Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Sox Therapy > Discussion
Sox Therapy
— Where Thinking Red Sox Fans Obsess about the Sox

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. John DiFool2 Posted: June 09, 2011 at 01:05 PM (#3849117)
Someone we can agree on MC. Now if we can just get Pedroia healthy and raking again, even if we do have to wait a month or so...
   2. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: June 09, 2011 at 01:07 PM (#3849119)
As good as his bat has been I think his defense is where the real improvement is. He seems to be getting a much better jump on balls regularly.
   3. Fly should without a doubt be number !!!!! Posted: June 09, 2011 at 01:10 PM (#3849120)
I just think it's a shame he's so soft.

There's no way he sticks around when he has a chance to get out, after the way the front office threw him under the bus last year, is there?
   4. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 09, 2011 at 01:33 PM (#3849129)
I believe that's a problem that can be solved the old-fashioned way - by throwing money at it. If he maintains this level of production, would Ellsbury take, say, a contract of 4/30 with an option this November?

(The 4/30 number is considering Ellsbury as about a $9M player on the market, with 60% and 80% contracts in his two remaining arb years. Ellsbury's actual projection will probably be quite a bit better than that, so maybe this is an unfair offer, but it's hard to imagine Ellsbury getting a bigger contract offer than Youkilis. Maybe 4/34 as a $10M player? Anyway, this is all dependent on Ellsbury continuing to play good, hope he does.)
   5. Joel W Posted: June 09, 2011 at 03:30 PM (#3849226)
Yeah, the Sox have more money to throw at him, and probably more accurately grasp his value than most of the teams that have money to throw at him. Plus, other teams probably think he's soft now and care about that more than the Sox do. The Red Sox also have the ability to pay him two years earlier than other teams (Time Value of Money). It all adds up to him getting a nice deal from the Sox so he can wipe away any hurt feelings with hundred dollar bills.
   6. tfbg9 Posted: June 09, 2011 at 03:44 PM (#3849237)
It would certainly seem Ells can make himself about, what, 35-50 million clams by simply keeping up his good play.
If he finishes of 155 games at ~.290/.365./.440, 17 bombs, 40 doubles, 110 runs scored and 50 SB's...what kind of deal do they offer him? Would a Boros guy even accept a buy-out of the arb years?

Its a good thing I don't believe in jinxes.

edit: math-related content
   7. tfbg9 Posted: June 09, 2011 at 03:47 PM (#3849242)
Speaking to his D...I still don't see a guy who is real good at going back on balls near the wall.
   8. John DiFool2 Posted: June 09, 2011 at 04:01 PM (#3849254)
He did run a crap route on such a ball last night-went to his right as his first move and only then did he backtrack-made a big loop out there.
   9. Tuque Posted: June 09, 2011 at 04:07 PM (#3849257)
Does this mean kevin can come back now?
   10. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: June 10, 2011 at 01:41 PM (#3850101)
I know someone who kept insisting that Ellsbury could turn into Kenny Lofton. I scoffed. I guess maybe he was right.
   11. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 10, 2011 at 01:45 PM (#3850104)
That was Darren.

This isn't really a Kenny Lofton season - Lofton was a better on-base guy, drew more walks. This is a Johnny Damon season.
   12. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: June 10, 2011 at 02:04 PM (#3850120)
To my untrained eye he just seems to be having better at-bats. In the past it seemed like he would decide whether he wanted to swing or not before the pitch was even thrown.
   13. Mike Webber Posted: June 10, 2011 at 02:29 PM (#3850144)
I would like to mention that the Red Sox now have the best record in the American League. When they were 2-10 on April 15, the day after my heart attack, I thought things were looking pretty grim. The outlook for both the Sox and myself have improved greatly since then.
   14. GGC don't think it can get longer than a novella Posted: June 10, 2011 at 02:46 PM (#3850158)
Glad to see you are alright, Mike. A cousin of mine is roughly our age and she had two attacks recently.
   15. Famous Original Joe C Posted: June 10, 2011 at 02:47 PM (#3850160)
I would like to mention that the Red Sox now have the best record in the American League. When they were 2-10 on April 15, the day after my heart attack, I thought things were looking pretty grim. The outlook for both the Sox and myself have improved greatly since then.

Mike, glad to hear you're doing well.

I noticed the same thing this morning glancing over the standings. This is why you don't piss your pants in April and May. Every year, some of you guys seem to forget.
   16. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: June 10, 2011 at 05:45 PM (#3850349)
That was Darren.


Maybe he said this, but not to me, since we never shared a house and this conversation took place in my kitchen.

This is why you don't piss your pants in April and May. Every year, some of you guys seem to forget.


I remember all the odds people were running, and their talking about how it was unprecedented for a team with that start to make the playoffs. My general feeling on the matter, depressing as it was, was, "Whatever."

The outlook for both the Sox and myself have improved greatly since then.


Good on ya, mate.
   17. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 10, 2011 at 06:04 PM (#3850370)
This is why you don't piss your pants in April and May. Every year, some of you guys seem to forget.

I remember all the odds people were running, and their talking about how it was unprecedented for a team with that start to make the playoffs. My general feeling on the matter, depressing as it was, was, "Whatever."
I'd make a distinction, though, between running odds and talking about "unprecedented" playoff runs. The odds talk, which left the Red Sox with still significant chances at making the playoffs (maybe 25% ish) directly contradicted the implicit claim that such a comeback was impossible.

Is there a substantive claim being made here, or an emotional one? That is, is the argument, "a team which begins the year 2-10 has not materially hurt their playoff chances" or "you shouldn't worry about the material harm to playoff chances done by a 2-10 start"? I can see the case for the latter, it overlaps to some degree with the argument I was trying to make at the time - a 25% chance is obviously worse than a 75% chance, but it's two coin flips, and people win two coin flips all the time. So, while starting 2-10 is legitimately a bad thing with bad effects on the projected outcome of the season, it's not a cause for panic. Still, the odds aren't invalidated by a team coming back, like the Sox have.

If anyone predicted, on April 16th or May 11th, that the Red Sox were about to start playing .700 or .750 ball, they kept that claim to themselves.
The outlook for both the Sox and myself have improved greatly since then.
Hey, best of luck with your recovery.
   18. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: June 10, 2011 at 06:20 PM (#3850382)
Maybe the leaderboards have changed, but I see Ellsbury around 17th for hitters by Fangraphs WAR, which is still pretty good. It's still early, and while Ellsbury is having a great season with the bat, there's still plenty of time for him to ultimately drop back to his career numbers. The guy is just awesome to watch, though. It's pretty great having a guy who can get around the bases that quickly.
   19. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 10, 2011 at 06:25 PM (#3850387)
Ellsbury's 10th in the AL right now, and yes, 19th in the majors.

While there's time for Ellsbury to drop back - and his .350 BABIP is most likely fluky - I do think the bump in power is pretty real. He's hitting the ball with more authority in great part because he's swinging harder, and he should be able to keep that up.
   20. Joel W Posted: June 10, 2011 at 06:34 PM (#3850393)
League my refer to AL above.
   21. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: June 10, 2011 at 06:37 PM (#3850395)
Ah, I see. I agree with you about the power spike - I think he's making better contact, and with his speed he's in a better position to take advantage of some of that contact. Ellsbury right now is pretty much the player I thought Carl Crawford would be.
   22. Darren Posted: June 10, 2011 at 09:44 PM (#3850526)
Yeah, Voxter, I've never been in your kitchen--you keep thinking that.

As for the Ellsbury comp, let's see: .300 hitter, super speed and lots o' steals, decent power. Yep, Crawford's the one I'm thinking of too.
   23. Joel W Posted: June 11, 2011 at 02:50 PM (#3850794)
Looking at the fangraphs leaderboards for the past 3 years, players with over 100 SBs seem to have BABIPs in the .320s or so (RIP Jimmy Rollins apparently) and Ellsbury is a career .321 BABIP guy. ZiPS has him at .324 the rest of the way. So yeah, flukey, but he should still be up there in the BABIP rankings. Just below the truly great power hitters along with some other speed guys.
   24. Dale Sams Posted: June 11, 2011 at 03:19 PM (#3850804)
Re: his defense. I'm not seeing it.

During the 2-10 run, there were plenty of balls he just came up short on. The ball going over his head in Yankee Stadium is the sort of play I seem to always see, but there may be several plays I haven't seen.
   25. John DiFool2 Posted: June 11, 2011 at 04:21 PM (#3850822)
While there's time for Ellsbury to drop back - and his .350 BABIP is most likely fluky - I do think the bump in power is pretty real. He's hitting the ball with more authority in great part because he's swinging harder, and he should be able to keep that up.


If he's hitting the ball harder (and I agree), that will correlate positively with his BABIP too. Several hitters each year have a .340+ BABIP (Crawford last year for ex.), so that as his new (current) true level of ability (or close to it) is not all that far-fetched.
   26. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 11, 2011 at 04:52 PM (#3850836)
I didn't mean, when I said that Ellsbury's BABIP was probably lucky, that he was merely a league average ball-in-play hitter. With his speed and ground ball tendencies, he's surely above average. There are only two active players in MLB with long-term established .350 BABIP skill - Jeter and Ichiro. I think odds are good that Ellsbury isn't super-elite in batting average on balls in play, so he's probably been a bit lucky. I was guessing the effect was 10-20 points of batting average.
   27. tjm1 Posted: June 12, 2011 at 09:01 AM (#3851242)
"Would a Boros guy even accept a buy-out of the arb years?"

Absolutely. Boras is very big on getting the money now. He knows guys can get hurt and see their careers end. Only in rare cases will he advise guys to take one year deals - cases where the guy's market value has plummeted from what it once was, and might be restored by having a good year. I don't know if he'd advise Ellsbury to take 4/30, but there's definitely room with Boras to take a longer deal that guarantees a good payout over taking one's chances on the market three years from now.
   28. gay guy in cut-offs smoking the objective pipe Posted: June 12, 2011 at 02:09 PM (#3851281)
Does this mean kevin can come back now?

Ellsbury's 2011 OPS+: 132
Grady Sizemore's 2011 OPS+: 133

Advantage, kevin!
   29. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: June 12, 2011 at 03:24 PM (#3851304)
Pedroia's getting hot again. This team is scary good.
   30. villageidiom Posted: June 13, 2011 at 07:28 PM (#3852214)
During the 2-10 run, there were plenty of balls he just came up short on. The ball going over his head in Yankee Stadium is the sort of play I seem to always see, but there may be several plays I haven't seen.
I was in Toronto for the Fri/Sat games, and on flies to straightaway CF Ellsbury still seemed very unsure of how far the ball was hit. There was one hit pretty much right to him, and he started out, then in, then back to where he'd started.

I'd like to say he has improved, and I think I've seen fewer obvious misjudgings than in the past. But I can't say sample size isn't the driver.
   31. Joel W Posted: June 13, 2011 at 09:51 PM (#3852310)
Ellsbury clearly needs to workout with Andruw Jones's dad in the winds of Curacao. He is so terrible at going straight back. It speaks to his ridiculous speed that he is able to be an average defensive center fielder despite that liability.

I was sort of hoping we'd get a Monday thread that basically said "let's all think of different ways to comment on how good the Red Sox are," because this team is really, really, good. A .640 3rd order WP on Prospectus, i.e a 104 win team. Fun with selective endpoints: Since starting 2-10, they are 37-16, which is .698 baseball, the team OPS is .826 (in this run environment). 3.8 RPG in that same time frame. Just awesome baseball for a 50+ game stretch.

The sad thing is that unless the Yankees and another team keep playing really well, they won't have the incentive to go for 100 wins, which is seemingly realistic for them. Bring on the 10 team playoff.
   32. villageidiom Posted: June 14, 2011 at 03:10 AM (#3852604)
I was sort of hoping we'd get a Monday thread that basically said "let's all think of different ways to comment on how good the Red Sox are," because this team is really, really, good.
Funny, I turned on the radio this morning after the Red Sox started their AL East road trip 6-0, hoping to hear such a discussion on any sports talk radio station. All but one spent all the time talking about Mavericks/Heat and LeBron's comments on his haters. The exception? WEEI, which was constantly talking Bruins.

Give 'em all another week or two and they'll all be talking about the NFL lockout again. Fine. Let this freakin' awesome team fly under the radar.
   33. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 14, 2011 at 05:06 PM (#3852997)
I couldn't find an angle on the "this team is awesome" story that interested me enough to write something up. If anyone else has a good angle and writes something up, I'd be more than happy to post it.
   34. Dale Sams Posted: June 14, 2011 at 05:21 PM (#3853013)
All I got is we better pray the White Sox don't find a way into the playoffs.
   35. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: June 14, 2011 at 05:30 PM (#3853022)
For better or worse I don't think there is anything inherently "interesting" about this team other than "they're really good." The single season records for the club are out of sight (175 RBI, .406, 150 runs). Other than Ellsbury breaking his own club record for steals no one is doing anything that will reach historic levels.

I think the only interesting thing to consider is the negatives; what moves might they make at the deadline;

- reliever for sure
- starter if they can but unlikely
- catcher? knock on wood but Saltalalmacchia/Varitek are doing well enough so far.
- shortstop - Neither Lowrie nor Scutaro is particularly impressive. Off the top of my head I don't see an upgrade of meaning over those guys out there. Flags fly forever but Doubront and Ranaudo or something like that for 3 months of Reyes wouldn't excite me.
- right field - Drew is having a pretty rough year and some teams not in the race have players that probably would be upgrades to varying degrees.
   36. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 14, 2011 at 05:41 PM (#3853033)
reliever for sure
Two of the better pitchers the Red Sox have in the high minors - Kyle Weiland and Alex Wilson - project as relievers in the majors. I think there's a good chance that one or both of them get a shot a shot at helping the bullpen if it's still a mess in July.
   37. Dale Sams Posted: June 14, 2011 at 05:52 PM (#3853044)
There's an outside chance Ellsbury could break the AL plate appearance record of 762. He would need 4.85 appearances from here on out where Ichiro averaged some 4.70. But this was for a 2004 Mariners team that only scored 698 runs. Man that team must have underperformed for Ichiro to get so many appearances yet only score 698 runs.
   38. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: June 14, 2011 at 06:21 PM (#3853064)
Lester is leading MLB in wins. *ducks*
   39. Dan Posted: June 14, 2011 at 06:28 PM (#3853067)
- right field - Drew is having a pretty rough year and some teams not in the race have players that probably would be upgrades to varying degrees.


Carlos Beltran seems like the obvious move to upgrade this team. As a rightfielder who destroys LHP and plays good defense, it's hard to picture someone else being a better fit. And Drew (or Reddick if they think Drew is finished) could still play 2-3 times a week against RHP to keep Beltran rested and healthy.
   40. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: June 14, 2011 at 06:36 PM (#3853073)
Lester is leading MLB in wins. *ducks*


I actually thought about that but unless he wins virtually every start he'll still come up short or Roger's 24 or the post WWII high of 25.

Carlos Beltran seems like the obvious move to upgrade this team. As a rightfielder who destroys LHP and plays good defense, it's hard to picture someone else being a better fit. And Drew (or Reddick if they think Drew is finished) could still play 2-3 times a week against RHP to keep Beltran rested and healthy.


I'd love Beltran. On a less "name" side how is Willingham's defense? Can he play right?
   41. Dan Posted: June 14, 2011 at 06:45 PM (#3853080)
Willingham playing RF at Fenway would be utterly gruesome.
   42. Joel W Posted: June 14, 2011 at 07:28 PM (#3853118)
I tend to find juggernaut teams inherently interesting, and the Red Sox haven't won 100 games since 1946. It'd be cool to see them get there. They also haven't led the league in wins on their own since 1986. Both of those seem very within reach. There would be something quite satisfying about some regular season dominance.
   43. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 14, 2011 at 07:51 PM (#3853138)
If anyone predicted, on April 16th or May 11th, that the Red Sox were about to start playing .700 or .750 ball, they kept that claim to themselves.


I thought they were a .600 team to start the season (97 wins), and so 12 games didn't change that. So I did expect them to play .633 ball the rest of the way, which means a stretch of .700 at some point. No, I didn't know exactly when that stretch would begin, but I expected it to come.

Just like I expected them to have a 2-10 stretch at some point, but didn't know when. So it happened to come at the beginning of the year. Big whoop.

The fact is that a lot of people panicked, because a lot of people are short sighted.
   44. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: June 14, 2011 at 07:52 PM (#3853141)
I'd love to see it happening but just as many people (y'know, like me) are looking foolish for their level of panic early in the season I worry that the same thing is happening in reverse right now and we are anointing this team as a great team based on a recent hot stretch.

Right now this is a team on pace to win 97 games. While I would not be stunned if this team rolled like this the rest of the year I wouldn't be shocked if the pitching stumbled, and a couple of hitters slumped and they went through another bad stretch. I don't think they'll do another 2-10 but I don't think the possibility should be dismissed.
   45. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: June 14, 2011 at 08:54 PM (#3853198)
Even if they were on a pace to win 100 I doubt they'd get there. Knowing how the Red Sox like to roll into the playoffs, if they feel the wild card is in hand, they'll switch into rest mode, and we'll get extended looks at the B team while the starters rest. The Red Sox just do not care about wins beyond the bare minimum needed to get a playoff spot.
   46. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: June 14, 2011 at 09:19 PM (#3853230)
I thought they were a .600 team to start the season (97 wins), and so 12 games didn't change that. So I did expect them to play .633 ball the rest of the way, which means a stretch of .700 at some point.

Gambler's Fallacy.
   47. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 14, 2011 at 09:36 PM (#3853245)
I thought they were a .600 team to start the season (97 wins), and so 12 games didn't change that. So I did expect them to play .633 ball the rest of the way, which means a stretch of .700 at some point.

Gambler's Fallacy.


Agreed that after 12 games the 2-10 start was already banked, so that does change the expected outcome. But it doesn't magically turn them into a "true" .167 (2-10) team. I think we should still have expected them to be very good the rest of the way. So there will be some .700 stretches in there regardless.
   48. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 14, 2011 at 10:26 PM (#3853291)
Agreed that after 12 games the 2-10 start was already banked, so that does change the expected outcome. But it doesn't magically turn them into a "true" .167 (2-10) team.
The point is, though, if they're a true .600 team and they started the season 2-10, over the full season they project to win 92 games, not 97. A team that projects to win 92 instead of 97 games has a worse shot at the playoffs. They're still a good team, with a good shot at the playoffs, but that bad start does have an impact.

Now, it might be argued this is the wrong way to go about it, as I said above. It might be that a team that happened to have a 2-10 record in fact shouldn't have another bad stretch. Or that they have a better chance of running off a .700 streak. Or any of these things - that was my question. Is there a substantive claim being made that a .600 team that started the season 2-10 doesn't project to 92 wins? Or is it an emotional claim that we shouldn't worry about that?
   49. karlmagnus Posted: June 14, 2011 at 10:52 PM (#3853305)
If it's really a 100-win team that won't quite make it because management slacks off after the postseason place is won, then after the 2-10 start we should still expect it to win 95 games; it's simply that management won't get the opportunity to slack off, because the postseason will only be assured in the last few days of the season.
   50. Benji Gil Gamesh Rises Posted: June 14, 2011 at 11:01 PM (#3853310)
I couldn't find an angle on the "this team is awesome" story that interested me enough to write something up. If anyone else has a good angle and writes something up, I'd be more than happy to post it.
You could see how close they are to your Crazy Fanboy Prediction System...
   51. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 14, 2011 at 11:15 PM (#3853319)
"Is there a substantive claim being made that a .600 team that started the season 2-10 doesn't project to 92 wins? Or is it an emotional claim that we shouldn't worry about that?"

I don't understand what you're asking with the "emotional" bit. But yes, I will agree that a true 97-win team that starts 2-10 should be expected to finish at 92 wins (or whatever it is) rather than 97. So in this sense I guess I'm reversing what I wrote in post 43.

I don't see how it changes the point that their true talent even after 12 games was still very good, so we should still have expected that they had a really good stretch in them (as very good teams always do).
   52. The Keith Law Blog Blah Blah (battlekow) Posted: June 14, 2011 at 11:57 PM (#3853351)
Interrupting: I just moved from Milwaukee to Hartford, and I have tickets to both the Friday and Saturday games. It's just my second-ever trip to Fenway. I'm excited. I hope it doesn't rain. I also hope the Brewers don't #### the bed again, though 2008 turned out okay.
   53. villageidiom Posted: June 15, 2011 at 02:05 AM (#3853554)
So I did expect them to play .633 ball the rest of the way, which means a stretch of .700 at some point. No, I didn't know exactly when that stretch would begin, but I expected it to come.
Lots of teams have a stretch of .700 ball; the question is one of duration. Did anyone expect .700 ball for a two month stretch? I know I didn't.
You could see how close they are to your Crazy Fanboy Prediction System...
That seems perfect.
   54. Dan Posted: June 15, 2011 at 02:10 AM (#3853564)
Hate to see a winning streak end, but Shields vs. Wakefield at Tropicana Field was never a good matchup. Oh well, get 'em tomorrow with Beckett. Hopefully they can make Hellickson come to them. He's had some control issues this season.
   55. villageidiom Posted: June 15, 2011 at 02:21 AM (#3853581)
As a followup, I checked the CFBPS thread. Ortiz is outperforming his projection.
   56. Darren Posted: June 15, 2011 at 02:51 AM (#3853615)
@55--that's awesome.
   57. Dave Cyprian Posted: July 23, 2011 at 08:03 AM (#3883767)
This thread belongs back on top of Hot Topics.
   58. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: July 23, 2011 at 12:24 PM (#3883783)
Earlier in this thread, people were dismissing how awesome the Red Sox were playing as sort of a "sample size" issue - how long can they really play .700 ball, even to counterbalance the lousy 2-10 start to the season.

Well, we've played the games of July 22nd, and here is their record:

First 12 games: 2-10
The next 85 games: 58-27. That's a .682 pace for over half a season. That's a 111-win pace. And that's without Buchholz, Lester, Matsuzaka or (until the last three starts) an effective Lackey. Of course, now that Drew is out of the lineup for good, here's the OPS+ of their typical lineup:

Ellsbury 140
Pedroia 135
Gonzalez 162
Youkilis 142
Ortiz 153
Reddick 197
Crawford 80
Saltalamacchia 109
Scutaro 92

The only surprises in that lineup are that Ellsbury is obviously hitting with power we didn't expect; Saltalamacchia is hitting with a little more power than most people expected; and Reddick is an upgrade on 2011 JD Drew, no matter what he does from here on in. Crawford has been so much worse than expectations that he negates much of Ellsbury emergence - he's been the worst-hitting starter on the team.

The other big surprise, which doesn't get that much attention because of the offense, is the bullpen. Bard is outstanding, but that's what we expected. Paps has been as expected. Albers and Aceves have been very good in their roles. The guy I'm starting to watch, though, is Dan Wheeler - we gave him good money, he had a terrible start to the season, and because relievers don't throw 150 innings, their ERA will often stay high for the duration of the season, even as they vastly improve. I think this is what's happening to Wheeler. Through May 4th, he had four terrible outings, and his ERA was 11.32. He went on the 15-day DL, and came back May 21st. Since then:

19 GP, 21.1 IP, 13 H, 17 Ks, 4 BB, ERA of 2.11, slash line of .169/.210/.260. He hasn't been put into a lot of high-leverage situations, but I'd like to see him given more opportunities. He looked really good in a 2.1-inning stint against Baltimore a few days back, when the team really needed help in the aftermath of the 16-inning Tampa game, and they were in a tight game (it ended up being a 15-10 blowout win, but it was tight when he entered the game).

Bottom line: I think there are many reasons to think the Red Sox will get better over the next 65 games than they have been over the last two months - and that is saying a lot.
   59. NJ in DC (Now unemployed!) Posted: July 23, 2011 at 01:13 PM (#3883787)
So, this morning I noticed that the RS have 3 of the top 5 and 4 of the top 7 position players in the AL in WAR. How the hell are they not running away with the division? This is a serious question as I haven't had much time this summer to closely follow things. What are the team's weak spots?
   60. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 23, 2011 at 01:44 PM (#3883794)
The Red Sox, compared to preseason expectations, have been about as good as advertised, but it's been arranged in an extreme feast-or-famine fashion. It's not just Crawford who's massively underperformed, it's also Drew and Cameron and McDonald. Those four players underperformed expectations by such a large amount that the team as a whole is scoring runs at basically the rate projected for them before the season started (adjusting for lower levels of offense). See the "Expectations" thread.

Also, the pitching hasn't been all that great. They have an above average ERA+ thanks to Beckett and the bullpen, but the ERA+s of the pitchers currently in the Red Sox starting rotation are: 192, 88, 85, 77, 52

The Red Sox have also been below average in turning hits and walks into runs, or in preventing runs based on their hits and walks allowed. (I don't know which. I could look it up, but it seems hard.) The Red Sox second order winning percentage on BP's adjusted standings is .658, which projects to a record of 64-33. So they've underperformed run components by about four wins. (I feel like the Red Sox under Theo have very commonly underperformed their run component stats. I could look it up, but it seems hard.)
   61. chris p Posted: July 23, 2011 at 01:44 PM (#3883795)
What are the team's weak spots?

back end of the starting rotation, corner outfielders.

if lackey can bounce back and lester comes back healthy, the starting rotation should be fine. drew has been benched in favor of reddick, so they might have better production in right field. and then there's crawford ... if he finishes strong, then yeah, they'll be looking good.
   62. chris p Posted: July 23, 2011 at 01:47 PM (#3883796)
it's too bad rich hill got hurt.
   63. Famous Original Joe C Posted: July 23, 2011 at 02:09 PM (#3883799)
What are the team's weak spots?

Until Reddick came along, they were getting replacement level performance from both LF and RF. And they started 2-10. The rotation could be more healthy. That's about it, though.
   64. SG Posted: July 23, 2011 at 02:37 PM (#3883805)
The Red Sox have also been below average in turning hits and walks into runs, or in preventing runs based on their hits and walks allowed. (I don't know which. I could look it up, but it seems hard.)


The Red Sox have a winning percentage of .619 (aka 100 wins).

They've scored 526 runs and allowed 405, which is comes out to a Pythagenpat winning percentage of .622 (aka 101 wins).

The linear weights of all the offensive events for them comes out to 540 runs, and the linear weights of all the offensive events against them comes out to 387 runs. So they've scored 14 fewer runs than their peripheral stats say they should have, and allowed 18 more. If they had actually scored 540 and allowed 387 they'd have a Pythagenpat of .654 (aka 106 wins).

They're the best team in baseball. And it sickens me.
   65. RobertMachemer Posted: July 23, 2011 at 05:12 PM (#3883847)
They're the best team in baseball. And it sickens me.
The Yankees currently have a better Pythagorean Win-Loss record. Granted, the Red Sox's injuries to their rotation probably do suggest that, when healthy, they're better than the Yankees, but as far as the teams have been so far and as far as the teams look to be for the rest of the season, is there any particular reason to be pessimistic about the Yankees' chances? I mean, I like the Sox, but I don't think they're light-years ahead of the Yankees (or Rays, for that matter).
   66. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 23, 2011 at 06:05 PM (#3883873)
The Yankees currently have a better Pythagorean Win-Loss record. Granted, the Red Sox's injuries to their rotation probably do suggest that, when healthy, they're better than the Yankees, but as far as the teams have been so far and as far as the teams look to be for the rest of the season, is there any particular reason to be pessimistic about the Yankees' chances? I mean, I like the Sox, but I don't think they're light-years ahead of the Yankees (or Rays, for that matter).


The starting rotation would worry me if I were the Yankees. Burnett's not really a #2 guy right now, and after him you've got Colon, Garcia, and Hughes/Nova. I believe in Colon's current talent level, but not his health; he's about to reach his highest innings total in six years -- and he's only at 97 innings. Garcia seems to be pitching over his head, and who knows what to expect from Hughes.

Aside from that, they're carrying a replacement level SS and DH, and C hasn't been much better. They'll get ARod back, but Granderson will come down to earth.

Bottom line I think the starting rotation has a chance to get pretty ugly. But their offense will probably get them into the playoffs.
   67. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: July 23, 2011 at 06:13 PM (#3883878)
It was asked in #59 why the Sox aren't running away with the division. The answer is: they are running away with a playoff spot, but the fact that one of the other three really good teams in baseball (Yankees, Braves, Phillies) is in their division explains why they are only a few games up in the division. The Sox are nine up in the loss column over their nearest wildcard rivals, the Rays and Angels.

If the Red Sox played in the Central or West divisions in either league, they'd be much further ahead in the divison standings - and that's before taking into account that they wouldn't have to play the Yankees and Rays about 19 teams each...

The Yanks and Sox are going to the playoffs, we just don't know who will be the #1 seed, and who will be the #4 seed. Given that the All-Star game decides who gets home field in the WS, all they are playing for is home field advantage in a potential ALCS matchup, as well as matchups for the divisional round. I'd rather plays the Central winner (Detroit?) than the West winner (Texas?) in the first round, and I'd rather have home field in that round too - how much is that worth to those teams, though?
   68. Joel W Posted: July 23, 2011 at 06:15 PM (#3883880)
@65 It's really that the Red Sox are this good and are underperforming their components that is so scary to the Yankees fans I think. Even allowing for all of the injuries, they've just been unlucky a bit, and they're still playing over .600 ball. The Yankees are still damn good, and pretty clearly it's the Red Sox, Yankees, and Phillies that are the three best teams in baseball.
   69. Dan Posted: July 23, 2011 at 06:19 PM (#3883882)
I'd rather plays the Central winner (Detroit?) than the West winner (Texas?) in the first round, and I'd rather have home field in that round too - how much is that worth to those teams, though?


I'd rather play Cleveland than Texas, but I think I'd actually prefer Texas in a short series over Detroit. Facing Verlander 2 times in a short series could really suck.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Traderdave
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Syndicate

Page rendered in 0.7005 seconds
41 querie(s) executed