Texas no step

No Texas for me this weekend. I’m going to lay low and rest up for an intriguing homestand against the Indians (and Trot Nixon) and the Yankees (and Roger Clemens). Should be fun.

This weekend, why don’t all of your faithful readers serve as my eyes and ears. I’ll be away, so I doubt I’ll see any of the three games in Texas.

Let me know how Dice-K looks and any other developments you might view as meaningful.

I’ll see you on Memorial Day. I expect that ovation for Nixon to start sometime around 9 a.m. on Monday. It will be nice for the Fenway faithful to have a chance to welcome back one of their favorite Dirt Dogs.

Maybe J.D. Drew will get on track between now and then so the typical knee-jerk reaction won’t take place.

See you later,

Ian.

45 Comments

Did anyone EVEN think that I would not not be a respondent to this one??? I REALLY can’t wait to see Trot’s return to his home of many years and back to his old “stomping grounds” in right field.
I’ve seen many players who were traded,or not re-signed, come back to haunt our Sox whenever they came up against us. I love My Sox, but I want Trot to do well in his career, (I’m very torn on this one) I will be part of the standing ovation for Trot, be it from Fort Lauderdale, but I still want my Nation to overcome the Indians!!!! He IS the epitome of The Dirt Dog.

I hope this weekend bodes well for us…. LET’S GO REDSOX LET’S GO!!!!

PS>>> I JUST GOT MY TICKETS BEHIND HOME PLATE TO SEE THE INDIANS PLAY THE Marlins!!! Last year I got Trots jersey for my birthday. This year I get Trot in person ON my birthday…. life’s good. Life being great will be whEn I get to go Fenway in August..YEAH!!!!!

If Gabe Kapler got such an amazing ovation from the Faithful when he returned I can’t even imagine what Trot’s will be like. One of my all time favorites. We should have kept him :)

I am watching (and unfortunatley listening) to the game on the Rangers regional network. I relalize that the dimensions of the outfields vary from park to park as far as the depth. I just watched Youkilis hammer one to deep left. The left fielder got it at the wall. These bhutt headed homers actually said, “that’s a homer in Fenway, but in a real, regular park, that’s what happens….” How much of a phriggin homer can both of these guys be????

I was thinking that same thing, Ellen. The whole “Fenway home run” thing is overblown. The only “easy” home run at Fenway is a drive around the PEsky Pole. Much of Fenway has dimensions that are more challenging to hit it out than at other parks. The Green Monster takes a lot of home runs away. It is 315 to left. In most parks, it is 330, yet the fences are much lower. True, there is the occasional fly ball that would be a fly out anywhere else but dinks off the Green Monster. But when you hit a home run over the Green Monster, you earn it.

Jeff

http://www.soxandpinstripes.com

Looks like Matsuzaka’s random one inning blow-up has returned, this time in the form of 5 runs in the 4th.

After retiring the side in the bottom of the 2nd, he grabbed his side as he walked off of the mound. He is leaving fastballs middle-in, two of them have been hit for homerun’s. I don’t want to say he’s injured, but it’s not looking good.

Plus, he has had about 2 or 3 curveballs that have stayed inside on hitters but still resulted in a strikeout. Although I’m not complaining about getting the K, his curve is usually very sharp and 12-6, whereas tonight the break is not nearly as hard nor is the rotation of the ball looking normal.

Hopefully he is okay and can put together 2-3 scoreless innings.

This is truly ridiculous….Judy Drew is officially a rally killer! Forget that he wastes his outs but why double plays?? Utterly useless. How about we call him (Lack of) Punch and Judy Drew….all you ol’timers will know what I mean.

Jeff,

You’re absolutely right. The Wall giveth and the Wall taketh away. I am sick of hearing how Fenway gives hits. Even Big Papi had 22 Fenway homers last year but hit 32 on the road.

OK, I’m going to say something here, but before I say it and get ripped up b everyone, I’m going to say that there is no nasty, malicious,or derogatory intent involved. I honestly could not have told you last year who JD Drew was. Given the fact that I watch every game, I’ve seen him at the plate alot this year. Please y’all, don’t take this the wrong way. I love to see a really pretty swing. You know the ones that they put on baseball cards?? When JD strikes out, I swear to the Lord above it’s one of the prettiest swings I’ve ever seen. I don’t like the out come, but IT is pretty. Call me stupid.. Really don’t; that was rhetorical.

Papelbon looked sharp again. I was able to watch the last inning due to the rain delay. Seems like it was a strange game, Dice-K sick but still pitching, and the Rangers giving a great demo of why Jeff is always upset about walks. 4 runs , one hit, a single at that.

lol. You’re right, Arnie, walks are about the only thing that gets my blood boiling. Otherwise, my BP is fine! That is why I am dreading watching Wakefield tomorrow night. When the knuckler is now working, it is all over the place, and then otherwise bloop singles and force outs lead to runs.

Ellen, I am as frustrated as anyone about Drew. I even hope to see Wily Mo tomorrow night, but I am confident he will turn it around. He is too good of a hitter to have numbers like what little he has produced to date for the Sox.

Jeff

http://www.soxandpinstripes.com

I meant, when the knuckler is not working…….

Daisuke was limited to two pitches last night that he could command, the 4-seam and the slider. The few times that he threw anything else, it was right down the middle and crushed or way off the plate. On nights like that, he will get burned. It had looked like he had solved such issues, since he was great in the last two starts. For now, I’ll write it off to the sickness. Any time a guy has to barf between innings, you have to cut him some slack.

Agreed, you have to respect the guy for giving his team 5. Like I said earlier, and as was reported, at the end of the 2nd the nauseau had set in so he toughed it out for 3 more innings.

Manny put together another multi-hit game and Big Papi is slowly raising that batting average. If he can keep it in the .320’s then maybe that final missing piece to his MVP credentials will be complete and he can take home the award (no I’m not talking about playing defense, I mean batting average).

Now if we could just get that guy in the #5 hole to get it going…

Funny post, Ellen. Drew’s not hitting anything but he sure looks good doing it. That’s the key to success, always look good when you fail.
There’s a lot of talk about Crisp needing to go, but this guy has a lot of talent and if he just relaxes he will produce a lot of runs. That will be his value, you’ll see, he’ll score a lot of runs. He’s starting to get going now. 2nd half he will probably score 50-60 runs.

Drew is prone to slumps, he did it last year in LA. Hopefully he’ll get hot when someone else cools off.

Jeff….I do hope you are right about Mr. Drew. It’s just so disheartening to see low production numbers from the right field position. Crisp is a good player but I’ve already conceded power numbers from center field as well. Gone are the days when the Sox outfield could give you eighty homers a year conservatively. The pitching has been great but the margin of error will be slim to win ballgames should the pitching cool off and those in a slump do not produce. Punch and Judy has the Freddy Lynn swing with the Mendoza-esque average….go figure. Please be right on this guy, Jeff.

Fenway is a doubles park between the vast right center field, the 420 to dead center and the wall that turns some popups into homeruns, but mostly, doubles. Guys that come to the Sox don’t hit extraudinary amounts of homeruns except for Ortiz, Manny had that power the whole time, he did the same thing at Jacobs Field. They do, however, tend to hit better, average wise and especially doubles (Mike Lowell). It is like how lefties develop power magically at Yankee Stadium. Short right porch.

three guys I really don’t care to see in Red Sox uniforms, Coco, Willy Mo and JD.All that money spent on very little production. Trot played as well as those guys.

There should be a rule… once you are 100 points higher in batting average, you should be forced to switch spots in the line-up (Drew / Lowell)

re: slugger, trot wouldn’t be a center fielder no matter how you look at it…

This is it for Drew… please wake up and contribute.

Drew finished with 3 walks, 1 RBI and 1 run scored. It’s definitely a step in the right direction; if he’s not swinging the bat well, at least he can use his good eye to get on base.

Ramirez’s 4 hits launched his batting average 16 points to .272, pretty amazing stuff. Seeing .240 and .250 next to Manny’s name just didn’t look right.

And Youkilis with his 6th straight multi-hit game, the guy is a machine.

11.5 games over the Yankees now. Who says you can’t scoreboard watch in May?

Anyone else noticed that Pap seems to be throwing his slider a lot more and throwing his split a lot less? I wonder if the split is bothering his arm.

I too am excited to see Trot again tomorrow night and am very happy that he is having a good season so far. He always gave it his all w/the Sox, definitely the ultimate Dirt Dog.
As for Drew though – he’s slumping, that’s all there is to it – but he’s working his tail off to get out of it, and last night, he was on base 5 times w/3 walks and an RBI, plus he’s showing good defense. So, he is contributing as he tries to come out of a hellish slump.

The great thing about this team is that folks are picking each other up.

Who is this #51 on the hill and what has he done with the guy that used to pitch with us named Tavarez? If this new guy has the old guy locked in a basement somewhere please don’t let him out.

…Meanwhile we are offically a DOZEN up on the 4th place Yanks.

Hmm, it appears the old guy pitched the 6th.

Very nice to see JD contribute today

Well, I can’t wait to see Trot come back to Fenway; what’s going be a bit amusing is that you know that any ball he hits will take advantage of the park completely. He’ll know where to drop it in for a double, single, whatever :)

As for Drew, very nice to see him get results in his work. Perhaps he’ll finally get the monkey off his back and become consistent for a bit. He’s got one heck of a sweet swing, but I honestly felt he was pressing a bit previously.

I expect Brian Cashman to lose his job by the All-Star Break; 12.5 games behind us and there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight.

I have a question, and I do not want it to be construed as just anti-Yankeeism but really something I am curious on. In today’s Yankee game, Mientkiewitz faked getting hit by a pitch on his foot. The ball clearly landed in front of his foot but he sold it by hopping around and pretending like he got hit.

What I am wondering is, do people see this as a guy doing what it takes to help his team win? Or is it just a low act and complete gamesmanship? I understand the Yankees are in a slump but surely what he did is tantamount to cheating.

I really think that certain members of the current Yankees lineup are less ethical than their goody two shoes team image would indicate, especially A-Rod…there are several examples of him crossing the line of hard play into un-sportsman like conduct. The Yankees are desperate right now, expect more of this if they flounder in the next two series.

The guy is hitting .230 so why wouldn’t he try and get on base any way he can? If you’ve watched enough baseball, you know that umpires primarily go off a player’s reaction when it comes to being hit by pitches. I really think that you are grasping for straws and essentially kicking the Yankees while they are down by even bringing this issue up.

The game was a close one the whole way through and I know Mientkiewicz bats at the bottom of the order, so what’s wrong with trying to get on base and flipping the lineup over to the heavy hitters? Nothing, I say.

If you’re looking to take shots at the Yankees, just direct your attention the standings and say no more.

Just wondering the Sox record since Josh Beckett has gotten injured.

Since Beckett went down, which is essentially the day after that comeback win against Baltimore the Sox are 9-4.

Also I was wondering how we would shape our rotation up for the weekend against the Yanks. Right now it would be Schill, Beckett, Dice-K against Cleveland then Wake, Tavarez and Schill against NY. But with the off days the way they are we could skip Julian and go Wake, Schill and Beckett. I know the Yanks are game out of the basement but they are our natural rival and beating them should be important. If Ian or anybody else knows what they will do, it’d be great to know.

Thanks for the update! Its remarkable to me that the Sox have gone 9-4 with Beckett out of the rotation. I would save Beckett for the NYY Series.

I’d personally like a win against the Yanks as well, but considering the fact that their hitting is in quite a slump, having our 4-5-1 starters going wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing.

Personally I’d love to see Beckett pitch against the Yanks, but it would be best if he got his feet underneath him again against the Indians. I know the Indians are doing VERY well, but they don’t come with the emotional baggage of the Yanks-Red Sox rivalry. And especially if the Red Sox have gone 9-4 without him, I think they can do just fine without a rotation shuffle.

Good point, with the way we are cruising we should leave well enough alone. If the tables wore turned and the Sox were 12.5 out I am sure they would throw their big 3, just like what the Yankees will do this weekend. By not pitching Beckett on Sunday, he would go the day after which would be in Oakland, who are playing better than the Yanks and are more of a litmus test and like you said bring less emotional baggage with them.

Brendan, it’s a good question. I personnally don’t like it. And i don’t care if he hits for a buck 50 or .700 and if he plays for a 1st place team or a team that stands at 55 games behind! You’ll never see guys like Tek or Jeter do that kind of act. Those guys want to win, but they want to do it the right way.

That being said, it’s not that bad since it’s basically an instinctive reaction.

Zachary: Can I call you our local Yankee apologist, pweeeeeze? ;-) :-P (Sorry, I just had to :-D ).

Off topic, but I just had this thought: granted this seems like light years away, but how’s about our pitching staff for 2008? I can see Beckett, Dice-K and Lester guaranteed, but what about the 4 and 5 spots? The way Schilling has been going, the fact that Theo didn’t resign him for beyond this season seems like a smart move. I’m not saying Schilling won’t get better, but he is getting older and he is primarily a power pitcher; he’s not bringing the heat like he used to. I’m thinking we may not re-sign him and we may go after say the D-Train or some other young, marquee pitcher and perhaps keep/re-sign Wakefield as our 5th starter. Heck, knuckleball pitchers can pitch almost forever and he’s a great 4th-5th starter option.

However, if we don’t keep Wakefield, then I’m thinking we may bring up one of our prospects. And the way Gabbard was pretty much lights out against the braves, I wouldn’t be surprised if he was called up.

So I’m thinking our two rotation options could be:

Beckett, Dice-K, Lester, free agent pitcher, Wakefield

OR

Beckett, Dice-K, Lester, free agent pitcher, Gabbard (or other prospect).

Sorry to all the Schilling fans (myself included), but in a business sense, unless Schilling can become more of a control pitcher than he already is, I don’t see him getting resigned by the Red Sox.

So I guess, chew on that :-)

Well, Thank You guys for the info. and we’ll check in later.

-Thanks Again

Pacol, i’d put my money on Clay Buccholz for the 5th starter spot. Gabbard is good too, though, and with Lester that would make 2 lefties in the same rotation. Could be interesting.

When was the last time that happened ?

Not sure when that was the last time 2 lefties were in a rotation…but just thinking about it makes me happy.

I don’t think Buccholz will end up in the rotation just yet. I’m sure he’ll be at Spring Training next season and he might even be a late season call up this year. However, Gabbard has MLB experience that has served him quite well down at Pawtucket and we clearly saw that against the Braves.

Lester we all know how good he can be and will be, so it goes without saying he’ll be in the rotation next season.

My personal feeling is that we’ll keep Wakefield. IMHO, if you can get a consistent high 3 to low 4 ERA from your 5th starter AND he can pitch into the 6th inning on average, I’ll take that. Plus he can get us wins even with that ERA. It’ll be a tough call for the Red Sox brass, that’s for sure.

Every team in baseball would try what mientkiewicz tried today. In fact it was done against the Yankees by the Mariners last time they played. Should Crisp return to 1st or go back to the dugout when he was called safe even though he was out in the middle game of the last series? No, he got the call. It has nothing to do with how well a team is doing or how poorly a player is doing, with the game on the line anybody with a pulse is going to try to reach base or do what he can to win a game.

Haha there is a big difference between being called safe by the umpire and starting to walk to 1st base on your own after allegedly being hit by a pitch. The umpire did not point to first as soon as the pitch was thrown, it was only after Dougie M. reacted in such a manner that he was awarded the base by the homeplate ump. It’s not like Coco somehow conned the 2nd base umpire into believing he was safe, it was a bang-bang play that could have gone either way. Now that Bloomquist stolen base a while back is a different story…

Obviously I am not opposed to this strategy of doing “whatever it takes” (as I have previously commented on it) but try and keep your bitterness from a missed call 5 games ago from diluting the integrity of your point. With that being said, I am in complete agreement with the second half of your post.

Mientkiewicz has shown the type of class of a person he is twice now with the Red Sox. Might as well just hit him next time and tell him thats for taking our ball also.

Vince: Just because anybody in the league would fake getting hit doesn’t make it right. He was still cheating.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 77 other followers

%d bloggers like this: