for a game that is fairly unattractive. Mid-week, crappy opponent, uncertain weather that still means a lot of season ticket holders have their tickets. And looking at the list of games it seems that the average is about 1,500-2,000 tickets.

Admittedly, seeing that many tickets is shocking and obviously I have a dog in this fight.

I really don't understand how it is possible for a place like StubHub to exist. I don't understand how what they are doing is not scalping.
   75. Dale Sams Posted: September 06, 2011 at 04:32 PM (#3917765)
The four or so times I've visited Stubhub to play the 'If I were in (x) city right now' game, I've seen tickets I would be more than happy to pay. Not too long ago there was a Green Monster seat for $200. I'd certainly do that as a one-time thing. Right now there's a nice loge seat for the first game at Fenway after this road trip for $88. And that's days away, I'd figure much better deals will materialize.

Every KC-Sox game I've gone to, I've seen guys standing on the freeways, and in front of the hotels selling tickets. Who goes to a KC game without tickets? Especially when you can go to Stub-hub to get below face, or mlb or the ticket office at Kauffman and get face value. It's those scalpers that I don't understand how they don't go broke.
   76. Nasty Nate Posted: September 06, 2011 at 04:58 PM (#3917784)
Not all re-sellers are season-ticket holders, of course. Some people buy individual games with the intention of selling for profit, and other people just can't use the tickets because of schedule changes etc. I would predict that most of those remaining stubhub tickets for 9/21 will actually go for below face. But for most games, the stubhub market value is above face, especially for ones in the cheaper sections. Of course the current ticket count doesn't include seats that have already been listed and sold.
   77. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: September 06, 2011 at 05:00 PM (#3917786)
I really don't understand how it is possible for a place like StubHub to exist. I don't understand how what they are doing is not scalping.
Because they--for better or worse--legitamize it. MLB is happy, as are the teams, because I'm sure they get a either a flat rate from StubHub or a cut of every ticket sold and the teams are happy because people are more likely to buy season tickets if they think they can resell them with minimum trouble. I have a friend who has Mets season tickets and makes back a substantial portion of his costs selling the highly desirable games (Yankees, Phillies, etc.).

The Red Sox are an unusual situation because I'm guessing they could sell more season tickets than they do currently, but that's definitely an exception and not the rule when it comes to MLB.
   78. Nasty Nate Posted: September 06, 2011 at 05:05 PM (#3917789)
edit- double post
   79. Nasty Nate Posted: September 06, 2011 at 05:08 PM (#3917791)
Every KC-Sox game I've gone to, I've seen guys standing on the freeways, and in front of the hotels selling tickets. Who goes to a KC game without tickets? Especially when you can go to Stub-hub to get below face, or mlb or the ticket office at Kauffman and get face value. It's those scalpers that I don't understand how they don't go broke.


It's the perception that tickets are rare that helps the secondary market prices. With a little bit of effort, it's not hard to get regular-season tickets even at Fenway at or near retail face value.
   80. villageidiom Posted: September 06, 2011 at 05:09 PM (#3917792)
I can't tell you how frustating it is to me to see how little they do to combat the scalping. I see the same guys in the same spot every game but meanwhile I follow the rules and only sell to friends and family at face value. Technically I believe my contract with the Sox says I'll lose my tickets if I sell above face value.

Nate, I think the great majority of season ticket holders do what I do. I get why you are suggesting what you suggest but I think you'd be punishing many for the transgressions of the few.
I always sell at face value, but I believe I (and you) are in the vast minority. I've heard of other folks who get the weekend plan, sell off the 25 or so games they don't want at a large markup, then go to the other five games essentially for free.

What makes it trickier is that a significant portion of ticketholders are out of state. Scalping laws in MA don't apply to transactions in other states. (Only the U.S. Congress can regulate interstate commerce.)
Speaking of my season tickets, is there anyone else out there who has paid for post-season tickets with a debit card? The transaction went trhough last week but now the money is back in my account even though a call to the Sox this morning says my bill is indeed paid up.
I paid with a credit card, but now you're making me regret it...
   81. villageidiom Posted: September 06, 2011 at 05:10 PM (#3917793)
The Red Sox are an unusual situation because I'm guessing they could sell more season tickets than they do currently, but that's definitely an exception and not the rule when it comes to MLB.
Also unusual is that the Red Sox don't have a deal with StubHub. They partner with Ace Ticket. EDIT: Actually, it looks like as of this year the Red Sox have a deal with both StubHub and Ace.
   82. caprules Posted: September 06, 2011 at 05:18 PM (#3917796)
he transaction went trhough last week but now the money is back in my account even though a call to the Sox this morning says my bill is indeed paid up.


My current job comes in handy for the first time here. I see this at the bank where I work for. The Red Sox haven't collected on the authorization that they have obtained within the given timeframe for the bank that you use (for mine, it's 3-4 days). Since merchants collect on authorizations within that timeframe 99% of the time, the bank assumes that this is a hold that won't be used (like using a card to hold a car or a room and then paying cash or with a different card) and then releases the funds back into the account. The merchant still has the authorization to collect on funds at no further notice to you.
   83. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 06, 2011 at 05:23 PM (#3917800)
My current job comes in handy for the first time here. I see this at the bank where I work for. The Red Sox haven't collected on the authorization that they have obtained within the given timeframe for the bank that you use (for mine, it's 3-4 days). Since merchants collect on authorizations within that timeframe 99% of the time, the bank assumes that this is a hold that won't be used (like using a card to hold a car or a room and then paying cash or with a different card) and then releases the funds back into the account. The merchant still has the authorization to collect on funds at no further notice to you.


So basically the Sox are waiting until some specific date (probably the date the payment is due which I think is Thursday) and they'll just do a sweep of all the accounts at once? That seems odd to me but I'll assume it saves the club some money.
   84. Nasty Nate Posted: September 06, 2011 at 05:27 PM (#3917804)
I always sell at face value, but I believe I (and you) are in the vast minority. I've heard of other folks who get the weekend plan, sell off the 25 or so games they don't want at a large markup, then go to the other five games essentially for free.


This is why maybe, in this unique case, it might make sense for season-ticket holders to pay the same price as individual game buyers (or even more). Normally, I think sports season-tickets are sold at a discount so that teams can (1) get the money earlier, (2)avoid the risk of not selling them later, and (3)reward loyal long-time fans. For the Red Sox, (1) and (2) are not much of a worry, as they could probably sell almost everything in advance anyway. And as for (3), why give a loyalty price to people who are just turning around and making money off of you? For you guys in this thread, who maybe do deserve loyalty, you would still be getting a great deal even at retail face value.
   85. caprules Posted: September 06, 2011 at 05:31 PM (#3917808)
So basically the Sox are waiting until some specific date (probably the date the payment is due which I think is Thursday) and they'll just do a sweep of all the accounts at once? That seems odd to me but I'll assume it saves the club some money.


I'm guessing that's the case.
   86. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 06, 2011 at 05:38 PM (#3917816)
One thing about the discount, we only get it if we pay by a certain date (around December 15 in the last few years). I also have the option of paying full freight by January 15 or so instead.
   87. Nasty Nate Posted: September 06, 2011 at 05:53 PM (#3917833)
Is that a discount on the already lower face value? or do you have to pay retail face after that date?
   88. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 06, 2011 at 05:59 PM (#3917840)
Discounted amount for the 12/15 payment date, retail face after that date.
   89. Nasty Nate Posted: September 06, 2011 at 06:15 PM (#3917859)
Okay, so you don't get that much of a discount considering you have to pay that far in advance.

But I wish the owners would do a couple of token revokations for scalping, just to put a scare in people. I think the Patriots did that recently.
   90. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 09, 2011 at 02:00 AM (#3919968)
Right now MCoA is making my spring training performance look good. This team better pull their collective head out of their ass soon.
   91. Darren Posted: September 11, 2011 at 12:40 PM (#3921699)
Paging Dr Jinxable, you've got an angry mob in room 2.
   92. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 18, 2011 at 09:41 PM (#3929039)
Due to overcrowding the angry mob has relocated to the observation deck of Operating Room 4.
   93. tfbg9 Posted: September 18, 2011 at 11:59 PM (#3929117)
Nah, it was VI's ridiculosly rosey stretch-run thread that jinxed the team.
That's when it began to go bad.
   94. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: September 27, 2011 at 02:22 PM (#3938895)
yeah...
   95. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: September 27, 2011 at 02:25 PM (#3938897)
I regret nothing.

Jinxes do not exist. The next time the Sox break 99.9% playoff probability, I'm gonna write the same post.
   96. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: September 27, 2011 at 06:35 PM (#3939272)
Can we at least agree that the methodology that resulted in a 100% playoff probability is a little suspect? Those are toy stats that are not to be taken seriously.
   97. Dale Sams Posted: September 27, 2011 at 06:47 PM (#3939290)
Jinxes do not exist. The next time the Sox break 99.9% playoff probability, I'm gonna write the same post.


They do. I said, "If..ok, WHEN the Sox clinch" and it all went downhill from there. It's my fault and I've apologized, bargained...nothing's worked. It's payback for Red Sox hubris. "100 wins", "Best team ever".
   98. Best Regards, President of Comfort, Esq. Posted: September 27, 2011 at 07:01 PM (#3939305)
Well, I guess you'll just have to kill yourself. Don't worry, if they miss the playoffs, we'll bring you back as a zombie. Stay away from Colin Wyers, though.
   99. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: September 27, 2011 at 09:58 PM (#3939498)
Can we at least agree that the methodology that resulted in a 100% playoff probability is a little suspect?
100% is just rounding up from 99.95%. I think it's probably true that these projections don't create a fat enough tail - they don't recognize the possibility of significant changes in team quality leading to significant changes in outcomes - but the reason everyone is talking about the Red Sox collapse is that it's been crazy. I believe no one has ever lost an eight game lead in September before. The Red Sox projected as the best team in baseball when the month began, and they've been the worst in baseball instead over that month, and even so they're only tied. What are we supposed to do with that?

I for one have little interest in baseball analysis that has to bite its own tongue and mouth platitudes about when it's over.
   100. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: September 27, 2011 at 10:49 PM (#3939530)
I think it's probably true that these projections don't create a fat enough tail - they don't recognize the possibility of significant changes in team quality leading to significant changes in outcomes - but the reason everyone is talking about the Red Sox collapse is that it's been crazy.I believe no one has ever lost an eight game lead in September before. The Red Sox projected as the best team in baseball when the month began, and they've been the worst in baseball instead over that month, and even so they're only tied. What are we supposed to do with that?


This is a huge problem for the projections, IMO. Absent a confidence interval or measure of variability, they present a misleading view of odds. Of course the collapse is crazy. It's a crazy nightmare of suck-chokery. But it's interesting that a number of people predicted it fairly far ahead of time. Maybe those people were chicken littles who got lucky, but maybe there's something else going on. When our guts tell us one thing and the numbers say something else, that's a good opportunity for reflection - are our models adequate, are we blinded by our emotions/biases, is there something we're not seeing?

I for one have little interest in baseball analysis that has to bite its own tongue and mouth platitudes about when it's over.


Not really sure what this is responsive to. There's been an explosion of Red Sox chatter on the site lately.

EDIT: Thanks for getting much of that started, by the way.
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