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Sox Therapy
— Where Thinking Red Sox Fans Obsess about the Sox

Friday, May 07, 2021

Finally Lining Up the Minors

At long last minor league baseball is back in full swing!  There have been some changes since we were last here in September of 2019.  The Pawtucket Red Sox are now the Worcester Red Sox, the Lo A Greenville Drive are now the Hi A Greenville Drive while the Hi A Salem Red Sox are now the Lo A Salem Red Sox.  Most heartbreakingly for your faithful correspondent the SS-A Lowell Spinners are no longer a Red Sox affiliate.  I can’t overstate how many wonderful nights I had at LeLacheur Park ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: May 07, 2021 at 09:39 AM | 17 comment(s)
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Thursday, May 06, 2021

Tap the Brakes

Even by Sox fandom standards the emotional mood swings around this team have been pretty impressive.  In 31 games it’s gone from;

“good lord they suck, Bloom is terrible” (0-3)
“they are back! Cora told us we should have listened!” (9-0)
“look at all the problems, they gotta this straightened out before it falls apart.” (9-10)

Inhale.

Exhale.

OK.

They have played 31 games and at 18-13 and since the big winning streak have looked like the .500 team most observers pegged them as.  They have ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: May 06, 2021 at 01:03 PM | 5 comment(s)
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Wednesday, May 05, 2021

Quiet Production

I was thinking of posting something about JD Martinez terrorizing pitchers, or marveling at Rafael Devers, or maybe something about the excellence of the pitching staff. And then it hit me: we never seem to say anything about Xander Bogaerts.

villageidiom Posted: May 05, 2021 at 09:52 AM | 15 comment(s)
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Friday, April 16, 2021

Home for the Holiday

As Dave O’Brien mentioned…REPEATEDLY during the road trip the Sox kick off* their longest homestand of the season tonight against the Chicago White Sox. To say the road trip was a success would be a huge understatement and the critical thing about this homestand is that on Monday morning I will make my triumphant return to Fenway.  I can’t freakin’ wait let me tell you.

* given the weather perhaps “drop the puck on their longest homestand of the season” is more appropriate.

Of course like the ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: April 16, 2021 at 01:34 PM | 29 comment(s)
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Wednesday, April 07, 2021

Just How We Drew It Up

Get swept by the Orioles, then sweep the reigning AL Champions. Didn’t see that coming.

I suspect a lot of us see the first series as the kind of disappointing, 2020 all over again, mess of a team we’d expected, and the second series as a fluke. Some of us might see the second series - solid hitting, promising bullpen, capable starters when healthy - as the true expectation, and the first series as a fluke. Regardless of what your expectation of the team this year, you probably saw enough to ...

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villageidiom Posted: April 07, 2021 at 08:12 PM | 38 comment(s)
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Sunday, April 04, 2021

I Declare That Not A Good Start

So I don’t think I’m out on a limb there with that title.  Still, rather than try to dig into assorted cliches, justifications or excuses let’s just try to break it down a bit.

Stuff That We Were Worried About That Went OK;

JD Martinez - The Sox need the big DH to be an offensive star if they are going to do anything this year.  The early returns after a fairly mellow spring are very good.  6 for 12, 3 RBI and the club’s only homer is definitely doing his part.  Very good news indeed. ...Read More...

Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: April 04, 2021 at 05:50 PM | 27 comment(s)
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Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Random Thoughts On Opening Day Eve

It is what it says in the headline;

- I am pessimistic about the rotations ability to stay healthy but I predict that one of Nathan Eovaldi, Garrett Richards or Martin Perez is healthy and effective all year.

- Franchy Cordero is going to be a fan favorite or about as popular as Carl Crawford.  There is going to be no in between for him.

- He will make less than 20 starts but Tanner Houck will be the Red Sox best starting pitcher in 2021.  I am buying big on him.  Part of me thinks he would ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: March 31, 2021 at 01:19 PM | 30 comment(s)
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Monday, March 29, 2021

The Roster of Who The Hell Knows

I remember in 2013 just before the season opened Will Middlebrooks suffered a minor injury.  It was one of those where it could have been a lot worse and MCoA said it kind of felt like a litmus test for the season.  A healthy WMB meant the baseball gods were with us, if it was serious we were in for another difficult year.  I was thinking of that this weekend as we watched COVID descend on the Sox clubhouse, Eduardo Rodriguez came down with dead arm and Christian Vazquez took a throw to the ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: March 29, 2021 at 11:00 AM | 16 comment(s)
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Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Over and Under

The season is just a week away.  The Sox will soon be playing games that count for the first time since 2019.  I mean, yeah last year technically counted but the Sox were eliminated before a pitch was thrown.  I figured a few random over/unders to give us something to chatter about and for me to look stupid in six months (if not much sooner) might be enjoyable;

Team Games Played: 140 - COVID is not the only risk factor here.  I haven’t heard any discussion of a strike but with the CBA ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: March 24, 2021 at 06:52 PM | 22 comment(s)
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Monday, March 15, 2021

The Ides of Rostering

It’s been nearly two months since we considered the Red Sox roster.  In that time the roster has changed a bit and things are in some ways a bit clearer and in others, less clear (ooh, this is the good stuff).So let’s see where we stand still using the 13/13 position player/pitcher split.

INFIELD
Then: Bobby Dalbec, Kike Hernandez, Rafael Devers, Xander Bogaerts, Christian Arroyo, Michael Chavis
Now: Bobby Dalbec, Kike Herandnez, Rafael Devers, Xander Bogaerts, Christian Arroyo, Michael ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: March 15, 2021 at 01:14 PM | 29 comment(s)
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Friday, March 05, 2021

A Week Without Me

Despite my absence the Red Sox have been able to have Spring Training this year.  I have to say after two decades of continuous Fort Myers appearances not being there to watch the minor leaguers, soak up the sun and enjoy the fake games it is a strange feeling But the Sox are getting after it.  The first week of games has gone well enough it seems.  I can’t quantify it but this year feels better than last year did.  Last year on the heels of the Mookie deal, the Alex Cora suspension and the ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: March 05, 2021 at 02:37 PM | 35 comment(s)
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Friday, February 12, 2021

Canary In The Coalmine

Over the last couple of days I’ve been trying to make some sense of the Sox’ trade of Andrew Benintendi.  From a practical standpoint, I suspect we will look back on this as a non-event or possibly even a good trade.  While hopeful for Benny’s future I think the ship has likely sailed on his stardom.  Having said that it is hard not to look at this deal and other moves in recent years as a bit of an end of an era.  I don’t think I’m unreasonable when I say that from 2003 to 2018 is the greatest ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: February 12, 2021 at 03:13 PM | 79 comment(s)
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Monday, February 01, 2021

Thanks For the Memories Dustin Pedroia

He arrived with a reputation.  He was too small yes, but he was brash.  He had a confidence bigger than his body, he wasn’t smart enough to know he was too small to hit home runs, he didn’t have an arm strong enough to play shortstop, he wasn’t especially fast.  But everywhere he went, Arizona State, Sarasota, Augusta, Portland and Pawtucket he performed well.  He was the front line for more than a few stats vs. scouts battles.  The end result was not whether the stats or the scouts won but ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: February 01, 2021 at 11:20 AM | 16 comment(s)
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Sunday, January 24, 2021

The Roster - As It Stands

So with the Sox actually make some moves this week I figure now is as good a time as any to revisit the roster.  We last looked in detail back in September and didn’t even bother trying to figure out the pitching staff then.

Infield: Bobby Dalbec, Kike Hernandez, Rafael Devers, Xander Bogaerts, Christian Arroyo, Michael Chavis
Depth Options: Jonathan Arauz (projected: Worcester), Jeter Downs (Worcester), Triston Casas (Portland), Hudson Potts (Portland)
Still On The 40 Man Roster: Dustin ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: January 24, 2021 at 04:04 PM | 36 comment(s)
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Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Benny’s Gonna Jet?

Thing I said previously.

OUTFIELD: The big question in the outfield is Andrew Benintendi. It’s pretty clear that ZiPS isn’t too bothered by 14 bad games during a pandemic and has Benny going back to his 2019 form for better or for worse. For the Sox to move back into contention Benintendi at least splitting the difference between 2018 and 2019 would be a big boost.

Thing vi said in response today;

Seeing reports that a trade of Benintendi is… I don’t know about “imminent”, but ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: January 13, 2021 at 01:06 PM | 19 comment(s)
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Friday, December 18, 2020

ZiPping Along

With Christmas just a few days away (be safe Therapudians!) we got a little baseball gift as FanGraphs released their ZiPS projections for the 2021 Red Sox.  Dan always gives some good stuff here (I know he pops in on BTF and if he has issues with me using ZiPS for a post let me know and I’ll remove it) and I thought in the absence of any meaningful news I would poke around a bit.

INFIELD:  The infield is what it is.  Xander Bogaerts (of whom Dan asks “is he the most underrated shortstop in ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: December 18, 2020 at 02:31 PM | 14 comment(s)
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Thursday, December 03, 2020

Love Me Tender

With yesterday’s tender/non-tender deadline in the rearview mirror I thought it might be worth a quick look at some guys the Sox probably should be kicking the tires on.  I have to admit I was bummed to see Corey Knebel dealt to the Dodgers at the last minute.  That was such a great move by the Dodgers in my opinion (good organization makes good move, film at 11).  The Sox didn’t really do anything surprising in striking deals with Eduardo Rodriguez, Kevin Plawecki, Matt Barnes and Ryan Brasier ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: December 03, 2020 at 08:14 AM | 8 comment(s)
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Friday, October 23, 2020

Just Say No

With the World Series in full swing the Boston Red Sox (who will not win their fifth title despite losing the fewest games in a single season in franchise history) are searching for a new manager.  Reports from all manners of places have had them interviewing Pirates coach Don Kelly, Diamondbacks bench coach Luis Urueta (oh to hear Remy pronounce that), possibly Dodger coach George Lombard, Cub coach Will Venable and possibly others.  Of course, all of these interviews come while the elephant ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: October 23, 2020 at 12:59 PM | 16 comment(s)
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Monday, October 19, 2020

The Perfect Post-Season - World Series

Well, we reach the end of our series.  I hope you’ve enjoyed it.  With no baseball during the first four months of the season and then the Sox playing “baseball” for two months a little look back at some fun seemed like a good exercise. The timing of this ending is fitting as my youth baseball coaching for this year will also be ending this week.  I guess it’s time to move on.  A few random comments;

- I only go back as far as 1986 here.  No 1975.  I was five years old so while I’ve seen the ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: October 19, 2020 at 06:23 PM | 5 comment(s)
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Saturday, October 10, 2020

The Perfect Post-Season: ALCS

After sweeping all five games of the perfect Division Series the Sox go out and sweep all seven games in our perfect ALCS as well.

ALCS Game 1 - 2003 - Sox 5 at Yankees 2 - I’ll always believe the Sox were the better team in 2003.  Entering this series I was sky high with confidence and game one did nothing to diminish that. Homers from Ortiz, Ramirez (as part of a four hit day) and Todd Walker ringing one off the foul pole chased Mike Mussina.  Tim Wakefield dominated the Yanks not getting ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: October 10, 2020 at 09:36 PM | 15 comment(s)
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Tuesday, September 29, 2020

The Perfect Post-Season

The postseason begins and the Sox look to come out strong in the Division Series.  One of the great things about the last 40 years of Boston Red Sox baseball is the number of memorable games that are available to us with a good outcome.  One thing I realized is that the Sox have at least one win in every possible postseason game with the exception of game 7 of the World Series.

ALDS Game 1 - 1998 - Sox 11 at Indians 3 - There are moments when you know you’ve picked the right job.  My boss ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: September 29, 2020 at 10:21 AM | 4 comment(s)
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Monday, September 28, 2020

Meet the 2021 Boston Red Sox - Position Players

With the 2020 season coming to an end yesterday let’s take a look at what the 2021 Boston Red Sox look like at this very early date.  For these purposes I’m going with the 26 man roster that the 2020 season was supposed to feature.  Obviously depending on what happens with the plague and the whole world coming to an end thing may change this but we gotta start somewhere. Starters in bold.

Infield: Bobby Dalbec, Xander Bogaerts, Rafael Devers, Tzu-Wei Lin, Christian Arroyo, Michael Chavis

...Read More...
Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: September 28, 2020 at 08:59 AM | 53 comment(s)
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Friday, September 25, 2020

Party Like It’s 1975

For the first time since 1975 the Boston Red Sox completed their home season without ever having me in attendance.  I suspect that my absence was not noteworthy (though how cool would it be if Sam Kennedy* called me up and said “hey, here are free Opening Day Monster seats next year, we missed you”) but with just three games left I figure we can do some talkin’ about the state of the Sox.

Thanks for the Memories - If last night was Jackie Bradley Jr.‘s final home game at Fenway Park it was a ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: September 25, 2020 at 10:25 AM | 17 comment(s)
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Thursday, September 17, 2020

The Imperfect Schedule - Games 152-162

The final regular season installment of our program (I’ll keep it going for the post-season) features lots of champagne, partying and some wonderful memories for me and I hope for you.

Game 152 - Indians 8 at Sox 9 - 2000 - I remember this one fondly.  It was the day half of a day-night doubleheader and my father and I were set to be in attendance.  He got stuck in traffic and arrived after the top of the first.  No biggie except Roland Arrojo had put the Sox in a 7-0 hole and the old man ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: September 17, 2020 at 09:08 PM | 7 comment(s)
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Tuesday, September 08, 2020

Lining Up The Minors - The “Huh” Edition

Without a true minor league season this year it is tough to get a feel for what is happening in Pawtucket.  Still some reports are coming out and it’s worth taking a look at what is in the pipeline;

1B - Triston Casas - The reports about Casas have been glowing.  He’s been getting playing time at Sim City and hitting bombs pretty regularly. He is one guy who has probably benefitted from all of this.  He’s not on the radar for 2021 yet but he’s looking at a AA start and a fast track if ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: September 08, 2020 at 08:17 PM | 5 comment(s)
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Sunday, September 06, 2020

The Imperfect Schedule - Games 141-151

The Sox keep the winning ways going after the brief blip in the last stretch.  At 150-1 they’ve probably clinched the AL East at this point but they are continuing to work hard.  Eleven games in this segment and the next one to get to 162.  This one features a bunch of Yankee games for some reason.  It should have included Roger’s second 20K game also (game 151) but the game I chose just had some names I wanted to include and a unique event in Red Sox history so I went with it.  I also ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: September 06, 2020 at 11:15 PM | 4 comment(s)
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Monday, August 31, 2020

Job Done!

And as the trade deadline passes the Boston Red Sox have had their most successful and important day of the season.

No, I’m not talking about the trades they did or did not make (more on that coming).  I am referring to the fact that based on the agreement between MLB and the MLBPA with the passing of the trade deadline all luxury tax calculations are reset* and the Sox have accomplished what they wanted back when they traded their best homegrown player since Yaz (and arguably before that). ...Read More...

Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: August 31, 2020 at 07:15 PM | 48 comment(s)
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Saturday, August 22, 2020

The Imperfect Schedule - Games 131-140

Well the dream is over.  After 134 consecutive victories our virtual Sox fall to defeat.  The loss is on the list as it remains one of the great memories of my time as a season ticket holder.  It’s an absolute classic and was a really wonderful and memorable night at Fenway with a good friend for me.

Game 131 - Mariners 1 at Sox 8 - 2003 - There really aren’t many interesting game 131s.  Anyways, as was his wont Pedro dominated the Seattle nine for six innings then Grady Little handed the ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: August 22, 2020 at 11:17 PM | 11 comment(s)
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Thursday, August 13, 2020

The Perfect Schedule - Games 121-130

At least in one universe the Sox are a professional baseball team playing well.  They run their record to 130-0.  A bunch of personal memories here.

Game 121 - Sox 24 at Indians 5 - 1986 - I remember watching this one on my parents’ 10” black and white TV.  Against highly touted southpaw Greg Swindell making his MLB debut (and I remembered that off the top of my head) the Sox went bananas.  Spike Owen scored six runs, Tony Armas drove in six (Owen batted after Armas in the order) and on a ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: August 13, 2020 at 09:23 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Related News: sox therapy


Sunday, August 02, 2020

The Perfect Schedule - Games 111-120

The Sox stay hot running their record to 120-0 with ten great victories here.  This stretch features some huge run totals and a near no-hitter.

Game 111 - Sox 5 at Tigers 4 - 1980 - Making his first start since May of 2019 Mark Fidrych pitched 8 innings allowing 11 hits and 5 runs.  Fred Lynn and Tony Perez had three hits apiece and Jim Dwyer hit a solo home run off the Bird in the 8th to make a winner of BIll Campbell.
Game 112 - Rangers 7 at Sox 8 - 2005 - The Sox jumped out early and led ...

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Jose Is An Absurd Balladeer Posted: August 02, 2020 at 10:32 PM | 3 comment(s)
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