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— Where Thinking Red Sox Fans Obsess about the Sox

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   1. Golfing Great Mitch Cumstein Posted: June 05, 2010 at 10:55 PM (#3551255)
This team is tough to watch. They have gone on a great run, but were 4-3 at home against the Royals and A's while the Yanks and Rays were pulling wins out of their asses. They were 18-11 in May, but that was because they were 10-2 in Lester and Buchholz starts.

They need the rest of the rotation to get healthy/start pitching better and they need to have more than 1/3 of the starting OF in the lineup.
   2. Joel W Posted: June 06, 2010 at 12:47 AM (#3551301)
"but that was because they were 10-2 in Lester and Buchholz starts." A team that goes 500 in gamed pitched by the worst 3/5ths of its rotation is liable to be a pretty damn good team, no? And frankly, I don't think they'll go .500 w/ those 3/5ths on the mound going forward.
   3. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 06, 2010 at 01:03 AM (#3551311)
They were 18-11 in May, but that was because they were 10-2 in Lester and Buchholz starts.
What is the force of the adversative? Why is it bad to go 10-2 in one subset of the games?
   4. Golfing Great Mitch Cumstein Posted: June 06, 2010 at 01:45 AM (#3551361)
My point about the record with Buchholz and Lester is that both had great months that you cannot expect to be repeated every month. Then there is the concern that Buchholz's ERA is unsustainable and the fact that Wakefield looks horrible and you have no idea what you are going to get from Matsuzaka and Lackey.

I complain about this team's failure to beat up bad teams, but I also find hope in how much the Rays are playing over their heads, both in terms of pitcher projections and component stats. Three of the Rays starters have DIPS of 4.00 or above with ERA's below 3.10. On the offense side, the Rays are fourth in runs scored, but 8th in OPS (SB are a factor, I know). I realize that all these stats are blunt and that there is a lot of underperformance by the hitters. I just think that the pitchers' fall will be more than the hitters can make up for.
   5. Darren Posted: June 06, 2010 at 02:25 AM (#3551391)
My point about the record with Buchholz and Lester is that both had great months that you cannot expect to be repeated every month. Then there is the concern that Buchholz's ERA is unsustainable and the fact that Wakefield looks horrible and you have no idea what you are going to get from Matsuzaka and Lackey.


Cheer up. You can't expect Buc/Lester to be that good but you can't expect the rest of the rotation to remain that bad.

Edit: Also, can't agree that this team is hard to watch. They've been mostly fun to watch since late April. It's watching the Yankees and Rays that is tough.
   6. Spivey Posted: June 06, 2010 at 02:36 AM (#3551401)
Well Tampa is due for a slump because they are actually not that good. Also, hacking hitters are going to be streaky
   7. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: June 06, 2010 at 02:38 AM (#3551403)
Since the 4-9 start they have the best record in baseball, what is tough about watching this team? Jesus, we're really going to ##### because Buchholz and Lester have been too good? That's the problem?
   8. tfbg9 Posted: June 06, 2010 at 03:04 AM (#3551411)
Beltre's a whole lot of fun. We get HR's from down on one knee, mad crashing into OF'ers, and his "don't you %$%$#^$'ing tell me I went around!" routine; I see possible folk hero status in his future. Unless he signs a $60 million deal with the Philles or something...sure Beltre has been solid, and Big Papi's return has been gratifying. But what about that Bill Hall guy?


Besides the 4-9 start, extra inning games, Wakefield games, and games against the Yankees and the Rays, the Sox are boffo good. That's my take on the season.
   9. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: June 06, 2010 at 03:51 AM (#3551431)
At this point, I think it's pretty safe to say the Red Sox are who we thought they were.
   10. Xander Posted: June 06, 2010 at 04:55 AM (#3551455)
Even moreso, actually even less so, he's one of the most idiosyncratic baseball players I've seen. He's got so many personalized moves he would make a pro wrestler blush.

To sum up:

The check to first: He became famous for this a while ago, but he's still the only hitter I've seen consistently point down to first base when he check swings.

The congratulatory tip toe pitter patter: He actually has two versions of the pitter patter. In this version, he does a quick jig on his tip toes when he doesn't swing at a ball outside the strike zone, as if to congratulate himself for not rolling over to third base.

The defensive tip toe pitter patter: In this version, he quickly backs out of the strike zone on his tip toes on any ball threatening to even graze his personal space.

The lean over bat flip: This hard-to-categorize move is performed every so often on one of his many off-balance swings. He'll flagrantly continue to lose his balance, hit his bat against the ground to catch himself, and flip it back up to himself.

The proposal: The man loves to swing and on those occasions where he recognizes breaking ball out of the hand, he's so anxious to crank it out that he does it off of one knee.

The stop and throw: He's not modest about his arm strength and if he ever has the chance, he'll stop, plant and throw to first side-armed off his back foot, the throwing position which he feels most comfortable.
   11. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 06, 2010 at 02:12 PM (#3551547)
Great post, TUS. Absolutely agree.

I wonder if we don't see as many players with such personalized styles and quirks because these things usually get ironed out by development systems that perhaps overly prize uniformity. Beltre, who became a professional at 15 and a major leaguer at 19, was never in the clutches of those systems long enough to get homogenized, and was always too good to mess with.

(Though perhaps Beltre's failure to develop into a consistent All-Star could also be laid at the same door.)
   12. shoewizard Posted: June 06, 2010 at 02:19 PM (#3551554)
This team is tough to watch.


I know you guys are awesome fans and students of the game. I love reading the threads. But I got a chuckle out of this.
   13. John DiFool2 Posted: June 06, 2010 at 02:30 PM (#3551559)
Well Tampa is due for a slump because they are actually not that good.


They already are: 4-8 over their last 12 games; started with the 3 game sweep by the Sox, natch.

I wonder if we don't see as many players with such personalized styles and quirks because these things usually get ironed out by development systems that perhaps overly prize uniformity. Beltre, who became a professional at 15 and a major leaguer at 19, was never in the clutches of those systems long enough to get homogenized, and was always too good to mess with.


I also wonder the same thing about Honus Wagner, if he was born 100 years later; aside from the special challenges of his body type, he had a definite unique defensive style which worked spectacularly for him. But in Little League, the coaches would mold him and smooth off the rough edges, and something unique would be lost.
   14. Repoz Posted: June 06, 2010 at 02:32 PM (#3551560)
Even moreso, actually even less so, he's one of the most idiosyncratic baseball players I've seen. He's got so many personalized moves he would make a pro wrestler blush.


Don't forget the seriousness of Beltre's head rubs!
   15. chris p Posted: June 06, 2010 at 03:25 PM (#3551576)
Don't forget the seriousness of Beltre's head rubs!

nice. even got the falling to one knee action.

and apparently, beltre has promised to get revenge for teh head rubs.
   16. Joel W Posted: June 06, 2010 at 05:21 PM (#3551650)
“I don’t like anybody to touch my head, and he knows it. He does it on purpose,” said Beltre. “So I’m not responsible for everything that happens after that.”

Hahaha. Amazing.
   17. Dan Posted: June 06, 2010 at 10:11 PM (#3551925)
So now this team is 1-7 in extra inning games, including 4 losses to Baltimore.

I know the bullpen hasn't been great either, but isn't this a pretty big indictment of Francona's strategic acumen?
   18. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 06, 2010 at 10:47 PM (#3551941)
isn't this a pretty big indictment of Francona's strategic acumen?
Eight games, in the seventh season of Francona's career in Boston? Previous to 2010, the Francona Red Sox were 31-29 in extra innings, now they're 32-36. Hard to see that as anything but variation.
   19. tfbg9 Posted: June 06, 2010 at 10:50 PM (#3551943)
I know the bullpen hasn't been great either, but isn't this a pretty big indictment of Francona's strategic acumen?


No, I don't think so. The Sox were 31-29 in extras from 2004-2009 under Tito, in line with
expectations. This year's 1-7 means they've been unable to catch more than one break in innings 10 onward in 2010, nothing more.

Oh, BTW, have I mentioned that I don't like Delcarmen in thekind of spot wher he failed today?

2-1/2 out of the WC, on June 6th, 3 in the loss column.
   20. tfbg9 Posted: June 06, 2010 at 11:07 PM (#3551950)
Coke to Poindexter up there :-)
   21. tjm1 Posted: June 06, 2010 at 11:21 PM (#3551961)
We're talking about the quirkiness of Adrian Beltre, and in the first 20 posts, no one mentioned that the guy refuses to wear a cup?
   22. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: June 06, 2010 at 11:28 PM (#3551962)
Guy is hitting .376 at home. That's crazy freakshow 1940's Red Sox stuff. Won't last.

But his road stats are right in line with normal. So he should be pretty dandy overall.
   23. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: June 06, 2010 at 11:34 PM (#3551966)
You got it backwards Harv, he's hitting .376 on the road. That too won't last but he's not a Fenway product.
   24. Hugh Jorgan Posted: June 06, 2010 at 11:35 PM (#3551970)
This team is tough to watch.

Disagree. This team never quits....like ever. The series in Oakland we pegged back two leads and won. Recently in NY, even behind we were still putting runs on the board.
If we go extra's now, I just turn it off and assume we will lose. Lackey was a fraction better today. So I've been trying to come up with a saying that might stick to reflect this season...the 2 choices are..

Buch and Lester, then it festers.

Or, my favourite..

Lester and Buch, then were f*cked.

Whadyareckon?
   25. Darren Posted: June 06, 2010 at 11:44 PM (#3551977)
I heard Francona on the pregame saying he went a batter too long with Lester, which was nice to hear. But then it looked like he did the same thing with Lackey today.
   26. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: June 07, 2010 at 12:00 AM (#3551983)
My mistake.
   27. Phil Coorey is a T-Shirt Salesman Posted: June 07, 2010 at 12:43 AM (#3551998)
Lester and Buch, then were ###### for me !
   28. Answer Guy Posted: June 07, 2010 at 01:16 PM (#3552146)
Besides the 4-9 start, extra inning games, Wakefield games, and games against the Yankees and the Rays, the Sox are boffo good.


4-5 against the Orioles is not good enough. I don't care if six of them were in Baltimore. The O's are awful. Their best starter thusfar is winless. Their best hitter thusfar this season, by a considerable margin, has been Ty Wiggington.

(Although "extra innings games" covers some of that, as they've lost to Baltimore three times in extra innings. Let me use this time to also ##### about the bullpen. If you're losing lots of bullpen battles to the Orioles, your relief pitching isn't good enough.)
   29. Answer Guy Posted: June 07, 2010 at 01:23 PM (#3552149)
To the extent they're tough to watch, it's that Matsusaka and Wakefield are both in the rotation. I find even most good Dice-K starts excruciating, and few things are more grating to view than a Wakefield start on a day where he's getting pounded, and that's happening with increasing regularity.

I do appreciate that they never say die, that Youkilis is a superstar that doesn't seem to be generally recognized as such, and that, other than Pedroia's struggles, the guys who are the obvious future of the team are hitting or pitching well.
   30. John M. Perkins Posted: June 07, 2010 at 01:50 PM (#3552159)
The post is not worthy of a feature. Please save features for substantial posts.
   31. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: June 07, 2010 at 02:01 PM (#3552165)
Ya'know a guy who has also been around a million years, seemed to be on the downside, and has found his new surroundings quite pleasing is Scott Rolen.

Like Beltre, he's doing better away than at home, but something has lit a fire in his gas tank. Guy is slugging almost .700 over the last month. I don't know how to get to the dispersal pattern of his homers, but I am sure if you checked they are all to left and left-center. He's become a dead pull hitter. If you thrown it inner half he's going to take you deep.

I wonder if this is Gary Mathews circa 1984. Mathews started sitting on inside stuff while fouling off anything else.

Pitchers catch up eventually.
   32. Famous Original Joe C Posted: June 07, 2010 at 02:05 PM (#3552169)
The post is not worthy of a feature. Please save features for substantial posts.

Thanks?
   33. Golfing Great Mitch Cumstein Posted: June 07, 2010 at 02:22 PM (#3552183)
We're talking about the quirkiness of Adrian Beltre, and in the first 20 posts, no one mentioned that the guy refuses to wear a cup?


A lot of athletes don't wear cups. They don't like running with them.

What did Mike Lowell do to be buried deeper than whale ####? He didn't play when Beltre got his day off and didn't play against a lefty the next day.
   34. SoSH U at work Posted: June 07, 2010 at 02:23 PM (#3552184)
The post is not worthy of a feature. Please save features for substantial posts.


Yes, it's important that we hold Sox Therapy to the high standards of the other team blogs at BTF.
   35. Answer Guy Posted: June 07, 2010 at 02:41 PM (#3552200)
What did Mike Lowell do to be buried deeper than whale ####? He didn't play when Beltre got his day off and didn't play against a lefty the next day.


He's not been hitting lately, but I'd thought he'd have played over Ortiz yesterday.
   36. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: June 07, 2010 at 02:47 PM (#3552206)
A lot of athletes don't wear cups. They don't like running with them.


This is true, but most athletes haven't suffered a ruptured testicle from taking a line drive in the nuts. It's a special testament to Beltre's hatred of cups that he would continue not wearing them after suffering such a horrifyingly painful injury.

I didn't really know what to expect from Beltre when the Red Sox signed him, but he's probably on of the most fun players to watch since they signed Manny. He just has an impressive number of tools and does amazing stuff on a pretty regular basis.
   37. Darren Posted: June 07, 2010 at 04:29 PM (#3552348)

The post is not worthy of a feature. Please save features for substantial posts.


John,

Any requests (I assume it's a request and not an order) of this type should be emailed directly to Jim. The people who post these threads have nothing to do with whether they are considered features.
   38. tjm1 Posted: June 07, 2010 at 04:45 PM (#3552379)
I didn't really know what to expect from Beltre when the Red Sox signed him, but he's probably on of the most fun players to watch since they signed Manny. He just has an impressive number of tools and does amazing stuff on a pretty regular basis.


Yeah, I had no idea that he would be this much fun. I think he's probably as batty as Oil Can was, and also seems to enjoy himself in the same way. He's probably more of an Oil Can-level talent than a Manny-level talent. Beltre's best year was probably actually better than any year Manny's ever had, but Beltre only had one really great year. Julian Tavarez was also a lot of fun, except when he was in a game in a crucial situation.

This is true, but most athletes haven't suffered a ruptured testicle from taking a line drive in the nuts. It's a special testament to Beltre's hatred of cups that he would continue not wearing them after suffering such a horrifyingly painful injury.


I think most of the athletes who refuse to wear cups are doing things less dangerous than playing 3B in the major leagues. Catcher is the only more vulnerable position on the diamond - 1Bs play deeper, and it's acceptable for a pitcher to get out of the way of a ball hit at him. Hockey is obviously more dangerous, but football and basketball aren't.

But maybe it's more common to play 3B without a cup than I think. I still think it's a part of the wacky legend of Adrian Beltre. There's really almost nothing he could do on a baseball field that would surprise me, both because of his wackiness and his raw athletic ability.
   39. Golfing Great Mitch Cumstein Posted: June 07, 2010 at 04:54 PM (#3552394)
I think most of the athletes who refuse to wear cups are doing things less dangerous than playing 3B in the major leagues.


Football players, especially linemen, are vulnerable to being punched in the nuts on every play, yet they don't wear cups.
   40. tjm1 Posted: June 07, 2010 at 05:46 PM (#3552458)
Football players, especially linemen, are vulnerable to being punched in the nuts on every play, yet they don't wear cups.


I don't want to volunteer for an experiment, but I'm pretty sure a hard ground ball hurts more than the kind of punch you can get away with without getting caught by an official.
   41. The Ghost of Sox Fans Past Posted: June 07, 2010 at 06:05 PM (#3552475)
it's acceptable for a pitcher to get out of the way of a ball hit at him.

If they can. They are second in vulnerability to catchers. Closer to the batter and following through rather than just being ready for the ball like infielders.

Football players don't wear cups???????
   42. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 07, 2010 at 07:27 PM (#3552565)
Football players don't wear cups???????
Seconded. I certainly wore that thing every practice.
   43. tjm1 Posted: June 07, 2010 at 08:26 PM (#3552663)
Has Ray Lewis started wearing shin guards yet? That's pretty insane.
   44. Golfing Great Mitch Cumstein Posted: June 08, 2010 at 01:52 PM (#3553453)
Seconded. I certainly wore that thing every practice.


Yeah, I heard an interview with a Patriots lineman in which he said they don't wear cups and there is a lot of nut punching going on.
   45. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: June 08, 2010 at 02:22 PM (#3553476)
Yeah, I heard an interview with a Patriots lineman in which he said they don't wear cups and there is a lot of nut punching going on.


That's crazy. When I played, teammates would punch each other in the nuts to make sure they were wearing one.
   46. TomH Posted: June 09, 2010 at 11:54 AM (#3554472)
THRU 60 G
first 40 games: 218 runs allowed, avg of 5.45
last 20 games: 59 runs allowed, avg of 2.95

Yeha, pitch+def has been a lot better. Who woulda thunk it with Beckett out?
   47. tfbg9 Posted: June 09, 2010 at 05:21 PM (#3554634)
Seconded. I certainly wore that thing every practice.


You played football? Kinda surprising.
   48. Darren Posted: June 11, 2010 at 02:18 AM (#3556046)
You know who really kinda sucks? Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz really kind of suck. Good thing Pedroia is injured and allowed to call his shots about staying in the lineup. Would hate for management to tell him to take a couple weeks off for treatment. 2 hits tonight and he's UP to about .250.
   49. tjm1 Posted: June 11, 2010 at 02:40 AM (#3556068)
You know who really kinda sucks? Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz really kind of suck. Good thing Pedroia is injured and allowed to call his shots about staying in the lineup. Would hate for management to tell him to take a couple weeks off for treatment. 2 hits tonight and he's UP to about .250.


Well, if they had an extra outfielder so that they didn't need Bill Hall out there, they might be in a better position to insist Pedroia take some time off. Assuming that the injury isn't going to get worse because he's playing with it, this might be the least bad option they have.
   50. Darren Posted: June 11, 2010 at 03:27 AM (#3556102)
Since hurting his knee on May 15: .170 .282 .234.

Heck, Reddick could do that. Also, they have better OFs in the minors who are not being used.
   51. tjm1 Posted: June 11, 2010 at 10:42 AM (#3556175)
Since hurting his knee on May 15: .170 .282 .234.

Heck, Reddick could do that. Also, they have better OFs in the minors who are not being used.


Pedroia's defense has still looked good over that timespan. Probably they should sit him - I agree - but given the options available, it's not that easy a call.
   52. Golfing Great Mitch Cumstein Posted: June 11, 2010 at 11:06 PM (#3556775)
You know what kinda sucks? Beltre taking another OF out with his play and the injury not being diagnosed for days.

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