It's a Sunday Afternoon in … Detroit

OK, so it’s not quite a Sunday afternoon in New York, but I don’t dislike Detroit as much as many of my cohorts on the beat. I have relatives here in a nice suburban town called West Bloomfield, so it’s always nice to catch up with them and get some good eats and hang out with my cousin.

As for today’s big rubber match. The Red Sox will rest a couple of regulars. Mike Lowell and Mark Loretta are both out of the lineup and not surprising when you consider the day game after the night game and the fact that both players are battling nagging injuries.

Youkilis will hit second and play third base. J.T. Snow is batting seventh and playing first and Alex Cora is No. 9 at second base. Aside from that, it’s a regular lineup.

By the way, count Curt Schilling among those who has enormous respect for what the Yankees are doing with all their injuries. The ace pointed out the Yankees have as much payroll injured or on the DL as many teams do on their entire active roster, which is also why Schilling thinks that Torre is a runaway for AL Manager of the Year at this stage. It’s hard to argue that right now.

In other news, the reason Keith Foulke hasn’t been used this weekend is because his back has been acting up a little. If you recall, Foulke battles back woes every year at some point, so this is nothing alarming.

Tough loss last night. Was I the only one having Deja Vu when Ortiz stepped to the plate with a chance to be a hero against Fernando Rodney in the eighth inning? One of the most dramatic moments in Ortiz’s run to the MVP last year (well, what should have been his run to the MVP until the vote came out in favor of A-Rod) was when he went deep off Rodney to tie a game with one out in the ninth. Ortiz then belted a three-run shot in the 10th. Alas, this time he hit a medium-range flyball to center.

Anyway, let’s see what Clement has today. It should be very, very interesting. And the Tigers have a kid in righty Zach Miner making his Major League debut. Those are always fun to watch.

C ya,



I know they didn’t start out that great, but I’m rather surprised that Loretta and Lowell aren’t being discussed more in the national media as excellent signings by Boston. I don’t know if they’re both all-star candidates, but they’re definitely closer to their May numbers than their April numbers.

And watch out for those ML debut pitchers. I know they shut us down every time (oh wait, it’s because our advance scouting is horrible, nevermind :-P)

Family or no family, Detroit is a pit. Big game Wednesday! Bring your A-game Brownie!

Every once in awhile you run into the other teams buzzsaw.

I wish Wake had better luck but he is getting the Charlie Brown treatment all year. I hope that changes soon.

In the meantime, it will be fear and loathing with the 4th and 5th SOX starters. Clements is just having that ONE bad inning season. I hope that changes soon too.

Ian, I really miss Bronson (I know, get over it). Did you see his win with the Reds yesterday. I never knew the Sox had a great hitter hidden on the bench. And Bronson had no earned runs in that game too.

Just checking up on last night’s posts. Thanks for correcting the masses Daniel. Let’s hope Clement gives us a quality start. The defense will be there, but with Lowell and Loretta out, the Sox will have to capitalize on every opportunity. We don’t want to go to NY on a down-note.

For those of you back home up north that get to watch Rem Dog and Don every game, you should really appreciate it. Having the baseball package, I never know which telecast will be on. Don and Remy are so biased and insightful compared to other networks. These Detroit announcers are complete Homers. Friday night they spent 15 minutes complementing a slide into second base by Detroit. Just wanted to pass this useless information out these to those that care (or don’t).

In response to my man’s post: Family or no family, Detroit is a pit. Big game Wednesday! Bring your A-game Brownie!

I agree that the city itself is lousy. But there are some very nice suburbs around here, so I think we need to recognize that this is a fine state, with just a very lousy city mixed in the middle. Now if only the Tigers could play their games in one of those nice suburbs!

Interesting stat just shown on FSN Detroit regarding batting average against Clement.
1st time through. .217

2nd time through. .290 +

3rd time through. .377

Come on Matt, keep it close and hopefully we can get to this rookie.

Our boy Kevin Millar just hit a 3 run bomb of Aaron Small.
6-0 Baltimore in the 3rd.

Tek is slowly creaping back up towards .250. 3-3 today.

Hopefully we can get to the rookie early and often today. We really need a win to give us some momentum going into the Yankees series. Hey Ian whats the pitching rotation for both those teams in that series? I do know we have Pauley pitching but the rest I am unclear on.

Sorry I accidentally posted that in the last blog.

Ian and Mark,
I’ve lived in a number of cities; Detroit, Chicago, Boston, San Francisco to name a few. I know many people think Detroit is a pit, which in many ways it is, but there are some great people in that city. I’ve always held the opinion that there are great aspects of every place, its just that sometimes they don’t jump out at you like the Golden Gate Bridge or the “Magnificent Mile.”

The people of Detroit are great sports fans, knowledgeable ones too. They’re also down-to-earth, hard working people. I think the great thing about that city is the people who make it up.

I’ve always thought that its pretty pretentious to talk badly about a city unless one’s lived there…otherwise, they really don’t know what they’re talking about.

Well, I’d say that was a pretty postive game in most respects. Clement goes 6 innings and only allows 3 runs. Not Hall of Fame numbers, but it’s an improvement. VanBuren, Seanez and Riske combine for 3 scoreless innings and allow only 2 hits and 1 walk. And if anyone had any doubt about Coco, I’d say he’s definitely back in form. I hope they put his 8th inning robbery of Ordonez on the highlight reel. The Detroit announcers made it sound pretty spectacular. The offense was clicking pretty well, too. Good upbeat win to give the Sox a little lift heading to New York, and even better combined with the Yankees losing to the O’s.

Real good job. I was shocked to still see Clement in there in the 7th.
This was a complete team game. Each time the Tigers scored, the Sox came back and answered with a run in the following top half. When Clement started the 6th off the way he did: Hit to Wilson, hit on 0-2 meatball to Granderson, i thought he was about to implode like he has all season with runners in scoring position.

He really looked like he stayed focused and got out of the inning. Hey, this could be the game that turns around the season for him. I hope so. Coco’s catch was awesome!

Beckett needs to be in top form tomorrow, the Moose is sure to be on his game.

Did you ever notice any time there is a touted pitchers duel the game is usually a blow out? Let’s hope it’s in our favor.

Jeter took one off the hand today, looked real bad, but they say it’s day to day.

riske looked good AGAIN today, not to mention van buren. and you gotta admit that clement looked as good if not better than yesterday’s wakefield.

We are already back in first place. Great game today. What happmed to Clement i didnt see what happned and I heard Remy mention that the two trainers were inside with Clement. Very solid performance from VanBuren. Although he had 30 pitches in i believe the 7th he still was able to get out of it. Great job all round.

Well the Yankee fan is back haha. Just wanted to say looking forward to this series even though there are injuries, either keeping people out or just nagging, on both sides. As far as the Jeter injury, in the post-game interviews he said he wants to be in the lineup tomorrow and thinks he can be, but he’s sure Torre will want to see him hit and throw tomorrow to see how the thumb is reacting.

When i said were inside with Clement i actually ment to say weren’t and Remy followed by saying so it vouldnt be anything serious. Sorry bout that.

I think that Youk is doing well in the 1st or 2nd spot.

I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s pitching matchup. Mussina has been great this year for the Yankees and I think Beckett has been excellent at times, and great at others. We’ll see which pitcher elevates his game in tomorrow’s charged atmosphere.

Id have to say the highlight of the game for me wasn’t the four jacks, it was the 3-walked in runs. It’s so impressive to watch a team hit with so much power and then turn on a dime and become the most patient team in baseball. Love these guys.

I had walked away from my computer for a little and came back and heard that Youk had been hit and Clement left with an injury and i almost choked. Glad to hear those guys are ok.

How bout A-Gon’s jack today? His random power bursts always suprise the **** out of me.

I’m looking forward to this week, it will be a showcase of our young talented pitchers (Pauley, VanBuren, hopefully Lester) should be fun to watch.

I had to leave mid 7th today so I could get to work with seconds to spare. But I was impressed with Clements start today. He looked better in the beginning than he has in ? starts. Interesting stat picked up by “gosoxred”.. (by the way sorry I got you confused with someone with a similar tag… MY APOLOGIES.. If you’ve had Daniels back in the past you’re ok with me; he’s got mine. I heard Van Buren had a good outing, but havent had the chance to look at the condensed game yet. Just call me no-life, when I come through the door I immediatley come directly here, I truly love being able to discuss the game and the comraderie. As I’ve said before, it’s difficult to find someone here to seriously discuss the Sox. I was absolutely on my feet when alex g. cranked his shot today. I truly love his glove, and am really glad when he gets his bat on something like that.

I think that tomorrow nights “Match-up on the Mound” is going to be something to see. I hope Josh rebounds, WE NEED YOU JOSH!

A note to those who aren’t really thrilled with the non-baseball stuff that we slip into occasionly: We are the Red Sox Nation. An united front. I think that the semi-personal stuff that comes up brings us much closer together as a unit. I’m sorry if the asides that we sometimes post offends anyone, it is certainly not my intention to do so, but I enjoy getting to know a little more about each of you. Doing that makes it a little easier as to not offend anyone. it also is what made me finally open up and write after a long time of just reading. Maybe it will help someone else with a new, maybe fresh point of view comfortable enough to write, so be it. We are always looking for that type of blogger.

Sorry Daniel won’t be with us for a while, Happy fishing lines to him.


Yes, Ellen, on another semi-personal note, another series with the Yankees this week, and, as always with a Yankees series looming, I’m drinking heavily. Just kidding! Sorry, Ellen, for being down in the dumps and AWOL again, with the Sox losing with the Yankees breathing down their necks and winning, in totally aggravating ways that the Yankees seem to be able to do like no one else. You’ve probably gathered by now how I am about the Yankees. Here they were about to face the Tigers, who were supposedly the hottest team in baseball. I didn’t go that far, but I did relish the matchup. I remember the laugh I got in the preseason when they pelted Mussina, and beat the Y’s 15-1, I think. “I threw everything I had at them,” Mussina said, “and they hit everything.” I told folks to watch out for the Tigers this year. Just when the Y’s play them, they’re not the same team, and have their first let-down-collapse of the season. AGGRAVATING!! I have to get away from it at that point. I don’t want do die of aggravation. The Yankees could give me a stroke or something if I let them. But I’m sorry, enough about the frickin’ Yankees. I know we all feel that way about them. I wimp out sometimes when it comes to them. Enough said, enough whining about ’em. Back up come the Sox and my spirits tonight, as the team again displays what it’s capable of, like when the giant wakes up! And the O’s kick asp and remind the Y’s that they’re only human. A season’s road to a championship is bound to be filled with ups and downs along the way. Come on Marshall, enjoy a great penant race and what’s sure to be a memorable season! Of course I’ll be sticking with the Sox through it all, you can count on that!

Yep, the road to a championship is bound to be filled with ups and downs, because it will be filled with fair-sized obstacles and formidable opponents to be overcome. That’s the whole idea! Come on, Marshall, enjoy!

And I have the urge to make a third posting just for fun.

It is always nice to come away from any away series with a series win. It is especially nice when you can come away with a win from team that has been playing pretty good baseball. Way to go Red Sox! Now we move onto new york and the pinstriped payroll machine. If I have got this right, than the pitching matchups should be Becket-Mussina, Pauley-Wang, Shilling-Wright, and Wakefield-Johnson. Hopefully this is the series that wakes up our napping giant, the big Papi. I would never believe that he has been sleeping but I think he may have been catching a little cat nap. I would sure like to see our guys be patient in the batters box and get these pitchers into high pitch counts, because the relief in new york has not been real strong lately. As I follow these games mostly from the gameday and the audio feed from the computer, my wife has to remind me that she doesnt believe the team can hear me all the way from Florida. I will be doing everything possible for sure over the next 4 days to see if I can get them to hear me. Lets go Red Sox!

I realized one fringe benefit of being a Redsox fan over the weekend… That we don’t have any butt ugly players on our team. After watching Shelton and Bonderman for a few days, I was grateful that we don’t have that problem on our team.

I’m also going to declare that I’m officially getting off Gonzales back for being a poor hitter. Not just because he has connected for a few homers and hits lately… but because up until now, I thought he was the worst hitter (starters only) that I have ever seen in my 30 years of a being a Redsox fan. However, I just remembered Tony Clark and looked up his numbers… .207 with 3 homers in 275 at bats. Tony is the all-time winner (or loser) in my book!


Personally, I have no problem with the non-baseball chatter. That was what I tried to convey in my post the other day, but Mr. Fagan chose to take it as a personal slam against him. Perhaps the fault is partially mine; the post may not have been written clearly enough.

I, too find it interesting to learn a little bit about fellow bloggers. Others obviously don’t. If they don’t want to read about bar stools or family histories, they can skip over it.


If Beckett is in top form tonight and Mussina has the kind of stuff he’s had so far, it could be a really tight game. Sure, pitcher’s duels don’t always live up to the hype, but when they do it’s really fun to watch.

The Sox’ schedule gets decidedly easier after this series. Of the next seven series, only three are against teams that are in first or second place in their division. Not that the rest of the teams are complete pushovers (hey, even KC beat the Yankees!), but the Sox should be able to continue to put up more W’s than L’s.

Okay so after studying the rotation for the yanks to figure out the pitching matchups for this series, I just read the game preview and see that they list them at the bottom of the page. This should teach me to read the page all the way to the bottom.

The people who post here regularly, too many to name, always talk about baseball! If an occasional post (or even more) gets personal, so what? Ellen is right about the Nation, obviously we are here about the Redsox (i.e. baseball), but Redsox fans are known around the world (literally) for having a camaraderie second to none. Many of us have disagreed strongly with one another 1 week and supported each other the next. The fact that most of us only know each other through a computer screen actually makes it important that we do give some personal info (whether its age, location, job, etc…). If I met one of you in a bar I’d probably give you more personal info in 5 minutes than I have here in 2 months, so what’s the problem? The funniest thing to me is the post that started this conversation:

[hey folks, imho the signal-to-noise ratio is getting a bit out of hand here. maybe we need a self-imposed 2-post maximum and fewer personal discussions. let’s keep it about baseball!!

Posted by: | June 3, 2006 07:50 AM]

technically doesn’t really have anything to do with baseball either. It is a personal idea about the blog itself. I have said it once and I will say it again. I enjoy reading all your posts (even goredsox06). Sometimes I agree, sometimes I disagree and sometimes I have no opinion at all; but reading them makes me laugh, makes me think and makes me proud to be a Redsox fan!

As for baseball, this is our most important series so far, 4 games @ NYY. I won’t say this too often but… A NYY fan said it best: “Just wanted to say looking forward to this series even though there are injuries, either keeping people out or just nagging, on both sides.”

Finally, let’s go BoSox! The result of this series will determine the success of this road trip, so let’s pull together and take it to ’em!

Most people here now I have a major beef with the ridiculously wide and inconsistent strike zone. That said, it was nice to see Leyland get chucked yesterday arguing pitches that were 4-6 outside and correctly called balls. I was wondering what his argument was…”Hey ump, didn’t you know that pitches that hit the catchers mitt when he is lined up outside are still strikes?”.

I agree with one of recent posts that the Detroit announcers were brutal. Total homers. I wish I wrote down some of their material… They tried to say that Zumaya was doing as well as Papelbon (2.70 ERA vs. .31 – you do the math).

bcpark33: It’s nice to know that I’m not the only one who loves the comaraderie that the Nation brings to us. You have to be of a certain thickness of skin to be a Sox Fan, you know all the **** we take from the “evil “universe””. So as part of the Nation, we need to stick together. You know, agree to disagree. Thanks for the backup and support.
I say it every time we meet the Yankees, but these are the games in which anything can and usually does happen. So I’m a leetle bit sceeered, as always. tonight should be a really good one. I’m hoping for the run support that Beckett needs. I stopped in on feinsands blog for a minute, man they’re really bagging Beckett and Jon-Bon, which leads me to believe that they too are more than just a bit anxious. Well, this should be a war of nerves (for the fans)tonight.

I really hope that Papi gets crankin’and that Manny still continues to get hotter. I’ll probably post again before game time, so I’ll just say, when you’ve got the best fans, you’ve got the best team. Do you think any of our guys ever look in here to see what we think??

Hey this is the “NYY fan” just checking in to see what’s being said over here about the series that’s starting toninght and I have to agree with ellen, it’s nice to have the comments coming in and being able to go back and forth. I know from Feinsand’s blog there’s typically about 100 comments on each post of his (granted I don’t like some of these as it turns into some play by play being done) but it allows us to debate on what we think the status of the team is, what should be done, what kind of moves, and so on. It provides a nice community, and it’s great to talk baseball, for the most part with people who know what they are talking about.

Hopefully this game turns out to be the pitching duel that it’s being talked about (at least by Mussina haha) and the Yankees can find a way to get Ortiz and Ramirez out.


I certainly hope the strike zone is the same for both pitchers.

8-2 in the 2nd??? I know it’s early but why isn’t there someone up and throwing in th pen???? the yankee fans are loving this.

Look at the bright side, this has to take the pressure off of Pauley.

Yeah but look at what it’s going to do to the pen now. arghhhhhh!!!!!!!


Down 10 with at bats left. 2 runs an inning and we’re back in it! (assuming we hold them down the rest of the way)
Well, chalk it up and get all the kinks out now.

A loss is a loss, but the biggest thing about this is the work the pen is going to get today and tomorrow w/Pauley going. We have to bank on Schill and Wake to put things back together Wednesday and Thursday. Maybe we can knock a few more off the Moose and get into their bullpen and wear them out.

Is anyone concerned that in big starts at Cleveland(when Clev was playing well), at Toronto and at New York, Beckett hasn’t lasted past the 4th in any of them???

I don’t know what I’m more upset about, the loss or looking the Yankees blog and hearing them yuck it up over there.

Not too worried about this one. The Sox get blown out by the Yankees at least once a year, and vice versa. I’m looking for the Sox to take 2 out of 4 in the Bronx…hopefully 3. Again, although its the Yankees, and I hate to see the Sox lose to ’em, its just 1 game in a season of 162. Hopefully the rest that Lowell, ‘Tek and some of the other regulars get will do them some good.

I think it was fitting that ESPN showed the Redsox team Psychiatrist during the game. Maybe we can get a multi-player discount if we commit Clement and Beckett together. Our coaching staff really needs to get their act together as well. It’s bad enough that our starting pitchers are performing so poorly… but why does it have to be 6 or 8 runs during each meltdown? I didn’t even get a chance to put together a sarcastic comment about the strike call to Ortiz that was at least 8 inches outside that took us out of the first inning. In any case, this was all very explainable… what can you expect when you are facing a sick, injured, group of minor leaguers?


I don’t have a lot to offer in the way of encouragement here. Just a few observations from my score card (yeah, I’m kind of a weenie like that, I keep score when I watch games on TV).

– #1 through #4 in the starting lineup went a combined 2 for 13. At least runners left on base (only 6 tonight) wasn’t an issue.

– Trot Nixon went 2 for 2 and reached base all four times he came up to bat; almost scored all four times as well. That was a very uncharacteristic baserunning mistake for him. You could almost cut him some slack and say it wasn’t really a mistake, because most pitchers probably would have gone to first on that play.

– Two GIDP’s for Tek. I sure hope he starts figuring things out at the plate like everyone says he’s going to. I know his leadership of the team is worth just as much as his bat, but the bat would be nice, too.

– ALL of the runs Van Buren allowed came with two outs. That hurts. The rest of the bullpen didn’t allow any runs. You have to take that as a positive, I guess.

Is it me, or did anyone else think Francona basically conceded the game in the fourth inning? Subbing Mirabelli, Snow and Harris for Ramirez, Lowell and Varitek his sacrificing a lot of offense for what?

The only thing keeping my chin off of my chest right now is the memory of what happened after the Yankees routed the Sox in Game 3 of the 2004 ALCS.

Ah, well. Keep the faith, brothers and sisters. Tomorrow will be only the 5th day of the season that the Red Sox have been out of first place. Let’s hope they keep it at five.

Whoops. I miscounted; 7 LOB.

I also just noticed that even though Van Buren allowed all those runs with two out, all of them were earned runs. Kind of unusual.

Feeling the way that I do, I don’t even know if I should post tonight. I know it was early when it got out of hand (that never should have happened). But why is it that by the time we get someone up and throwingin the pen, we’re down 4,5.6,10 runs??? I know that we’re short in the pen, but doesnt someone else think it’s really time to start grooming a long reliever??? I know that they are the hardest to come by, because as long relievers (from what I read and her) they can’t start, they can’t close (or actually they don’t either well). I sure the shell don’t know what to do….. but WE NEED HELP BIG TIME. I’m sorry about the negativity tonight, but being up 2-1 one minute and then down 10-2 the next….. Hopefully danielfagan is out of earshot on his fishing trip. Wish that I could say that I wish I was, but I CAN’T, I wouldn’t.. I love my Sox. “night Nationers. Hopefully a better tomorrow night.

Not much to add here except for the bullpen aspect. I was thinking the same thing, “why aren’t we getting anyone up in the pen.”
The answer: It all happened so d&** fast. After Phillips hit the homerun, it was 4-2, no one on. With Beckett on the mound, you’d figure he’d settle down and we’d move on.

Then, boom, boom, boom, 3 or 4 pitches and another run in and 2 on then the steroid freak hits the 3 run shot to put it out of reach.

For those that didn’t get to see it live, it literally was a matter of 3 minutes from Phillips homer to Giambi’s. Not enough time for Plastic Man to warm up, let alone one of our guys.

Anyway, has anyone seen Plastic Man? We might need someone like him with a rubber arm tonight w/Pauley going. I know that sounds pesimistic, but it is what it is. Let’s hope that bats are ticked off and jump on Wang early and give this kid a cushion that he can be comfortable with. Maybe he can hold a 7-2 lead this time!

Let’s take back 1st tonight.

OK Nation, I’m here to try and brighten everyone’s day.
Everyone keeps talking about how far ahead of the Spanks we should be because of all their injuries right now.

Just remember, we lost Coco for 46+ days and had basically no production for the 1st 30 of those days until Wily Mo started to get comfortable.

Dustan “Mr. K” Mohr and Willie “Thank God I can run or else I wouldn’t be on a major league club” Harris gave us NO PRODUCTION at all.

Don’t forget that Loretta started the 1st month and a half hitting just over .200. Alex Gonzalez left more runners on base than the Royals have scored.

David Wells has pitched 4 good innings all year.

Matt Clement has looked like a AA pitcher.

Timlin has been out for 15 days.

Papi hasn’t hit in 3 weeks.

Manny took a month to get going.

Tek barely has a better average than A-Gon.

Oh, and Josh Bard hurt us for a few games. (I’m glad he’s doing well in San Diego.

Tavarez and Seanez were an automatic 2 runs waiting to happen to start the year.

The only consistency we’ve recevied has been from Youk, Lowell and Paps.

All this and as of right now, we are only 1/2 game out!

Put all that together and things will get going.

Some of you may have figured out that I can get pretty down on the club when things aren’t going well, so if I can see this silver lining, so can you.

By the way, is there anything worse than a hypocrite Yankee coach?

Larry Boa gets mad at Cory Patterson for stealing against the Yankees when they were up by 6 in the 7th inning. I mean, it’s the Orioles pitching staff for God’s sake. 10 runs in 2 innings can happen in a heartbeat.

Yet, Mr. March, Alex Rodriguez steals 2nd while up by 6 yesterday. Yes, I know it was early when he did it, but they really think Moose was going to blow a 6 run lead? I hope the Sox don’t forget about that one.

Redsox Starting Pitching ERA is 5.24, 26th out of 30 teams. I think that pitiful stat would improve a lot more with Papelbon in the rotation. Our relief pitching is actually pretty good (8th in the majors). I just don’t think we can afford to have the luxury of Papelbon sitting around most nights watching our starters get shelled. Trade for a closer if we have to or try Timlin/Foulke.

I haven’t posted in ages.

Just a few comments…

I’m a stat geek too….I love scoring games on my own. (I forget who posted that but you’re not alone.)

It’s true about Red Sox Nation and being connected. I was at the Rangers-A’s game last Sunday night (the ESPN game) and it’s hard to describe the “fellowship” between other Red Sox fans that were there.

I went over to the gym to watch last night’s game on cable. We were up 2-1 when I sat down and within a 1/2 hour of my workout, we had given up 7 runs. I’m going to turn into my dad who believe he jinxes the Sox every time he watches. He actually went to bed during inning 8 of game 4 of the World Series.

I guess we have to give Alex “Mr. March” Rodriguez credit. Since he won player of the month, he can now officially be upgraded to “Mr. May”

“Willie “Thank God I can run or else I wouldn’t be on a major league club” Harris”…

gosoxred – That has got to be the funniest, yet truest thing I’ve read all morning!

In regard to the “banged up” Yankees and the Red Sox’ lack of ability to take advantage of New York’s “injured” condition, one need look no further than Melky Cabrera to understand why they division is still so tight. Cabrera has come through for the Yankees better than anyone could have expected, both offensively and defensively. Andy Phillips at first has also been a huge lift. My point is that the band-aid solutions the Yankees have implemented have worked out very well for them. In contrast, Boston’s attempts to shore up their problem areas just haven’t worked out as well. Yet, as was previously mentioned, the Sox are STILL just a half game back of the Bronx B^st^rds.

I was a little ticked at Rodriguez as well for stealing second in the second, but it was early in the game, and a 6-run lead between these two teams is not all that safe. Had he done it after the Yanks had score their other 5 runs, or after Francona had made his subs, I’d really be pissed. I wouldn’t be surprised if Bowa said something to A-Rod when he got back to the dugout. I have a lot of respect for Bowa (somewhat diminished by his decision to go to work in the Big Apple) for his excellent play and managerial work.

Just one loss. Not the end of the world. But I am starting to be more curious about what trades and other moves Theo is contemplating.

Rayman makes a good point. It’s been a topic of discussion for a while now. The Red Sox have Papelbon sitting and watching starters get blasted. As you have seen, though I love the game, I’m no baseball strategist, and, I’m afraid, don’t add much to the discussion as you guys discuss how available team personnel can be utilized to greatest advantage. I’ve often wondered what factors go into deciding whether a pitcher will be used as a starter or in relief. Maybe you guys can shed some light on the subject for me. Whether a pitcher is temperamentally suited for high-pressure, what most of us would describe as highly-stressful, relief situations is often mentioned. Are some guys’ arms not built to last six or seven innings? Does it partly depend on what the team needs at the time? Obviously you need good pitchers in both areas, starting and relief, but where do most managers wind up putting their very best pitchers? Or is it a matter of being good in some different ways: Do they look for certain qualities in a starter, certain ones in a reliever? Look at Mariano Rivera, for example. If he’s one of the very best pitchers around, why did he wind up a closer rather than a starter? Why not see what he could do over 6 or 7 innings? Maybe they did try him that way previously. But he wound up as closer in Torre’s ANNOYINGLY-successful formula for winning games. Now the Red Sox have that decision to make with one of their most promising, downright awesome, young pitchers, Jonathan Papelbon. How best to use him?

Have we ever seen Pabelbon be awesome for longer than a few innings, though, for, say, 6 or 7 innings? Has that gone into the decision to use him as closer for now?

Pardon my typo, Jonathan. I DO know how to spell your name.

As far as I have heard, Papelbon has always been a starter and would have been a starter this year if Foulke wasn’t injured. How many saves would the Sox have blown in Timlin/Foulke took over from day 1? Maybe 3 or 4 out of 20? Todd Jones from Detroit is 16 for 18 with a 5.85 ERA. At this point, I think its worth the risk. If Papelbon was our #5 starter from day 1, he would have 11 starts or so. If Becket could have 7 wins with a 5.27 ERA, it should be pretty easy to estimate Papelbon would have 6 or 7 wins at least from the #5 starter spot. After watching up drop to #26 in the league in Starter ERA, I’m casting my vote once and for all for Papelbon to start.

The debate as to which is more valuable, starter or closer, will probably rage on until all of us are dead and buried. In the end, my opinion is that it’s all just opinions. We can argue over how many saves might have been blown or how many games would have been won if a closer had been a starter or vise-versa, but the fact is we’ll never know what would have actually happened. Of the four games that the Sox lost when Lenny DiNardo started, how many would they have won if Papelbon started? There’s no way of knowing for certain. How many of Pap’s 20 saves would have been blown by Foulke or Timlin? Can’t say for sure.

I don’t think there is one definitive answer as to whether a closer is more important than a starter. If your starting rotation and offense are good enough that you routinely enter the late innings with 3-, 4- or 5-run leads, the need for a closer is greatly diminished. But your closer, even if made into a starter, is only one fifth of that starting rotation, so you’d really need to have 4 very solid starters to justify making a closer as good as Papelbon into a starter.

I think the decision as to whether or not to put Papelbon into the starting rotation should be made in the context of what trades are made. If the bullpen is shored up sufficiently but the Sox are not able to acquire or bring up another quality starter, then moving Papelbon into the rotation would seem to make sense. But if Theo can wrangle a trade for Dontrelle or another great starter and can’t find good bullpen help, then using Papelbon as the closer for the rest of the hear might be the better decision.

Of course, that’s all just my opinion.

I pretty much think it is completely absurd to not suggest Rivera is one of the best pitchers ever. I understand, however, where you were going with that whole rant, Robert. I agree that Papelbon will be better suited in the rotation, but not now. First off, you just don’t mess with success. ever. Second, he is srely needed in the closer capacity now. Last, if the Red Sox starters, who were so highly touted early in the year can’t get the job done consistently, the maybe it is time to take a chance on someone from the farm, or deal away for another solid, if not spectacular starter. Moving Papelbon to the rotation right now would be horrible. Next year, provided they can get Hansen up, then yeah he is in the rotation without batting an eyelash, but for now, no way.

One other thing I forgot to mention is “long” saves. In his book “Feeding the Green Monster” (which I would highly recommend to any Sox fan), Rob Neyer points out how Jimy Williams used Derek Lowe quite effectively in the closer role by putting him in for long saves, i.e., saves of more than one inning (as opposed to the standard practice of waiting until the ninth inning to bring in your closer). It strikes me that perhaps with Papelbon’s potential as a starter, it might be appropriate for Terry Francona to take a similar approach. As a starter, he’s shown that he can pitch effectively for a number of innings, unlike some relievers who really can only be counted on for an inning or so. I realize that putting Papelbon in for two innings rather than one impacts how often he can be used, but I think it also has the potential to win a few games that might be lost in the 8th or even the 7th inning, without even getting to Papelbon. I’d have to look back at all of the box scores to see how many games were lost by other relievers in the 7th or 8th inning, but I think it might be worth Francona deviating from the standard 1-inning appearance model for closers.

Well, there goes THAT theory. I actually took a look back at the line scores for all 22 of the Sox losses. In only 2 of those games did the opposing team either tie the game or take the lead in the 7th or 8th inning. And one of those games was the loss in which Papelbon gave up his only earned run of the year, so who’s to say he’d have had the stuff to go the three innings necessary to keep the other team off the board? In all of the other 20 losses, Boston was trailing going into the 7th inning.

I guess I should have checked that out before I spouted off my “long save” theory. Is there any way to delete my posts on here?

skull: I agree with you in the respect that you should NEVER mess with success,i.e. if it ain’t broke…. i know that we are in serious trouble (for the moment) with our starters, but (and you guys know how I feel when they get buried early and often) I’m really hoping that Beckett can turn things around, that his last 2 outings were just a freak of nature. I’m not saying wait forever to so something but, maybe just 1 more outing for him before we bring out the hanging tree. Robn was saying how we can’t be certain how things would work out given the chanceto change them. Look at how many of still 2nd guess the Arroyo deal. He’s doing great with the Reds, but would he be doing that if he was still with us?? Like rob said, “can’t say for sure”. So we armchair chair managers and Monday morning pitching coaches will still have our way of thinking and our opinions. Isn’t it great to be in the Nation where we can freely serve up those thoughts… Anyway, bottom line?? We just need to get it together and soon.

Just a remark on the stolen base situation. In the case of A-Rod last night, yes it was early, yes there was a 6 run lead, yes Mussina was pitching, but it is also the Red Sox lineup. I am a diehard Yankee fan but I have to respect people like Ortiz and Ramirez as hitters (just to name a couple). I know that they are sort of struggling but they have come up big against the Yankees how many times?

And as far as against the Orioles, Bowa was more upset of the steal of 3rd base after Patterson stole 2nd. That second steal was what sent him over the top. He could have easily scored from 2nd with his speed and the Yankees lineup at that point was pretty much torn apart, without Jeter, Damon, Giambi, and A-Rod still sick (which was evident in his at-bats that game).

As far as the injury situation, I realize the Red Sox have had injuries but I don’t think that the stats of the people that have been lost can be valued as much as what the Yankees had been missing with people like Matsui, Sheffield, Posada at times as well. And I guess the main argument IS that the Red Sox offense has struggled mightily, not allowing them to ‘take advantage’ of Yankees injuries. Showing that the guys that have been called upon to fill in have produced much better in the Yankees lineup to keep them very close throughout the begninning of the season.

Also, Rivera was brought up and made his debut as a starter. I’m not sure what the exact reason was to make him a reliever but he became the setup to Wettland and with his efficiency, was given the closer role and Wettland was gone.

I guess I do always go into what could be termed a rant once I get into the Yankees, even when I don’t intend to. I really have an open mind on the subject of how to use Papelbon, though. I just wanted your thoughts on it , and on one of the interesting managerial dilemmas in baseball, how to use your piching staff most effectively. I guess it’s a judgement call, based on years of experience, and your team’s needs and situation. But don’t you think Mariano Rivera gets a little bit of over-rating just by the nature of his slightly-cushy job as closer for the Yankees? Usually one inning, usually with a fairly comfortable lead produced by the Yankee offense. I would like to see how “unhittable” he is over several innings as a starter, but maybe that’s not relevant in evaluating him. That’s not his job. Closer/saver is. Is the cut fastball, in the hands of a master of the pitch, the unhittable piTch. especially out of the park? Is any pitcher really unhittable? Isn;t it just a matter of ADJUSTING to what the pitcher’s doing? Mr. Frustration, Mariano Rivera, has been around for 12 years, and no one’s figured it out yet? Shouldn’t a great hitter be able to make the necessary adjustments? If what you’re doing against Rivera hasn’t worked for years, doing the same thing tonight isn’t going to get it done, either. Oh, well, such is life in the great American League East Division. About half an hour until game time. David vs. Goliath tonight. TWO Davids vs. Goliath? Interesting discussion. Thanks, guys.

Let me start this by saying that I surely will not amke excuses for Beckett. I believe he has the ability on any given night to win every game he starts. That being said I have to believe the reason for the home runs is a lack of concetration. I have no idea if I spelled that right. You can get away with this mistake in alot of major league divisions, but not in the AL east. You lose focus in this division and you will be down alot in a hurry. This is something that he is going to have to learn and I certainly hope it dosent take too long. One thing too remember is that if I am not mistaken we do not have our regular pitching coach in there right now. I dont know how much of a diffeerence this might make but could be part of the problem. That being said last night was ugly but even should we lose tonight and be able to win with Shill and Wake we go 1/2 a game up. But lets not depend on that Lets Go Pauley and Lets Go Red Sox!

I meant to add to that posting, about the stolen base that I would almost bet if you asked that just about every Sox player if not every Sox player they would tell you they did not see anyting dirty about that play.

Another DP for D.P. I really think this guy has some potential.

This is an example of how bad Beckett hurt us last night and how Timlin being on the DL hurt us big time. We had to bring out that load Rudy Seanez with the bases loaded instead of anyone with a fresh arm.
Man, this kid pitched too good to lose on a fluke hit like that. I can’t even believe they ruled it a hit. Home field scoring, I guess.

What a catch by Melky Cabrera.

Going back to the question this weekend when it was asked how Manny was doing and we all concurred that we have no idea what is going on in his head.

What in the world was he thinking trying to stretch that single to a double? I know Damon has a weaker arm than my wife, but even she could have thrown him out at second.

You always hear analysts ask what’s worse: losing via a blow out or losing a close one. This one is a lot tougher to swallow than last night.

Hopefully Schill can be Schill and Wake can outduel RJ.

1 run in 7 innings for pauley (unless they charge him with the one seanez walked in), pretty good for the Portland AA kid.

now, if Manny would just start running when he hits the ball, rather than waiting to see if it’s another HR, we might have won that game.

ok, i know that’s a little unfair. melky, wow.

Is Ian still around???
Come on buddy, what’s the inhouse gossip??

Any chance on you getting an exclusive w/Manny to figure out if that “hustle” play into second was his attempt to feel reunited with Damon again?

Matt, that run will be charged to Pauley because he is the one that put the runner on base. Unfortunate, but that’s the way it goes.

Good God! I was ready to throw my TV out the window when I saw Seanez up in the pen, then coming out with the bases loaded! Seriously now…***?!?!?! I know our pen was down and Timlin was on the DL…but Seanez…is our entire coaching staff on drugs?!?!?! Seanez needs to go now. I can’t stand watching this guy f* things up any longer.
I really liked what Pauley did tonight though; can’t wait to see him full-time in the Majors soon.

Wow. What a great game, though it was a disheartening loss. Pauley certainly is the Sox player of the game. He was above and beyond all expectations! Absolutely excellent for this debut in Yankee Stadium, all the props to him. The only blemish were Bernie’ HR, and his “error” in fielding that ball, which led to the run. Overall though, all the props to him.

Ortiz seems really struggling with the bat, and his average is looming around .250. That’s definitely not good. Had Wang not made that mistake, Papi could have been in another big slide. It’s concern now. So is Tek, who is continuing his slide. Maybe it’s just Yankee Stadium, but let’s hope it’s just that.

Manny…that run to stretch into a double was totally dumb and inexcusable. Seriously, nobody is that stupid to run like that, esp. when it looks to be a sure single. I don’t care if Damon is made of wax, you don’t run for second, and just look how far Manny was–the ball got to Cano/Cairo when Manny was half-way to second. Dumb. Duh. And shouldn’t the first base coach be telling Manny to stop? Where is he?

The offence is really struggling. The major problem, three innings they had men on first and second, and couldn’t get the run home, or even advance runners with less than two outs. It’s really a concern. And in latter innings, they just could not take pitches and hits bad pitches and balls into outs. That’s NOT how you tackle a sinkerballer like Wang, who pitched very well too and settled in. Very much like Lowe really in Game 7, though Lowe, you’d say for sure, was much more masterful.

Well, great catch by Melk. They’ll be all having Melk instead of milk tomorrow morning in New York. Props to that young kid. And everyone is complaining Yanks have no farm system?

Still can’t solve Mo. More Mo means more trouble for Sox. There’s no Mueller to help this time, sorry kids.

Surprised with the ruling of Cairo’s ball as a hit. It was clearly an error on pitching. Seriously, they need MLB scorers, not home team provided scorers. It will screw up a lot of baseball stats, not just for the game, but for future and career stats, with such biased rulings. Also, I’m sure the umpire messed up more than two balls/strikes calls, some leading to big innings for both teams. At least he messed it up for both.

Good game again. But Sox need to bounce back and let Schill make a statement. Time to shut up 55,000+ New Yorkers, though they’ll be quite loud tomorrow night. And the offence really needs to get in gear, esp. against Wright.

On side note, Seanez, despite that walk, has been quite solid. However, he is not a guy I want to put in a based loaded situation needing just an out. Definitely not the guy. But then, who does the Sox have? Besides, Papelbon.

Happy that Hansen is up on big roster. Let’s wait till Fenway to have him make his debut, along with Lester. Yankee Stadium is rough.

even though pauley is charged with the loss he pitched one **** of a game. for a 23 year old rookie to watch the yankees beat the living **** out of beckett the night before and come back and give us probably the best start of the season my the 4th-5th pitcher, in his second career major league start and in front of a packed house in the bronx is amazing. it should be interesting if he continues to pitch in the rotation if wells doesn’t came back.

and even thought seanez’s numbers appear solid (4.18 era) he’s allowed a ton of inherited runers to score (not his era but he screws up everyone else’s era) if i were him i would want to avoid pauley for the next week or so

Got Melky?

Got Melky?? This is from the same guy that was trashing his team on the Yankees blog 3 days ago. Their whole blog was saying how terrible their team is and their pitching stinks, blah, blah, blah. Now they win 2 against us and they’re on top of the world. I guess that’s what happens when you haven’t won anything in 6+ years.
They keep talking about their homegrown products. Well, Phillips is close enough in age to retire soon. Cano and Cabrera are the only young good players they have. Damon won’t last his 4 year deal, Sheff will be gone, Posada is getting creaky, Giambi will eventually get off the juice and wear down, Williams is old, Rivera(well, he’s a stud, I don’t known when he’ll wear down).

Do’t fret Nation, Schill tonight and Wake tomorrow and we’re a 1/2 game up again.

Then the Spankee fans can start freaking out again about how terrible their team is.

Mr. Marsall:

I would respectfully disagree with your assessment of Mariano Rivera’s position as “cushy.” Closers are usually NOT brought into the game if there is a significant lead. A “Save” is earned by the finishing pitcher if he meets the following conditions:

(a) He enters the game with a lead of no more than three runs and pitches for at least one inning; or

(b) He enters the game, regardless of the count, with the potential tying run either on base, or at bat, or on deck (that is, the potential tying run is either already on base or is one of the first two batsmen he faces); or

(c) He pitches effectively for at least three innings. No more than one save may be credited in each game.

From 1997 to 2005, Rivera finished the season with fewer than 35 saves only once, and fewer than 40 saves only twice. In all of those games, the opposing team had a reasonable chance to tie or win the game, and Rivera shut them down. He is a masterful pitcher who is normally brought into the game in high pressure situations. The fact that he has been able to befuddle Major League batters for 10 years (and counting) with essentially one pitch is all the testament that should be needed to convince someone that he is one of the elite pitchers of our time.

GREAT game by Pauley. Tough loss, especially on a walked-in run. I noticed that he was locating his pitches much better than his previous start, and that he was getting ahead of pitchers early in the count more often as well. I also noticed that Varitek was catching him last night instead of Mirabelli, who caught him the first time around. I wonder if that had any effect on his performance.

Seanez did walk in a run, but it could have been much worse. A single would have produced two runs, an extra base hit maybe 3, and obviously a homer would have plated 4. The fact is that Seanez kept the Sox in a still winnable game. Rivera gets Nixon, Varitek and Lowell (two .300 hitters and a guy that should be a .300 hitter) on 5 pitches. Game over.

You hate to see them lose the close ones, but there will be plenty of close ones they win.

i have three things to say about yesterday’s game:

1. i hate to say “i told you so” about Pauley. I was on here preaching the promise he showed after he first outing and i couldn’t get many to agree with me. I still think this kid is something special.

2. Tito actually pulled Pauley at the right time yesterday, at the first sign of trouble, not after trouble and more trouble.

3. The Spankee’s curtain calls are just getting ridiculous. William’s home run in the FIFTH INNING was not only just a solo shot, but it only tied the game, it didn’t even put them ahead! Why would the Yankees fans cheer for the curtain call like he just won them the world series? I could see it after Melky’s catch (which was actually nice and a game-saving play) but that kind of legitimate curtain call really loses it’s value after the 100 others the Yankee’s have given out this year.

Francona left Pauley in at least 1 batter too long, maybe 2. Redsox announcers were saying he would probably stay in until his first base runner. You don’t bring in a new pitcher with the bases loaded and the league leader in walks up at the plate.

Are you upset GOREDSOX? Good. Hey, did you like Manny’s expression when he caught that ball? Priceless. Have a great day Red Flop Nation!

I don’t know where this clown got the term Red Flop Nation? The biggest flop in the history of baseball was losing a series up 3-0. That’s what I call a flop.


The biggest flop in the history of baseball can only happen on the biggest stage–the World Series. The biggest flop in the history of baseball was a ground ball through Buckner’s legs in the 1986 World Series.

For skull, there is nobody that lives in the past more than Yankee fans. For solan, one error can’t be considered a bigger flop than losing 4 games in a row, 2 at home, one with a lead in the ninth… and everyone knew that the Yanks/Sox WAS the World Series that year… as was evident by the Cards just laying down for us. I’d also have to consider 5 years straight of the highest payroll on no titles a pretty major flop.

LOL….Hey Rayman, Got Melky???

Ian and I manage to get along just fine … why can’t you all do the same? Play nice, children.

Yea, I suppose when you have gone 68 years without a title, what’s one little error that makes you have to wait 14 more years!

As for your payroll comment, give me a break. I thought red sox fans were more intelligent than that. Any intelligent baseball fan knows there is no correlation between payroll and winning championships.

Fine, your team beat us after being down by 3 in the ALCS. But at least we didn’t **** for 86 years.


are we 12 years old? can you people go away so true Red Sox fans with real interesting opinions (gosoxred, fagan, ellencullum, rayman) can actually have real coversations again? I was enjoying the conversation about last nights game until this garbage started.

kgr, I must say that the Sox fans here are very intelligent. Some of them have posted over on my blog, too, and I enjoy hearing what they have to say.

That said, you should be a little more tolerant of the Yankees fans as well. Everyone here is just having a little fun, and had the Sox taken the first two, I’m sure my blog would have some good-natured ribbing going on the other way.

kgr1, I have had many amiable conversations with colleagues and friends who are sox fans, but when I came in here and saw attacks against the team I love, I reacted. I probably should not have joined a conversation in progress. Peace?

thanks Mark, but I was actually speaking to anyone posting the immature babble on here in general. Both the ribbing and the responses are irritating. It’s fun and good natured if your wearing a Red Sox jersey in Yankee stadium or vice versa, but here it’s just annoying. Especially when most of it’s not even about the game, it’s just cliche insults we’ve heard a million times.

I respect plenty of Yankees fans and Yankees bloggers (and I enjoy your Blog as well), just be insightful and respectful, not annoying and superfluous.

Absolutely, I would have done the same and realized it was probably annoying to people afterwards as well. Solan is probably my new favorite Yankees fan, exactly the type I was referring to in my above post and being a fan I can respect. Cheers, Solan.

Carpe diem, kgr1

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