Rocket pursuit lands with thud

You have to give the Red Sox credit. They broke out the video, they made the recruiting trip, they pulled out all the stops. In the end, a Hall of Fame pitcher from Houston decided to stay in Houston.

In reality, this thing ended the second Drayton McLane emptied the vault and offered to pony up the pro-rated $18 million. Oh well, it was just too comfortable for Roger in Houston. You can’t really begrudge him for that.

Now, it’s time to figure out what the Red Sox are going to do with their rotation. Obviously there are no complaints with the front three: Schilling,Beckett and Wake. That’s a solid trio. But Clement is a mess and we have no clue what Wells will be able to deliver.

Perhaps the answer will come internally with Lester by about July.

Is it worth trading a major prospect for D-Train?




Was there anyone who seriously thought if Clemens came back he’d choose anywhere but Houston?

I’m just happy he is no longer keeping MLB hostage with his ego-driven ‘decision’.

I don’t like the idea of trading one of our prospects for Dontrelle. We have enough of our own young talent to choose from without picking up another National League pitcher who might or might not adjust well to the American League.

If the only thing wrong with Wells is a bruised knee, I don’t have any worries about him when he comes back. Not the way he was pitching before Travis Lee tagged him.

And Clement? I really have to believe something is finally going to click for him.

Doesn’t mean I don’t think they shouldn’t be pursuing trades for a pitcher…I just don’t think Willis is the answer.

Speaking of Wake…

Rayman, I did read your posts yesterday about the ESPN power rankings. Your points about passed balls and stolen bases are well taken. I agree, they are definately byproducts of a knuckleball. I do like statistics a lot and feel they are a big part of baseball, but it is also true they can be very misleading at times (especially 2 months into the season). To be honest, I have never paid much attention to power rankings or fantasy comparisons. Maybe it is just because I don’t know exactly how they work, but for the most part I just look at the standard statistics ( player stats minus fantasy comparisons). I use stats to judge players I am unfamiliar with more so than Boston players. Furthermore, the players I like I base on watching them play, my gut feelings and numerous “clutch” things that there are no statistics for. What Wakefield has done historically for the Sox doesn’t give him an automatic free pass, but for me it does matter a lot more than what ESPN has to say about him or some bad games here and there. Out of curiosity do you know if those ratings take into account run support? I know record (W-L) doesn’t, and I strongly feel Wake has pitched well enough this season to have a winning record. Bottom line is that he doesn’t, but his overall stats this season are very good (especially if you look at his games individually). Peace, go BoSox!

On the Clemens decission, at least it wasn’t the Evil Empire. It would have been neat though, I grew up watching him pitch and will cheer for him unless we face Houston in the Series.

Daniel, (and everybody)…I read and enjoy all your posts and I don’t care how long they are. Ian mentioned it the other day too (I also noticed you complimented Ian a few days ago as well!). In regards to goyank, as juvenile as it sounds…”he started it!” Or at least was asking for it. If he had initially said “the Jays for you are like the Angels for us” he might have been able to keep it “just baseball”… I have never been to the Yankee blog, but I specifically remember your Matsui comments and wanting to beat their best. Recently you have also made a lot of good comments on our players.

Robnbetsy, your vacuum cleaner line made me literally laugh out loud (as do many of DFagan’s posts). As far as positives, Ian Harrison reported (Notes: Pauley to make his debut) that Francona said “Hopefully, [the Jays’] unfamiliarity with him will get him through.” I am excited to see him pitch. The article also said he is a sinkerball pitcher, so hopefully that will translate to not so many homers and lots of DPs. So good luck to D.P.!

Also, on Bond’s 715th… I honestly think some of you are being to hard on him. People always say “Records are meant to be broken!” Bonds just got confused with the expression “Rules are meant to be broken!”

Good question, Ian. My personal opinion is that it’s not time to hit the panic button yet. As you point out, the first three pitchers in the Sox’ rotation are solid. I agree with Cyn that Clement still has better days ahead this year (although I can’t fault anyone for wanting to move him out of the rotation). That leaves Wells, and we have yet to see what his performance will be like when he comes back (again). If Wells can’t cut it, then I’d say it’s time to pursue a trade for another starter; until they’re sure Wells is toast, I’m willing to put a few eggs in that basket.

But the biggest reason I have for not panicking yet is that the season is not quite one third over, and the Sox are still in a tie for first place. Sure, they’ve had a rough stretch lately and they have two more tough series coming up against Detroit and the Yanks, but they have a great team this year and I think they’ll continue to show us what they’re made of.

I think it’s a tough balance a general manager has to keep between making strategic trades when they’re available and trusting the staff that they have. Whether they go for the upgrade or stand pat, they’ll be roundly criticized by the fans if they don’t win a championship. (“They should have traded this guy!” “What the heck were they thinking trading that guy?”) It’s too easy from the fans’ seats to second-guess the GM’s decisions. Theo Epstein and Terry Francona and others have done terrific things with the Boston Red Sox, and I expect they’ll continue to do so.

Another reason not to panic… from Cyn’s blog: “We had 27 wins and 23 losses on this morning last year. This morning? 30-20.” + 3 looks good to me!

It was nice to see a small-ball run from Crisp yesterday… Single, Stolen Base, RBI-Single. With our conservative basecoaching and LOB problem, we can get 3 hits in an inning and not score sometimes.

Who cares about Clemens? Trade Clement for a prospect. Pay off some of that insane salary and piece together a deal for Willis with the prospect we get for Clement. Willis is going to be good for a LONG TIME.

Well, Clemens finally got the $$’s he wanted. I’d have done the same thing. I know Clement hasn’t been good lately, but I too feel he’s going to get it together soon. As far as Dontrelle, I’m not sure, even though I’m down here in his front yard, I don’t follow the Marlins. Although I have seen some of the headlines recently “THE D-TRAIN HAS BEEN DERAILED” etc. He, according to the local media has not had a good year thus far. Let’s see what Pauley can do tonight. Who knows maybe he’s another diamond in the rough and just needs some polish (I really hope I don’t have to eat my words tomorrow). We’re fortunate that Theo and Co. have seen fit to keep developing our young players and that we have a farm system. Does anyone know what his stats are in the minors?? If so please let us all know. I’m looking forward to tonight. At least we’ve all got great thoughts for our guys.

Pauley’s stats in the minors are pretty good this year, 3.78 ERA for career, but I read that the replacement (amateur) umpires down there have a much bigger strike zone, so all of the pitchers have better stats than usual this year.

for those of you who think willis isn’t worth it because he’s having a bad year, have you ever wondered why he is having a bad year? because him and miguel cabrera are the only noteable players left after last year’s fire sale. that’s got to be somewhat of a mental challenge losing all your friends and playing with a bunch of rookies

What about Hansen?? No one has mentioned him much, and ****, his stats aren’t that bad compared to Clement’s! I too believe that Clement still has some good outings ahead of him, he just needs time to get his sh^t together.
But why pass over Hansen for Pauley all the way down in Double-A?

Anyone have the answers here?

i agree that they trade clement somewhere for a prospect (maybe to the mets for millege, their top outfielder) and put together a package for d-train (who’s only 23)

The way Clement has been since he got hit in the head last year, no team will trade a top prospect for him, especially with his back-loaded contract. Yes, the Redsox are stuck with Clement for now, unless they decide to eat a major portion of his contract.
On Dontrelle, I don’t think its a bad idea to trade a major prospect for the guy, especially if they could lock him up in the long-term deal. He’s as young as many of the Redsox top prospects; the difference is that Dontrelle is a proven major league pitcher, who will continue to improve over the next few years. He’s 24 years old with a 3.45 career ERA and a 47-33 Win/loss record. He also had 26 quality starts last year. Pretty impressive numbers for a guy of his age. Although he hasn’t been as effective this year, some of that may be tied to the fact that he threw 230+ innings last year, and that he’s pitching for a AAA caliber club this year. I would be ecstatic to see the Sox have two aces in Beckett and Willis at the front of the rotation for now and the future. Trade a prospect (not a sure bet) for Willis, a proven star? Absolutely.

Miss Ellen, from Ian Harrison’s article “Red Sox notes:Pauley to Make His Debut” posted on our site here at 8:15 pm yesterday(5/30). He pitches for the Sox’ Double-A farm team affiliate the Portland Sea Dogs. Has never pitched above that level. He’s 23. “… 2-3(W-L), 2.39 ERA in 10 starts this season,striking out 47 and walking just 17 in 60 1/3 innings.” Now you know as much as any of the rest of us. I wondered why Double-A? Don’t we have ANYONE from Triple-A? My feeling is that they don’t want to call up, say Hansen or Lester, because I think management is grooming them…just a few more games…just a little more experience in the minors…to be brought up after the All Star game,…and they do not want to throw them in the fire at this time, have them be shelled in front of 40,000 fans…destroying their level of confidence and development when they are approaching soooooooooo close to be ready. Pauley, I think, is a little shocked and surprised to be offered this “opportunity” so early in his development. It’s like a kid from the country being invited to the circus in the big city, all expenses paid. I was surprised–to get Terry’s drift–that he sees the inexperienced youngster not just going tonight but 2-3 more fill-ins spelling Wells until Wells gets back! That, of course, assuming he doesn’t get hit in the head, the knee, or the ankle like our other guys? So, summing up, it will be a great cup of coffee and an unexpected thrill for Pauley no matter HOW much he gets roughed up. Rather than DESTROYING his self confidence, I think, it will be a big boost for him to know something I’m sure he didn’t know BEFORE his call up, that his professional parents up in Boston believe so much in his poise and potential that they would think he could pull this off. No one—maybe even David I would think is expecting a whole heck of a lot from Pauley…so I think little chance of psyche spoiling. Rubbing elbows with Schilling and Beckett, and working with Veritek, Al Nipper, and Francona, he’ll pick up more experience by osmosis in a couple of weeks or so than he would the whole year in Portland. Boy, 23, been to Boston and back, he’ll have all the motivation in the world when he returns to zone in and concentrate on his progress having now seen the difference in a bus and a Jet. I can imagine him sprinting for the telephone as soon as he heard: ” Mom! Dad! Guess where I’m going!!!?

Daniel, interesting insight. I guess I wasn’t thinking about management “grooming” Hansen…I was just thinking more like “He’s there! Let’s use him!”

Ian, I don’t see how you can just jump right to the 4 and 5 spots of the rotation, calling Schilling, Beckett and Wakefield a “solid trio.” Schilling is 39 years old, with lots of mileage. We laugh at the Yankees expecting so much out of Randy Johnson at his age, but is Schilling really still a number one at age 39?
Beckett never allowed more than 16 home runs in any season with Florida. He looks to at least double that, if not triple it this year. Then there’s the fact that he’s never pitched more than 178 innings in a season.

And Wakefield? You’ve got to be kidding me. Would he be a number 3 starter on any other contender? Instead of getting Mirabelli back, they should have sent Wakefield to San Diego.

I have to admit, I was kind of excited when the Sox signed Clement. I knew he had some nasty stuff…when he was going right. However, even in Chicago he was also know for being inconsistent and struggling with control. I know a lot of people don’t like to write a guy off; neither do I. The truth is, he’s been terribly inconsistent for pretty much his career, averaging over 4 BB/9. Thats a pretty telling stat for his control, something that is needed in the power-laden AL East. I really hope he can turn this year around, but I honestly won’t look for anything more than his usual up-down performances.

Geez Fagman, all that effort to use big words and you can’t even spell your own team captain’s name right. VARITEK. All the minutes (hours?) of your life that you waste here you’d think you could get that one right. Seriously dude, consider having yourself committed., you realize everyone stopped reading after your opening, right?

Don’t you have a meeting to get to?

Cyn, I’m sorry did I write too much? Or with you people should I say not enough? Actually I’m right where I want to be, thanks for the thought though.

IPAC, my thoughtful friend, thanks for catching my spelling error and correcting it. I appreciate it. I will accept help from anyone, even a fool. Somehow I feel that it is not by spelling that’s bothering you, boy. Maybe I’m putting too much of the unpleasant truth about your team out there,…and the truth hurts. We on the Red Sox blog ARE impressed, however, that Yankee fans know how to spell all our players’ last names. I’ll bet you see them in your nightmares, don’t ya’? I probably do spend too much time on this blog, IPAC, but the fact that I realize that should indicate that I’m not ready for the funny farm yet. And, IPAC, the fact that you’re still out on the streets lends me an awful lot of encouragement regarding my prognosis. Especially what I appreciate, IPAC, is that you took hours away from your busy valuable life to read every single word of what it took me hours to compose to find ONE single inadvertent mistake. I put a lot of hard work into that, thanks for spending the necessary time away from performing your brain surgery to read it all. Boy, you Yankee fans are a glutton for punishment, aren’t you!!!???? Do you feel enough like fool now…or do you want more. Significantly, one glaring observation I made from your brief comeback and the subject you chose to zone in on–you didn’t refute anything I said about the NYY and you and yours. Come on….”26″…————————Thanks, Cyn!

jpac-it!: with the immediate name calling we obviously know where you’re from. I, for one enjoy reading danielfagan’s insightful, almost always sure to make you think, “never thought of it that way”, point of view. So if you can’t be of a postive thought or comment here, keep it to yourself or to your home blog.

danielfagan: I knew that you’d have my back on the feinsand blog issue, THANKS!

Can’t say that I was happy with last nights outcome, but also I wasn’t truly surprised either,(but I was truly hopeful). Trot’s been coming through to no avail, lob’s still an issue, we just got buried early and often.

I really, really hope that this kid Pauley can work some kind of magic, the kind my pins and dolls haven’t been able to do. (I hope you all know that’s just a joke, OR IS IT?) Nice Irish Catholic girls don’t do things like that, do they?? robnbetsey (is it rob or betsey?, or both). you got me thinking today when I read your post. Even though I’ve been a Sox fan for YEARS I learn something new everyday.

Being here on Ians blog allows me to gain insight from true Sox fans that I’d never have gotten without reading all the posts.

YO PAULEY! GO GET ‘EM TONIGHT! I bet when you were on the phone with your parents they were really proud, so DON’T LET THEM DOWN. Just know when things get tough you’ve got the true Sox fans (NATIONERS) right here for you big guy!! I’ll say it again today…. HOT BATS STAY HOT, COOL ONES, GET HOTTER AND ….. GO SOX, WE LOVE YA!!!! No matter what we’re still behind you all!!!

When did I say I was a Yankees fan there chief? I just don’t like you. You’re a joke and you make it embarrassing to be a fan of anything. So spare me your “21st century” garbage because it means nothing to me. And don’t try to act like I’m not as intelligent as you because that’s the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard. Oh yea and for the record, it’s JPAC boy!! Wow for someone as “smart” as you i’m amazed you can’t even read a simple letter.

Ellencullum: thanks for your thoughts, and that clever little pack-it nickname. Once again I’m not a Yankees fan, I’m not even from New York, but I am a baseball fan and since this is a free country I have a right to have an opinion and a right to say what I want so I will continue to do so.

Guess what upacit, I never said you were a Yankees fan, but I’m sure even they would be embarrased to call you one their own.. to all Sox Fans, If I can make a small suggestion; LET’S JUST IGNORE THIS small mind. We’ve got a game to watch and or listen to…..GO SOX!!!

Hey jpac why dont you do us all a favor and shut up. Does it make you feel better about your own stupidity when you make fun of someone else..because you sound like a two year old. Well you might a genius i mean did you think if Fagman all by yourself??

I do believe that you are not a Yankee fan though. I mean being the loser you are you must be a Devil Rays fan.


Ian, you encouraged us to invite our friends to the blog, but I may not be attracting the newcomers you had in mind. So, Ian, all you guys and gals out there, if all the nonsence I started is upsetting ANY one, I’ll turn the other cheek…even if called FAGMAN–and just go directly to the Yankee blog and destroy them there. Thanks Ellen. Thanks Robn. Thanks, again, Cyn. Especially you BC. I had a lot of second thoughts after I finished last night…thought when I came back on the blog today that I would possibly be blown out of the water from both inside and outside our blog. You covered me from so many angles, BC, and said so many flattering things that I’m quite ready to die now and use what you said for my eulogy!!! Especially by posting early enough in the day, you ran a lot of needed interference for me that may have fended off some negative posts coming. I thank people. People thank me. Sometimes I guess we could get a bit corny, but what’s wrong with honest mutual admiration? I’ve enjoyed all your posts, BC. Informative. Insightful. Most of all civil. And, a human characteristic I very much admire…you always seem to have the courage to stand up and defend the underdog. Previously I wasn’t too sure what you thought of me, because I never received any feedback from you when Ellen and I were having so much fun with the word I pretended you coined (and corrected yourself)–pither. Thanks, again, BC PARK!

Hopefully, all of you can now get back to baseball. I’ll be listening to all of you tonight, but I’m going to give my keyboard a rest for the nite. I’m concerned about keeping JPAC up all night reading my verbiage and struggling to respond to me. He probably has a migraine by now, and I really DO have a heart. Finally, ARIELLE, you’ve put a lot of pressure on me not being responsible for your flunking the 11th? grade. At 16, Shakespeare, Spanish, I’m just guessing 11th? And, thank you, for the niceties you sent my way. When I posted that cheap shot about I thought I could win the writing contest you won (writing about a guy I’m fond of, too, and am looking forward to returning–Gabe Kapler), I didn’t know your age. I erroneously assumed you were an older lifetime college student-type lady seeking recognition. I didn’t post but I went to your blog once. The day I browsed, you were complaining about your first bout of “writers’ block”. Having been a writer myself, Arielle, and maybe Ian can likewise vouch for this, too, getting writers block is like a pitcher building more muscle in his arm by throwing more. YOU’RE GETTING THERE!!!It’s a professional by product. Goodnight everyone. Thanks for everything!

Keep it up Daniel. No problem here.

How many times is Alex Gonzalez not going to come through with men on third and less then 2 out??? Good thing Coco got us something out of it. I think this kid will settle down with a decent lead. This was a big chance to get him that big lead. Let’s hope he can hang on. He really looks like he could be real productive when he keeps the ball down and gets the nerves out of his system.

Boy am I glad I was wrong about the Sox’ chances for a win tonight! Pauley may not have had a stellar debut, but it was good enough. What was it, four inning ending DPs? Outstanding. Too bad he wasn’t able to go long enough to qualify for the win. The bullpen came through pretty big again as well. Francona may be onto a new strategy, borne of Sox’ lack of a true middle reliever: just trot out your bullpen one pitcher at a time for one inning each.

Rough news about Pena’s surgery and Wells going back on the DL. (I guess David Pauley might think that Wells going on the DL isn’t such a bad thing.) The bats are going to have to stay hot, I guess.

Great win to avoid the sweep. I’m a happy Sox fan.

I thought that Pauley (being from AA) had really good presence tonight against veteran batters. Yeah, he walked in a run but after that he got out of it with the help of his defense. That’s called TEAM!!

We got out of the way of the broom. I was very happy for that. Manny, David, Trot (oh my Trot,he’s so hot!) all were great. Everyone else chipped in in one way or another. You know the old thing ” there is no “I” in team. Team was there tonight. I was not(I was there in spirit and cheerleadership,((daniel, is that a word?) and we WON!! I love OUR SOX.. Night Nationers. More tomorrow.

I was not surprised at all with the Clemens decision. Ever since spring training, I stood by my prediction that he would stay in Houston. Going elsewhere makes no sense, despite the romanticism up here in Boston or George’s fat wallet. I, as all other Sox and Yankee fans should, wish Clemens all the best with Houston and in the NL. He definitely will give Houston a big boost in the NL Central and even though it will be hard for him to gather much statistical awards such as a 1.87 ERA, he will still work hard and be great. Twilight of careers just seems to never end for the gods.

As for today’s game, Pauley did well for starting this game, cosidering he never pitched above double A. His first four innings are amazing in fact for a minor leaguer. Finally, the Sawx offence figured Ted Lilly–I still don’t understand why the Yankees got rid of Lilly and got Contreras instead, dumb dumb. The offence still needs to be more consistent but I like Coco’s new presence on top the order. It really gives the lineup life and energy. Foulke is impressive today and Papelbon again, lights out and works out of leadoff trouble. Good win!

The Yanks win again, and I think Mussina not Johnson is the real top gun on the Yanks rotation. The Sox have figured him out well from seeing him so much in the regular season and postseason. But it seems the Tigers look like paper tigers, at least in front the Yanks. The Sox need to measure up when they visit over the weekend.

Mets vs. D-backs. Scoreless for 12 innings wow. Pedro’s line: 8 IP, 8 K, 0 BB, 5 H. Wow, don’t we miss him now? Esp. with Matt.

Speaking of CLement, it’s obvious by now he needs to go back to the National League (well, maybe after Interleague play ends in early July so the Sox can get those interleague victories–the only ones he can give). As for a solution to the rotation, Wells is a major question. I think the Sox really should look from within, esp. at Lester, Hansen maybe. I hope they come up soon and make a difference. Trading major prospects for the D-train is a NO-NO!!! He’s struggling ever since the WBC, from the NL and a team that has been apathetic about winning since 2004. He will not be the solution, definitely not this years. Giving up future prospects will only hurt the Sox (ask George III in Tampa for add. reference). The Sox should look within, and should things be really dire by late July, I’m confident Theo will find some way and do his magic but with minimal loss of prospects. We’ll just hope and see. We all know, it’s in Theo’s hands to fix the rotation. But the rotation definitely needs fix.

Night guys, finally out of Canada. Sick of those pesky blue people.

I sure hope the Tigers lay down for us too. When is someone going to remind the public that the Central Division darlings (Whitesox and Tigers) have played the Royals a combined 17 times already. If anything, they should get credit for being able to switch back and forth between Major and Minor League games so effectively.

Hey Jpac,

Please respect earlier wishes that i have made in this space for people not to call each other juvenile names in this blog. I asked nicely, and hope that you can just respect that. I love the passion and knowledge in the blog posts, particularly from Fagan, Ellencullum, rayman94 and Arielle, and it seems like we are getting newcomers each week. So let’s keep that momentum going and not slide with offensive monikers.

Thanks for blowing the referee’s whistle on some of our more enthusiastic contributors.

Meanwhile, I get a special thrill seeing the rookies perform. Pauley was very good except for one inning. I guess Terry was in the restroom while he left his new pitcher in a few batters too long.

But I like the fact Terry had confidence to follow with more rookies.

And then finish it all off with Lights-Out Papelbon.

It’s a re-occurring theme especially when you look at other ex-Red Sox prospects doing so well.

I hope Theo puts more faith in the farm system and continue to be tentative with the veterans who are so capable of multiple breakdowns. Just look at the incredible injuries come from the NYYs ranks.

Ian, I liked your article on the upcoming draft. I would like to hear more perspectives about the draft and how that transpires in the Red Sox farm system. The REAL Sox destiny is in its youth.

Great win tonight! Although it is always important for teams to play a “team game” there are times during just about every season where even they have to focus on it. As I said in one of earlier postings and as many of you have stated, this is going to have to happen for how ever long this team continues to go through this injury period. Changing the subject somewhat I would like to say to all those who Ian mentioned in his last posting and also robnbetsy that I for one truly appreciate all of your insights and postings. To Daniel I would like to say that your posting the other day where you showed your support for Clement, you reminded me that although the players by the nature of being athletes are subject to a view that many times come from a more cynical side, they are still humans who certainly cannot enjoy or gain anything of use by being put down in a public forum. Being in Florida where it is not easy to get good coverage of the Red Sox (except for Wake because he is a local talent) I truly appreciate the insight that I gain from this site. So I close by saying keep up the good work all and Lets Go Red Sox!

//Is it worth trading a major prospect for D-Train?//

No, because it wouldn’t take a major prospect to get D-Train. It would take *multiple* major prospects. No, no, no, no!!!

And for those posters wondering why it was Pauley and not someone else (i.e. Hansen) who got the call, several reasons: It was Pauley’s turn in the rotation; he’s a sinker pitcher going against a fastball-hitting club; he’s a rightie going against a team that mashes lefties. Alvarez is a lefty, and Hansen was only on two days’ rest.

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