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— Where Thinking Red Sox Fans Obsess about the Sox

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   1. Darren Posted: August 26, 2007 at 10:33 PM (#2500303)
Anywhere care to try to explain why Pap's profile went from Mariano-esque to Lidge-esque over the past year?
   2. Dave Cyprian Posted: August 26, 2007 at 10:47 PM (#2500306)
Thank you Chicago White Sox. 2005 it ain't.
   3. The Piehole of David Wells Posted: August 26, 2007 at 10:49 PM (#2500308)
in particular, i would like to hear from chadbradfordwannabe to see if papelbon's arm slot has anything to do with his success. his analysis made me think papelbon's arm was going to fall off. but this year he's been even more effective than last year, in terms of k-rate and hit rate. i'm still worried, but watching him, the loss in velocity doesn't seem to be a problem.

and, BROCKTOON! he's back?
   4. The Piehole of David Wells Posted: August 26, 2007 at 10:51 PM (#2500310)
and after i wrote that comment about "loss in velocity" i realized that we don't actually know if there was a loss or if the guns magically adjusted or if they were accurate in the first place. anyone have an idea?
   5. Darren Posted: August 26, 2007 at 10:58 PM (#2500312)
Piehole, thanks for calling back Brocktoon.

Right around the same time that Pap starting K'ing 2 guys every appearance, people started talking about him using a lower armslot. That slot seems to be working for him.

Since June 22 (arbitrary endpoint!), Pap has the following line:

21.1 IP, 10 H, 4 ER, 2 HR, 4 BB, 37 K. That's 15.67 K/9.
   6. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: August 26, 2007 at 10:59 PM (#2500313)
Well, Papelbon threw only fastballs early in '06, and now he throws a fastball and a splitter.

Billy Wagner looks like the best (optimistic) comp. Overpowering fastball that does most of the work, great secondary pitch to spike the K numbers.

Papelbon improved his command of the splitter over the course of the season last year, and he struck out 28 in 22 innings after the all-star break. He's now fully confident in the split and throws it a lot. I think the addition of the splitter explains a good chunk of the jump in Ks.

I guess there's a question as to whether Papelbon could have maintained his one-pitch brilliance from early '06, but I think it's unlikely. He's got an incredible fastball, but I don't think it's a once-in-a-lifetime pitch like Mariano's cutter.
   7. stealfirstbase Posted: August 26, 2007 at 11:09 PM (#2500319)
Crowing about beating the White Sox is like crowing about winning the Spanish-American war: There was never any competition to begin with.

*Sigh* I'm just one frustrated White Sox fan. Hopefully, they'll be back playing baseball and not doormats next year.
   8. Enrico Pallazzo Posted: August 26, 2007 at 11:28 PM (#2500326)
I'm enjoying the fastball-surge that is developing in the Red Sox pitching staff post-Pedro. Paps, Beckett, Buchholz, Delcarmen, Gagne, and even Dice-K throwing some gas. There's nothing quite like a group of K-happy arms.
   9. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: August 26, 2007 at 11:51 PM (#2500344)
Schilling still throws hard on occasion, too.
   10. Answer Guy Posted: August 27, 2007 at 12:41 AM (#2500387)
Crowing about beating the White Sox is like crowing about winning the Spanish-American war: There was never any competition to begin with.

Perhaps, but this comes on the heels of failing to close the deal on a sweep twice in a row in less than two weeks' time vs. the Devil Rays, and being shut down by a pitcher not named Kazmir or even Shields each of those times. That would explain the "pleasant surprise" aspect to Red Sox fan's reaction.
   11. tfbg9 Posted: August 27, 2007 at 12:45 AM (#2500396)
When was the last time the Red Sox just beat the living crap out of a hapless opponent for four road game wins in a row in this way, like they just have against the White Sox? 46 to 7! Man! Did not really see that coming, I mean I did notice how badly the White Sox had been performing.
   12. robinred Posted: August 27, 2007 at 12:49 AM (#2500401)
Man! Did not really see that coming, I mean I did notice how badly the White Sox had been performing.


Really? The White Sox and the Devil Rays are pretty much the worst teams in the game right now--certainly the worst in the AL and (I will risk pissing off the White Sox fans here, and they can correct me if they feel I am wrong) I would think a disappointed, veteran team like the White Sox would have a hard time being focused and motivated right now. This, combined with the Yankees schedule this past week, made it almost certain that the Red Sox would increase their lead this week, as in fact they did.
   13. Answer Guy Posted: August 27, 2007 at 01:06 AM (#2500430)
This, combined with the Yankees schedule this past week, made it almost certain that the Red Sox would increase their lead this week, as in fact they did.

Except that the Yankees had recently won 3 of 4 from the Tigers, who had been in a bit of a slump, in the Bronx - and swept a 3-game set in Cleveland. I'm not sure a losing week, even on the road in Detroit and Anaheim was anything like a foregone conclusion.

Certainly the Red Sox have been getting more baserunners lately, but I kept waiting during this Chicago series for that game where they totally forget how to score runs..which seems to happen at least every third game or so, most frequently when Dice-K starts. That game didn't come this time.

7 games at this point is a good lead, 8 obviously even better if Detroit prevails tomorrow. And I wasn't really expecting it to be this size at this juncture. Two out of three in the Stadium would mean the Yankees would need another 18-2 stretch to make the East interesting in the final week; additionally, it would put their postseason streak in considerable jeopardy.
   14. chris p Posted: August 27, 2007 at 01:14 AM (#2500445)
Really? The White Sox and the Devil Rays are pretty much the worst teams in the game right now

sure, the devil rays are bad, but they have some good young hitters and kazmir is pitching as well as anybody in baseball. shields isn't bad, either. it's the other 3 spots and the bullpen that make them horrible. now the white sox ... that's a bad team. they didn't even look like they were trying.

and like robinred said, you have to expect to gain ground when the yankees are facing detroit and anaheim and you've got the drays and the white sox. which they did ... so that's good.
   15. robinred Posted: August 27, 2007 at 01:18 AM (#2500453)
Except that the Yankees had recently won 3 of 4 from the Tigers, who had been in a bit of a slump, in the Bronx - and swept a 3-game set in Cleveland. I'm not sure a losing week, even on the road in Detroit and Anaheim was anything like a foregone conclusion.


Yeah, but I think people in fandom mode sometimes underestimate the way that things even out. The Tigers have a pretty good team and had been playing badly for awhile--they were due to win a few. The Yankees had been hotter than hell for awhile--they were due to lose a few. The Yankees always have trouble with the Angels. You could say this might apply to the White Sox as well, but as I said, I think they may be phoning it in.

I do think that things went even better from the Red Sox POV than one would have expected--but I was 99% sure that the Red Sox lead would be bigger on 8-26 than on 8-19. I would have guessed 5.5 or 6.5, not 7.5, however.

Two out of three in the Stadium would mean the Yankees would need another 18-2 stretch to make the East interesting in the final week; additionally, it would put their postseason streak in considerable jeopardy.


I agree with Part 1 of that; I am not sure about Part 2. It depends on how you define "considerable jeopardy" but I still see the Yankees as slighty better than even money to finish ahead of the Mariners.
   16. Dr. Vaux Posted: August 27, 2007 at 01:21 AM (#2500458)
For most of this year, Schilling has been in the batters' happy zone-- 88-90 mph, not too fast for them or too slow. The only thing he has going for him is his propensity for not walking people. He's basically David Wells who throws slightly harder.
   17. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: August 27, 2007 at 01:23 AM (#2500468)
sure, the devil rays are bad, but they have some good young hitters

I was thinking this too, but they really have two good young hitters, Crawford and Upton, plus Carlos Pena's career season (he's 29). Delmon Young and Dukes haven't lived up to their promise yet, maybe they will next season. Jonny Gomes is pretty good, but not as good as he was 2 years ago. Brendan Harris is pretty good for a shortstop, but not what you'd call a scary hitter. Wigginton has reverted to being mediocre, and he's 29 too. Dioner Navarro has lived up to maybe 1/8 of his promise.

They're a very very young team, though.
   18. chris p Posted: August 27, 2007 at 01:27 AM (#2500474)
I was thinking this too, but they really have two good young hitters,

better than the white sox.
   19. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: August 27, 2007 at 01:28 AM (#2500476)
Any week the Yankees play the Angels, you can be certain the Sox will increase their lead. I'm better off not even watching the games because I know the Yankees will be lucky to even win one game.
   20. Justin T., Director of Somethin Posted: August 27, 2007 at 02:04 AM (#2500525)
Wigginton plays for the Astros now.
   21. Answer Guy Posted: August 27, 2007 at 02:09 AM (#2500531)
better than the white sox.

Yeah, the "keep the core intact" strategy Kenny Williams seems to be using looks to be a bit ill-advised. They seem to be largely buying into declining skill sets. Buehrle seems to be worth signing (esp. considering what Zito is costing the Giants) but the Dye signing doesn't seem like a great idea given where this team is right now.
   22. John DiFool2 Posted: August 27, 2007 at 02:57 AM (#2500553)
Not much I can add, other than they avoided that one awful game by the offense and finally destroyed an opponent in a series for a change, as others have said.

Momentum is only as good as your next game, but after it got down to 4 and I was as pissed at this team as I've been all year, I'm liking what I'm seeing.
   23. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: August 27, 2007 at 05:42 AM (#2500620)
Ugh, a bunch more games against Toronto, Baltimore, and Tampa Bay, which means we'll see Sox Killas Doc, Bedard, and Kazmir a bunch of more times. Ugh.
   24. Xander Posted: August 27, 2007 at 06:03 AM (#2500631)
which means we'll see Sox Killas Doc, Bedard, and Kazmir a bunch of more times. Ugh.
Halladay has a career 4.79 ERA vs. the Sox, a 6.04 ERA against the Sox this year, and a 4.44 ERA against them between 04-06.

Bedard hasn't pitched well against us in his career, he's been good against us this year, but we can handle him.

Kazmir kills us.
   25. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: August 27, 2007 at 06:19 AM (#2500635)
We'll probably get Johan Santana, Dan Haren, and Chad Guadin to end the regular season too. F!@#
   26. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: August 27, 2007 at 11:22 AM (#2500668)
and like robinred said, you have to expect to gain ground when the yankees are facing detroit and anaheim and you've got the drays and the white sox. which they did ... so that's good.

Coming into this year, I was all sorts of wrong about stuff. Anaheim always beats up on the Yankees, but I was not a Detroit believer, and I thought that both the Rays and White Sox would put up a better fight for Boston.
   27. chris p Posted: August 27, 2007 at 01:55 PM (#2500724)
bedard and kazmir both have a tendancy to run up their pitch counts. kazmir hasn't gone more htan 6 against the red sox all year and the last time we faced bedard we roughed up their bullpen pretty good after he left. unfortunately that was one of hte gagne disasters.
   28. TomH Posted: August 27, 2007 at 03:09 PM (#2500788)
Time to root hard for the Mariners and Angels. Best scenario is

-Yanks miss playoffs
-Mariners get wild card
-Sox play Mariners, who frankly just are not all that good. Nice bullpen, not much else, and Putz will be wasted if the team is behind after 7 most days.
   29. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: August 27, 2007 at 03:29 PM (#2500807)
There's nothing worse than rooting for a specific team to win in order that they can lose later, and then losing to that team. Two games against King Felix, two games in Safeco, no picking on the terrible back end of the Mariners rotation, that doesn't look fun at all.

Also, I find that sort of rooting way too complicated. I'm rooting for the Red Sox to beat the Yankees, then for the Red Sox to make the playoffs, then for the Yankees to miss the playoffs. Which team beats out the Yankees is just too far down the rooting ladder, and too much wishcasting, for me to get involved.
   30. The Yankee Clapper Posted: August 27, 2007 at 04:03 PM (#2500848)
I'm rooting for the Red Sox to beat the Yankees, then for the Red Sox to make the playoffs, then for the Yankees to miss the playoffs. Which team beats out the Yankees is just too far down the rooting ladder, and too much wishcasting, for me to get involved.

Whatever happened to AL East solidarity? Besides, would it really feel like postseason if there wasn't a series against the Yankees?
   31. Famous Original Joe C Posted: August 27, 2007 at 04:04 PM (#2500850)
Ugh, a bunch more games against Toronto, Baltimore, and Tampa Bay, which means we'll see Sox Killas Doc, Bedard, and Kazmir a bunch of more times. Ugh.

Only you could be pessimistic about things with a 7.5 game lead and 31 to play.
   32. Spahn Insane Posted: August 27, 2007 at 04:07 PM (#2500853)
The White Sox now have the second worst record in baseball. It's hard to believe they swept the Red Sox in the playoffs less than two years ago.
   33. Dingbat_Charlie Posted: August 27, 2007 at 04:12 PM (#2500858)
Something struck me about this series. I tuned into it at various times over the weekend and kept noticing that Ortiz was left in the game late while Boston had a huge lead. It happened again yesterday - Ortiz reached on the dropped fly ball in the 9th and was left in to run the bases and ultimately came around to score.

Isn't he nursing some injuries? I know he's hot and probably wants to hit but wouldn't it be prudent to let him rest a little when he will be needed down the stretch and in October? Maybe I'm missing something so I thought I'd ask Sox fans if anybody else noticed and had the same thought.
   34. Dewey, Soupuss Not Doomed to Succeed Posted: August 27, 2007 at 04:16 PM (#2500863)
The White Sox now have the second worst record in baseball. It's hard to believe they swept the Red Sox in the playoffs less than two years ago.

That's what happens when you catch a bunch of players right at the end of their primes and then hold onto them into their decline phase. Two years later, you have a mess on your hands.

I'm hoping that this series is a wake-up call to the White Sox front office - this team is not a player or two away from contention. It's going to be a long, slow process to rebuild this team. Throw 2008 and probably 2009 out the window.
   35. TomH Posted: August 27, 2007 at 05:33 PM (#2500941)
Two games against King Felix

King Felix might have a great career. But so far, his lifetime W-L record is 26-24, ERA of 3.94. This year his ERA is 3.90. In a pitcher's park. If he's their #1 guy, I'm not trembling in my boots.
   36. Dave Cyprian Posted: August 27, 2007 at 05:40 PM (#2500949)
Whatever happened to AL East solidarity? Besides, would it really feel like postseason if there wasn't a series against the Yankees?


What? Yes. Every game Jeter and the gang has nothing better to do than watch the Sox in the playoffs with the rest of us is a good game.

//

Sorry to those who find this distasteful but..... I am smelling SWEEP IN THE BRONX this week. Knock 'em out cold boys.
   37. robinred Posted: August 27, 2007 at 05:44 PM (#2500956)
Sorry to those who find this distasteful but..... I am smelling SWEEP IN THE BRONX this week. Knock 'em out cold boys.

See, IMHO this is how Red Sox fans oughta be: basic, arrogant old-school high payroll first-place smacktalk, instead of all the handwringing. Evil Empire Jr. ;-
   38. Dan Posted: August 27, 2007 at 06:13 PM (#2500983)
I think realistically the Sox will take 2 of 3 in NY, losing the Schilling game. I can't envision him allowing fewer than 3 hr to the Yankees lineup, so it'll just depend on how many men are on base. And which Wang shows up, the one who dominated the Sox lineup earlier this week, or the one the Sox have usually owned.
   39. Mister High Standards Posted: August 27, 2007 at 06:23 PM (#2500990)
Curt Schilling, most underrated pitcher in the history of Sox therapy.
   40. GGC don't think it can get longer than a novella Posted: August 27, 2007 at 06:54 PM (#2501029)
Whatever happened to AL East solidarity? Besides, would it really feel like postseason if there wasn't a series against the Yankees?


I never bought into that. In football, I despise the other NFC East teams. In college hoops, I don't root for Georgetown and 'Cuse. The only other ALCS team that I will root for is the Jays.
   41. Dingbat_Charlie Posted: August 27, 2007 at 07:09 PM (#2501053)
I never bought into that. In football, I despise the other NFC East teams. In college hoops, I don't root for Georgetown and 'Cuse. The only other ALCS team that I will root for is the Jays.

College Hoops seems to be the only sport for which I will root for division rivals. I'll cheer on other Big East teams after GU is eliminated.
   42. chris p Posted: August 27, 2007 at 07:13 PM (#2501057)
The only other ALCS team that I will root for is the Jays.

i find myself rooting for other AL East teams pretty often--whenever they play the yankees!
   43. GGC don't think it can get longer than a novella Posted: August 27, 2007 at 07:21 PM (#2501066)
Well, there's that too, chrisp. Touche.
   44. Sexy Lizard Posted: August 27, 2007 at 08:33 PM (#2501207)
King Felix strikes me as the sort of pitcher who could pull a 2003 Josh Beckett. You know, young and supremely talented but who has never completely put it together, then goes bonkers in a postseason. I'd rather not run that risk in a five-game series. But really I don't care, I just want the Red Sox to beat the hell out of as many teams as possible between now and September 30th and worry about the playoffs when they happen.
   45. bostonjimmie Posted: August 27, 2007 at 09:23 PM (#2501297)
Good weekend? That was a great weekend. Boston is doing great, they get a day off and the yanks have to handle detroit again tonight. This will be another "sad failure" for the yankees as they enter this three game do or die situation. Yankee fans need a new team., and when they are playing golf in post season they will reorganize for the 2008 season and will continue to hate these tshirts. - www.21stcenturybaseball.com
   46. Golfing Great Mitch Cumstein Posted: August 27, 2007 at 10:49 PM (#2501396)
Well, there's that too, chrisp

There's a pool and a pond. A pond would be good for you.
   47. Dan Posted: August 28, 2007 at 01:46 AM (#2501587)
8 game lead in the offing. I don't think even Detroit's pen is going to blow a 11 run lead.
   48. Dan Posted: August 28, 2007 at 01:49 AM (#2501593)
Sorry, a 14 run lead now.
   49. Dan Posted: August 28, 2007 at 01:53 AM (#2501597)
SIXTEEN to nothing, Detroit now, in the seventh. Wow.
   50. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: August 28, 2007 at 04:59 AM (#2501733)
Detroit won, which in the standings matter a lot. They did do us a huge favour, but they coudl have helped us further had they kept it close and made the Yanks to Chamberlain.
   51. RobertMachemer Posted: August 28, 2007 at 09:36 PM (#2502295)
Besides, would it really feel like postseason if there wasn't a series against the Yankees?
Absolutely, see 1986. Except for the final result, that was a perfectly great postseason without the Yankees. I've only known Yankees fans and media people to ever bemoan the (possibility of) the absence of the Yankees from the postseason. To say that I'd be perfectly fine if they never made the playoffs again is to understate the matter.
   52. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: August 29, 2007 at 03:11 AM (#2503195)
Next year, there should be a permanant Francona Gripe thread for the entire year.
   53. Guapo Posted: August 30, 2007 at 08:17 PM (#2505327)
I am smelling SWEEP IN THE BRONX this week. Knock 'em out cold boys.

Primey
   54. tfbg9 Posted: August 31, 2007 at 01:31 AM (#2505669)
Yep.

As long as SEA cooperates, things ought to be OK for the Sox, but the M's keep hanging in there.
   55. JC in DC Posted: August 31, 2007 at 01:37 AM (#2505674)
Sox fans are bipolar. You guys are great! Dan: How 'bout the Sox lose every game, including the Schilling one, and barely get hits in the last two?
   56. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:11 AM (#2505704)
Good weekend? That was a great weekend. Boston is doing great, they get a day off and the yanks have to handle detroit again tonight. This will be another "sad failure" for the yankees as they enter this three game do or die situation. Yankee fans need a new team.

Pride goeth before the Fall, b-town jimmie. At least you've got a few things to think about while your schedule softens up a bit. Schilling pitched a great game, though, even if Cano got in a few good swings.

The chief function of the White Sox these days seems to be to instill a false sense of confidence in both the Yanks and the Red Sox. Neither of them seemed to realize that beating up on Chicago is sort of like proving yourself on a team of blind cripples from the Helen Keller Home for the Seriously Senior Incurables. But the Sox should consider themselves lucky to get the Orioles in their worst looking stretch since April of 1988.
   57. JC in DC Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:25 AM (#2505716)
What happened to the White Sox, btw? They're not just bad, they're terrible.
   58. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:34 AM (#2505728)
What happened to the White Sox, btw? They're not just bad, they're terrible.

The scuttlebutt is that the gays put the kibosh on them after one too many press conference cracks by Ozzie. It's as good an explanation as any.
   59. Answer Guy Posted: August 31, 2007 at 03:09 AM (#2505741)
But the Sox should consider themselves lucky to get the Orioles in their worst looking stretch since April of 1988.

With no Bedard (for once!) and no Guthrie. I consider anything less than winning 3-of-3 in Fenway against a seriously reeling Baltimore club a failure. They've pissed away their margin for error.

I still fail to see this team winning a playoff series, even if I have to admit that it's still unlikely that they'll choke away a playoff berth entirely, if for no other reason than there aren't really enough games left in the season for them to do so. They're just too easy for a decent pitcher to shut down - this has got to be the worst hitting Boston club since Butch Hobson was managing the team.
   60. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: August 31, 2007 at 03:41 AM (#2505752)
With no Bedard (for once!) and no Guthrie. I consider anything less than winning 3-of-3 in Fenway against a seriously reeling Baltimore club a failure. They've pissed away their margin for error.

The Radhames Liz guy is supposed to 100 miles an hour.
   61. Dr. Vaux Posted: August 31, 2007 at 05:31 AM (#2505783)
No way do they hit worse than the 2000 club. Or was it the 2001 club? Or both.
   62. karlmagnus Posted: August 31, 2007 at 11:12 AM (#2505802)
The 2001 club hit fine until the entire heart of the lineup got injured. I tend to agree that with Manny and Ortiz both way down from their peak, this is the worst hitting club since '96 ('97 on had Nomar.)(incidentally, Ortiz's near-uselessness makes me seriously doubt the value of OPS+; for a man with an OPS+ of 163 he's appalling whenever you need him. His habit of making the last out with men on base leaving the bases empty for Manny is particularly annoying. Games 1 and 2 would have been won with 2005-06 Manny and Ortiz, on average.
   63. PJ Martinez Posted: August 31, 2007 at 12:37 PM (#2505819)
"with Manny and Ortiz both way down from their peak"

I can't speak to the general value of OPS+, but Ortiz has simply been a _different_ hitter this year-- more OBP, less SLG. Also, he's been less clutch.

Manny's numbers are down across the board, of course, but the dropoff from him to Hinske is considerable. Sox still should have won at least one game in New York, but that would have been easier to do without Manny's injury.
   64. TomH Posted: August 31, 2007 at 12:46 PM (#2505823)
are you KIDDING me? How SHORT are some memories? Hello!....

1. 4 games in a row of 10 runs or more scored. That was almost a whole week ago, I know.
2. 4th in the MAJORS in OPS
3. They were incredibly snake bit the last 2 games. No-hitters thru the 5th and 6th? Bah! If a pitcher KOs 9 thru 5, he has a decent no-hitter going. Clemens and Wang weren't fooling many guys at all. The Sox just hit at-em balls two days straight.
   65. The Essex Snead Posted: August 31, 2007 at 01:04 PM (#2505835)
Never mind that both Clemens & Wang were feeling generous w/ the walks.

Yeah, there's no reason to start thinking OH NOES TEH RED SOX R DOOMED. They were just outplayed & outlucked & outGiambi'd - if I see him make another great defensive play this year, I'll eat CHB's hat.

Also, he's been less clutch.


Oh, whatever. It might seem that way (probably because he actually made some outs in the 9th inning), but check his situational splits w/ RISP and/or 2 outs between this year & last year - they're nearly identical. Bagging on Ortiz, or calling him near-useless (like karlmagnus did), is a crock of sh!t that even the most diehard bipolar RSN acolyte wouldn't stir. It's the same garbage NYY laid on A-Rod's door prior to this year.
   66. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: August 31, 2007 at 01:20 PM (#2505847)
The 2001 club hit fine until the entire heart of the lineup got injured. I tend to agree that with Manny and Ortiz both way down from their peak, this is the worst hitting club since '96 ('97 on had Nomar.)(incidentally, Ortiz's near-uselessness makes me seriously doubt the value of OPS+; for a man with an OPS+ of 163 he's appalling whenever you need him. His habit of making the last out with men on base leaving the bases empty for Manny is particularly annoying. Games 1 and 2 would have been won with 2005-06 Manny and Ortiz, on average.

What the ####? This is David Ortiz, people! The clutch god! You Boston fans are out of your ####### minds.
   67. JC in DC Posted: August 31, 2007 at 01:24 PM (#2505853)
They were incredibly snake bit the last 2 games. No-hitters thru the 5th and 6th? Bah! If a pitcher KOs 9 thru 5, he has a decent no-hitter going. Clemens and Wang weren't fooling many guys at all. The Sox just hit at-em balls two days straight.


Funny stuff. Wang was excellent yesterday, and had the Sox doing what he wanted them to do.

Listen, on the Red Sox lineup. Do you know how as a fan you can sometimes gauge your competition by the guys on it you really really fear? I hate the Sox, as y'all know, but as a Yankee fan what scares me about your team is its pitching, not its hitting. The 2 toughest outs, the guys who really bug me, are Pedroia and Youkilis. Ortiz is great and intimidating, but he doesn't have that aura this year. And with Ramirez out, it's definitely a lineup that, as a fan of their most hated rival, I can locate lots of flat points where I think, "Geez, if we just get by Pedroia, I'll take my chances with Crisp," or, "Let Youkilis get on 1st, and let's get the fat guy to hit into a DP." Varitek, Crisp, Lugo, Drew, Hinske, Cora, and even Lowell (despite Lowell's excellent season) don't scare me much. That's a lot of empty space.

But your pitching? Another story.
   68. PJ Martinez Posted: August 31, 2007 at 01:36 PM (#2505856)
Well, I wasn't "bagging on Ortiz," I was simply noting the difference between his OBP and SLG this year compared to the last couple. And "RISP and/or 2 outs" hardly seems like the last word on clutch-ness. How many game-tying or game-winning hits does Ortiz have this year? How many times has he come up big in the late innings? The relative lack of home runs matters too, here-- getting on base is great, but getting to first doesn't usually have the same impact, late in a close game, as hitting one out or off the wall, say.

I know the Sox have a relatively good offense, and had some tough, Manny-less luck this week, especially against Clemens (Wang mostly shut them down, I think, with some surprisingly good defensive help-- though there were a lot of balls in the air in the early going, which doesn't seem like Wang's MO).
   69. willcarrolldoesnotsuk Posted: August 31, 2007 at 01:38 PM (#2505857)

1. 4 games in a row of 10 runs or more scored. That was almost a whole week ago, I know.


I find it funny that when the Yankees beat up bad teams it's because they were playing bad teams, but when the Red Sox did it against the ChiSox they were "gearing up".
   70. TomH Posted: August 31, 2007 at 01:45 PM (#2505862)
somewhat a true jab. They both have beat up on bad teams. When the Sox thump the pathetic O's and Rays pitching the next two weeks, it won't be gearing up, it will just be ... expected.
   71. karlmagnus Posted: August 31, 2007 at 01:49 PM (#2505864)
I think the assumption that the Sox will go 12-0 against the Os and Rays and anything less is a disaster is overdone. Neither team appears to have given up on the season, as the White Sox seem to have done. 8-4, with a .500 record against the rest of the schedule and 1 of 3 wins against the MFY AT HOME should be enough, however. Even that probably requires a fit Manny after say a 10-day recovery, however, and progression beyond the Division Series certainly does.
   72. karlmagnus Posted: August 31, 2007 at 01:53 PM (#2505865)
Incidentally, can we persuade the brass to do a quasi-Clemens with Manny next year, and activate him May 15. He's a waste of space in cold weather, and has broken down a month from the end of the season two years in succession.
   73. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: August 31, 2007 at 01:56 PM (#2505867)
Not to worry, though. If the standings look like this in a few weeks, the Yankees would proceed to lose three straight to the Angels in the Division Series and not get the opportunity to prove that the Wild Card makes regular-season division races completely meaningless.
   74. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: August 31, 2007 at 01:57 PM (#2505869)
Who said they have to go 12-0, or would go 12-0?
   75. The Essex Snead Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:00 PM (#2505871)
Who said they have to go 12-0?


I imagine a lot of slapheads bringing up the grim spectre of '78 yet again are probably spewing this nonsense. & I imagine someone on WFAN will say this as well (if it hasn't been said already).
   76. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:04 PM (#2505873)
How often does any team go 12-0?

The RS and Yankees will play just about even for the rest of the year, barring any major injuries. I hope the Yankees hang on for the WC. I think they will.
   77. SoSH U at work Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:12 PM (#2505879)
I hope the Yankees hang on for the WC.


Why in the world would you hope for that?

It's not just that my deep disdain for the Yankees and would delight in their failure to reach the postseason. But of all the potential playoff opponents, they're certainly the team I find the most threatening.
   78. JC in DC Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:15 PM (#2505881)
As Erik pointed out above, while the Yankees may be threatening to the Sox, they would have almost no chance against the Angels. The Angels just kill us (and I feel like I've been saying that all my life).
   79. GGC don't think it can get longer than a novella Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:19 PM (#2505888)
JC, is this one of those boxing things where a puncher has an advantage over an in-fighter, an in-fighter has an advantage over a boxer, and a boxer has an advantage over a puncher?
   80. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:19 PM (#2505889)
In that matchup, I would give the Yankees about a 25% chance to beat the Halos in a short series. And much of that is the "any given Sunday" phenomenon.

Regardless, a Yankee playoff appearance would make this into a good year. And with the kids coming up and playing well, it's decent-to-good even if they falter in the last few weeks.
   81. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:20 PM (#2505892)
I like Yankees/Red Sox playoff series. They're fun.
   82. JC in DC Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:21 PM (#2505893)
Pretty much, GGC. The Angels destroy our style. It's rock paper scissors. We're the rock, they're the paper, and the Sox are the scissors.
   83. JC in DC Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:22 PM (#2505895)
Regardless, a Yankee playoff appearance would make this into a good year. And with the kids coming up and playing well, it's decent-to-good even if they falter in the last few weeks.


This is adjusted expectations, a consequence of the disastrous early season. At the beginning of the season, you and I would never have thought the season remotely successful if the Yankees missed the playoffs, right?
   84. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:26 PM (#2505900)
the Sox are the scissors.

You're hocking a chynek. The season series is split 8-7. The last 125 games between the 2 are something like 64-61. They split the last 2 playoff series they've met in.
   85. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:28 PM (#2505904)
Correct. To use arbitrary beginningpoints, at the All-Star break, I would have been satisfied with a .500 record.

At the beginning of the season, I could have been convinced that a miss of the playoffs could equal a good season. But it wouldn't have been easy.
   86. JC in DC Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:36 PM (#2505914)
You're hocking a chynek. The season series is split 8-7. The last 125 games between the 2 are something like 64-61. They split the last 2 playoff series they've met in.


Take your meds.
   87. The Essex Snead Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:40 PM (#2505925)
This is adjusted expectations, a consequence of the disastrous early season. At the beginning of the season, you and I would never have thought the season remotely successful if the Yankees missed the playoffs, right?


Well, it might not be what folks expected in terms of performance, but it looks like the early scuffling might be beneficial for the team in the long run. It caused them to actually look @ folks in their farm system & take stock of their future (in lieu of their recent veteran-plug-&-chug antics). I imagine things were heading in that direction anyway, but falling flat on their face early on (coupled w/ all the injuries) forced their hand, & now the Yankees are back to being the lovable pain in the a$$ RSN knows and fears. Even though I've had more than my fill of Joba Fever & the Melkman, it sure beats the one-two punch of Aaron Small & Shawn Chacon.

That said, I'm rooting for the M's to get off their cans & seal the deal. (Actually, I'm rooting for the Tigers to sneak in & shiv both of them, but if they keep batting Timo Perez in the 3 hole & having their starts screw the pooch in the 1st inning, I'm not sure it'll happen.)
   88. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:43 PM (#2505930)
Jesus Christ, let's root for Tampa Bay to make it, why doncha?
   89. JC in DC Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:52 PM (#2505941)
Well, it might not be what folks expected in terms of performance, but it looks like the early scuffling might be beneficial for the team in the long run. It caused them to actually look @ folks in their farm system & take stock of their future (in lieu of their recent veteran-plug-&-chug antics). I imagine things were heading in that direction anyway, but falling flat on their face early on (coupled w/ all the injuries) forced their hand, & now the Yankees are back to being the lovable pain in the a$$ RSN knows and fears. Even though I've had more than my fill of Joba Fever & the Melkman, it sure beats the one-two punch of Aaron Small & Shawn Chacon.

That said, I'm rooting for the M's to get off their cans & seal the deal. (Actually, I'm rooting for the Tigers to sneak in & shiv both of them, but if they keep batting Timo Perez in the 3 hole & having their starts screw the pooch in the 1st inning, I'm not sure it'll happen.)


True, true. But "that said," I'm rooting for the Red Sox to collapse, and if that doesn't happen, at least for Pedroia and Youks to confess to playing footsy with Senator Kennedy in the bathroom stalls at Logan.
   90. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:54 PM (#2505944)
OH NOES TEH RED SOX R DOOMED

Isn't that supposed to be "DOOMDED"?

The Angels just kill us (and I feel like I've been saying that all my life).

Ah, youth.
   91. JC in DC Posted: August 31, 2007 at 02:57 PM (#2505950)
Ah, youth.


I'm 40.
   92. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: August 31, 2007 at 03:03 PM (#2505957)
Lordy Lordy look who's 40!

What happened to the White Sox, btw? They're not just bad, they're terrible.

We need to hear from Mr.Keefe on this.
   93. cercopithecus aethiops Posted: August 31, 2007 at 03:07 PM (#2505968)
I'm 40.

Whippersnapper.

And get the hell off my lawn.

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