Making the adjustment

That’s what this whole season is going to be about for Dice-K. Adjusting to his environment, adjusting to hitters, adjusting to a different baseball, different mounds, different stadiums.

Last night, he won the adjustment game, recovering nicely after those three bad outings. It was interesting to hear him after the game. He certainly was a little relieved, but in no way does he feel as if he has all this figured out now.

I think the struggles of those previous three games were a little eye-opening to this man, who has only known success in his life. Now he knows how stiff the competition is against American League hitters, and he’s in the process of tacking that challenge. It’s going to be an ongoing one.

The team itself has a good vibe to it right now. There seems to be a different offensive hero every night, though nobody minds when Ortiz belts four hits, as he did Wednesday.

Wakefield vs. Halladay. This will be fun. Two pitchers who know exactly what they want to do and work quickly. A sweep for the Red Sox could be enormously damaging to the reeling Blue Jays.

Later,

Ian.

61 Comments

I agree that Dice-K is on his way to making the adjustment, but another guy making a huge ajustement is Pedroia. Obviously being a rookie is hard enough, but to turn that into being an everyday player is even tougher. Hes been hot lately, and I have a feeling will continue to hit the ball well. He just seems like hes got a fire in his eyes to do nothing but succeed.

I know its only one game… but tonight’s could be really big. BJ Ryan is out for the season… the Yanks (Wang) are getting slaughtered today at home by the lowly Rangers… would be awesome to steal one from Halladay and get the sweep… go up by 7 games.

It’s good to see the RedSox Starting pitchers throw quality starts with so much consistency.

And Wang blew it today. Just goes to show his last year stats were a fluke. 3 bad starts and only one good start so far for WANG.

I agree completely rayman, and if you think the Sox aren’t scoreboard watching in May then you are nuts.

So many things can be accomplished with a W tonight:

1. bury the Blue Jays and Yankees (and either Baltimore or Tampa Bay, depending on who loses) a game deeper.

2. give the Red Sox even more confidence by finally getting to a pitcher who has handled them in both previous meetings.

3. keep the quality starts coming from the starters.

The bullpen has to be so well-rested at this point. There was an off-day, then both starters went 7 IP. And don’t expect to see Wakefield come out of there early either; he’s not only an innings eater but also because he has been spinning beauties all season long.

“And Wang blew it today. Just goes to show his last year stats were a fluke. 3 bad starts and only one good start so far for WANG.”

The very fact you can use the number “three”, the words “last year” and “fluke” in the same sentence, is kind of scary.

He has one great start, one mediocre start, and two bad starts. Check his stats from last April (which is what it is for him right now), tell me how he did. Do you follow baseball or just read the little numbers in the box scores?

Somebody’s bitter his team’s stay at .500 was short-lived…

Why does everbody hate on Wang? He’s a solid pitcher.

The sportcasters on ESPN constantly are saying “those great Brewers” “playing .700 baseball” “la la la”. How about them Red Sox, ever thought of that Steve Phillips, John Kruk, Carl Ravich, and Orel Herishsier. The Brew Crew is 24-10 were 22-10, we’ve missed two games.

The Brewers schedule over the remander of the month is Mets(21-12) x3, Phils (15-19) x4, Twins (17-17) x3, Dodgers (20-15) x3, Padres (18-17) x3, and Braves (22-12) x3.

The Red Sox schedule over the remander of the month is Orioles (16-18) x3, Tigers (21-12) x4, Braves (22-12) x3, Yankees (16-17) x3, Rangers (14-20) x3, Indians (20-11) x3.

Looks like both teams are playing just as difficult of a schedule as the other. Should be interesting as we get a little deeper into the season..

I hate to clutter this blog with ticket talk, but can anyone PLEASEEE tell me how to get tickets to the 5/19 game, other than the overpriced ebay and stubhub? PLEASE HELP! Im in town for my brothers graduation from BU and wanted to catch a game.

I took a look at the numbers again today. 63 % of all starts have been quality starts, but what may be even more important is that 43.8 of all the starts have been at least 7 innings with another 6.3% being at least 8 innings. That is how you keep a bullpen well rested.

As for Wakefield tonight, the key will be the offense. They need to score more than 1 or 2 runs for Timmy. Here’s hoping the bats stay alive tonight. (halladay is only 9 and 7 vs Sox for his career).

bosox, i don’t know what is overpriced to you but i got mine on :

http://www.floorseattickets.com/ResultsGeneral.aspx?kwds=Boston+Red+Sox&stype=2

Dice-K has a way to go toward Ace-Hood….lets hope his learning curve is short

I can’t help but see Wang as a league-average pitcher with a good offense to back him up. Check his peripheral numbers from last season:

233 Hits in 218 IP

1.307 WHIP

52/76 BB to SO

The one thing he did do well aside from pile up wins was limit the long-ball.

Interesting matchup tonight. Wake has been dominant lately and Halladay, well, he has our number, hasn’t he ?

But except for Drew, nobody’s in a slump right now and it should be real exciting to watch the hot bats against the Roy. Now if only Wake could find a way to neutralize Frank the-knuckelballer-crusher Thomas, it would be great.

I saw that comment a Yankee fan left in a previous post about how he would take the Yankee’s rotation over Boston’s, and I don’t know what the heck he’s talking about.

OK, lets compare with as little bias as possible (hard to do, as I’m pro-Boston):)

1: Curt Schilling vs. Roger Clemens.

This one’s a tough one. Both are competitive veterans who are HOF-bound. The only disadvantage Clemens has is age and NL. He is a good five years older than Schilling, not to mention he’s coming over from the pitching-happy NL. Also, the Yankees call him an instant fix. Last I checked, he’s still a good three weeks away from coming back. To sum it, both are good, but I’ll take Schilling on ths basis of his recent AL experience and his younger age (which isn’t saying much I suppose), not to mention he is pitching in the here and now.

2: Beckett vs. Wang.

Beckett is Cy Young-worthy the way he’s pitching. He’s obviously made adjustments from last year, and the results are flying in. As for Wang, he’s fresh off the DL, and is still trying to find his stuff. When he does, I have no doubt he’ll be solid for the Yankees. But I’m still taking Beckett because he strikes out a lot more than Wang, and Beckett can get a groundball if he needs it. Also, Beckett has only given up 2 HRs over seven outings, compared to Wang’s 3 over 4 outings. Obviously, it’s too early, but I think Beckett is a better choice here.

3: Matsuzaka vs. Pettite.

It’s a case of young firepower vs. veteran experience. I’d say that the final season stats here may be close, so I’ll take either pitcher for 2007. But in the long run, I’m definitely going with Matsuzaka. He’s got his whole MLB career in front of him, and his stuff is developing at a rapid rate. Even in the short run, I’ll give DK the edge because he’s been dependable, and his arm is healthy for a good full season.

4: Wakefield vs. Mussina

Mussina has better stuff naturally, but Wakefield has been very dependable for us to this point. He’ll always give us at least 10 wins and around 200 innings. Mussina has been having arm trouble, and with his age he might not even make it a full season without at least one more incident. Both pitchers will help their teams, but Wakefield’s dependability will help us more than Mussina will help the Yankees.

5: Tavarez/Lester vs. DeSalvo/Rasner/Hughes/Karstens/Igawa/Pavano.

If the Yankees could hold on to one of them for a week or two, I’d be able to predict this better! While Tavarez has been unremarkable, at least he’s been there to start. The Yankees have yet to find a consistent 5 pitcher, and while all of the aformentioned pitchers have potential (except Pavano obviously), it may be a while before they adjust to life in the Majors. I’m sure that DeSalvo and Hughes have the capability to hurt us down the road, but for now, Tavarez is holding his own. The real chip we have is Lester, who could arrive on the scene at the same time Clemens does. If we are patient with Lester and he comes back ready to go, I’ll take Boston’s 5 guy. But for now I’m just watching and waiting.

I won’t even touch on who has a better bullpen. We all know that Boston has the best bullpen in the league.

And think of this: we may not have the best pitching or offense statwise, but as of this writing, we’re second in both! We have such good team balence. Some, like the Yankees, have dynamic offenses. Others, like the Athletics, have pitching. We’ve got both. If we stay healthy, I like what this team can do.

Ok, that last paragraph was off topic, but I’ve been dying to get that out!

You’re just as bad as the guy who originally posted that the Yankees had the 5 best starters.

Camp- Wang is also the second most economical pitcher in baseball in terms of pitches per inning. I believe he was also second in baseball in DP’s which takes away a lot of those hits per inning. When you pitch deep into games, give the offense a solid rhythm, have a sub 4 era, the stuff to erase baserunners with one pitch and don’t walk or give up homers to many batters, I’m not seeing how that makes you “average”

NX, bullpen is a no contest right now, and the Sox are certainly balanced having faced no adversity yet this season, but your still a little biased in the rotation.

If you’re comparing the potential of the rotations, the Sox have the edge. The Yankees will have three guys 34 or older by the end of the season, the Sox will have three guys 26 or younger.

But you’re not, you’re comparing the rotations right now. Pettitte is better than Matsuzaka, right now. Look at the ERA’s, Pettitte would have 5 wins but that bullpen we just gave the advantage to the Sox, blew three of them. He has been healthy for two years, throwing 200+ innings both seasons, you can’t assume he will get injured, he has shown no signs of it, even throwing in relief twice this season. The advantage if you think Dice-K and Pettitte are equal spots in the rotation, goes to Pettitte, he has been more consistant, reliable and important.

Clemens vs Schilling- I’ll give it to Schilling right now. He is after all, pitching, and pitching well. But like Mussina, I assume he will get injured at some point this year (he has since 2004) whereas in the second half Clemens will be at full strength. Now all of a sudden the age just about balances itself out. Schilling also has the experience vs the AL in recent memory, Clemens doesn’t, which is why, again, Schilling is the favorite for now, but that could easily change come July or August.

Beckett-Wang

Right now Beckett is the clear cut favorite, look at the records. 7-0 vs 1-3. beckett has 23 wins in 7 months as a Red Sox. Again though, Wang is coming back from injury and won 19 games last year. He has had slow starts in both of his only two years in the majors, whereas Beckett generally gets off to a hot start. This could change, but Beckett has to start pitching poorly first.

Wakefield vs Mussina-I honestly think Mussina will turn out better in the end. He has the more successful track record, but Wakefield has been pitching well for over a month, way above what was expected. Mussina has made two starts from the DL and was great in both. This is a wash to me, when you see both of them pitch, they both pitch well, but Wake has done it longer. Mussina injured a second time because he’s old? He seems to miss three weeks every year (like Schilling) he already missed that, I doubt if Mussina hits the DL or misses multiple starts in a row for the rest of the year, nothing in his history points to that. Wakefield, missed a lot of last year, not arm related but he’s not exactly 25, knuckleballer or not. Injuries are not a concern to me in this situation, but again I expect based on some past patterns that Wake does worse than he is right now all year and Mussina probably does what he does every season (15-19 wins, mid 3 ERA).

Tavarez/Lester vs Hughes/desalvo/Rasner- right now it’s tavarez is only because he has pitched all year (catching a trend here?) and the Yankees don’t have a distinguished five starter yet. Rasner has done better than Tavarez all year statistically (though past shoulder problems don’t let him pitch deep into games) and Desalvo has had one start. Hughes will be worlds better than Tavarez THIS season, but by the time you see him, Lester is probably back for the Sox. Then you have two young guys. I believe Hughes has the better stuff and the higher upside and I don’t think his no hit bid was a fluke. At one point (when Hughes was 18) in the minors, these guys were right next to each other on the prospect list, but by the time Lester reached the majors, compared to Hughes now, there is no comparison. Hughes is an ace of the future, Lester is probably a 2 or 3 starter.

It’s clear that right now the Sox have the advantage at most spots in the rotation, you can tell by the two team’s records, but a lot stands to change in the next couple of months and this evaluation, or any of ours will probably be irrelevant.

If Texas can do it we can only do it better…Texas hit Halladay pretty bad in Arlington…Sox are doing it a little better hitting Halladay pretty bad at their HOME.

pacol: I wasn’t saying anything bad about “JD”, judy was the nickname the Dodger fans gave him during his tenure at L.A.. and if anybody has bitten their tongue about his performance (and gave him his due when he was hitting good) it was me. But you still have to admit that at this point the transaction isn’t looking like a truly good one for the Sox. We all know that can change with a drop of a hat. I think I have been more than fair when it comes to JD Drew aka JUDY.
ps, and being a real fan of our dearly departed “Dirt Dawg”, I’d say I’ve been more than kind!! and I think that The Brownie Point regulars would agree with me.

Everyone, remember that its is still generally early in the season. Comparasions and allegations are useless until post-All Star game, or at the earliest the trade deadline.

The bats are really staying hot tonight, everybody has at least one hit except Mirabelli… What can you expect from the guy when he’s only in the line up once every 4 days!! He may not bring much TO the plate, but with Wakefield in the rotation, could we do without him BEHIND the plate????

Ellen I know how much u like “Dirt Dawg” Mr Trot Nixon. We know how much u wanted him to stay with Sox.Looks like he is doing very in Cleveland. He made quite a number of fans already in cleveland. But I like I like JD better than Trot for 2 reasons
(1)Trot is a dead fastball hitter. JD is better in that regard.

(2)JD can hit both left and right hand pitchers. Trot has very good numbers righties not so good Vs lefties.

JD is in some slump now. Just give him some time to get out of the slump. Once he is out of the slump u r going to love his Sweet Swing. He has one of the prettiest swing in all of baseball.

Enough of Wake. Great job…let’s get our bullpen some work. Too much rest is not good.

Wake’s Stats so after this game

ERA =1.79 — Best in the league

Opponent’s BA .189 —Lowest in the league

Maybe “league average” in a statistical sense was in incorrect statement. I just personally do not trust pitchers that do not strike out a lot of guys and give up lots of hits – see Derek Lowe.

Okajima is downright nasty, I was worried a bit about him being seen around the league and them adjusting but the Jays have had a look at him multiple times and have come up zilch-o

A lefthander that is equally as tough on righties. 16 IP, 11 baserunners, OppSLG 0.189, 1 Run allowed and 19 Ks…..WOW

If the season ended today, I believe we would have the top 3 guys in Cy Young voting, mine would look like this:
1.Beckett

2.Wake

3.Schill

It feels great to say that, we have the 3 best pitchers in the AL thus far. I know its a long season (about 1/5 done), but no one could have asked for a better start. What’s more is that we have built a comfortable cushion over our divisional opponents (Yankees). They have been playing better ball of late, save for that 12 run whooping today, and still find themselves 7 out. After the Yankee series in the Bronx I said Red Sox Nation couldn’t get any better, but I was wrong, tonight it feels so much better. Whoever said it earlier was right, it is nice to be able to relax and watch a Sox game.

Great game by the Sox tonight. Way to go WAKE!!! He’s got some killer numbers up there. Not bad for a 40 year old, huh?…
I hope Julian Tavarez has as good a game tomorrow night as he did last outing. We need that fifth spot strong.

I really love the way our Sox are looking and playing right now. Let’s keep the RSN Faith!!

VERY VERY quick game tonight. I’ll get 8 hrs tonight. We (I) need more of the fast paced games!!lol

Can someone post the result? Gameday seems to have crashed and is not updating the bottom of the 9th!

Mike Lowell, anybody? The guy is absolutely on fire. Who needs Todd Helton right now?

Besides that I really do not know what else to say at this point. The Sox are cruising and a 10-game home stretch should only help matters, especially considering that we have owned Baltimore the past 2 years.

While the Sox are hot, I would love to pad this lead another couple of games because let’s face it, they can’t stay hot forever. But right now, this season has been a beautiful thing.

Love it when the games are over in less than 2 and half hours.

Final Score is 8-0 by the way.

Sox Big-4 Starters so far this season:

W-L: 19-6

GS: 28

IP: 183.67

H: 154

ER: 63

BB: 56

SO: 150

ERA: 3.09

WHIP: 1.14

Now that’s pitching

my gameday hasnt updated in 5 minutes, does any body know whats going on?

FINAL SCORE is 8-0.

thanks kumar. gameday had been having updating problems all day (day for me, night for you guys over in the US)

If Wake played for some DOME team he would have won Cy Young every year.

If Lowell only Toronto Bluejays for 162 games he would win triple crown every year.

That’s how dominant they are in Domes and Vs Jays respectively.LOL.

This series was an example of what the Sox will look like this year when they are clicking on all cylindars.

Wakefield is having a rebirth. He got stronger during the offseason and is in the best condition he’s been in years (so they say). Wake will definately not keep his ERA below 2 and more than likely not below 3, but it is extremely possible that will stay below 4 and even stay in the low 3s. Wake is looking the best I’ve ever seen him pitch. Looks like Roger has to compete for the title of best 4th starter in the majors now, huh?

Mike Lowell: Leader, gold glover, and showing all the signs of returning to how he was offensively in 04. Todd who?

The play that Mirabelli made to double the runner off first base when the jays had the bases loaded and one out, seemed like it turned the tide in the game. Jays had Wake in trouble, TW was struggling. Then BAM! strike out throw out DP, inning over–and game over for Jays. Sure it was early in the game, but the BJ’s never got anything going after that. It just took all the air out of their sails. Seems to me.

I agree with arnie about the DP.
From that play on, the Jays were flat and the crowd was silent. Well, those fans, they didn’t get much chance to celebrate through the whole series, did they ?

Ellen, if I sounded like I was singling you out, my apologies completely. And there were others who called him “Judy” as well. So again, my bad :-(

As for being Trot’s biggest fan here, oh no question: you’re the one (at least here that I see). I was just referring to how you said the team brass were possibly under appreciative of him that’s all. Heck, I’d be deaf, dumb, and blind if I didn’t see you as “Trot Nixon’s #1″ here :-D

Lowell’s just hitting the big stick. And correct me if I’m wrong, he hasn’t made any errors in a while either right?

And I still can’t believe we just swept the Jays; they always played us hard…wonder what’s going on up there?

As for Tavarez, again, he’s like the small cog for this team. It’s no fun without him, so you gotta have him there.

Honestly, it’s fun to see him on the mound and if he can keep whatever adjustments he made in his last start going, it’ll be real good. This way, we can keep Lester getting all his work in with no rush and when we do bring him back, our bullpen will only get stronger with Tavarez in there.

Yankeev – that is some nice unintentional hilarity you have going.

First, you say you hated Wells since 2003.

Then you say:

“And then Brendan comes and says well we hated Wells once he signed with the Sox but not with the Padres…..DUHHHH”.

I know you’re contradicting yourself here – that’s fine. But to mix in the whole patronizing DUHHHH comment in there as well, even when you have said two different things, is absolutely priceless!

Some interesting comparisons on pitching staffs. I still think Clemens hurts the Yankees more than he helps. On a good day, he going to give you five or six good innings which means every time he pitches, he’s going to subject an already overworked and beat-up bullpen to more abuse. He’s also in the AL East, not the NL. It will be much different this year. Personally, although I’m a lifelong Rocket fan, I’m glad the Sox didn’t sign him. No matter what he says, he has put himself above the game, and the team. It’s a real gamble for the Yankees, because if his first couple of outings aren’t good, it’s gonna get ugly in NY.

Brendan- Yankeev is a Yankees fan. Don’t expect him to be smart ;-)

19-6 for our top 4 starters is pretty **** good. No other team’s starting rotation comes close right now.

lol, I love Yankee fan bashing! I think the Rocket would have helped us for sure..even if he does 6 innings as our 5th starter atleast we would know what to expect..as for helping the Yanks, I agree with the majority about the Yankee’s over taxed bullpen!
Nice to see Wang pitch so well, that last outing of his had cy written all over it! Even when the yanks get all those old guys back…really I can’t see any of them pulling more then 7 innings with the posible exception of Wang. Pettite would pull his elbow out, Mussina would faint…who were those other 2 they have again???

atheose, Yankeevmm is actually very smart, look at his posts they’re all fifty pages long.
The yankees ****, but Vince is a smart guy.

Vince may be smart, but he is still a lot of fun to poke fun at. But only in baseball terms, don’t make personal attacks, because that just makes you a worthless, attention-seeking troll. Jeez, if you can’t make fun of him through his love of the Yankees and not personally at this point in the season, you must not have much imagination. Keep it clean and about baseball!

What is going to be the bigger influence tonight? The Red Sox standard “Hangover” game after a big series… or the fact that the Orioles have a rookie making only his second start of the season (he got shelled his first time out).

Would be nice to see our hot streak continue and give this guy the Chase Wright treatment.

I don’t know who annoys me more right now- Wily Mo or Nacho Libre. Wily Mo has to play better D. Nach is barely doin alright right now.

Gotta cash in on all of these walks at some point.

Bases loaded for ‘Tek, time for one of those timely hits.

Bring Coco home Papi.

10 hits, 8 Walks…only 3 runs…Not good offense today.

Hey Nationers, I guess we can’t win them all!! Although we’d like to. (shhhhh!! don’t tell the rest of MLB that we know that we have to let the other guys win every once in a while. You know just to keep them interested, and so it’s not just a walk away win for the SOX!!) lol.
pacol, no offense taken, and I didn’t say that the brass said Trot was unappreciated, those were your words!!

We’re gonna have the bat oven on high tonight so we can win the rest of this series.

Can I ask a question of the Sox fans here?? Do you feel differently when you see Kevin Millar at the plate as opposed to Damon?? I know that I do; even though I won’t BOO damon, I just can’t cheer against Kev-Lar, I don’t want him to win the game but…

Even though both Millar and Damon meant equally the same to the Red Sox (specifically the 2004 squad), they left on completely different terms.

Damon claimed he would never go to the Yankees and it wasn’t about the money, then turned around and put on pinstripes to the tune of an additional $10 million.

Millar, on the other hand, didn’t have a great 2005 and left with no hard feelings.

It probably doesn’t hurt that Millar plays for the non-threatening Orioles and hasn’t changed a bit while Damon has sided with the enemy, cut his hair and beard and lost his personality.

Wow! 13 LOB. How many times did the Sox leave the bases loaded tonite? 3? More? Definitely did not bring their A game. Tomorrow.

The Yanks lost as well so we r still 7 games ahead of the Yanks.

Zachary: I think you’re really right, Kevin still seems as down to earth and has the “Cowboy up” attitude, you know, just a take it as it comes attitude, just like when he was with us. Still I just can’t seem to root against him!! He’s just such an easy personality to love. Always with a smile!!!

Millar was always a riot…still is, hehe.

Damon…well, what he did was pretty lame. Yeah business decision, blah, blah. 42 million vs. 54 million (or whatever the terms were)? That’s just nuts. But don’t get me started. All I can say is that I donated my Damon T-Shirt…to somewhere.

Ellen, I guess I misread your post a bit then. :-) Heh, I gotta stop posting this late.

So was it just me, or was the strike zone COMPLETELY MESSED UP today? Especially that call on Lowell. He never says anything and even he was pissed…

And as for that strike zone, no wonder Tavarez didn’t some calls. I felt like there were several calls that simply could have gone our way. Also, it ***** that he was just getting hit the way he was…it wasn’t an outing in which he was completely failing either. Guess his luck as a starter just isn’t there.

Back to the strike zone, I’m sure even the Orioles’ pitcher Buress was wondering what was going on in regards to some of the calls. Although I bet he was happier, heh.

Kumar, you’re obsessed with the Yanks aren’t ya? :-P

So it’s still 7 games. Honestly I’m not comfortable with this lead we have unless we’re double-digits above second place (at this point the Orioles are 6 games back).

How huge is Alex Cora this year!!! Another clutch basehit. Gotta love it!!

typical redsux fans!!! always excited in april and may and down and out in sept.

That’s the best you can come up with, mkelly? Not exactly clever, are we?

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