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Tuesday, April 04, 2017

Let’s All Overreact!

With their victory on Monday the Red Sox are 1-0, on pace for the first undefeated season in MLB history.  I will assume this is statistically meaningful and expect it to happen.  For now a few stray observations and opinions based on the first 0.61728395% of the season.

- So that outfield is kinda good.  That really was the blueprint for how this team wins.  JBJ made a wonderful catch off Cervelli in the triangle and Benintendi’s grab in the 7th probably was a game saver.  Both players made the catches look a lot easier than they had any right to.  I thought Benintendi made a bit of a mental blunder earlier in that inning though.  He did a Yastrzemski-esque job of deking Freese on Cervelli’s wall scraping double.  Unfortunately he gave up on the play and when he picked the ball up I think if he had come up throwing he might have had Freese at third base.

Of course both players contributed offensively bookending the five run fifth.  Bradley starting it with the triple then Benintendi capping it with the dinger.  Add in Mookie reaching twice and that is the strength of the team delivering in a big way.

- Speaking of strengths the reigning Cy Young winner did his thing as well.  This was typical Porcello who pitched better than the final line showed.  For six innings he just rolled through the Pirates.  That he and the bullpen held Marte and McCutchen to a combined 0 for 8 was the key to the game in my view.  I won’t expect a Cy Young performance again in 2017 but a steady eddie 200 inning season from Porcello has great value.

- If we must overreact (and we must) I loved how the bottom half of the order played yesterday.  Xander Bogaerts is on pace to smash Rickey Henderson’s stolen base record notching two of them and Sandy Leon’s bunt (which evidently Jerry Remy LOVED) made an impact.  Farrell talked in the spring about playing a bit more aggressively to make up for the loss of Ortiz’ power and that was on display.  Pablo Sandoval (GWRBI!) had a hit or miss day.  His single to give the Sox the lead was great but he made a truly grotesque throwing error and his approach at the plate remains hideous.

- There were not a lot of negatives.  Mitch Moreland had a tough day at the plate and failed to come up with a couple of throws (Sandoval and one from Bogaerts that may or may not have been an out if he grabbed it).  Both were very difficult but I would have expected him to grab one of the two.  Drunk guy passed me after the Sandoval throw and said “Hanley would have scooped it.”  No, no he would not have.

- The bullpen was a bit dicey.  Barnes looked rough and was bailed out by Benintendi’s grab.  Kimbrel was painful to watch, by my count he threw five curveballs and not a one went for a strike.  It is really amazing to watch him. It seems like he throws that first curve and if it is a strike it’s game over but if it is a ball he just doesn’t have it.  I thought Heath Hembree looked very good, Freese’s at bat was a guy really struggling to pick up the baseball.

- While I am not a Patriot fan the opening ceremonies and first pitch were very well done.  Malcolm Butler’s interception got a huge cheer when they showed it and even the cheesy “Gronk steals Brady’s jersey” thing which looked pre-planned was fun.  Allow me to highly recommend the low fat and delicious “french fries with pulled pork and cheese” being sold in the Big Concourse under the right field stands.

Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 04, 2017 at 10:33 AM | 52 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. villageidiom Posted: April 04, 2017 at 03:27 PM (#5428944)
and Sandy Leon’s bunt (which evidently Jerry Remy LOVED)
Mid-game reports from mrsidiom were used in the compilation of this blog post.

Due to the uniform number change she also referred to Benintendi as "Sweet 16". I endorse this.

Allow me to highly recommend the low fat and delicious “french fries with pulled pork and cheese” being sold in the Big Concourse under the right field stands.
Wait, what? How did I miss this? I SHARED PEANUTS WITH YOU, DAMMIT.

I got a hot dog from a roaming vendor. It was over $7, which is close to double the price of the last Fenway Frank I got from a vendor a couple of years ago. The dog was also double the size, with no drop in quality.

Mitch Moreland had a tough day at the plate and failed to come up with a couple of throws (Sandoval and one from Bogaerts that may or may not have been an out if he grabbed it).
On the plus side Moreland kept both balls from getting past him.

Listening to the radio on the long drive back to CT I heard a caller express concern that Brian Butterfield might not have been ready to act as 3B coach since he didn't get in much practice in spring training. Yes, it was that good of a day if a sports talk radio caller's point of contention was "Maybe we shouldn't have rushed the 3B coach back."

I only have two overreactions on the day. First, there are unlimited parking meters near Dean Street in Brookline, right by the T stop on the Cleveland Circle line. This is the BEST THING EVER. It's about a 20 minute T ride from there to Fenway, or a 2.5 mile walk if you're looking for exercise. The meters take quarters and are 75 cents an hour Monday to Friday until 8 pm, and free otherwise. Including fare for the T it cost me $10, which is about $40 cheaper than parking for a mid-week day game. And that $10 was about $1.50 overpay, as Porcello kept the game at a brisker pace than I'd pumped the meter for.

The second overreaction is HOW COULD I NOT KNOW ABOUT THE PULLED PORK POUTINE?
   2. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 04, 2017 at 04:19 PM (#5428974)
Oh yeah, I had french fries covered with pulled pork and cheese. If you had parked closer I'm sure I would have shared with you.*

* - I wasn't sharing that stuff, damn was it good.
   3. Dillon Gee Escape Plan Posted: April 05, 2017 at 11:18 AM (#5429361)
Travis Shaw is batting .500/.500/1.000. Panda is .250/.250/.250.
   4. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: April 05, 2017 at 11:27 AM (#5429374)
Travis Shaw is batting .500/.500/1.000. Panda is .250/.250/.250.


Yeah, but Thornburg is dealing in the bullpen. No runs allowed.
   5. Nasty Nate Posted: April 05, 2017 at 11:43 AM (#5429395)
I'm heading to the game tonight; freebies which include a pre-game reception at some in-park function room. I don't know where my seats will be, but I'd guess grandstand.

I'm glad to see the Pirates (an Taillon). I may have actually never seen them. Obviously they don't come to Fenway often.
   6. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 05, 2017 at 12:05 PM (#5429414)
Sounds good. I'm looking forward to seeing Taillon too. And that guy for the Sox who is supposed to be ok.

I believe this is the second time they've played at Fenway. The first was 2005 and was the first time I sat in the monster seats.
   7. Nasty Nate Posted: April 05, 2017 at 12:22 PM (#5429429)
I tried to look it up, but don't know where to find franchise v franchise lists. It seems odd that they haven't been to Fenway more, but I'd guess it's a quirk caused by the old 6-team central division.
   8. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: April 05, 2017 at 12:23 PM (#5429430)
Rick Porcello has a 4.26 ERA. I'll take the over for the rest of the way.
   9. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 05, 2017 at 01:31 PM (#5429479)
ERA is weird, by "over" do you mean "higher" or do you mean "better?"
   10. villageidiom Posted: April 05, 2017 at 03:21 PM (#5429581)
Rick Porcello has a 4.26 ERA. I'll take the over for the rest of the way.
It's an overreaction thread. We're required to take the over.
   11. Nasty Nate Posted: April 05, 2017 at 04:11 PM (#5429627)
Mookie is not in the lineup due to illness.
It's an overreaction thread.
SOMETHING IS WRONG WITH MOOKIE! THE SEASON IS DOOMED!
   12. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 05, 2017 at 04:34 PM (#5429635)
ITS NOT JUST MOOKIE! HOLT MAY BE UNAVAILABLE ALSO!!!!!!!!!
   13. Nasty Nate Posted: April 05, 2017 at 05:14 PM (#5429676)
That would mean Hanley is the backup SS!
   14. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 05, 2017 at 05:17 PM (#5429682)
Am I wrong to hope X gets ejected?
   15. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 05, 2017 at 05:18 PM (#5429683)
Am I wrong to hope X gets ejected?
   16. Nasty Nate Posted: April 05, 2017 at 11:18 PM (#5429844)
I made it until the 10th before cold and fatigue prompted me to leave.
   17. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 06, 2017 at 12:38 AM (#5429869)
I'm pretty sure that Joe Kelly has the longest active winning streak in the majors at 13 games dating back to 2015.
   18. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 06, 2017 at 12:41 AM (#5429871)
Random thought, there was an inning (the 10th?) that McCutchen ended with a man on base. Had he reached Polanco was going to bat and I thought it was instructive that Abad was not getting ready for him. I don't think Farrell is a fan.

Also I thought it was interesting that it was Taylor not Ross getting ready for the 13th.

Both of those could of course be flu related.
   19. villageidiom Posted: April 06, 2017 at 09:22 AM (#5429916)
Both of those could of course be flu related.
It's an overreaction thread.

IT'S THE PLAGUE! EVERYBODY RUN!
   20. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 06, 2017 at 09:29 AM (#5429923)
Can we overreact about the defense which seems to be the best defense ever assembled? Other than Fat Panda they have been slinging some leather these first two games. What's been noticeable is that the defense has been coming at key moments;

-Bradley's extra inning catch last night
-Pedroia's sliding play on McCutchen that would have put runners on the corners
-Benintendi's catch on Monday
-Leon throwing out Polanco stealing on Monday, that was Porcello's one bad inning

It's a lot of fun watching this team do its thing so far. The goal of run prevention to cover for Papi's absence seems to be in place.

The other thought I had last night is that Sale is going to get the attention and so will Leon's homer of course but 5 innings of goose eggs from the bullpen is encouraging. I thought Barnes looked a lot better than he did Monday and Kelly pitched well.
   21. villageidiom Posted: April 06, 2017 at 09:42 AM (#5429934)
I'm pretty sure that Joe Kelly has the longest active winning streak in the majors at 13 games dating back to 2015.
His last loss was July 22, 2015. He followed that with a no-decision, then 8 wins in 8 consecutive starts to close out the year. Last year he went 4-0, with 2 holds and a blown save (the walk-off grand slam to Teixeira, in the Kimbrel implosion game). And now 1-0 this year.

Is anyone feeling better about the bullpen after last night's game? EDIT: OK, that's what I get for not refreshing the page.
   22. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 06, 2017 at 10:11 AM (#5429960)
VI DIDN'T REFRESH!!!!
   23. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 06, 2017 at 10:54 AM (#5429997)
If you are going to the game today don't go, it's been called.

I mean IT'S RAINING CATS AND DOGS, ARTHUR D'ANGELO IS BUILDING AN ARK AND WE ARE ALL GOING TO DIE!!!!
   24. villageidiom Posted: April 06, 2017 at 11:34 AM (#5430038)
VI DIDN'T REFRESH!!!!

OH MY GOODNESS GRACIOUS OF ALL THE DRAMATIC THINGS I'VE EVER SEEN
   25. villageidiom Posted: April 06, 2017 at 01:25 PM (#5430172)
EVERYONE IS DYING

The first step in roster juggling came after the Sox’ 3-0 win over the Pirates Wednesday night, when travel arrangements were being made for Matt Barnes to attend his grandmother’s wake and funeral. Barnes was headed to the bereavement list, where he would be forced to miss a minimum of three games and a maximum of seven.

...Xander Bogaerts is joining Barnes on the bereavement list...
   26. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: April 06, 2017 at 01:49 PM (#5430217)
Barnes out, Bogaerts out, Marco Hernandez up, Noe Ramirez up, Holt! probably ready for Friday, Betts and Ross probably not ready for Friday, Pomeranz still hurt, Sandoval and Abad still bad, Moreland probably still bad.
   27. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: April 06, 2017 at 02:00 PM (#5430230)
Nice to see Travis Shaw didn't hit another 2 doubles last night. Only a homerun.
   28. Nasty Nate Posted: April 06, 2017 at 02:00 PM (#5430231)
Pomeranz still hurt
Actually, I think he is scheduled to start on Tuesday....until the superflu or family death strikes him.
   29. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: April 06, 2017 at 02:27 PM (#5430282)
MORELAND probably STILL bad ####### WORTHLESS!!!!!!
   30. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: April 06, 2017 at 02:52 PM (#5430317)
IT'S THE PLAGUE! EVERYBODY RUN!

The plague is actually very treatable these days. It's probably something far more sinister and evil... probably like SARS. Came back as karma for me making so much fun about the SARS panic at the time.
   31. madvillain Posted: April 06, 2017 at 03:15 PM (#5430345)
You guys enjoy Chris Sale or what last night!
   32. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 06, 2017 at 03:19 PM (#5430351)
Holy mother of god yes. Lord that was fun. Just watching the radar gun was a hoot, 97, 72, 96, 77, 81...I mean he was all over the place. I really haven't seen him pitch much, dude is a ####### artist out there.
   33. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: April 06, 2017 at 03:20 PM (#5430354)
MORELAND probably STILL bad ####### WORTHLESS!!!!!!


C'mon now, he ALMOST had a HR last night.
   34. madvillain Posted: April 06, 2017 at 04:35 PM (#5430470)
Holy mother of god yes. Lord that was fun. Just watching the radar gun was a hoot, 97, 72, 96, 77, 81...I mean he was all over the place. I really haven't seen him pitch much, dude is a ####### artist out there.


He routinely throws a fastball at 92-93 just to throw the hitters' timing off after he comes 97. The guy is a pitching machine. Bit of a redass headcase at times (which is when he gets into trouble and starts rushing his delivery) but as far as pure stuff goes there is nobody better to watch when he's on his game IMO.
   35. GGC for Sale Posted: April 06, 2017 at 04:49 PM (#5430483)
IT'S THE PLAGUE! EVERYBODY RUN!

The plague is actually very treatable these days. It's probably something far more sinister and evil... probably like SARS. Came back as karma for me making so much fun about the SARS panic at the time.


Given the weather lately, I'm more worried about flooding of Biblical proportions. Not only did I see Noah today, Jonah passed me.

   36. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 06, 2017 at 04:49 PM (#5430484)
Sounds like Ross is on the 10 day DL for the flu issue and Marrero is called up. That sounds more like a matter of convenience to get an additional infielder to cover Xander's absence this weekend.
   37. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: April 07, 2017 at 10:16 AM (#5430864)
Any word on today's lineup?

My guess:
Pedroia
Benintendi
Young
Ramirez
Bradley
Moreland
Sandoval
Hernandez
Leon
   38. Nasty Nate Posted: April 07, 2017 at 10:19 AM (#5430866)
Nesn.com says:

Brock Holt, DH
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
Andrew Benintendi,LF
Mitch Moreland, 1B
Chris Young, RF
Jackie Bradley Jr., CF
Sandy Leon, C
Pablo Sandoval, 3B
Marco Hernandez, SS

I didn't even know Hernandez was called up. It was reported that Marrero was.
   39. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 07, 2017 at 10:24 AM (#5430868)
Hernandez is up for Bogaerts who is on bereavement leave.
   40. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: April 07, 2017 at 10:50 AM (#5430891)
Brock Holt, DH


Aw jeez did HanRam catch the plague as well?

Sorta takes pressure off the club to come out streaking hot if half the team is out I guess. Wonder if it is going to put pressure on the starting P's.
   41. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 07, 2017 at 10:56 AM (#5430901)
Yup. According to WEEI neither Hanley nor Mookie is with the team. Just to highlight the fun here as great as that lineup is the available bench is;

Deven Marrero
Steve Selsky
Christian Vazquez
   42. villageidiom Posted: April 07, 2017 at 12:28 PM (#5431011)
Nah, they have more than that. At a minimum Porcello and Sale are available for pinch-running duty.
   43. villageidiom Posted: April 07, 2017 at 12:34 PM (#5431018)
2nd inning: Hernandez and Sandoval collide in the field, and both leave the game due to injury. Marrero is put in at 3B and they put Holt at short. Thus they lose the DH.

4th inning: Steven Wright bats. He bunts to move Marrero over to 2nd, but they throw out Marrero instead. And then with Holt batting, Wright takes too long a lead off 1st...
   44. GGC for Sale Posted: April 07, 2017 at 12:51 PM (#5431040)
I had to Google Selsky. How do you guys keep track of this stuff? As I get older, I run out of time to keep up with this day to day.
   45. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 07, 2017 at 01:01 PM (#5431053)
I had to Google Selsky. How do you guys keep track of this stuff? As I get older, I run out of time to keep up with this day to day.


No social life, no family, no friends. It works well.
   46. villageidiom Posted: April 07, 2017 at 01:02 PM (#5431054)
I rely on Jose.
   47. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 07, 2017 at 01:10 PM (#5431065)
I rely on Jose.


Few sentences have ever been so likely to result in disappointment and failure as that one.
   48. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: April 07, 2017 at 01:30 PM (#5431090)
#44-#47 - I love Sox Therapy.
   49. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 07, 2017 at 06:43 PM (#5431363)
While that was an annoying loss any game that we are missing Hanley, Mookie and Xander is not a likely win. For now I'm choosing to be encouraged by yet another big inning. I like scoring in bunches though I'm not sure "score all the runs in one inning" is a particularly sustainable strategy.
   50. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 09, 2017 at 04:47 PM (#5431863)
Porcello vs. EdRod is the difference between a guy with experience and a guy without. Porcello just fought through it, figured out how to get by.

I cannot ####### stand watching Craig Kimbrel pitch. God he's annoying. How do you just walk the first two batters with a three run lead in the ninth and Cabrera scheduled third? ####### underhand it up there.

Amazing what happens when you have your good players. Mookie Betts starts the winning rally, Matt Barnes works a key inning and a third. That's the difference between today and Friday.
   51. GGC for Sale Posted: April 09, 2017 at 07:16 PM (#5431913)
How do you just walk the first two batters with a three run lead in the ninth and Cabrera scheduled third?


The cynic in me says that he's rusty because he wasn't used on Friday.
   52. Jose is El Absurd Bronson Y Pollo Posted: April 22, 2017 at 11:24 PM (#5440757)
Rob Bradford is doing the overreacting thing right now on the Full Count blog worrying about the offense. One bit is this;

After the initial two-run surge by the Red Sox against rookie Jayson Aquino, the whole night fell into the abyss Farrell’s club has seemingly been digging themselves out of too many times. In the last four games, the Sox are just 3-for-26 with runners in scoring position.


I mean yeah, if they hit .115 or whatever that is all year w/RISP then that's a problem. It's also slightly less likely than Sandoval winning MVP. He also addresses the rotation which admittedly hasn't lived up to billing but again, I think the raw numbers are skewed by a couple of bad starts. The 5.97 non-Sale ERA is largely one Wright and one Porcello start. Take out those two games and it's 3.56. It's just too early to get a read with raw stats.

I suspect the next week might be a bit grim (O's for one more, Yankees for 3, Cubs for 3) but the May schedule looks pretty soft.

Hanley is my one concern. 2015 was a mess for him with the shoulder injury but his track record is such that he should be expected to hit.

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