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   1. philly Posted: April 10, 2005 at 11:55 PM (#1246424)
And somewhere Tangotiger has an early candidate for worse used closer in the baseball for a second year running...
   2. Bob from DC Posted: April 11, 2005 at 12:28 AM (#1246471)
I don't think the "glorious" Red Sox like using Foulke in a traditional closer role. I sat through one Fantasy BB season last yr with him on my roster & really saw the pattern. So what do I do. . .like a fool still drunk on the post-season champagne, I pick Foulke again for this yr. I used to blame it on Francona, but it's obviously written down somewhere in the Red Sox organizational rule book not to use Foulke as a "real" closer. . .except in the WS.!?!
   3. Mikαεl Posted: April 11, 2005 at 12:48 AM (#1246498)
This was an absolute no-brainer, use your ace situation. Mills has been a tactical disaster.

Bob - tied bottom 9th is not a traditional closer situation, though it is as high leverage as innings get. This is the main place where the traditional closer usage pattern has to be amended.
   4. GGC Posted: April 11, 2005 at 12:53 AM (#1246508)
This has probably been answered somewhere before, but I noticed that today the Red Sox sanitary hose were completely red and not red and white like they were in the past. Is this just a road thing?

I'm not much for armchair managing but, yeah, it was puzzling why Foulke wasn't pitching the ninth.
   5. Phil Coorey. Posted: April 11, 2005 at 02:25 AM (#1246658)
In any case there has to be cause for concern over Timlin. He flat out looks crap this year.
   6. mr. man Posted: April 11, 2005 at 05:24 AM (#1246878)
as a jays fan, i was thrilled to see timlin still in...i've gotta think that the attitude many managers have is that you've got to save your guys for extra innings, such that timlin would pitch the ninth and then foulke the tenth and eleventh. this could be sensible in normal conditions, given that embree had been used already and everyone else had been knocked around the night before.

However, given that boston's 4-5-6 hitters were coming up and batista was looking shaky, mills would have done well to assume his guys could put a run on the board in the top of the tenth and leave foulke to finish it out.

I think mills is defensible in that he probably felt he didn't have a option he was happy with after foulke, and wasn't willing to use foulke for 3 innings, considering they play the yanks monday.
   7. Phil Coorey. Posted: April 11, 2005 at 08:49 AM (#1247030)
However, given that boston's 4-5-6 hitters were coming up and batista was looking shaky, mills would have done well to assume his guys could put a run on the board in the top of the tenth and leave foulke to finish it out.

Agree, Ortiz alone might have ended it, who knows.

At least Timlin won't be used tomorrow vs NYY....
   8. Mikαεl Posted: April 11, 2005 at 12:27 PM (#1247091)

At least Timlin won't be used tomorrow vs NYY....


Yup. But Blaine Neal will be ready!

I really was agitating for another reliever, a Chris Hammond or a Jim Mecir. (Neither cost >$1M, IIRC)

This bullpen is at least one real arm short, unless Matt Mantei can start missing a few bats. (And throwing a pitch half a foot outside while the bat remains on the batter's shoulder does not count as a missed bat, Matty.)
   9. Rally Posted: April 11, 2005 at 12:45 PM (#1247098)
I'm shocked, shocked I tell you, that Timlin and David Wells are pitching so poorly. I don't know what could explain how this can happen to young men in their prime like Wells and Timlin.
   10. Mikαεl Posted: April 11, 2005 at 01:31 PM (#1247139)
I know!

It's like the way Steve Finley's range has disappeared the last few years. Who can predict what will happen, even with the healthiest and most youthful players!
   11. Rally Posted: April 11, 2005 at 01:46 PM (#1247159)
There was another Steve Finley who played for the Orioles when I was in college back in the 80's.

Is he the father of the current Angel centerfielder?
   12. Tango Tiger Posted: April 11, 2005 at 02:20 PM (#1247193)
Keith Foulke will probably go down as the worst used ace reliever in history. Even from 1999-2002, his LI was 1.3, topping off at 1.60. One year, his LI was 1.0 (!). It was the season where the manager (Manuel?) said that Foulke was struggling. If you look at Foulke's pitching lines here, and don't look at the save total, you'll be hard-pressed to figure out why he was pitching in mopup situations for half the season.

I had him as one of the top 5 relievers from 1999-2002. In 03 and 04, he was arguably even better.
   13. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: April 11, 2005 at 02:43 PM (#1247238)
How is it possible that Foulke is so badly used? This is not a stupid team. They know as well as we do that their bullpen is sucking. How is it that a team that has Bill James working for it is incapable of using their ace reliever effectively?

Why is Keith Foulke not being used? Why? Why? Why? WHY?!
   14. Mikαεl Posted: April 11, 2005 at 02:51 PM (#1247254)
I honestly don't think Foulke's usage last year was all that bad. I need to go through the game logs in order to assert that, but I really think that the root cause his low LI was contextual rather than managerial. But I could be wrong, and I would enjoy passing over to the Tito-blamin' dark side with Darren.

Yesterday was an unmitigated disaster, regardless. (Unless, as kevin rightly points out, Foulke were unavailable - though i have to imagine we'd have heard so if that were the case.)
   15. karlmagnus Posted: April 11, 2005 at 02:51 PM (#1247255)
Foulke is only their ace reliever because they just gave away their ace reliever, B-H Kim. (ducks!)
   16. SacBunt Posted: April 11, 2005 at 03:16 PM (#1247295)
I think it's also possible that Mills did what he thought was politically expedient (read: what Tito would do). Can you imagine a better way of getting skewered in the press than by asserting a new managerial style while filling in for the ailing "real" manager?

I can see the Glbe now: "Do you remember that day in 2003 when the Red Sox proudly announced their hiring of ... ubermanager Brad Mills?"
   17. Tango Tiger Posted: April 11, 2005 at 03:37 PM (#1247331)
How is it that a team that has Bill James working for it is incapable of using their ace reliever effectively?

Because a team has that has Bill James working for it ignore his first requirement for optimizing a bullpen: get yourself a top ace. Instead, Theo Epstein was spewing the "we'll use the best reliever for the right opportunity" line, while staffing his bullpen with no ace, and then letting the media brand this as a Bill James idea.

Media: "Uhh... Bill James has an idea how to manage a bullpen.... uhh... Theo Epstein is rejigging the bullpen management.... uhh... I guess that means that Theo is implementing Bill's ideas.... uhh... Should I bother asking? Nah, let's just say it's Bill's idea, cause it makes for a better story.... uhh... bullpen falters, James' model doesn't work".

Theo did come out to take the blame, but, it seems that as long as relievers have their inning-based roles, that's all they care about.
   18. Mikαεl Posted: April 11, 2005 at 03:45 PM (#1247347)
The James model is designed to optimize use in a bullpen with one clear ace.

As Tango notes, it's entirely moot when you don't have an ace. I'd add that a James model is also not so important for a team like the the Yankees or Angels, who effectively have two aces (or, in the case of the Angels, fourteen). Then however you divvy the innings, you're getting a pretty good return.

What kills me is that since Williamson went down last May, the Red Sox have had exactly the collection of bullpen talent for which James' plan was devised. It shouldn't be that hard to drop a portion of +3 9ths onto Timbree while giving all the tied 9ths and a bunch of tied or +1 8ths to Foulke.
   19. covelli chris p Posted: April 11, 2005 at 03:48 PM (#1247353)
It shouldn't be that hard to drop a portion of +3 9ths onto Timbree while giving all the tied 9ths and a bunch of tied or +1 8ths to Foulke.

This would really hurt my fantasy team.
   20. Tango Tiger Posted: April 11, 2005 at 04:03 PM (#1247389)
Mikael, call it the spotlight syndrome.

I think the temperament of the relievers, as well as the backlash from the media, pushes the manager into a "don't rock the boat" situation. Incredibly, some players and managers don't want a spotlight on them.

As well, looking at the 2004 LI for each team, and there were many teams that had a higher LI for their non-closer. As it turns out, some of those teams lucked out, as they gave the higher leverage situations to their non-save guy who was a better pitcher! Unfortunately, as soon as everyone recognizes the quality of the setup guy, he'll be "promoted" into easier situations.

Note: this is how it works in corporate America as well. Consider the save-guy on some teams to be the middle-manager in corporate America that is the first to be laid off.
   21. Mikαεl Posted: April 11, 2005 at 04:28 PM (#1247457)
As well, looking at the 2004 LI for each team, and there were many teams that had a higher LI for their non-closer.

Huh, that's fascinating.

I've argued a few times that it can't usually be a good idea to have your best reliever be a set-up guy, just because those +1 and +2 saves are solidly high-lev. I guess all the close 8th innings, tied 9ths and extras can make up for it. I remember being a bit snarky in my responses to those ideas previously, so to whomever offered the theory, I apologize.

As regards spotlight syndrome, I don't think many people will be surprised to see the closer pitching a tied 9th. While I would notice it immediately, I think it would pass over most people as perfectly sensible usage.

The things that would be tough would be shifting those +3 9ths to the set-up men, and the missed save opportunities on days when the ace had gone two innings to close out a 4-3 win the day before.

But giving tied 9ths to the ace shouldn't make many waves.

kevin - yup, you often have to use guys like Neal and Halama when you're down two in the 7th or something. The answer, if you're worried about those innings, isn't to use Embree or Timlin then, but rather to get better pitchers.
   22. Tango Tiger Posted: April 11, 2005 at 04:53 PM (#1247526)
For the tied-9th, the "problem" is that once you take the lead, you may end up with not-your-best reliever to close out the game in extra innings. And there comes in the spotlight syndrome once again.

But, the way I see it, you have a "point-of-no-return", at which you must bring in your best reliever, regardless of what you are afraid might happen in the future. You can't always wait for a tougher situation, only to have some times those situations not materialize, and have to use your top guy in mopup duty the next day.

With an LI of around 2.3 or better, that's when I bring in my best guy, no questions asked. (I'd have to go to the chart to see what's a 2.3.)
   23. philly Posted: April 11, 2005 at 06:02 PM (#1247736)
Tango

IN post #13 you sorta skipped over Foulke's usage in 2003 in Oakland. Was his LI better there than in 2004 or his good years in Chi?

Have you specifically looked at how the A's used their collection of closers - Taylor to Izzy to Koch to Foulke?

Koch especially would be interesting. He pitched over 90 innings and had an amazing (for his time) 15 decisions. I know some of those wins were games he vultured, but you'd think there had to be some hi-leverage usage in there too.
   24. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: April 11, 2005 at 06:22 PM (#1247831)
Unfortunately, as soon as everyone recognizes the quality of the setup guy, he'll be "promoted" into easier situations.

Maybe I'm stuck in Theo-worship fanboy mode, but I've got to think that the Sox management is aware of this phenomenon and the concept of LI. That's why it's so frustrating when their best reliever is languishing in the bullpen during high LI situations. I feel like they should know better.

I seem to remember long stretches though last season when a string of games were not close at all and Foulke wasn't needed for like a week at a time.

As well, looking at the 2004 LI for each team, and there were many teams that had a higher LI for their non-closer.

God, I hope Mantei gets it together.
   25. Rally Posted: April 11, 2005 at 07:09 PM (#1248168)
As well, looking at the 2004 LI for each team, and there were many teams that had a higher LI for their non-closer.

How did K-Rod's LI compare to Percival last year?

It seemed like an ideal situation, with Percy pitching only the 9th and K-Rod going multiple innings or getting out of jams when needed.
   26. Tango Tiger Posted: April 11, 2005 at 07:10 PM (#1248174)
It's not "Sox management" that dictates, or even influences, who pitches: it's Terry Francona or the gerant-du-jour. In order, my guess is that Francona will listen to: his pitchers, himself, his pitching coach, the media, Theo, Bill James, lots of other people, me, a few more people.

***

I've never run my stuff on 2003.

***

No, I did not look at any team-by-team, other than the Yanks in 99-02, and each team in 04.

Padres, IIRC, had the best use of a bullpen last year, (given that the manager believed that Hoffman was his ace). The Cards and the Sox probably had the worst.

The Angels and Yanks both had two guys who each had an LI higher than the ace of the Cards and Sox. It's pretty hard to do that.
   27. Tango Tiger Posted: April 11, 2005 at 07:14 PM (#1248204)
Rally: I do remember them being a virtual lock, and both above Izzy. The numbers were something like 1.70 for Percy and 1.69 for KRod. Rivera had something like 1.85 and Gordon 1.65.

This would really be the ideal setup, getting two high quality relievers. This will remove the juggling required to get one guy a 2.4 LI and another a 1.2 LI, and instead, just give them each a 1.7 or 1.8 LI. I think the Ana/NYY model, we can all agree with.
   28. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: April 11, 2005 at 07:42 PM (#1248436)
It's not "Sox management" that dictates, or even influences, who pitches: it's Terry Francona

This is true, but the LI idea seems like just the kind of thing the front office should not-so-subtley remind/inform Francona about. The way they both talk in the press at least, it seems like the front office and Francona are generally on the same page. Who knows Francona's degree of receptiveness to different ideas, though. LI or the James model pen or whatever shouldn't even challenge that much conventional wisdom, since I believe it's similar to the way pens were managed prior to the days of the rigid closer role. It seems kind of intuituitive to me.

Francona can always ignore the FO, I suppose, and perhaps this is exactly what happened last season. The bullpen didn't turn out to be much trouble last year, whether because of, in spite of, or having nothing to do with Francona's style. If one or two things go wrong there this year though, a different emphasis in pen management might become a more pressing issue.
   29. Tango Tiger Posted: April 11, 2005 at 08:29 PM (#1248855)
griffy: I don't disagree with anything you say. The point is that Sox management is at the low end in the chain of what influences Francona (or any manager). As long as he's winning, the manager will respond to his players. As long as he's losing, he'll listen more to his management. Earl Weaver listens to himself.
   30. Mikαεl Posted: April 11, 2005 at 10:11 PM (#1249223)
Hey Tango, what's the LI on a +7 9th inning? I'm just wondering, you know, no reason.
   31. Famous Original Joe C Posted: April 11, 2005 at 10:53 PM (#1249256)
It's true Mikael, someone does have to ask.
   32. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: April 11, 2005 at 11:09 PM (#1249263)
I'm not disagreeing with you either, Tango. I'm just frustrated with a manager who uses his ace reliever when leading by SEVEN RUNS. As long as they keep winning, though, he can use the bullpen however he likes. AS LONG AS THEY KEEP WINNING. Otherwise, it just drives me crazy.

I have to admit it was nice to see starter to Mantei to Foulke go so well, though.
   33. Darren Posted: April 11, 2005 at 11:15 PM (#1249271)
Now that was just ridiculous. Is it finally starting to sink in, Mikael and co, that Foulke is being used about as poorly as possible? All last year I would bring up the poor usage, only to hear a chorus "he already had him warming up" or "he needs the work anyway!" Of course, on many of those occassions, Foulke shouldn't have been warming up anyways and/or he needed work because he had been passed over in a previous close situation.

There are, of course, some possible explanations. Maybe Foulke is trying to work through something or maybe he wasn't available the other day, but now "needs the work" so he'll be sharp for the rest of the series. Their overall track record is not promising though. One other note, say Foulke was only good for 1 IP yesterday. If that was the case, there was no reason to use him until you took the lead.

Lastly, I have no idea whether it's Francona's fault. It may be that the FO sees this as optimal usage or close enough that they'd rather make Francona, Foulke, and the rest of the pen comfortable. I usually blame Francona because he hasn't done or said anything that impresses me as coherent, and I think he got the job by telling the FO whatever they wanted to hear. And Curt Schilling.
   34. Darren Posted: April 11, 2005 at 11:25 PM (#1249281)
One year, his LI was 1.0 (!). It was the season where the manager (Manuel?) said that Foulke was struggling. If you look at Foulke's pitching lines here, and don't look at the save total, you'll be hard-pressed to figure out why he was pitching in mopup situations for half the season.

Tango, I just wanted to address this. I don't know if you've ever watched Foulke pitch, but it is excruciating. He throws a high-80s fastball and an excellent change. Even when he's at his best, you wonder why guys cannot simply tee off on his fastball. I can imagine that it'd be very tempting to pull him from the closer's role after he struggled in a few straight outings--he must look like BP at that point.

Also, did you get my email about Win Expectancy charts?
   35. cal Posted: April 12, 2005 at 02:47 AM (#1249607)
I have little to add to what you guys have been saying, but I was at the game today with my buddy who is very far from sabermetrically inclined and even he thought it was strange their best reliever was in the game with a 7 run lead.
There may have been a reason no to use foulke Sunday against Toronto, but there was no reason to use him Monday with a 7 run lead.
   36. Phil Coorey. Posted: April 12, 2005 at 03:40 AM (#1249699)
Maybe the Sox have plans for Arroyo as the set up pitcher for Foulke?

This has been discussed before I know, but they will definately stick with Wells longer to compliment Schilling, Wakefield, Clement and Miller (once he returns).
   37. Tango Tiger Posted: April 12, 2005 at 05:01 AM (#1249835)
Yes, I've seen Foulke pitch. He's not pretty. Neither is Mussina, and plenty of other pitchers who have that strange grip/motion. Mitch Williams though was very pretty to watch. Darren, "we're not selling jeans here!". Keith Foulke is arguably the best reliever of 1999-2004. He can't possibly be hanging on a wire, that if one thing goes wrong, then he's the worst pitcher in the league.

Let me check my email on your other thing. I know I read it, and I can't remember why I did not reply.
   38. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: April 12, 2005 at 05:35 AM (#1249888)
Maybe the Sox have plans for Arroyo as the set up pitcher for Foulke?

nononononononono

ARROYO IS AT LEAST OUR THIRD BEST STARTER
   39. Phil Coorey. Posted: April 12, 2005 at 06:43 AM (#1250077)
ARROYO IS AT LEAST OUR THIRD BEST STARTER

I know that, but he might provide more value as a set up man for a while. They are not going to dump the pie eater yet, and will obviously throw Miller in when he is ready.
   40. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: April 12, 2005 at 06:51 AM (#1250096)
I'd like to see Wake pitch mopup innings, but that's just me.

And Myers needs as much LOOGY action as possible. Give him as many 1/2 out appearneces as possible.

He's there, USE HIM.
   41. Mikαεl Posted: April 12, 2005 at 11:19 AM (#1250264)
I know that, but he might provide more value as a set up man for a while.

Well, even if Arroyo takes Timlin's innings - which I doubt - you're not going to see an LI in excess of 1.5, and it may well be significantly less. Arroyo's got to be much more valuable pitching from the rotation and racking up 200 starting IP, rather than 70 mid-lev set-up IP.

The solution to the bullpen problems is not to create rotation problems.

All last year I would bring up the poor usage, only to hear a chorus "he already had him warming up" or "he needs the work anyway!" Of course, on many of those occassions, Foulke shouldn't have been warming up anyways and/or he needed work because he had been passed over in a previous close situation.

Well, sorry to still be that chorus, but I dispute that "many of those occasions." Well, I think I do. I lack data. I should look it up.

If situations like this were common last year, where Foulke was passed over for high-lev innings and then took a get-work-in outing a day or few later, then you are right and I am wrong. I'll have to check.
   42. villageidiom Posted: April 12, 2005 at 03:12 PM (#1250505)
kevin - yup, you often have to use guys like Neal and Halama when you're down two in the 7th or something. The answer, if you're worried about those innings, isn't to use Embree or Timlin then, but rather to get better pitchers.

But then it's a personnel (Epstein) problem, not a usage (Francona) problem.

Padres, IIRC, had the best use of a bullpen last year, (given that the manager believed that Hoffman was his ace). The Cards and the Sox probably had the worst.

And a lot of good it did them.

Seriously... two thoughts there. First, Tango, is there any correlation between team offensive prowess and closer LI? It would seem to me that Boston / St. Louis closers could warm up in +1 but enter in +3 a lot of times, given their teams' tendencies to beat the stuffing out of the opposition bullpen. I know this happened with Foulke a few times in 2004.

Second... Could it be possible that long-term success blends "managing for today" with "managing for tomorrow"? I know I've been banging this drum for a long time now, but it still seems sensible to me that optimal reliever usage includes a balance among:

1. giving relievers regular work;
2. giving relievers regular rest;
3. matching up better pitchers with higher-leverage situations.

If all we're doing is measuring the last point, then, yes, some moves will look like dumb*ss moves. But then it's not necessarily the managers who are the dumb*sses.

Going into Sunday, you had Foulke, who had thrown around 30 ineffective pitches on Friday, on one day's rest. I think Darren's theory is correct: Foulke was likely unavailable for more than 1 IP, in which case either you need a lead (since they're on the road), or you need someone else to pitch a high-lev inning. Both Embree and Timlin had one day's rest, but Timlin had had the lighter workload, only throwing 9 pitches (effectively) on Friday. Timlin had two added advantages: (1) he was already in the game (one less move to make), and (2) he was throwing effectively on Sunday.

You also had Wakefield vs. Mussina the next afternoon, a game which we should expect to be a close, low-scoring game. (I wouldn't always say that about Wake, but he does well vs. the Yankees.) There was a likely need to have a top-notch reliever available on Monday. So, someone should get some rest on Sunday. Given that, I have no problem with it being Foulke. I also have no problem with Timlin being left in the game on Sunday.

Now let's move to Monday. Foulke has had two days' rest, and there's an off-day on Tuesday. In the spirit of giving him regular work he will pitch in this game, regardless of the leverage. Otherwise, he'll have gone at least four days without pitching, which is a long time for him.

The only beef I have is that Myers doesn't seem to be getting any work. He did warm up yesterday, but I think he needs more than that.

(Never thought I'd complain about Myers not getting enough work.)

Looking ahead, there are two games vs. the Yankees, and pretty much everyone is on decent rest. Not having given it much analysis I'd think that anyone is available for anything tomorrow.
   43. Mikαεl Posted: April 14, 2005 at 01:24 PM (#1255755)
This seems like a thread for #######', so here goes:

The Red Sox need someone, anyone in the organization whose job is to say "no" to Curt Schilling. I respect that he believes in himself without qualification, and he always wants the ball - that's a very good attitude for a ballplayer. But last night, he wasn't ready. He needed at least one more rehab start. Curt was sharp for three innings, and by the fourth he was hucking meatballs up there.

Someone needs to monitor his pitching, and, when it's clear he hasn't worked himself up to game shape yet, that person will say, "Curt, you're starting in Rhode Island tomorrow."

I don't see Tito or Wallace or Theo or Tek or anybody taking on that job. It's annoying.
   44. covelli chris p Posted: April 14, 2005 at 01:41 PM (#1255779)
The Red Sox need someone, anyone in the organization whose job is to say "no" to Curt Schilling.

also for when he has a bad ankle in the middle of the season.
   45. Women's Lib is Ms.Guided Posted: April 14, 2005 at 04:31 PM (#1256065)
I don't see Tito or Wallace or Theo or Tek or anybody taking on that job. It's annoying.

You can't put the milk back in the udder.

They created a monster and now they can't control it. It's a story as old as time.
   46. Baldrick Posted: April 14, 2005 at 07:01 PM (#1256431)
Make Wakefield the closer!

And keep him in the rotation!

That fixes all the problems.

2005 stats for Wakefield:
17-6, 2.86 ERA, 215 innings, 22 saves, 23 starts

Are you with me?
   47. covelli chris p Posted: April 14, 2005 at 07:41 PM (#1256559)
2005 stats for Wakefield:
17-6, 2.86 ERA, 215 innings, 22 saves, 23 starts

Are you with me?


now that is a Crazy Fanboy Projection™
   48. tfbg9 Posted: April 14, 2005 at 07:56 PM (#1256603)
Tito never takes the starter out if he has the chance for a win, that's the real problem.
   49. Mikαεl Posted: April 15, 2005 at 04:55 AM (#1258490)
This is the bullpen / manager / Foulke thread, right?

And no one has posted about the beautifully Jamesian, wonderfully optimized use of the closer tonight?

Or were you all so convinced by Backlasher's arguments in the Hench thread that you think this was too great a risk of his health?
   50. Darren Posted: April 15, 2005 at 04:59 AM (#1258509)
it was nice to see. too bad about the Nixon/Payton fiasco though.
   51. GGC Posted: April 15, 2005 at 01:48 PM (#1258858)
And no one has posted about the beautifully Jamesian, wonderfully optimized use of the closer tonight?

Or were you all so convinced by Backlasher's arguments in the Hench thread that you think this was too great a risk of his health?


Heh, Foulke did make me nervous in the 9th. Here's to a blowout tonight, so we don't have to worry about this.

(checks pitchers)

H. Nomo (1-0, 1.50) vs. D. Wells (0-2, 8.44)

Looks like a slugfest is more likely.
   52. GGC Posted: April 16, 2005 at 12:06 AM (#1260386)
Looks like a slugfest is more likely.

So far it's 7-0 Sox. Here's hoping Wells has a decent outing.
   53. Mikαεl Posted: April 16, 2005 at 01:56 PM (#1261325)
Man, I wish they hadn't used Foulke for two innings. You never know, the Rays coulda scored 8 off Halama in the 9th and all we would've had was Timlin!

As to the game last night, it was really sad to see the corpse of Hideo Nomo out there. He's done. That's a career. No normal right-hander can get by with a fastball in the 81-84 range, especially when he doesn't command it particularly well. When Fossum took over, he looked like Bob Feller by comparison - the ball was coming in faster to a degree noticeable from the stands down the 3rd base line. I wanted to applaud Nomo as he went off the field, probably his last game in Boston, but I didn't want it to seem like mockery.

One frustrating thing was that Fossum and Carter would be better than our 4/5 guys out of the bullpen.
   54. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: April 16, 2005 at 03:52 PM (#1261368)
I suppose there's a possibility Fossum might still turn into something and Lyon's not bad, but man that Schilling deal was sweet.

It was indeed beautiful seeing how Foulke was used the other night. He was really laboring in the 9th, but seeing him used in that way nearly brought a tear to my eye.

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