Playing out the string

Three weeks of baseball left, and the Red Sox are basically in the position of playing out the string. How odd is this? How could anyone have predicted they’d be in this situation?

Considering that the Patriots open up today in Foxboro, this Red Sox-Royals game feels like the most irrelevant game i’ve covered since I started this beat in 2002. I was lucky to have four highly eventful years, and this season is closing out like a train wreck. Five losses in a row to the Kansas City Royals? At least they snapped out of it today.

Julian Tavarez is fun to watch when he’s on his game, isn’t he? And Big Papi launched one for the first time since his two-day stay at Mass. General. Just two more homers and Ortiz ties Double-X for the team record. It would be nice to see him hit No. 51 at Fenway, but i’m thinking he gets it at Yankee Stadium.

After the game, as I was finishing my gamestory, I couldn’t help but look down on the field, where Theo Epstein was taking part in batting practice in what was apparently an event involving his charity, A Foundation to be Named Later. His performance included a lot of infield grounders, but also a couple of basehits to left and left-center. I can see why he didn’t break any baseball records at Brookline High. But it should also be noted that Theo did help pick up the baseballs after his round was over.

Feel free to chime in with Patriots game thoughts on today’s blog. Who’d have thunk they would have won the game on a safety by Ty Warren.

Later,

Ian.

79 Comments

ok, mariano rivera has never had an era that wasn’t under 3 as a reliever, he has closed out three world series and was a major aspect of a 4th. He has closed out countless alcs and alds’s with just what? 4 blown saves in 40+ attempts in the worlds biggest stage?

This will be his 4th consecutive year with an era UNDER 2, so whoever syas he is not feared and is losing his edge is crazy…he is putting up the best numbers of his career of late and htis year his era is 1.90 and he is 33/36 this season. Oh and yeah he has 412 saves! He has and has continued to dominate the entire league for a decade now. His career era is 2.30 and that is thanks mainly in part to his era of 5.19 as a starter in 67 innings his rookie year, without that his career era borders 2.

Try and tell me that is not the most dominating closer stats of all time….you can’t compare him to a starter because he has revolutionized an entire position by himself, much like ortiz could if he continues to put up his numbers for another 5 or 6 years.

He is irreplaceable, the testamant to this? Nobody has ever been in his situation…sure trevor hoffman has 400 saves but he doesn’t have 4 rings, or a career playoff era under 2. He was in the ws once and he blew it to scott brosius and the yankees. Oh and btw rivera also has a world series mvp and has finished in the top 3 of cy young candidates multiple times AS A CLOSER.

Papelbon was going to put together ONE solid season and did not even do that too nicely…he had what, 6 or 7 blown saves and didn’t stay healthy? I would have said eric gagne could have deemed rivera not irreplaceable but he hasn’t pitched now in over two years…his record of dominance stretched across like 3 or 4 seasons, not 10….give credit where credit is due, mariano rivera is irreplaceable

Posted by: yankeevmm@yahoo.com | September 10, 2006 12:07 PM

in case anybody missed it

This is bordering on pathetic. I really don’t want to give up on the season, but when the Sox can’t even win a series against KC at Fenway, what can you expect from them against the Yankees and Twins? I think my best strategy for keeping my spirits up may be to stop looking at the standings and just enjoy lisyening to each game on its own merits. Unfortunately, the last few games have been anything but meritorious.

I’d make a fuss about all the recent Yankee talk on this blog, but the Sox haven’t given much good to talk about, so what the heck. Not that I’m down on the players; with one or two exceptions I don’t think any of them have given up. If anything, it makes me admire them even more for at least going out there on the field every day when they know their season is all but over.

So I’ll keep listening to the games and hoping for a miracle. But at the same time I offer my respect to those teams (yes, even the Yankees) who have toughed it out through the difficulties that every team has, and made it to the end on top, and hope for some exciting postseason baseball.

Sigh, Sox baseball is getting to be irrelevent in my life now…

Pats game: off to a pretty awful start; defense not doin their thing, down 10-7… to the Bills…

Cmon, Pats… Boston needs ONE successful team this year!

Hey jamie, why arent you reading all those pages that you need to if Boston baseball is irrelevant?? Man I guess if the Sox aren’t winning, to you they are irrelevant??, and you need to take some time for spelling too, if they are nothing to you now.

Ian, I think that we’ve had a great run and the Sox gave us at least more than 1/2 a season of very exciting ball. Being that I live in So. Florida, I haven’t had much up close exposure to the Sox, and up until this year was unable to see them live unless it was on Fox or ESPN. To be able to watch my Sox every day that they’ve played this year, minus the ones that I had to work, has been an incredible experience. I plan to have mlb.com again next year. It breaks my heart to have people say now that RedSox baseball means nothing now. I have gone throught the heartbreak of the RedSox over the years just as the hometowners have. Maybe it’s just me and the fact that I love baseball, and I love the Sox, but I just can’t see anything irrelevant (except that we are not going to be in post season play) about RedSox Baseball.

Bright spot, though just a small one: Sox win one!!
You know, when December and January roll around, and I’m popping in Fever Pitch or watching Major League (for the umpteenth time), I’ll be begging to see even these lousy series against the Royals, Devil Rays etc.

Hey ellen, don’t forget Bull Durham, Eight Men Out and Field of Dreams!

So JT gets his first decision as a Red Sox starter. Not exactly stellar, but good enough for the win. Plus the bullpen went 3.2 giving up one hit and no runs, which is nice to see. Sorry to hear Manny took himself out of the lineup, but I guess they didn’t need him anyway.

All great movies. I still closet watch the one where the kid inherits the Twins. Strictly feel good but baseball none the less.

don’t forget “it happens every spring” and angels in the outfield too haha….oh and of course for all you sox fans…PINSTRIPE POWER. I love that movie

My recent discovery was “For Love of the Game” – great baseball film enhanced by watching Costner throw perfect at the Spankees :}

As for questions to ponder, Sox fans got spoiled the last few years (as have Braves fans over the last decade-plus, expecting a Series win, or at least an appearance, every time). A couple of things though:

1) Wonder why with all the pitching holes to fill, Tito didn’t consider Tavarez sooner. Went through every second-rate player cut by lower teams (Cleve, Colo, even KC for gawdsakes), before in desperation finding the one place “the other Z” could actually do something good. he had been better in 2-3 inning stints than in tough relief … Who knew?

2) Josh Beckett will continue to struggle until he learns ONE thing: a change-up that is at least 10-15 mph slower than his worst fastball! Wells should have been able to teach it to him (Schiling clearly should have! For that matter, Al Nipper LIVED off the changing speeds, and had NO killer fastball at all …) If he ever gets off his “I am the Heatman” kick, and learns to listen to his catcher a bit … Cy Young is not out of the question, and he will become the closer the Sox need.

3) Using the rookies as they did … I hope it makes them stronger not just spooked. Delcarmen, Hansen, Lester (I expect he’ll be fine once he recovers from the ‘treatment’), the kid from the Sea Dogs they brought up … A lot of promise in there, and then there’s Papelbon if he gets to be a starter …

4) Hope they don’t clean house with some of the vets they picked up: Loretta and Lowell were a breath of fresh air; if Trot must leave, WMP can fill the spot; Crispie I need to see healthy to judge; …

It’s been another Red Sox season, to be sure. I got to be there twice in August: saw Wells in his last two Fenway appearances, beating Tiggers; and then just losing that 2-1 thing to end the NYY mess,in the only good baseball game that weeekend. Had roof box seat for the last one, with my Dad and two brothers. (also got the Can Man’s ‘graph) Sweet even as a loss.

My all time favorite is Pride of the Yankee’s..

Something completely away from baseball: We as SoxFans and baseball fans are sitting here tonight either praising our teams or dreaming of next year. It took a movie on TV to remind me what tomorrow is. It’s the 5 year anniversary of the 9-11 attacks on the Towers in NY, The Pentagon and the Flight that went down in Pennsylvania. The world really stopped for us as Americans that day 5 years ago. We really didn’t think about baseball, or much else other than the people who were directly affected, and if another attack was going to take place and if it was, where?? It’s amazing how it takes something major like the attacks on the TwinTowers to bring our minds back into perspective, and remeber that baseball is just a game.
I know that anniversaries are usually happy events, but this one obviously not.

My sympathies to all of those who lost loved ones in the attacks. My deep and blessed thanks to the brave women and men of the NYFD/NYPD who put their lives on holds and on the line so that life could go back to ?normal?. They worked long and hard, and went far beyond the call of duty… I think that for them it was personal. If you know a Firefighter or Police Officer, or when you see one tomorrow, you might just say Hi, or Thank you for the job that you do.

Amen.

I’m glad that the guys (and we) have the night off. I hope that everyone took the time today to remember 9-11 and the family members that lost loved ones to the Barbaric terrorist attack of 5 years ago. God Bless and keep them.
Well we’ve got Baltimore and Cabrera tomorrow night, hope we can kick some butt and possibly make up a little ground, I realize that we are all but done, still I’d like for the Sox to finish a few less games out of 1st and out of the wild card chase. GO SOX!!

Jamie, are you getting any of your reading done?? lol

It was a tough year to watch, exciting around the total domination of the national league, and painfull around the depleted lineup august dog days. I’ll still watch like I have over the last 30 years. Don’t get too down on the sox, I imagine even with most of the players back, it’s tough on them knowing what happened in the standings. The excitement and thrill of a September stretch run out of reach. Worrying about the fallen Lester, the Papi scare. Losing Wakefield (team leader in wins last year) for most of the second half. Losing Clement for same, missing Wells for most of the season. Those 3 guys were the go-to guys for much of last year. Throwing out other starters to just fill the role had to hurt the core players, much of whom had to watch it from the stands, or on TV. Lets take out any teams (including the yankees) starting pitching core, not to mention thier team leader, and the numbers 3-4 spots, most of the outfield and see if they even have a winning record when its all said and done. Then throw in the bullpen woes, losing Timlin (when Timlin was going great) losing Foulke again, getting half-*** performances from the touted pick-ups of seanez and tavarez, then losing the rookie phenom to top it off. No team, (including the daddy warbucks team) could go thru this and make it to the postseason against other healthy teams. Teams that aren’t that far back in the talent pool. I’m grateful that Papi’s okay, I pray for Lester, and I hope the sox get the starting rotation together for next year and have some capable arms in the pen. The rest is great. If we had Wakefield for the season, and Clement pitching like he can do, then we would be on top of the wildcard race minimum. After all the turmoil were only 7 out from wildcard and 10 from team *******. Too late, but expected from the losses. Has any other team suffered thru such an injury plagued season in any sport ever?

d: I agree totally with you re the losses, but you will get rebuttal from Yankee and other fans that they lost just as much. That could well be the case, but they didn’t lose everyone in such a very short period of time.
I have loved the Sox for over 40 years, I wasn’t always as focused a fan as I have been in the past 20, but have loved them through everything, win,lose, Bucky Freakin’ Dent, Billy Bucks (whom I Dearly love) and everything else that they have endured, I will continue to love and watch them, as I suspect you will, Come H*E*L*L or high water (or anything else that comes their way.. From one die- hard to another…GO SOX!!!

huys, it football season now. no matter what the sox do i usually always focus on football this time of the year (03 and 04 were the only exemptions).

Didn’t lose key players? Key starters? Not in a short amount of time? Are you all kidding me? Matsui and sheffield were injured THE SAME WEEK of each other. Jeter, giambi, posada, damon matsui, sheffield and farnsworth were all hurt at the same time. Even now rivera, up until today cairo, sheffield, matsui (until tomorrow), and pavano are hurt compared to lester, clement, wakefield and papelbon. You guys lost your starters but let’s break that down.

Wakefield: leader in wins last year, but what does that say about this year? Certainly does not excuse a losing record and single digit wins when he played more than half the season. You can’t bring up what he has done in the past to harp about how valuable he was THIS season.

Clement? a main man last year? Really? I didn’t know being successful for half a season made you a main man, in that case kevin brown was HUGE for us his first season, and vazquez was amazing too. Please, clement was awful down the stretch when they needed him most and many sox fans agree they are almost glad he didn’t play this year. Not to mention clement-Pavano=wash.

Wells? Yeah he was so valuable you traded him, he struggled pre injury and for awhile after he came back, if you were going to put all your money on a 40+ year old that’s not saying much for building for the future. If wells was the secret to the collapse, then perhaops the arroyo deal didn’t pay off too much. Oh and hello? The sox have lost 3.5 games in the standings since the injuries all happened (when i say all i mean manny ortiz lester and company, not the pre injuries of varitek clement nixon and wells). You disregard the fact with the same amount of health as the yankees (who at the time were missing cairo sheffield matsui phillips pavano dotel) you guys dropped 6.5 games in the standings. Varitek, nixon, clement, wakefield, and lester were all struggling horribly when they were injured and you blame struggling players as the reason for a lost year? and then try to say the yankees losses don’t match up? That is a dying argument and after your boy ortiz’s comments today it is becoming increasingly obvious that most of you would rather create a dozen excuses for a problem you had since the all star break. You guys have been inconsistant since the all star break! Not the last few weeks of injury after injury, well before that and i’m sorry, condolences to lester, i hope he heals but a guy who couldn’t pitch into the 6th is not the reason you fell apart.

Maybe for once, you guys should evaluate seanez tavaraz delcarmen hansen wakefield before injury, varitek and nixon’s numbers, the way lowell has become worse each month, timlin’s age and all the other things that were underachieved this year. Not from injury necessarily, but from simply not playing up to expectations. How about beckett? why isn’t he the reason this season was a bust, the ace who can’t get his era under 5 and who has barely won down the stretch injuries or not.

I love it, these guys were huge last year (wake, clement wells) so therefore underachieving this year and then they get injured THIS year and they are the reason for the collapse. That makes no sense, plain and simple. My god, this is a historically proud franchise. One that doesn’t make excuses (except for the whole curse thing), one that is proud of their team even with all of its misery and yet this year they are the martyrs? The yankees deserve no respect? They faced no adversity and the division was handed to them? Please. Grow up.

Tell me something, before we signed abreu to improve our team at the half way point and if anything else, add depth even if we didn’t need improvement (something the sox did not do), what did you consider shef and matsui? Ok, a rod and giambi were 3-4 but how many teams is matsui and shef a 3-4? And with a rod’s struggles how improved and consistant could shef and matsui have been for our offense? You overlook that, you look at manny and ortiz injured for 1-2 weeks rather than 4 months as the bigger issue…when they were already 7 games out. You wanna know why you didn’t win the division this year? Your record vs the AL. Plain and simple, even before every injury minus clement wells and foulke (all 3 of which were terrible before injury anyway) you guys did not have a great AL record. You need to beat the teams you play, you need to take advantage when another team is hurt, and you didn’t. Yes, maybe if you didn’t get awful injuries all at once you don’t lose the division by 10 games (a realistic prediction) but that sure as **** doesn’t guarantee you come back from 6.5 down to come back on the yankees, a historically great 2nd half regular season team and take the division, especially considering the 4 remaining games were in yankee stadium….most of you predicted the sox win 3 of 5 from the yankees at home during that 5 game series, but now after the fact it is the injuries. Why were you all so confident before the series? Why weren’t the injuries a problem then? Then you lose all 5 and get more injuries and all of a sudden that is why you didn’t take care of business? This is just pathetic

Boston now 10.5 games out…all due to injuries…so sad!!!! Magic number Francona is 10!!!

Hi, All:

Taking a few minutes to catch up on the posts. Since this is a Red Sox blog – a forum for Sox fans to vent, debate and share their highs and lows – I’m not going to spend much time talking about the Yankees. They have endured a long season and they have earned their place in the playoffs. I’m not concerned at all that they will advance past the first round.

The bottom line is that key injuries to guys like Wakefield, Varitek, Nixon, Schilling (on and off), and Crisp (early on, which derailed his entire season)were crucial. The bullpen was very inconsistent. Truth be told, the team didn’t perform up to expectactions, even when everyone was healthy, but injuries did play a key role in the second half downfall. They likely would have reached the playoffs with a healthy Wake, Varitek, Clement, Wells and Nixon, but now that is just subject to debate because they weren’t healthy, and the Sox are not going to the playoffs.

Lowell and Loretta are bright spots. I do hope that Lowell returns next season. He is solid at the plate and in the field. Pena is a bright spot as well. I think he can become an all-star caliber right-fielder with his ability to hit for average and power, even with his tendency to strikeout. Hansen and Delcarmen are bright spots as well. They have had ups and downs, but it is obvious they will be solid relievers – hopefully for the Sox unless one or the other is packaged in am off-season deal. Bryan Corey and Craig Breslow look promising for next year’s bullpen as well.

It is disappointing the way the second half transpired, but that is what happens sometimes in baseball. Even though I’m just 38, I am a sage veteran as a Red Sox fan since I have closely followed the team and the sport since I was 7. It’s a given that some seasons you have the highs that 2003-2005 brought, and others produce the lows of 2006. Epstein will do what is necessary to put a World Series contender on the field in 2007. There will be some major moves, and big names coming to Boston, and perhaps a few big names leaving. So I will follow the Steelers and Celtics through the winter and look forward to spring training, and the new-look Sox. It would be nice to end the season on a winning note, and it is exciting to see future stars like Pedrioa and Murphy get their feet wet. As I mentioned, regardless of where the Sox are in the standings, I follow each game with the same emotion as if they are in first place. That is what a true fan does. In the playoffs, I’m pulling for San Diego with all of their former Sox. I’m shocked about the Twins. Looks like they may have a strong chance of winning the AL Central. I would like to see a Cinderella story like the Twins or the Tigers win the World Series.

Once the regular season ends, I’m going to still visit the Sox blog, but I’m also going to start posting on the Celtics blog. Not sure who on here are Celtics fans. I’m a die-hard – have been since the 70s – but as devoted as I am to the Celtics (as well as the Steelers and Ohio State Buckeyes), it pales in comparison to the Red Sox, thus the reason I enjoy all the Hot Stove League talk in the off-season.

Are the Celtics any good? I haven’t seen any of their games or followed them for… 4 years now?

The Celtics have some good young players, and likely will make a deal or two before the regular season begins. They are anchored by Pierce and Sczerbiak. Young guys like Kendrick Perkins, Ryan Gomes, Delonte West and Sebastian Telfair are promising, but it looks to me like they are a .500 team at best this season.

Can Theo hire Tom Brady to teach Ortiz how to conduct himself with some class. Ortiz is bordering on BEGGING for the mvp award.

as much as I hate the patriots, I really REALLY respect Brady not just because he is a winner but also for how gracious he was after the loss to Denver last year. Brady is the Jeter’s equivalent of football. Unlike Peyton.

As far as baseball movies go, I do like Fever Pitch, because it perfectly describes the lunacy and devotion of die-hard Sox fans in a humourously exagerrated manner. It’s not my favorite, though. Field of Dreams and Bull Durham are. For Love of the Game was a good one, too. Eight Men Out, Cobb and Maris were good ones regarding baseball history. One movie that rarely gets mentioned, but was good even though it depicts a fictional Yankees team, is Bang the Drum Slowly. It was one of Robert DeNiro’s early films, from the early 70s, I think. He stars as a catcher who afflicted with cancer.

Of course, as far as all-time sports movies go, who could not mention Brian’s Song as one of the best ever.

Field of Dreams captivated me lol

“If you build it, he will come”…

Shoeless Joe, which is the book the movie was based on, was a pretty good read too. If you liked the movie, i recommend the book to you too. Loved Brian’s Song too.

Hello everyone.

Yeah, I still hate Rivera. You all can say whatever you want.

Hmm, gee, you know what my favorite article to read today was? The one in the Boston Globe where Papi was talking about the MVP award. I think it was the most gracious article. So **** it up.

I don’t like Rivera, just as I don’t like any of the Yankees, but I do think he is one of the top five closers in modern baseball history. You have to include Trevor Hoffman as well. I would like to see Big Papi get the MVP, and I think he deserves it – as he did last year – but it will likely go to someone like Jermaine Dye (if the White Sox reach the playoffs). I don’t care too much about individual awards. I’m more into playoff appearances, which the Sox usually provide.

Sorry, I’m not trying to be a jerk, so please, don’t anyone take it personally. I wasn’t intentionally trying to hurt anyone’s feelings. I re-read what I wrote, felt bad about it, still stick by it, but I wanted to apologize for sounding snotty.

dreinbold: I said that you’d be rebutted on the subject; if you go to our roster list on the main page, the drop menu gives an injury submenu, it shows just how quickly everyone went on the dl. You, jlouderback, myself and MOST of the rest of our Sox fans have accepted our fate this season, and it’s just good? argument for the yankee fans (with exception to our regular GENTLEMEN)to throw it up that they too had injuries. Yes they did but their injuries didnt happen all at once. I swear this rivalry all goes back to ‘well my daddy is tougher than your daddy, and my daddy can beat your daddy up” Well Soxfans, we just couldn’t beat their daddy up this year. That not withstanding, AS GREAT, TRUE AND LOYAL FANS, OUR FANDADDY CAN BEAT UP THEIR FAN DADDY! Hey, I love our blog and all of our NATIONERS and MOST of our regular Yankee bloggers have been far more than polite all season, I respect them for that, it’s the sams that come onto our blog that feel the need at this point of the season to hurl onto our world, that I sent that one out to! I AM A TRUE NATIONER THROUGH AND THROUGH, AND NOTHING ANYTIME, ANYWHERE WILL EVER CHANGE THAT!!

That and I’m tired and I’m ready to go to Baltimore to see the boys play. I have about 6 posters, so look for them behind the Red Sox dugout. :) They say:

MVP #34 David Ortiz (with a beautiful picture of him hitting a walk-off HR off the Yankees)

The Baltimore mascot with a Boston hat on saying, “Hey Theo! Can I have a shot in the rotation, too?”

The ultimate every Red Sox must have, “We still believe”

A “Wanted” poster of Jerry Remy and Don Orsillo, with the missing Remy head. :-P It says, “Wanted. Reward $50,000. Person or persons responsible for the removal of Remdawg’s head. http://www.whosthewiseguy.com

We’re going to think of a few more on the way up, but we want to have a good variety. :)

I’ll have my blue Varitek shirt on with a red hat, just in case you see me. :)

Good call for movies jeff, though I REALLY enjoy (GOD HELP ME) Pride of the Yankees

Never saw Pride of the Yankees, and I didn’t like the Babe movie that John Goodman was in. Terrible acting. I haven’t seen the Michael Keaton movie centered around the 1986 World Series. I don’t particularly care to rehash that either! About Bill Buckner, I do think he belongs in the Hall of Fame. He had a remarkable career. It is unfortunate that he is remembered for one play.

if you don’t mind a “good cry” movie, Pride is it!! It’s base don Lou Gehrigs life, Gary Cooper starred.

Good Night y’all, interviews in the A.M., please, please, wish me luck!! See you tomorrow afternoon!

not wanting to start a pointless arguement but:
yeah the yanks lost of offense in shef and matsui but accoring to everyone and their brother, the yanks started the season with NINE guys in the lineup that can beat you. 9-2=7. sven guys in the lineup that can beat you is still pretty good (and now they have abreu, 8).

8 of the 9 opening day starters for the sox have missed at least 6 straight games with injury(not sure about youk) and 2 weeks ago, the lineup looked like a devil ray lineup.

the sox are currently without 80% of their rotation (schill, wake, clement, lester) and their potential ROY closer.

now im not comparing injuries or blaming faliures on injuries cause if everyone had been healthy, the result would be unknown. (meaning that if anyone mentions injuries again, im gonna jump off a bridge [not really im just sick of hearing everyone's (including yankee fanss) complaing who's injuries were more severe.])

does anyone have any idea where papelbon will pitch next year? i dont think there is a reliable reliever out there and replacing from within is probably not the brightest idea.

I read recently where the Sox will likely keep Paplebon in the closer’s role since there are no top-line closers on the free-agent market. Of course, the Sox could always get someone in a trade.

haha after the world series I will go straight to rooting for the giants, but prob no blogging with them, i don’t have the same sort of die for my team passion that i do with the yankees. Pro basketball is a lost cause, the knicks will never win anything with thomas in their front office…I can at least half assed root for the heat but that is not nearly as fun

Im not going to get into a war of words over injuries, yes the yankees had thier share, but you can’t tell me a year with wells, wake & clement as apposed to the never ending string of starters used in thier place wouldn’t have made the difference between where we are now, and where we should be. Ya Clement hasn’t been the same since he got hit, but he would have put up better numbers then his replacements and saved the overworked bullpen some valuable innings. Same and then some goes to Wake and Wells. The real killer is Foulke and Timlin, the heart of the bullpen over the past few seasons. Anyway, after the sox are eliminated I’m cheering for the Twinkies and anyone playing the Yankees. Can’t see the yankees making it anywhere with the pitching staff they have. Moose is old and getting older same for Johnson. Wang should wake up any day now, which leaves them with nothing. They will have to hit thier way to the series, which could happen but usually doesn’t. When was the last time they won anything anyway? Maybe they should up the payroll to that of the whole National League then they could sign a couple more charactorless players like the drones they have now. Then lose in the end again to some upstart team like the Marlins.

your evident ignorance betrays any chance of recognizable intellect.

Let your blind hatred guide you down the spiral of bitterness and unsportsmanlike immaturity, it only bodes well with the random yankee fans that will come on here and surely continue harrassing you with illadvised and inaccurate statements like that one.

Timlin and foulke are no longer effective, plain and simple, perhaps a deal by the 2nd highest payroll in baseball as you like to recognize the yankees as the 1st, would have been useful at the deadline. Then again, I forgot, you act like you cheer for a small market team instead.

wang waking up any day now? He is 17-5, give it a rest. The guy is 25-10 in his career. What you don’t know or choose to ignore between the redsox and yankees players and their stats this year, can surely fill fenway park.

It’s tough to say the Yanks have “characterless players”. They were able to hang in when they were on the ropes for a good part of the season because the core of the team is pretty solid in that department. Jeter is a tough competitor as is Damon, Rivera, Cano, Cabrera (heck of a job for a rookie in tough spots), and a number of the others. Torre has constantly preached in his 11 year tenure not to get “too high or too low” because the season is just too long to live on emotion. He has always said to keep grinding. That is not an absence of character.

I really believe the Red Sox had it worse than the Yankees in the injury department but the Schilling, Ortiz, Papelbon, and Manny maladies all came too late to do much about the Yankees (at least I think so). I don’t think Francona can be blamed…I’m just saying Torre was a real good guy to have at the helm for the Yankees in the spot they were in this year.

Torre will win manager of the year.

Francona’s doing pretty decent under the conditions too. If I were in his shoes, I wouldn’t died a long time ago lol

oddly enough i think leyland will win MOY award. Along with girardi. Unfortunately I think omar minaya has more to do with the mets success than randolph, but you cannot point to anything except girardi to explain the marlins….and the tigers recovering this quickly from 119 losses and making the playoffs (potentially) along with how much success they have had, leads me to believe torre won’t win….i know that’s weird coming from me but whatever.

oh also factoring in the division the tigers play in this year along with the fact nobody in their division really fell apart from injuries is another reason

the fact that leyland and girardi took teams that hardly anyone expected to finish above .500 will be enough for the voters

“Let your blind hatred guide you down the spiral of bitterness and unsportsmanlike immaturity” says the Yankee fan who comes on to the Red Sox website to blog. Also, for a person who told me shut my mouth etc. for ragging on him, saying something like “your evident ignorance betrays any chance of recognizable intellect” takes the biscuit. I can argue baseball yankeemm, and I agree with a lot of what you say (I was at a Yankee game watching Rivera and explaining to the guys who were with me, who don’t know baseball, that they were watching the best closer ever), but is that not making it a bit too personal?

On another topic, has anybody been getting a lot of junk mail recently? I recognized some of the email addresses on one of them from this blog. People wanting to invest money for me and what not. Like that would be a wise move.

yes, it was making it personal.

I too have been getting a lot of junk mail.

and regardless of what blog I comment on, it will never let me feel eligible to blog a bunch of brutal opinions about another team with no statistical backing or evidence to back it up.

btw how does redsox nation feel about ortiz’s comments? It has been grilled (obviously) on the yankees blog and lately a lot in the media, but I have not seen anybody comment on it here. All i can say is that play jeter just made is something ortiz obviously doesn’t quite understand

Of course it’s something Ortiz doesn’t understand, he weighs 100 lbs. more

Gabbard keeps averting danger. Keep it up Kason
I think a bright spot for our team in the next 5-10 yrs are all our young pitchers. First off I think throwing Pap, Lester, Beckett as our top 3 for several years to come COULD be the best 3 in the league. The thing is we have other darkhorses too, like Gabbard, another lefty. Also people forget about David Pauley and how well he pitched that night at Yankee Stadium when Melky robbed Manny. He seems just like a little Derek Lowe. Obviously we could also get a big name starter off free agency as well, but those 5 names seem pretty solid. If pitching wins championships, the Sox could become a nasty team for years to come.

I don’t have a problem with Ortiz’s comments. He has a right to say what he wants, and that’s what makes him the competitor and clutch performer that he is, the fact that he thinks he is the best at what he does. Now he won’t win nor he should b/c BOS is staying home in OCT.

I am still on the Dye bandwagon if CHI makes the postseason. His numbers are similar if not better than Jeter’s. About 20 more RBIs, 30 more HRs and 25 pts less in ba. Its not as if hes hitting 285, the guy is hitting a very respectable 320. And he plays defense (since that seems so important to you), very well I might add. I saw 1 play at Fenway last Wednesday that was dazzling. Jeter probably will win however b/c of the city he plays in and his “status” outside of baseball.

rizzo just out of curiosity, did you actually read the entire article? he said far more than that he just deserved the mvp, he also insulted the rest of his own team and defaced everything except rbi’s and homeruns as a stat. Plus completely contradicted himself in his own criteria of an mvp saying he won’t get the mvp because his team is missing the playoffs even though a rod won it in last place with texas then goes on to say he would give it to die or morneau depending on who made the playoffs.

haha dye not die.

I just don’t see why there was any reason whatsoever to bring jeter into it, he could have very well whined about deserving the mvp 10.5 games out of first without even mentioning jeter.

oh btw mussina certainly showing his age tonight, 6.1 innings 3 hits no runs so far

I agree about the future of the Sox pitching, Rizzo. I think Beckett will be a solid 1 or 2. I imagine that Papelbon will remain the closer next season, unless they find someone in a trade. Lester has a tremendous upside, which may be delayed next season as he recovers from cancer. I think Gabbard can be a decent starter. But the most promising guys are Daniel Bard, Clay Buchholz and Michael Bowden. It’s encouraging that the Sox can combine some homegrown starting pitching with free agents and guys they get via trade versus having to go outside the organization for the entire rotation. I imagine Bard, Buchholz and Bowden are a few years away, but at least they are in the system. Gabbard can make a difference next season. Not so sure about Pauley.

see? That was perfect. A perfect post from Jeff. He shared his opinion, gave some upside to his team, mentioned some additonal stats to support his theories and not one mention of the yankees. Both fan bases, for whatever reason, whenever they make a comment about their own team, particularly about the future, seem determined to bring down the opposing team while they do it. I don’t understand it. Anyway the whole point of this was to congratulate jeff on his comment without adding “unlike the yankees, who have a barren farm system, phillip hughes, tyler clippard, steven white, jb brentcox and every other yankee pitching prospect will be a bust, they are doomed for the future!”

so thank you, jeff.

…and Timlin doesn’t actually blow a 5-run lead. Surprise of my life.

I agree, Vince, both Sox and Yankees fans sometimes get personal and carried away with their comments about the other team since the rivalry is more intense than any other in baseball – and perhaps all of professional sports. I think the reason people on this blog react the way they do sometimes is that this is a Red Sox fan blog, and sometimes Sox fans just want to debate, vent and share with other Sox fans without hearing opinions from Yankees fans, just as I would think that Yankees fan bloggers feel the same about hearing from Sox fans. If someone has an opinion, there is nothing wrong with stating it – such as my opinion that the Yankees will not advance past the first round because of their pitching. Yet it is wrong to launch a personal attack or post a baseless and immature comment like, “the Yankees s**k or the Sox s**k.” I like intelligent debate, but I don’t like it when someone makes a personal attack or someone posts who obviously does not understand the game or has no clue about what he or she is talking about. For example, I would not comment on the Yankees prospects because I don’t know much about them. Anyway, there will always be strong opinions back and forth between the Sox and Yankees, especially when a Sox fan enters a Yankees blog and vice versa.

Regarding the MVP, I think Ortiz deserves it as he did last year, but it will likely go to Dye or Morneau. Jeter is definitely in the mix. There is no doubt that Leyland deserved manager of the year. What he did reviving the Tigers is remarkable, even if they fold and miss the playoffs. Girardi and Grady Little deserve consideration in the NL. I’m an ardent supporter of Francona, but I think that Little should not have lost his job because of what happened with Pedro. Little is a great baseball mind who relates with his players. Firing Francona would be a bad move, in my opinion. Hopefully, that doesn’t happen.

Yankeemm – I agree, except for one thing. There was a quote I heard on the YES network, who were in turn quoting the Dodgers commentator was something along the lines of: “Statistics are used in baseball like a drunk man uses a lamp post – for support but not for illumination”. There is no point in using them just to support your own point (and I don’t mean you personally, I mean the collective you) without giving the full picture.

As as arbitrary example, saying the Sox are second behind the Yankees in payroll is a somewhat spurious argument, seeing as the Sox payroll is approx. 60% of the Yankees payroll. That is by no means to say the Sox are a small market team. But just saying they are second does not give the whole picture.

One more thing. I'[m hoping the Sox use a committee that does not include Timlin in the closer’s role for the remainder of the season. Hansen is pitching much better since his brief stint at Pawtucket. Maybe a combination of Javier Lopez, Delcarmen and Hansen the rest of the way would be ideal. Timlin just can’t be relied upon to get key outs anymore. He rarely has an appearance where he doesn’t give up a few hits – and in recent weeks – at least a few runs. I know it is unlikely the Sox will even mount a run for the playoffs, but it would be nice if they can actually win games that they are ahead in the eighth and ninth innings.

By the way, one thing I am in agreement with you on is Wang. I know he pitched a bit last year but not enough to know for sure what he was like. At the start of the year the Yankees placed a lot of faith in him, even back in Spring Training I heard stuff about that, and they have always rated him very highly. That’s been rewarded this year. It’s a toss up between him and Santana for the Cy Young I would say.

You’re right, Brendan. Stats are not always a true indicator of what will happen on the field. I do agree that the Yankees have an advantage that no other team has because of their unlimited payroll, yet the Sox do have a healthy payroll and an ability to put a team on the field that legitimately competes with the Yankees. What separates them is that the Yankees can afford to have a free agent signing that doesn’t reap the expected results (like Pavano, Kevin Brown, etc.) while the Sox cannot afford it (Clement, Wells, etc.) That is why Epstein is under a lot of pressure to make beneficial trades and wise free agent signings. The Sox farm system is getting stronger and stronger each year, which will help tremendously since Epstein will not have to solely rely on trades and the free agent market to field a winner.

One more thing before I go to bed. I would like some feedback on this opinion. I think that Epstein will and should strongly consider dealing Manny in the off-season. If we could get Santana, Kendrick and another top young player from the Angels or Lastings Milledge, Aaron Heilman and another top young player from the Mets, I think Epstein should make the deal. The Sox can bring in someone like Carlos Lee to play left field or sign a big bat to play first or third. I think the Sox will keep Youkilis and deal Lowell in the off-season. I’m not sure what they will do about A Gonz and Loretta.

Anyway, I think that if you can get three good players in exchange for one great one (who likely has 3-4 healthy years left), you should make that deal. I like Manny, and I think he is THE best all-around hitter in baseball, but I think that it is time the sox went in another direction.

I don’t think anybody except santana will win the cy but wang is definitely turning a few heads. I agree, it is noteworthy that the yankees have a payroll 60 million higher than the sox, but it is like saying the sox should be eliminated from baseball/cheat to win games because their payroll is more than 100 million more than the marlins, it just doesn’t make sense to bring it up. Every team is not going to have the same payroll and rightfully so, if the twins owner is going to line his pockets with the extra income and keep his team low so he can profit the luxery tax then why would the twins deserve the same payroll with that owner as one like steinbrenner who uses as much money as he humanly can to win? The redsox make a ton of money, i mean a lot, they have a national network, sold out crowds every game, tons of support everywhere and they sell out visiting stadiums, they deserve their payroll but they can also afford to raise it, john henry as an owner, decides against it. The yankees have 20,000 more seats, have been in the playoffs for 11 years (including years where they did not have a massive payroll) so factor in all those home pkayoff games and benefits of 4 rings, have alwyas been selling out visiting stadiums and have a city of 9 million surrounding their stadium and like i said, steinbrenner is willing to spend it, it is not worth bringing up. most owners have millions upon millions and they choose what they want to spend, george spends more than all owners so implying things like the yankees don’t deserve to win because of their payroll doesn’t tell the whole story either. And please, everybody is entitled to a 6 year drought, we have 26 championships, coming from a redsox fan you are just asking for ridicule making fun of the fact the yankees haven’t won recently. And if you use jeff’s formula of success the yankees have remained successful even without a ring in the last 6 years/this millenium whichever other little trivial facts you want to use to feel good about yourselfs

jeff I honestly don’t think the angels would make a deal for kendrick santana AND another prospect…As far as I have gathered, santana is HIGHLY regarded by the angels and kendrick has had immediate success…..the angels as the team they seem to be with soscia as their coach i doubt would want a questionable clubhouse personality, an aging veteran and a weak defender in exchange for two future superstars and another up and coming prospect….if i were them i would never make that deal

and just like you can get carlos lee, so can they, they have the gm to spend the money and then they get to save their prospects

There’s no way Minaya makes a Milledge-and-Heilman deal for Manny, much less a Milledge-Heilman-Plus for Manny. Not happening. I don’t see the Angels giving up their future, either – the Angels are already aging. Certainly they won’t do it for Manny’s contract.

You’d be very hard-pressed to find someone to take Manny. As great a hitter as he is (and he is great, I’ve already posted about that), he comes with too much baggage. Red Sox Nation looks the other way on it, because he’s your baggage, but he doesn’t get away with it elsewhere in the league.

Put it this way: he’s far more valuable to the Red Sox organization than he is to any other team. And, paradoxically, the Red Sox are far more desperate to be rid of him than any other team is to add him to their lineup. If you get three “good” players for Manny, it would be larceny on the order of Kearns-and-Lopez-for-four-middling-relievers.

A more realistic case might be Manny + a prospect arm for two top young players, a prospect / average player, AND the Red Sox eat a healthy chunk of Manny’s contract. The teams that could eat Manny’s contract don’t need him (you could make a case for the Angels, but why would they take that contract when Carlos Lee is cheaper, younger, and good enough to protect Vlad?). But then the Sox are gonna be hard-pressed to replace Manny’s bat on their “operating” budget. Could be fun to see if ownership ponies up some of them profits, huh?

I am sure you know that making fun of the Yankees for not having won since 2000 is just enjoying a) the first time the Sox have won a championship more recently than the Yankees in 75 years or so and b) a little bit of payback for the years and years of having to put up with gloating done by Yankee fans. Not that I was around for a lot of it.

Dola.

As a reminder, a couple years ago nobody in baseball would make a Manny + His Contract for a handshake and a warm smile. I’m sure everyone remembers that, and that’s going to HARM Theo’s bargaining position.

I brought up Santana/Kendrick with the Angels and Milledge/Heilman with the Mets because those were actual deals tht were discussed last year. Now Manny has one less year on his contract. The Angels and the Mets are teams that are very interested in Manny and would make a deal. I do agree that the Sox will have to eat some of Manny’s contract, which would be worth it if management felt it could afford doing so and forking out the dough to get a guy like Carlos Lee (or if they would get Milledge in a deal, a big bat at first or third base to protect Big Papi. I still think the Sox will deal Crisp and try to get Andruw Jones. If they do that, perhaps they wouldn’t deal Manny. Regardless, it will be a very active off season for the Sox – one that will surely include a big trade and a big free agent signing or two (including a starter like Zito or Schmidt), and a couple other free agent signings to upgrade the bullpen.

By the way, I wouldn’t call Manny an aging veteran yet. A few years from now, maybe. But he is still the top hitter in the game. And his defense is much better than people give him credit for. I think the Sox should deal him while they can still get value in return since there is no room in Boston for Manny as a DH. He can DH for several more years in a place like LA.

i completely agree it will A: be a busy offseason for the sox, and rightfully so, their entire pitching pretty much needs a makeover. By that I mean I would think tavarez, lopez, timlin, and foulke all need to be replaced leaving just papelbon and maybe delcarmen andmaybe hansen in smaller roles in the bullpen. Their starters have schilling for one more year, obviously are holding beckett, wakefield will return and who knows what happens with lester snyder etc, but they definitely need one and more realistically two starters.

I also think manny is tradable but definitely not for the names being mentioned. That deal may fly during the season or before but another year the same story for manny….i could see him traded for one elite and two prospects but definitely not a future ace, an established player and a top prospect. I do think if they seriously had to, they could trade manny though

I agree he probably has 5 more solid offensive years in him, but he is certainly not entering or in the beginning of the peak of his career, by that i mean, he will not put up better numbers and I doubt after 1-2 years he keeps the same numbers. He is a solid outfielder IN FENWAY where leftfield is 100 feet short than anywhere else. Put him somewhere like yankee stadium ( i only say it because of death valley, not to compare the sox and yankees) and manny’s lazyness and lacadasical play at times will become much more obvious

wow, what’s up with Timlin? He’s been such a rock over the past 2-3 seasons. I think Foulke should close out the season as closer. He seems to be pitching better, and it could renew his confidence for possibly next season. It’s not like he’s old or anything. Give Mike his old set-up role back to try and get his game back.

I don’t see Manny as being lazy although it appears to be so at times. I think his mind tends to wonder at times. Like the Andrew Jones comment, that would be great to get his bat in the line-up. How about Soriano, that would add to the rivalry…lol . I also like the thought of Paplebon in a starters role next year, temaed with Beckett and Hopefully Lester that would be a great 3 for years to come. I don’t totaly agree with the Zito thing, he seems to be too up and down. One good year one bad etc… If the nation got on him for a few bad outings I can see him tanking. How about Manny to the Mets for Pedro! Then we talk the Rocket man into one more year, and poof, we have Pedro, Kurt, Clemens, Beckett and Wakefield! Sounds awesome if they could all stay healthy for one year.

As far as MVP goes, I think both Jeter and Papi deserve it, Jeter’s had a great year and should be rewarded for all his great years, and Papi’s been in the top 5 for awhile now and also deserves it. His clutch hitting is like no other…tough call!

The Mets had interest last year, before this season revealed they have a glut of OF’s. Besides Beltran, they picked up Green at the deadline (who has one more year on his tract), Endy Chavez (who has been a favorite of the entire team), Uncly Cliffy (who they may well let go because there’s no room for him!), and the aforementioned Milledge. The key is while only Beltran qualifies as a star in *that* area, the infield the Mets put out (Delgado / Reyes / Wright) certainly makes the lineup tough enough without needing to add Manny. Willy won’t take to Manny’s “playing” style, so even if they were going to add a bat, it wouldn’t be Manny. And it makes no sense to trade a young outfielder who has shown he can hit for an old outfielder who has shown he doesn’t play outfield.

I think Milledge will be dangled, but not for Manny Ramirez.

As far as the Angels go, last year Kendrick was a prospect in A-ball (that’s single A, mind you), and Santana was an inconsistent rookie on an aging team. This year, Kendrick is a .285 hitter in the middle infield, and Santana is one member of a young pitching rotation (with the emergence of Lackey and the introduction of the younger Weaver) the Angels can happily build around.

Certainly, the Angels need a bat far more than the Mets, but you said it yourself, Manny is one year older. Contracts, of course, are naturally backloaded – you pay more money for less production each year, as a trade-off for getting the sweet, tasty production of the earlier years at a discount. If they wouldn’t take Manny’s contract last year, why would they take it *now*, having lost one year of a better money:production ratio? And why would they wreck a core of young players that have now proven their worth?

I just think those deals are unrealistic. Theo’s best chance to move Manny has passed. Any potential deals, moving forward, will only get worse.

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