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— Where Thinking Red Sox Fans Obsess about the Sox

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   1. Hungry Hungry Hipolito Pichardo Posted: August 01, 2006 at 04:00 PM (#2121466)
From Krasner's piece:

On Jason Michaels' hit down the left-field line in the fifth, a grounder that kicked off the stands where it juts out past third base, Pena hustled to get in position to back up a throw from that spot to the second-base bag.

And it was a good thing he did. Shortstop Alex Cora airmailed a throw to the second-base bag past Mark Loretta and into right field. Michaels raced to second and could have made it all the way to third had not Pena been smartly backing up the play, holding it to a one-base error.

I noticed this too -- nice to see Peña thinking/hustling out there. Decidedly better than nearly decapitating Coco, but at least it seemed from the ESPN broadcast that he was getting reasonable coverage out there.

Epstein is a smitten fanboy with no melons- check.

Isn't this fruit more typically used as a metaphor for a prominent part of the female anatomy?
   2. PJ Martinez Posted: August 01, 2006 at 04:05 PM (#2121473)
I think you're right about melons.

Who was in the Oswalt trade? I assume Lester is a given. But after that I'm not sure, though I'm sure it was considerably more.

Did the Sox screw up on Abreu? Should they have just dumped Nixon, or worried about him later?
   3. OlePerfesser Posted: August 01, 2006 at 04:14 PM (#2121494)
(a) But for Big Papi's heroics, I think we would be seeing a 287-post thread on how rock-headed Tito was to leave Pantload in to face Blake in the 5th.

(b) On the Failure to Launch a Trade: I hope that the brain trust learns a lesson from its second deadline weekend in a row where their grandiose plans have all fallen apart.

This is no coincidence: This is a very thin market, you're operating under a tight deadline, and usually owners get involved when you're talking about big stars and mucho $$$. Odds are, therefore, that it's going to be damned hard to either move a big piece or acquire one in this setting; leave that for the off-season, and just keep it simple stupid.

I know these are Ivory Leaguers here, and they always think they can pull creative solutions out of their a$$es at the last minute, but the evidence is that it's harder to do at deadline time than they think. And the attempt can get in the way of more mundane but important work.
   4. PJ Martinez Posted: August 01, 2006 at 04:46 PM (#2121531)
"more mundane but important work"

Such as? I agree that the big plans may have crowded out smaller trades, and think you may be right in general, but I don't know of any obvious smaller trade the Sox should have made.
   5. Hungry Hungry Hipolito Pichardo Posted: August 01, 2006 at 04:52 PM (#2121538)
The situation of the two teams was vastly different. The Yankees had giant mounds of suck in several locations, making Abreu vastly important to them and Wilson valuable. Wilson would do much for the Sox as currently constituted, and Abreu/Lidle represented a more substantial gain to the Yankees than the Sox (not that it would be a smaller trade).

Where would small upgrades have helped with the Sox' real need in the rotation? Back of the bullpen? Kip Wells? Livan Hernandez? Armas Jr? Maybe something's slipped my mind, but if they weren't able to pull off a substantial pitching upgrade, I don't see where wasting time/talent on fringe upgrades was going to make much difference.
   6. Mister High Standards Posted: August 01, 2006 at 04:55 PM (#2121541)
Doug I wanted to use a specific type of mellon, but I couldn't figure out how to spell it. I could have said yam bags I guess.
   7. Hungry Hungry Hipolito Pichardo Posted: August 01, 2006 at 05:04 PM (#2121555)
I wanted to use a specific type of mellon

Casaba? Muskmelon? Can't find any melon types that would be funny in this spot, so I'll stop now...
   8. OlePerfesser Posted: August 01, 2006 at 05:07 PM (#2121558)
I'll settle for being right in general, PJ. Mainly 'cause we're unlikely to ever know which innings-munching starters or middle relievers would have been available and at what price (to the Sox--sometimes it's dicey to extrapolate from prices paid by other teams) if they'd been more focused, so getting too specific about coulda/shoulda/woulda is often fruitless.

Position-player-wise, I'm on record elsewhere that (a) I don't think it made baseball or economic sense to do an Abreu/Lidle trade, esp. when you didn't know Trot was gonna get hurt yet, but (b) after Trot's injury, Stairs would've been an obvious pick-up.
   9. Hungry Hungry Hipolito Pichardo Posted: August 01, 2006 at 06:06 PM (#2121638)
after Trot's injury, Stairs would've been an obvious pick-up

Even more so because he can play a passable 1B as well. Still, I think I'd rather have Wily Mo in there every day than Stairs in RF, so again, in my mind it's an upgrade only at the margin.

(And I think I would have made the same statement without seeing the broken-bat double and his performance last night.)
   10. OlePerfesser Posted: August 01, 2006 at 08:19 PM (#2121811)
In case folks missed it, BProsp's Will Carroll sez V-Tek's leg ouchie shouldn't be worrisome, but the "news isn’t so good for Trot Nixon, though it could have been much worse. Nixon was diagnosed with a Grade 2 strain of his biceps. If you think of the muscle fiber like a rope, Grade 1 would be wear some of the fibers are frayed away. Grade 2 is where there’s several broken fibers, up to about half the length. You could still use the rope, but it’s weakened and could break. That break would be a Grade 3, which is a complete or near-complete tear. Nixon should be out about six weeks...".

If the 6-week estimate is true, having a Stairs around to back up Wily Mo, pinch-hit, and take an occasional start at 1B would indeed be the kind of "only marginal" upgrade I'd have liked to see yesterday afternoon.

Carroll also has this nugget: "The Sox also have all but given up the hope that they’ll get anything from Keith Foulke. His back tightened up before a rehab appearance in Triple-A Pawtucket and sources with the team indicate that Foulke is considering retirement."

We'll always have '04, Foulkie.
   11. Hungry Hungry Hipolito Pichardo Posted: August 01, 2006 at 08:30 PM (#2121830)
If the 6-week estimate is true, having a Stairs around to back up Wily Mo, pinch-hit, and take an occasional start at 1B would indeed be the kind of "only marginal" upgrade I'd have liked to see yesterday afternoon.

If they believed yesterday this was the diagnosis (Theo was quoted yesterday with "3 weeks or so"), then Stairs would have been a sensible move at the price Texas paid. Too bad Choi is hurt (and hasn't shown a propensity to hit).
   12. OlePerfesser Posted: August 01, 2006 at 11:52 PM (#2122211)
It gets worse: ESPN now says V-Tek has been DL'd.

Sigh.

Mayhaps an unhappy Javy Lopez, in his walk year, will find his way to Beantown.
   13. Foster Posted: August 01, 2006 at 11:59 PM (#2122240)
Not just DLd, either -- out 4-6 weeks. That is a huge hit.

Any way Javy makes it through waivers?

Or is 'belli enough to get by? Huckaby promoted as backup; he'll be good for about .210/.230/.260.
   14. NTNgod Posted: August 02, 2006 at 12:00 AM (#2122251)
Started a thread for Varitek's injury; Choi DFA'd to make room for Huckaby on the 40, it seems.
   15. OlePerfesser Posted: August 02, 2006 at 02:16 AM (#2122728)
Well, it's gotten so we do need some stinkin' trades--a lot of 'em.

Now Lowell has an ouchie, an ankle injury that took him out of the game in the 8th. Hopefully this isn't another 4-6 weeks, maybe more kind of thing.

Is this the worst case of timing for a rash of injuries you've ever seen?

Ideas for a C, 3B. OF-L?
   16. Joel W Posted: August 02, 2006 at 02:39 AM (#2122777)
No idea OleP, I'm feeling a bit resigned tonight after last night's heroics.
   17. OlePerfesser Posted: August 02, 2006 at 02:57 AM (#2122808)
BTW, Seanez has pitched strictly mop-up his last half-dozen appearances, but hasn't allowed a run.

I've seen only one of those appearances, but I'd like to believe he's starting to come around. Anybody else have a good feeling about him, or am I grasping at straws?
   18. DCA Posted: August 02, 2006 at 05:12 AM (#2122919)
two of Lester, Hansen, Delcarman for Roy Oswalt.

If the Sox FO really passed on that, they're retarded. Oswalt is one of those guys that you give up your shiny toys to get.
   19. Bmore Boy (Thailand edition) Posted: August 02, 2006 at 09:33 AM (#2122973)
Lopez should clear waivers unless the Yanks just get spiteful - and they'd probably get him dumped in their laps. He's been bad this year, old, with a big salary. If he does clear, I bet we see some rumors of interest in Lopez/Conine from the Sox... with all these injuries, Conine wouldn't be a bad fill-in - not a good one, either, but he might be best of a bad bunch right now.
   20. chris p Posted: August 02, 2006 at 01:34 PM (#2123058)
Lopez should clear waivers unless the Yanks just get spiteful

if we fall below the yankees, then we don't need to worry about them being spiteful.
   21. Hungry Hungry Hipolito Pichardo Posted: August 02, 2006 at 01:38 PM (#2123065)
if we fall below the yankees, then we don't need to worry about them being spiteful.

Quick! Send Clemens through waivers!
   22. tfbg9 Posted: August 02, 2006 at 02:59 PM (#2123150)
Ole P.-its been his pattern, Rudy is a no-leverage stud.
   23. OlePerfesser Posted: August 02, 2006 at 05:44 PM (#2123361)
On Big Papi: Bill Simmons has a entertaining comparison to Larry Legend. Mentioning them in the same breath as clutch players is a sign of how beloved is Ortiz.
   24. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: August 03, 2006 at 04:10 PM (#2125011)
if we fall below the yankees, then we don't need to worry about them being spiteful.
Because the Red Sox have played two more games than the Yankees, they have waiver priority. According to McAdam at ProJo, the Sox are targeting Javy Lopez:
BOSTON -- The Red Sox have targeted Baltimore's Javy Lopez as their top target to help replace starting catcher Jason Varitek, industry sources indicated yesterday.
...
The Orioles aren't expected to ask for much in return for the 36-year-old Lopez. The catcher has approximately $2.7 million left on his 2006 salary, though the Orioles have indicated a willingness to absorb at least some of the remaining money in order to facilitate a deal. The more money the Red Sox pay, the less they'll have to surrender in terms of a prospect.
The Sox would have to make a waiver claim to avoid being blocked by the Yankees, so I doubt they'd get Lopez and cash from the Orioles unless they include a prospect. But this seems like a smart rental that could send Huckaby back to oblivion, so long as no one places a claim on Lopez before hte Sox do.
   25. karlmagnus Posted: August 03, 2006 at 04:16 PM (#2125023)
Lopez a rather better hitter than 2006 Varitek. How degraded are his catching skills?
   26. PJ Martinez Posted: August 03, 2006 at 04:30 PM (#2125046)
"The more money the Red Sox pay, the less they'll have to surrender in terms of a prospect."

The Sox should pay his whole salary and give up as insignificant a prospect as possible. Really, Lopez's pro-rated salary doesn't amount to that much. Even if his catching skills are minimal (and I don't know what they are, myself), he'd be an asset at least splitting time with Mirabelli, playing more if he can catch ok.
   27. Mike Emeigh Posted: August 04, 2006 at 12:11 PM (#2126676)
I started a little study using Tango's Leveraged Index concept to identify "clutch" situations (which goes beyond the traditional definitions of "clutch", and lets me look at about 80 PAs per season rather than the typical 30-40 or so). Most hitters lose about 30-40 points of SLG in high-leverage situations; what struck me about Ortiz is that he "gains" a significant amount of SLG in high-leverage situations, and he's done it for three years now. If I have time this weekend I'll post the numbers (I want to tweak the boundaries a bit).

-- MWE

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