Big Two North of the Border

Those footsteps are real now — the Yankees are just 3 1/2 back. That’s the smallest lead the Red Sox have had since May 1.

Granted, it would take a collapse of EPIC proportions to miss the postseason entirely but the Red Sox do not want to blow the division and homefield. With several guys banged up, they need to take care of business, get their positioning settled, and get guys rested before October.

There is a lot of pressure on two of the organization’s bright young pitchers the next two nights. Tonight, it’s Jon Lester, who has been very uneven and was hit hard in his last start. Tomorrow, it’s the no-hit kid, Clay Buchholz, who will be working on 12 days of rest.

Without Manny and Youkilis, the Red Sox are going to be challenged to produce offensively tonight against A.J. Burnett, who has been nothing short of electric of late.

Later,
Ian.

309 Comments

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All of your points from the last thread are true gsm, but if someone also told us that Lowell would have 20 homers and 110 driven in, Pedroia would be hitting .320, Ellsbury and Bucholz would be making contributions and Beckett would have 19 wins, I would say we must be 7 or 8 above everyone in the division. For all the things that been gone wrong, just as many have fallen into place. Simply put the season is now 11 games long and the Sox have been given a 3 game headstart.

One thing this team has shown IMO is resiliency. From getting swept in Detroit, to losing 2 of 3 to Baltimore, to getting swept in New York they have come back each time and played well the following weeks. For as bad as they look sometimes and they do look bad, they have a who cares attitude. They don’t worry about the Yankees and it shows b/c they never let losses snowball and go on long losing streaks.

As fans who want to see them win (for someone who called me out on it, yes I do want to see them win again, hence my presence on this blog) we can have hope that this team can bounce back and win the majority of these final dozen games.

When I look at the standings in the A.L. East, I just can’t believe the Red Sox have let the Yankees hang around. When the Yankees started out so poor, I thought they would make a run but it would fall a little short. I was thinking the Red Sox would have at least won 1 game in N.Y. and would have won 2 games in Boston. What was I thinking?

I still believe they will win the division. Of course we all know they should have wrapped it up a few weeks ago for sure. Get some players some much needed rest but I don’t think they’ll be able to do that now. If they had beaten the Yankees on Sunday night this division would have been over. Red Sox were that close to a sweep but the Yankees made the plays when it mattered the most and of course the Sox didn’t.

Red Sox turn to Lester and that doesn’t sound too good. Last night’s game the Red Sox were the walking dead. They seemed lifeless to me. I know McGowan pitched well but he isn’t that good. If Burnett shut them down that wouldn’t surprise me at all. When he is on, he is just nasty. Of course his big problem is keeping healthy and he is now for sure. He blew away the Yankees on Thursday night, they didn’t have a chance against him. The Jays bats have been dead this year and I hope Lester can do something tonight. Lester of course has problem thorwing strikes, throwing strike 1 is the most important pitch in baseball and Lester should be told of that because he certainly hasn’t figured that out. Low pitch counts early in the game is the key for Lester tonight. I hope the Jays are very impatient.

rizzo. very good points in general. i think we all want to see them win ( or we wouldn’t be here ) but to suggest there’s a right way and wrong way to go about voicing that opinion just makes no sense to me. now back to baseball. gsm is right technically they do control their own destiny but lookin at the schedule and the the lifelessness they have displayed over the past 2 weeks i do think they will need some help. they had 6 opp’s to bury the yankees and went 1/5. personally i think that says s-thing about their mental toughness. but we’ll see. they have been w/out a major off component in manny. who if you ask me is doggin it. no way he can’t play after 20 games with a pulled muscle. like i said chipper jones had the same injury and missed maybe 4 games. tito even said it was up to him. bottom line is they need to get to 98 wins ( still an underacievement IMO ) to lock up the div and home field. otherwise they need help from A LOT of folks.

Bosox

Clearly you haven’t looked at McGowan’s record. He’s thrown eight innings in three of his last four starts and is 3-1 with a 2.40 ERA over that span. McGowan now has 17 quality starts this season, all of which have come in his last 22 outings. He did not start the year off well, which is why his era sits where it is.

Clearly you under estimate him-what he did last night to yur guys is becoming a habit for him. Tell me which other pitcher in the LA throws at 98 MPH after he’s thrown 121 pitches, strikes out Ortiz 3 times and actually makes him look foolish.

When his stuff is on, he’s as good as Burnett.

bosox. you’re right about lester. he’s kinda like wake right now. either really good or really bad. bottom line though is 1 run ain’t gonna cut it many nights so boston might wanna be a lil LESS patient ( i.e. more aggressive ) at the plate and see how that works.

He isn’t as good as Burnett if they’re both on. Burnett when healthy is a frontline starter and McGowan is more of a middle of the rotation guy.

McGowan in his last 10 starts gsumner is 4-4 not exactly dominant in my book. McGowan’s ceiling is about 16 wins per season.

I agree with gsumner regarding McGowan. Awhile back he shut down the Yankees pretty good and has put up some great numbers in this his coming out season. He is compared to Halladay and it shows with his delivery. It is almost identical. That being said, there is no way McGowan, much less any pitcher should throw a complete game against the Sox with the way they take pitches. If Toronto can throw McGowan, Burnett, Halladay, Marcum and if they ever get Chacin back that is a helluva staff. With the Yankee/Red Sox pitching we all know about those 3 teams could be set for years to come.

These boring Blue Jay announcers again. They can put anyone to sleep. They almost make Joe Morgan and Joe Migrane ( gsm your favorite is Migrane as we are calling him ) sound good.

Put the volume down low for sure.

Let’s hope the Sox bats are alive.

Last time McGowan faced the Yankees he didn’t get past the 5th. Not too good there. A 16 game winner tops, not exactly a front line starter.

rizzo,

Your comparing McGowan to Halladay. Are you o.k.? Halladay has only won 2 Cy Youngs and is one of the best starters in baseball.

No I am not saying he is Halladay, I am saying his stuff and delivery has been compared to Halladay.

The start I was referring to was May 28 when he went 7 2/3 and gave up 2 runs. I know that was a long time ago but it was the first time I had seen him pitch.

Rizzo

Actually I think McGowan is closer to Burnett than Halliday, in that they’re both power pitchers. Halliday now pitches to contact. Last night McGowan threw 122 pitches of which 81 were strikes, which is the ratio needed to get trough 9 innings against a very tough Boston lineup.

rizzo,

When you say compared. Who has compared them?

McGowan is a good pitcher and I wouldn’t mind seeing him in a Boston uniform. A young arm that goes mid to upper 90′s late in the game is good for me. Him shutting down the Sox to me should have never happened but it did. Gsumner says he is as good as Burnett, I strongly disagree there. Burnett has top 10 stuff in baseball and McGowan doesn’t.

Bosox

Almost every starter has got creamed by the Yanks lately. I’ll make you a little bet on McGowan-you feel he tops at 16-I think he’s got more than that. So next year-barring injury-I’ll be he wins more than 16-you bet he wins less. Hows that?

Bosox

When McGowan has all 4 pitches going he’s almost unhittable-like last night. He’s still young, but did you see how foolish he made Ortiz look. Ive never seen David look that bad-ever.

I can remember someone on baseball tonight, maybe Phillips comparing the two awhile back

If Steve Phillips said it, uh oh. One of the dumber ones on t.v. He was a g.m.

How come when teams g.m.’s are fired. You never hear about Phillips being a candidate. I think there is a reason for that.

I’ll bet you he doesn’t win more than 16. Not barring injury, that is part of it. Barring injury, Josh Beckett would have won 20 already. He got hurt and that is how it goes. Life of a major league pitcher.

gusmner,

Every starter but Beckett.

Could it be his Cy Young?

Varitek got a hit there smckinny.

Rizzo, you are right on although I did expect Beckett to do what he’s doing. DP, Mikey and Youk have really picked the team up, not to mention Okie Dokie in the bullpen.

Brian, you’ll soon be reminded of just how bad Joe Migrane is when the Sox head back to Tampa. These Toronto guys aren’t Orsillo and the Rem Dawg, but they’re OK. I’d put them way above Migrane and that miserable crew in Chicago.

Well, it’s the SOS with Lester. Pitching from behind, walks and a million pitches in the first inning. Doesn’t really matter that he got away with only giving up one run. Best case scenario unless he has some real quick innings is the Sox will get five out of him tonight. He’s got to start pitching from ahead in the count.

OK – only one inning but feeling like another night like last night. How do we get our confidence back? I only feel good with Beckett pitching…..not a good sign for the playoffs.

I’ll be going to a couple of games at the Trop. I don’t have to hear Magrane. AMEN!!! I thought that the Sox would be clinching the division down there. I guess I must have been drinking heavily when that thought crossed my mind.

Lester just did get a 1-2-3 inning. Perhaps the first one in his career.

Ortiz didn’t come thru back in the 1st inning. He has to come up with the big hit in that situation. With Bucholtz pitching tomm night, I guess we will not see him pitch until April of 2008. LOL….

Sox look like they have more life in them tonight than last night.

Lugo should be running real soon.

Burnett looks hittable tonight, but the Sox are back to their old ways of leaving way too many on base.

Burnett looks effortless out there. He’s not even working to get the ball up there at 99. I wonder if their gun is right. It’s not like he’s blowing the ball by the Sox.

I don’t know why Lugo wasn’t running. Burnett like any power pitcher is easy to run on. Also Zaun in the 1st inning airmailed his throw when Ellsbury stole. Obviously tonight there will be very few runs scored, so running would have been a smart move by Lugo.

Do the Red Six lead the league in double plays? If not, they must be close to the top. So frustrating!

Bring back 6-4-3 Jim Rice.

I agree with you Brian. Burnett is slow to the plate. If Lugo makes it to second, he’s on third on Ellsbury’s grounder.

Another f’n walk.

Exaclty gsm. What the hey do we know? Sometimes it doesn’t make any sense and that to me made none at all. Zaun’s throw goes into center and Burnett is slow to the plate. Why is Lugo standing at 1b?

Nasty pitch by Lester, Hill didn’t have a chance. He couldn’t that with a paddle. That is what I want to see from Lester.

I sometimes laugh when I watch today’s games when it comes to the baseballs. Now if a pitcher throws a ball in the dirt, they throw it out of the game. Players routinely throw balls into the crowd aftet the third out of an inning. When I played, we got fined $25.00 for doing that and unless a ball had a major gouge in it, it stayed in the game, and then we kept them for batting practice.

Thought that might be more interesting than the Sox offense so far tonight.

Too close to take with two strikes there Papi.

Ever since the strike ended players have been throwing them into the stands. Trying to win back the fans.

I appreciate your story gsm, better than watching the Red Sox trying to hit.

Magadan might be all done whenever this season is over.

Burnett’s achilles heel is the base on balls and that should play right into the hands of the patient Red Sox. They need to break through here. Hows about a clutch hit from the Captain?

Burnett is really busting that breaking pitch to the lefties.

How about a walk to Varitek and J.D. Drew hits a grand slam….

I can feel it….

It would have to be a Moss Grand Slam, Drew already walked, but as I write, Tek comes through, as smc would say about time!

Your right gsm, a knee breaker for sure.

Captain clutch there smckinny….

I am drinking heavy here rizzo….

The kool aid is effecting me…

Lester get a quick inning here.

No rest for Burnett…

Sox need to get moving, Yanks are blitzing the O’s.

I wonder if the Yankees will hit the extra point.

They are lighting it up for sure.

I didn’t think Lester would pitch well but he is so far. He’s keeping them in the game.

Burnett looks hittable tonight for sure.

Orioles providing no help getting destroyed by the Yankees. At least have the decency to play out the season Baltimore don’t give the Yankees 4 or 5 more easy wins

No Bedard there and the Orioles have quit. Worst thing they ever did was give there manager a contract for next year. They should have waited obviously. I’m sure McPhail wishes he did wait until the season was over to decide.

The Nats will be taken that area over very soon.

I don’t know that the Yankees are going to lose more than a couple before the end of the season. Sox are in the playoffs right now and they didn’t even know it.

every game is do or die, because if they lose the division it’s over

I can see the Yankees splitting 2 games with Toronto this weekend. They will take 2 of 3 from Tampa. Yankees are beating up on a team that has quit.

wow. just got home and i missed a tek hit/rbi? damm. i’ve got about as good a chance at seeing haley’s comet again. oh well at least the good lester showed up so far. maybe they’ll light it up for 2 runs tonite!

Nice piece of hitting by Oritz. That is what he is supposed to do. Go with the pitch and drive it.

Need to keep scoring, b/c 2 runs will not hold up tonight

What could happen next smckinny? You writing something positive or seeing Haley’s comet or Manny Ramirez playing again?

Here’s that chance for a Drew homer Bosox. Except it would be a 3 run variety.

Better chance of it snowing rizzo than Drew going deep.

With runners on the guy fails way too much. Under .200 avg. with 2 out and runners in scor. pos. That is just AWFUL!!!

bosox. best case scenario IMO is NY losing 2 to tor and 2 to balt and TB combined. most likely they lose 3 total i’d say.

Ellsbury can absolutely fly

JD struck out on foul trip, not as bad as swinging strike or called strike 3.

Has Drew had a hit all year that has actually meant for something? When he gets up with men on base, might has well lay the bat down and give up the out. Watching him strike out time after time when it matters is enough to drive us to……..!

Very nice inning by Lester although 2 of those balls were smacked. Get Burnett right back out there with no time to rest in the dugout.

Lester looks sharp. 3 easy outs in 5th.

He made contact that boy Drew. He is improving.

Lester saw that one all the way. Nice inning again by Lester.

That o.f. in Toronto is huge. It must be nice to pitch there. If you have any athletes out in the o.f. you’ll do very well there.

When Ramirez is back, Ellsbury goes to r.f. and Drew will play little after that. That is what I would do if I was Francona.

I assume that will happen. Never assume right?

I agree with you about splitting with TOR smc. You have to hope Baltimore can win 1 of the next 4 against NY and TB can salvage a game against them. TB plays a huge role in deciding this thing, they play LA, Boston and New York

tough call bosox. probably manny playing though. actually i’m positive all the time. POSITIVE this teams offense is a joke. did you say s-thing about magadan not being back next year? everyone should prey to what ever god they worship that’s the case.

Nobody plays a role in where the Sox finish except the Sox. If they have to rely on help from somewhere else, then they will essentially “back” in. They need to finish the season playing good ball.

Magadan should be gone. If the Red Sox won the World Series I would think he would be back. That is the only way he is back.

smckinny,

Let’s hope it is Ramirez playing. This weekend in Tampa, Friday night I say.

gsm,

You are totally dead on there.

Sox control there own destiny. Amazing as that might sound.

They win some important baseball games and they will be in a good position. They lose some games and they’ll be playing Anaheim or Cleveland in the A.L.D.S.

LOL! Will someone please tell the Jays people how to spell “Defense”!!!! They spell if defence everywhere. Is that French or something?

gsm,

It’s a Canadien thing there with defense….eh!!!!!

harbour is another word they butcher….

based on the past few games it would appear magadan was already replaced. unfortunately he was replaced by veritek! seriously though nice to see him do something altough he sill has a ways to go to get out of MY dog house. oh i’ll say it now lester i’d let try the 7th but on a very short leash.

I didn’t Lester would make this far tonight the way he started. The kid is hanging tough.

Lester looks sharper in the 6th.

Time for Boston to bust this open. Let’s have a cushion here.

Lester should have a short leash for sure.

We might see Gagne tonight with a lead. That could be interesting even though he has pitched well but this would be with a slim lead if he is on the mound.

hope you’re right about manny bosox. i’ve always had great appreciation for his abilities ( and still do ) but he will way too often put his own interest above trying to help the team IMO and i don’t like that about him.

No, for once I am going to want Francona to pull the plug RIGHT NOW. Do not let him try and go back oot (Canadian accent there) there. Thrown 91 pitches, let him end the night on a high note.

A Brewer scout is there.

Hey Brewers make the playoffs first….

1982 was the last time the Brewers were there and that was the A.L.

Prince Fielder could win the M.V.P. over there…

Unfortunately, when Manny comes back, I think Ellsbury heads to the bench and Drew will play. You may see some platooning as the season winds down, but in the post season, I think it will be Drew.

Ramirez did quit last year for sure. He is trying to get back smckinny. He is coming back from a muscle injury, those can be tricky. They seem to linger a bit. They say Ramirez has been busting his tail to get back, unlike last year.

i don’t think the have the horses to “bust it open” tonite. i’d actually settle for 2-1. what is the record for consecutive games with 3 runs or less anyway? oh and no way they play ells over JD on a consistent basis IMO. if for no other reason than theo and tito wouldn’t wanna answer those questions.

You can’t put Ellsbury on the bench. Drew will get some starts but I believe the bulk of the playing time goes to Ellsbury. When it comes to the playoffs who cares about feelings being hurt. Torre put A-Rod 8th in that lineup for Game 4 vs Detroit.

Burnett is just chewing up left handed hitters with that breaking pitch.

One guy produces and the other guy doesn’t. I say Ellsbury plays the bulk of the time. You can’t have Ellsbury as a pinch runner, the guy can do more than that.

Well Brian, you’re right, I can’t put Ellsbury on the bench, and I wouldn’t. However, Francona can, and he will.

maybe as far as manny. i’ve had some pretty bad muscle pulls ( well back when i had muscles ) and never had one that took a month to heal. a hammie would be diff but a muscle i don’t know? i just hope he’s hot when comes back. no doubt about drew gsm.

Francona would have to go for a cat scan if he does.

I am not saying he doesn’t but how could he?

To protect J.D. Drew? Drew is a grown man not a child.

gsm you beat me to it. although i was gonna get in a lil more of a jab at tito.. seriously they have heard the JD media bashing all year. they will not leave themselves open to the questions of not playing him. tito will use the same logic/spin he has with pedroia and lugo.

he’s not protecting drew. he’s protecting him and more imp theo. you don’t pay a guy 14mm a yr and sit him for a rookie unless you’re okay with lookin like an idiot and the subsequent questions.

The difference between Ells and Drew is experience when it comes to the postseason. Drew needs to be starting in right in that first game against LA or Cleveland. Besides that leaves Tito with multiple opportunities to insert Ellsbury into the lineup late in the game for speed/defense.

Torre had alot of sack to put A-Rod down at 8th. It would be time for Francona to as well. Of course we are talking down the road here.

I don’t know how they could put Ellsbury on the pine. I could see them putting Crisp down because he will not be back next year. They protect themselves by doing that.

and i honestly think theo’s ego is too big too allow it.

crisp maybe but i doubt that as well. would hurt his trade value IMO. i’ll let gsm take the torre part of your comment.

Drew’s experience is so valuable. A .180 hitter in the L.D.S.

Ellsbury energizes things out there, he produces. Given him 2 at bats a game or using him as pinch runner does him no justice. How could anyone in there right mind play Drew over Ellsbury? Sox will spin it and say Ellsbury hasn’t played much r.f. PLEASE!!! If you can play c.f. you can play all o.f. positions.

Obliques are tough because you never really know when they are really healed and there’s no real way to tell. Been there, done that, got the tee shirt. Remember how long Trot Nixon was out when he injured his? It was most of the season, and he hasn’t been the same since.

I really could care less if Ellsbury is done any justice.

But if someone like Milla, um, I mean Youk draws a late game walk who do you want running for him in the 8th or 9th inning? JD or Ellsbury?

Ellsbury does energize things but if our cleanup hitter gets on, Jacoby provides no energy sitting on the bench waiting for his turn to bat.

gsm i’ll take your word. never had one fortunately. not even sure i have an oblique. bosox. can’t argue with your logic at all and wouldn’t want to but it won’t happen. i honestly feel for the reason i stated b-4.

There’s some validity to your point Rizzo. Ellsbury would be one heck of a situational player in the post season.

well tito actually made the right move. please make note of that. i hope it works out.

You don’t pull Youklis from the game. The guy has played great at 1b. In the playoffs you want him there.

Red Sox hold Ellsbury for a pinch runner. It might never happen. Makes no sense at all. You put him in the lineup. I am not saying bench Drew and let him rot away but Ellsbury to me gets the bulk of the playing time. Sure with Ellsbury out there, your bench is a little weak because Drew doesn’t give you any options.

he could def be valuable. a la dave roberts. you never know they could actually have an injury and he gets forced to play.

OK, here comes Gagne! This appearance could be huge to him, and to the Red Sox if he does well.

Smckinny, you probably used to have obliques, now they’re called love handles.

Excellent bunt, excellent plays by both Hinske and Gagne.

Gagne on Canadien soil feels good. Nice defence ( gsm you like how I spelled defense ) by Gagne.

Brian, that’s the Kool Aid spelling.

It would happen at some point late in a close game that the tying run reaches base.

Another reason for Drew is that he is so calm. We all hate it as fans but he won’t get impatient up there in a pressure cooker situation. Ellsbury no one knows but he is a rookie in a new environment, he may tense up in a playoff situation.

Gagne has looked good lately but tonight he looks like the guy that they traded for.

How strange it is. A few weeks ago I wanted to strangle this guy, now he comes in and I feel good about it.

Drew calm? Are you kidding me? The guy has done nada, zip, zero in clutch situtations.

Thomas lives to hit this soft stuff. Two pretty tough calls on what looked to be good fast balls.

Drew vs N.Y. this year is 9 for 56 I believe.

Those are pressure cooker games and he has melted.

He is playing better but still I have no confidence in him at all.

Gagne is getting better folks. I don’t know if any of you watched the game on YES on Friday but Kay would not shut up about Gagne and how he kept lifting his arm up, insinuating that he had another shoulder problem. He really drove me nuts and then he shut them down Fri and Sun so that must have shut him up. Yet another reason I can not stand Michael Kay

Those fast balls couldn’t have missed by much.

There are many reasons to hate Kay there rizzo. I saw the game on N.E.S.N. and E.S.P.N. I’m glad I didn’t get the Yankee feed. Especially the 8th inning. He must have been on his high horse.

This game is too tight for my liking.

Bring in Papelbon now!!!

Gagne is getting better???

Pap should be warming up right now. If Terry thought it necessary to try and get 6 outs from him on Friday, why not get 4 from him tonite? No game is more important the other b/c the Sox are on top.

Gagne still gets it up there pretty well.

Now screw this guy into the ground with that change up!

I agree Rizzo. Francona seems to contradict himself here.

What the **** was that?

Live by the sword, die by the sword.

Where the **** is Pap? This makes no sense to me

Why isn’t Papelbon in????

My oh my!!!

If the Sox were up by 8 games, let Gange work thru it. This just in, the lead in the loss column is 3.

If this is better I would sure hate to see worse?? And FranCOMA is going to leave him in?

Unfreakin believable

Where is Francona???

Are you there Tito???

Did he make the trip???

This is INSANE!!!

gotta agree once he walked the guy to 2nd time for pap. much less full.

UNFREAKIN BELIEVABLE

I hope one of the players beats the snot out of FranCOMA for this one

Francona is alive, he was writing something down. Probably tomm’s list for shopping in Toronto.

Where is Papelbon???? Timlin???

Okajima????

Relief help….

Anywhere???

We were talking earlier about Ellsbury playing r.f.

After watching Francona handle this situation tonight in the 8th.

I think he might have Oritz pitch.

I think it is time someone looks into Tito. I wonder if he is getting paid off to lose this.

Gagne is just terrible.

Francona is sleeping……

Drew tough play, the ball was hit hard.

Once we all think he has worked it out he blows up. I honestly thought that was Okie’s inning, it HAD been all year prior to the trade deadline.

Let Delcarmen take the 8th inning, Okajima needs rest and Gagne is just an awful pitcher. He has single-handedly lost 3 games for the Sox and he hasn’t even been here for half the season.

How’s that trade looking now?

Gagne was horrible, but I’m pointing the finger right at Tek for that inning. His pitch selection was absolutely horrible. He has three hitters with two strikes and tries to put them all away with fast balls when you have a guy on the mound who got the first two hitters out on a breaking ball and a change up. C’mon, what’s he thinking about?

Sorry guys, Im a Yanks fan…but i just love checking out this blog after Sox lose, and everyone talking like their gunna commit suicide…it always brings a smile to my face…i also lovveeee Gagne!

Well its 2.5 games now. We’re screwed. Thios is over. Unfreaking believable. By tomorrow night it culd be 1.5 games. Congrats to the yankees for winning the division yet again.

TEK??????????
FRANCOMA LEFT HIM IN??

OK I’M JUST A RED SOX FAN HERE IN TEXAS AND I REALLY DON’T SAY MUCH BUT DANG SEND ERIC TO THE MINORS OR WHEREEVER THEY WANT TO BUT GET RID OF HIM AND I LIKE FRANCONA BUT SOME OF THE THINGS HE DOES I HAVE TO QUESTION PAP? ERIC? HUM NOT TO DIFFCULT TO FIGURE OUT I GUESS WE {HE} WANTS TO GIVE IT TO THE YANKEES I JUST CAN’T FIGURE IT OUT

Gagne is terrible has he even recorded a decent inning yet? Francona and everyone needs to get their act together.

This team is taken on water real fast…..

everything you guys said X2 regarding franCOMA. but really assume not knowing the situation, how many times you gonnna score 3 runs in 2 games and win 1 of them? this team is pathetic offensively. that’s all you can say.

SOMEONE PLEASE TELL ME WHY FOR THE LOVE OF EVERYTHING HOLY IS GAGNE STILL ON THIS BALL TEAM? SOMEONE PLEASE!!!! ANYONE!!!!

F###Gagne, F###Francoma. I told you can’t pitch Gagne in a close game. The winning combination is Oki and Papelbon in 8 & 9.

Francona should get a raise by the Yankees…..

i got no prob w/bringing GAGne in. but once they had 2 on and 2 out any reasonably intelligent mgr woulda gone to pap. gsm chalk this one up to another of those “bonehead” moves.

GAgen couldn’t pitch against Baltimore with a multi run lead and they expect him to pitch with a one run lead in a pennant race & on the road. HOLY &*^!@*%*!!@!!!! I have seen better managing of a pitchign staff in the little league world series! Have we not learned you cannot leave a Frenchman to guard anythign much less a lead? COME ON!!!!

I’m telling eveyone Francona is getting paid off to lose these games. There simply is no other excuse for it. A five year old know to take him out

Our season could very well lie in the hands of a rookie tomorrow night. Win and we can sleep a little easier, but a loss and we may have to wave the white flag

Sure now Lugo gets a hit.

We as fans seem to care more than the manager!!!

Why did he leave Gagne in there?

I can’t think of any reason he did. If the Sox were up by a bunch of games, I would say leave him in but they’re only up by very little.

Any chance Manny can come off the bench and pinch hit here?

wow, i can’t FIN BELIEVE IT

FRANCONA IS THE WORST MANAGER EVER….he can’t bring Pap in to get 4 outs? WTFFFF

now it’s gonna be 2 1/2 games …. if u include all 4 games that gagne blew for the sox, it would be a big lead in the al east

i can’t believe it :(

this is gonna be the worst season everrrrrrrrrrrrr

Whoever on here said he/she believes Francona is getting paid by the Yankees – I agree. If Theo would put down the Wii or the Sega and stop texting his wife and pay attention he’d see Tito is screwing this team’s chances. I think Tito Jackson could manage this team and its pitching staff better!

It’s hard to believe that one guy can be so horrible after having a pretty good season. I don’t think Francona could possibly pitch Gagne again in any situation outside of a mop-up. Delcarmen has a 2.30 ERA in 39 games AND NO LOSSES. He threw 3 pitches in the 7th inning. Would it have been too crazy to give Delcarmen a chance to step up. It’s also hard to believe that Francona left him in for 2 walks and 3 hits… especially with Gagne’s recent history. What a disaster. If you really look at our trade or free agent history, I really believe close to 80 or 90% of players immediately take a dip in performance after joining the team and immediately improve after leaving. It’s amazing we’re still in first.

THis *** big time.I hate Gagne.Im beginning to think George Stottenmire is paying him to blow games for us.

Right now give Texas Gabbard, Murphy, and Tejada for a cute ballgirl for all I care. Then the lead would be 6.5 and the division would be over.

I CAN MANAGE THIS TEAM BETTER!

Even up a bunch you are just crushing his confidence if you leave him in.

I have tried to hold my tongue, but SOX game management is beyond Grady Little bad — its so blazing stupid, and non-tactical — I can’t even conceive of it. Might as well gift wrap the season for the Yanks now. How in the world can you let one man lose four games for you — when you can see it dissentigrating before you eyes and Papelbon is ready. This we gotta get these guys ready for the post season is too late. Unbeliveable, simply unimaginablly non-tactital, daringly bold or stubborn — mindless. I really think we are GIVING another division title slip away — and we could be at least 4 more games up if we would only manage games at critical times with half intelligence — I don’t get it.

That ball to Ellsbury looked to be inside.

How appropiate the word GAG is in his name GAGNE. I understand he was once a hockey player. He needs to go back to hockey.

Just a thought. If we never got Gagme the regular season would be over. 5 loses are 5 wins that is 10.

It’s almost comical how horrible this Gagne trade has worked out for us. Then again, it serves the front office right for being greedy and trying to overstock the then-best bullpen in MLB.

PS: I believe Gagne was the pitcher everybody was crying for Francona to bring in on Sunday night to face Jeter. Good call.

Again why was it so necessary to pitch him against the Yankees for 6 outs? He has the mindset of a scared dog. Just because it is the big bad Yankees we must throw him out there for 2 innings. But the lowly Blue Jays he doesn’t see the need to bring him in for 4 outs in what was a 1 run game when Friday it was a 7-4 score.

Sox aint won the division since I was in kindergarten my goodness

So I wonder how the press conference goes with Tito, er, Ned Flanders….”Well, hi-dittily-oh reporters. Gosh dittily darn it….we just didn’t get some runs, geez. His pitches were there, somewhere…around the plate dittily ate. Yes, do you have a question?” “Yeah, um, what’s it feel like to be a complete ***** and secondly, have you finished reading the book Managing a Baseball Team for Dummies?”

2 on with 2 outs in 8th and Gagne is ****, why not use Papelbon? His arm is not going to fall of by pitching 1.1 innings.

I don’t live in Boston but in all honestly I expect a BUNCH of fans to show up and “greet” ole Tito and Theo and the rest of the Mouseketeers at the airport. You know? Just to say “hello”.

This is 4 games this guy has blown. How can Francona pitch him in any situation when the game is on the line? He’s a mop up pitcher at best, right now. I can’t wait to hear the spin about how making the playoff’s is what’s important and not winning the division… blah, blah, blah.

How would you like to be in the other dugout and watch this **** go on. They must be laughing up a strom at Francona. I also have to beleive the players must be talking about it.

Come on there 007chow….you ask a very good question and have a very reasonable answer/resolution. But you speak logically. That is not Tito’s way. He used what the Magic 8 ball “told” him to do. It was either that or he was reading all the great comics on the gum wrappers he has with him.

The only reason I want the SOX to win the division so badly this year, is because we ain’t winning anything else, get ready for Yankee title to cap off Torres tenure. Yanks are peaking and still rising — 12-0 against the O’s.

I guess I have become a true SOX fan now, I believe we are going to come up empty handed unless someone starts thinking differently in the dugout — inconceivable. Maybe they have a 2.5 game limit to give every player a chance, before they start managing to win. There is no other explanation, than they wanted to give Gagne a chance to shed some demons for the post season, over winning the game — instead they lost the game and made his demons even bigger. Good call :)

Bring back Gabbard!!!!!

Bosox

Remember I told you, we had the pitching set up for this series-now maybe you believe.

We put out a lineup tonight that included two AAA players, 3 walking wounded and still beat you guys.

When was the last time anyone ever saw Ortiz strike out 6 times in two days. I can’t remember if he’s ever done that.

Yanks now 2.5 back and charging-they will catch you-no question.

You guys should start to be concerned about what Detroit’s doing-cause NY has already grabbed ya.

I can’t believe it. Can’t blame Gagne for being stupid or whatever. Frncoma should be fired right now before further damage is done. The Sox still has 21/2 games lead. I feel sorry for Lester.

Look our freaken front office has loadsa money….USE IT!Play the Yankees in the money game!Buy Andrew Jones or something for Gosh sakes!

zachary. actually i think most people who questioned the move sunday were saying ANYBODY but schill. i said that’s why they traded for gagne was to pitch the 8th ( GOOD MOVE THEO!! ) but anyway. blame GAGne ( that’s my new one by the way ) and franCOMA if you want. and i do. but really that’s 3 consecutive games against ML teams w/3 runs or less. YOU JUST CAN’T DO THAT and expect to win. you can’t. i know i’m being redundent and i know they have a couple of key guys out but this team at the plate is an absolute horror movie. and not even a good one! theo is as much to blame as tito. he had chances to make deals at the deadline to help this team offensively and didn’t ( YET AGAIN ) and now manny got hurt and it’s showing up. maybe he’ll decide houston looks nice.

or Pittsburgh Pirates

When the Yanks catch you guys, will this be the biggest Boston collapse or have there been worse ones?

Gsumner you did not beat us, Gagne beat us. Your team did nothing until he came in so he did not matter if it was a high school team or the Blue Jays, Gagne was going to blow it.

gsumner. all i can say is if you think the last 2 nights were due to great pitching you must have never played the game. toronto’s pitchers ( and the club in general ) wouldn’t have the record they do if they( their staff ) were great. this has been bad offense. toronto has been throwing balls right down ths middle for the most part for 2 nights and boston, as usual, simple will not swing the bats. toronto’s pitching is pretty good and i hope they show up in NY but it’s not great. decent pitching will beat bad offense every time.

Rizzo

We did nothing-I guess you think Burnett’s start was nothing. Ok. We were due to break out on you guys during this game. Lester threw **** all night long and got away with it, someone-Gagne had to pay the price for that.

Smckinny

be careful laddy-you’re starting to show your ignorance level. Toronto has the best era in baseball post All-star. Check this out:

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/stats/aggregate?sort=ERA&split=182&group=9&season=2007&seasonType=2&statType=pitching&type=reg

oh well. they only have to win 8 of 10 now. ha. i can’t believe i actually said that. gsm, repsect yor insight a great deal but this team needs A LOT of help. they’re not too good at controlling their own detsiny!

gsumner. i SAID they’re good. they’re NOT great. how did they do against NY last week? like i said good/decent pitching beats bad offense. boston is a woefully inconsistent off in general. w/ manny and youk out it’s downright pathetic!

I understand that most everybody is just letting off steam after another brutal loss that did not have to happen–and should not have happened. But when I hear people–both Sox fans and Jays fans–saying that the Yanks have already won and that the division is already lost, I have to step in to stop the tide of loserdom. Who are you people? You give up, even though you are winning, just because the chips are down? You just lay your weapons down, pee your pants, and give your necks to the enemies because of a few defeats? I love the Sox because they represent the perpetual possibility of redemption–however Sisyphian it often feels. But some of you seem to only relish the possibility of eternal humiliation–almost begging for it. Listening to some of you, I’m ******* embarassed to be a Sox fan. Pull your stuff together and let’s win this ****** or die with our boots on.

Last Friday night I thought that there was no way I could feel more frustrated about a ball game. I was wrong. I am a big Red Sox fan and always try to keep positive, but I just cant get over this one. This team has had a chance to put away not just the division but the whole AL a number of times the past few weeks and they just seem to leave the door open for the rest of the teams over and over. And what concerns me more is that some BIG mistakes by Francona can hurt the team confidence going into the post season. I still cant beleive that when you have as weak as a lineup as you have had all season and you know its a game you have to win with pitching and Lester gave you all you could expect from him, you keep Papelbon watching from outside after he has not pitch in 3 days and you have off days Thursday and Monday. Terrible loss in every way you can look at it.

BTW. downtown toronto is really nice. you’ll get a good opp to enjoy it during the playoffs since there won’t be any b-ball goin on there!

smckinney

Actually our starters did better against NY than yours. But if I as a Red Sox fan, I’d be more concerned about how well the Jays starter do against NY next week-cause we might just save your A**

lol nice one Smc.

smckinney

glad you enjoy our city. I might say the same for downtown Bostong after the first series-cause if your guys keep playing the way they are-no way you beat anyone.

He we have Glaus out, Overbea out, Zaun, Johnson and Wells injured but still playing-so don’t talk to me about injuries,we’ve had more than our share this year

smckinney

hey we’re starting a AA pitcher tommorrow night-and giving you guys a chance to win. think you can handle that?

You do NOT want Andrew Jones. I live down here and while the Braves would liek to get rid of the guy he is not worth the money. The difference b/n the Skanks and the (soon to be) Dead Sox is as follows:
1) The Skanks have leadership and the only person ont he Red Sox I see giving a rat’s *** is a potential rookie of the year. They also have a good manager. Tito is Double A ball material at best. (Hey! Is it possible to send a manager down to the minors for a rehab assignment?)

2) They are driven to win. Their attitude is to win and not just the division. They want the whole freaking thing. THAT is what makes champions. They are not giving up and never have even when down by 14 games. The Red Sox of 2004 did the same when down 0-3 in the ALCS. They had guts then; now they do not.

3) The yankees play to win. The Dead Sox play not to lose. THERE IS A HUGE difference if you have played sports. The Sox had their foot ont he yankees throat way back when and did what? NOTHING!

I want the Sox to win. I do! But after watching tonight’s game I have come to believe the Sox will lose b/c of that man _ Francona.

If the Red Sox do not make the playoffs – heck, even if they lose the division next week if not sooner – I truly hope Red Sox fans show up in protest outside Fenway Park. I don;t know if this has EVER been done in sports but whether or not it has, I will fly up there and join you all.

I know wat it is.

I apologise to everyone in here,I am sorry.

You’ve got to wonder what gsumner is crowing about. A pitching line-up whose season ERA is second in the AL to the Sox, and who possesses a number of potent hitters: Rios, Wells, Overbay, Stairs (the former Sox). With all that fire power, they are fighting to win as many as they lose. Last year, they were able to finish just ahead of the Sox after virtually all of the significant Sox performers were injured. Oh yah, the Blue Jays have something to crow about. They have to make a big deal about beating a team that will make a strong run at the World Championship, becuz they’ve got nothing else to shout about! Get real!!

I am not as quick to question Tito’s moves as others who participate on this blog are, but I must say, when the bases were juiced and the Blue Jays sent up Russ Adams, a lefthanded hitter, why didn’t we have Javy Lopez or Oki ready to go in?, especially given the trouble that Gagne was having finding the plate.

I have been thinking about why the Sox have been so circumspect about the innings Buchholz will throw. Certainly one explanation is this innings limitation (the Buchholz rules — I guess like the Joba rules). However, I wonder if he was held out of the Yanks series so that the Yanks would have no prior experience with him when he throws against them in the play-offs. If he pitches well tomorrow night, there has to be thought about putting him on the play-off roster by reflecting an injury to someone else.

The bigger question has to be how big a funk Wake is in, and how he finds his way out. The one place we could count on him pitching well was indoors, where his ball could move less predictably. Last night sort of blew a hole in that theory. I guess we’ll have to wait to see how he does against Tampa Bay indoors this weekend.

I know the lead is down to 2 1/2 games, but I like the fact that there is no apparent panic on the team. Perhaps some of you will say there should be, but that’s not the approach and has not been when times have seemed tough (like 5 losses to the Yanks in 6 games).

Now the Sox have No-Hit Buchholz, Beckett and Dice-K lined up to start. If we are going to win the division, we need to win these games, and can do that. I know Beckett goes up against Kazmir. However, he just beat the unbeatable in Wang. Beyond that, no matter how well Kazmir may pitch on Friday night, his pitch count won’t let him get beyond the 6th or 7th inning. As long as Josh keeps the Sox in the game, they’ll score enough against the D-Rays bullpen to win that game. So let’s keep the faith, and believe in the best team in baseball.

gsumner. i’ll give ya glaus. overbay is a non-factor. to answer your AA question. i doubt it. based on the way they looked against the previous 2 AA guys. well, unless buch throws another no hitter. then boston might win 1 – 0. toronto really is nice though. as is boston but i live in NC and the first round will likely be played in anaheim or cleveland. to start with anyway.

its my fault we losing,im sorry

dbenjamin. no panic? you can’t get a pulse on a dead guy. i think their play the last 5 games shows serious panic. bottom line is unless they get some life offensively they’re done. they’ll make the playoffs no doubt. but unless something puts a spark in them off they’re 1 & dun IMO. you can’t be this inconsistent offensively and win a 5-7 game series. nobody’s pitching is that strong. not this year.

I can’t belive you boston crybabys I’m a jays fan we would love to be where you are now get behind your team you bunch of suicidal ****** you make me sick and you don’t deserve a winning team.

OK I will try to put a positive spin on the disaster tonight and last friday. The only logical thought I can think of regarding Francona and the Sox and the idiot moves is that maybe they would rather be the Wild Card and play the Angels in the first round? I actually think their season series record is better against them than the Indians. OK so I tried and even I don’t believe it.

gsumner,

Injuries are a part of sports. All teams get injuries and that is a fact.

Especially baseball because the season is so long.

Jays pitching has been there.

Sox should have won this one but there was a manager in the Red Sox dugout that was sleeping for some unknown reason.

Yankees haven’t caught the Red Sox. Of course there hanging right there. Boston is hanging on but by a limb. Even if the Sox won the division, I don’t like there chances right now. Of course that could change but as of now, no way could anyone feel optimistic of the Red Sox chances of doing anything.

There chances of missing the playoffs is NONE!!!

Umm if we face the Angels in round 1,gud chance we will collide with the Yankees in the ALCS and then we are cooked,we are fried chicken.

smckinny

So you’re saying both McGowan and Burnett are AA pitchers huh. Well they sure made your guys look like rookies. lol.

chman
your guys will never get by the Angels so no worry

Not necessarily. The Indians could pitch Sabathia and Carmona for four games.

go red sox!!

Bosox

They’ll make the playoffs-I agree, but they won’t go past the first round.

Francona was probalby snoozing with our guy Abner. lol

Yeah thanks gsumner i really needed that.Its my fault the sox are losing im sorry guys.

chman

Do you want me to lie to you?

Gsumner im tleling the truth,its my fault the red sox been losing.I can explain.

i know i blame you chman! just kiddin. fact is if you were payin attn you could see this coming 6 weeks ago or more. they have just put TOO much pressure on their pitching in general. and tito has done one of the worst jobs at managing them i have ever seen or can remember anyway. they woulda fired grady little mid-season had he made tito’s decisions. they’ll make the playoffs and still have a chance but suffice it to say the confidence level is low at this point. stock tip folks. BUY GREY GOOSE. they’ll be a lot of it consumed here the next 2 weeks!

Smc,I think I jinxed the Red Sox.My year of 2007 in every category of life has been a living **** for me and ive been through on and off depression and everything that could go wrong seemingly has.And anyone im with or hanging out a lot with,bad things happen to them.Im cursed and doomed and im bringing it on the Red Sox.

Your guys disaster was the Yank series. You messed up in that series and didn’t take us seriously. I warned Bosox our pitching was set up for this series and the Yank series.

We have great pitching, something that Francona either didn’t realize, didn’t believe or just forgot about.

Our hitting is no ****, because of injuries, but you wouldn’t want to be a hitter and face our starters-not any more.

chman-please have a drink, take two asprins and go to bed-it’ll be better tommorrow, we’ll let you guys win

Francona was in a deep sleep for some strange reason.

Friday night vs New York, Okajima and Papelbon are in the game despite the Red Sox with a comfortable lead. Tonight with the game in balance, a game where Papelbon needs 4 outs for a very important save and gets his team a win. Papelbon watches like us. Francona totally contradicts himself there. I couldn’t believe what I saw. I put this game on Francona totally. He did not put his team in a position to win the game.

shut up GSumner,wel kill yall tomorrow.

gsumner. i was just kidding. they’re actually 2 of the better .500 pitchers i’ve ever seen. almost as good as wakefield.

Ill keep away from the game tomorrow and we will win.

Bosox

Chill, your guys have a 7 game lead on Detroit with 11 games to play-you need to win 3-4 of those games to guarantee the wild card. The most important thing for the Sox to do, is set up their pitching for the playoffs. Francona is doing that and should be complemented for it.

Save your pen, save your starters, give them all as much rest as possible and get ready for round 1.

chman. you’re scaring me dude. you havn’t had an AB, made a stupid pitching decision or done anything to effect this team in any way. nor has any other fan. nor could you/us. fact is they have a below avg mgr and some under-achieving players. that doesn’t bode well for long term success. they still have a chance. look on the bright side you could be a toronto fan! sorry gsumner. too easy. kinda like toronto’s pitching. for most teams.

Thanks Smc,I honestly appreciated that.its been a rough year for me.Red Sox baseball was always one thing that brought me joy.But your right,we can still save this thing for the play offs.THis offseason,I better see big moves.

smckinny

Starter records are dependent on the team. Both of these guys have had really poor run support to the point they lost games when going 7 innings and giving up 1 run.

I’d take these two over any Boston pitcher-with the exception of Beckett who I think is a bit better than McGowan-more experienced, and almost equal to Burnett.

But you can keep Shilling, Wakefield and Dice-K. Shilling and Wakefield are done and Dice K is done for this year

Besides my pitching decision would be to NOT let Gagne come in with such a slim lead.Stick with Delcarmen then bring in paps in the 9th.That way Oki can have another night of rest and Delcarmen can get some more work in.

chman

You’d better win tommorrow, we’re stating a AA pitcher, playing two AAA players and 3 walking wounded. If you can’t beat that you’d better hope you don’t face KC in the playoffs-cause you wouldn’t beat them either.

chman

The best thing to do with both Dice K and Okijama is let them rest until spring.

Hey guys, Francona, Papelbon and Buckholz are all coming on to a Toronto radio station for interviews. Good for them

Throw the S.O.B. back – he totally f’ed this game up for us. Nobody ever wanted him in the first place, and THEN he was left in there to after walking two batters. Not only should he have been taken out after that, he NEVER should have been put in there in the first place. He’s already shown he does nothing but screw up slim leads like that. I don’t know why, but this game, more than any, pi**ed me off the most.

Sumner,…..go to ****.

bosox. the sad part is had he just semi-consistently done his job ( give them their best opp to win ) the entire year this game and conversaion would be moot. call me negative, pessimistic, what ever. he s-u-k-s. plain and simple. they still might win it all. but it’ll be in spite of him not because of him. i almost want them to lose the div and in the first round because that might actually be the only way they boot him. but even i can’t bring myself to that level of negativity. i’ll continue to pull for him/them but he’s just plain bad.

I’ll follow you chman-lead the way. lol

Just heard 7 of the 10 candidates for president of Red Sox nation have dropped out of the contest.I wonder why?

Hey sox nation you should be use to this!A little nervous yet?

I had a lot of respect for you Sumner but ur beginning to **** me off.

chman-have a drink, take two aspirins and go to bed. A better day tommorrow.

screw u too sumner.Good thing ur team aint even gonna be in the play offs,though good chance they will be next year.

gsumner. burnett almost equal to beckett? dude. i know canadians have a high tolerance but put the crack pipe down for awhile. those two would be 3/4 starters for boston. and oh BTW you’ve been starting AA and AAA guys all year aparently. that’s why they’re barely .500. can you send me some cuban cigars though? since that’s the only thing canada will be exporting in oct.

Who cares who the president of Red Sox nation is. I wouldn’t give a hoot if it was sentinel.
I am sick of hearing about the candidates. It is one thing that I have paid no attention to. Just another way for someone to cash in on. I had to get that out of my system. LOL….

LEONARD.BRYAN

I wish all the candidates would drop out.

Tom Caron’s postgame analysis/attempt to make me feel good failed miserably: he reminded Sox fans that last year, Detroit lost 5 in a row to end the season, concluding with a loss which put them in 2nd in their division and gave them the Wild Card instead of the AL Central. And then they went onto the World Series. Jim Rice was looking at him like he had 2 heads the whole time.

But hey, tomorrow’s a new day. The Sox pretty much have to win in order to maintain a 2.5 game lead because without Bedard and Guthrie, Baltimore is absolutely the worst team in the AL.

Gsumner, just curious why you are on a Red Sox blog spewing anti-Red Sox sentiment when I’m almost positive nobody here thought to himself, “Hm, I wonder what a Toronto Blue Jays fan perspective is on this whole situation?” I mean I’m all for having a variety of opinions (ie: the blossoming alcoholic in smckinny, the manic depressive chman, etc.) but when all you’re doing is gloating that your team will be fortunate to push 85 wins for the season, I can assure you that your act is getting old fast and you are past irrelevant.

smckinney-no you got it wrong

I said Beckett is almost as good as Burnett-not the other way around. Do you really think Shilling, Dice K and Wakefield are exceptional starters-lol. No wonder you guys lose, you’re dillusional

Good luck tommorrow night, Im out of here

And what will you be exporting in October-Francona?

Look at our future u buttcrack,wel have Bucholz,Lester,Dice K,Wakefield,and I guarantee you a big offseason acquisition.

gsumner,

Burnett is almost equal to Beckett. Are you on drugs pal. No baseball fan with any knowledge would even say that. Beckett is a much better pitcher than Burnett and it isn’t even close.

Beckett is going to win the Cy Young this year and oh by the way he shutdown the Yankees back in 2003 in game 6 on 3 days rest and the MARLINS WON IT ALL. What was Burnett doing in the dugout that night? Besides watching!!! Beckett put that team on his back and pitched one of the best games I have ever seen. He wanted that ball that night. Your on your high horse because the Jays have won the first 2 games of the series and go for the sweep tomm night but please don’t get carried away.

Beckett is almost equal to Burnett, now I can go to sleep laughing, thank you gsumner. You made my night!!!

Thank you for stating facts Brian.Thank you so much.Beck is clearly the better pitcher.

That was Detroit last year. This team is made up of different players. I guess when a team is down 3-0, well the Red Sox came back. Tom Caron is bought and paid for by N.E.S.N. ( Red Sox ) of course he is going to put a positive spin on it.

Remember Bob Rodgers a few years back. He would question Grady Little’s moves all the time on N.E.S.N. All of a sudden Bob Rodgers was off the air. It’s amazing how that works. Tom Caron better put a good spin on it because if he doesn’t he’ll be bowling with Bob Rodgers.

If someone is going to say that Beckett is almost equal to Burnett, needs to be set straight.

Burnett is a good pitcher but he is only 2 games over .500 for his career. Has made over 30 starts only once in his career. Talking about not being durable. Burnett’s season high for wins is 12, he has done that twice in his average career.

Comparing Beckett and Burnett is like comparing Francona and Torre. Night and day….

Beckett has had a heck of a break out season this year.He is definitely going to be our ace of staff next year.

Brian to make things easier,in a big game situation,would you rather hand the Ball to Beckett,Burnett,or Marcum?

Beckett is 3-0 in the playoffs with a 2.11 e.r.a.

Burnett has made as many playoff starts as me.

Here is a shock, Burnett could have made some playoff starts back in 2003 but he was HURT!!!!

Obviously,Beck can handle the pressure am I right Brian?

Beckett and it isn’t even close.

Among pitchers right now, who would you want on that mound?

Beckett….Santana….Sabathia….That would be my top 3!!!

Burnett wouldn’t even the be the #1 starter if by miracle the Jays ever got there. Halladay would be for sure.

gsumner. no i didn’t get it wrong, i corrected you. i have no doubt you talk to any ( honest ) gm in baseball they would rate beck and dice above burnett and what’s his name. so yes they would be 3/4 in boston. they’re good don’t get me wrong. but not as good.

Beckett showed on Ocotber 25, 2003 he can handle the limelight. Shut the Yankees down and made it look easy. I was amazed that night.

Jack Morris and John Smoltz were the best starts I have ever seen. When they went head to head in the World Series, game 7. Beckett is right after that.

Pedro’s start when he allowed only 1 hit( h.r. to chili davis ) back in Sept. of 1999 vs the Yankees at N.Y. was unreal and that is very high on my list.

Alright here is how ide do it,santana,Beck,and Sabathia,then number 4 can be Bedard and fifth would be Halladay.

BEckett had his stuff working for him that night.Fastball was well mixed with his curveball and he just put them on smash.

Beckett is the ace of this staff for the next several years. That will take alot of pressure off of Bucholtz and others. You need an ace for sure. Whoever says you don’t need a #1 starter is on some real good stuff they got from Ozzy Osbourne. Some people out there think that, you don’t need an ace.

Thats ridiculous,an ace is VITAL to success.That stopper and standard setter.

zachary. i’m not an alcoholic. alcoholics go to meetings. i just happen to like the stuff. plus i’m a most of my like sox fan. they kinda go together.

I have been a Yankee fan all of my life. Once again it looks like the red *** are going to blow it again. I can’t wait. I got to this blog because I read a MLB article written by Ian Browne. We wrote about how the red *** were ‘cruising’ into the playoffs and first place. What an idiot. Other then Papi, Beckett and Varatek, the red *** are nothing but a 500 club. In New England they are all you got, thats why most of you follow them. The red *** are crumbling just as much as that old piece of s**t ballpark they play at. Both should be rebuilt.

Santana

Beckett

Sabathia

Bedard

Halladay

Haren

Burnett not!!! A good pitcher but not in that category. He needs to go a full season and give his team 35 starts before we start throwing his name out there. He pitched very well tonight for sure and I wouldn’t take that away from him. To say Beckett isn’t equal to Burnett, come on now.

actually to be a threat to win it all i’d say you need 2. or at least 2 pitching like aces.

2 aces and one good starter and a solid guy.

look at 2001 Diamondbacks.

johnt106,

When you say in New England that is all we have. Are you feeling o.k. pal?

Patriots have won 3 Super Bowls and there going to win a fourth.

Your Giants are given up points like the Red Sox are given up games pal. If you root for the Jets, good luck there pal. EXPECTATIONS = PRESSURE…Not going good there johnt106…

Knicks, come on now….Nets, please!!!! Islanders and Rangers, Devils= WHO CARES!!!

In N.Y. you have the YANKEES AND NOTHING ELSE PAL!!!! Jets and Giants are a combined 0-4!!!!

oh. gsumner. i don’t think we’re lucky enough to find a destination for tito BUT a man can dream i suppose.

johnt,

typical yankee fan, you come around when your team is playing well. Where were you when the Yankees were getting smoked pal? Just what I thought!!! Yankee fans are all mouths when they start winning, unlike Red Sox fans. I can’t wait to watch your team CRUMBLE!!! It’s been 7 years pal, it will be 8, you know it and I know it johnt…..

Don’t get out much bosoxbrian?? Yankees, Mets, Phillies. Three big draws in the NY/NJ area in baseball. We cares about football. My team, the YAHKEES, usually plays in October. We don’t always win it,,, but we’re always in it.

get Em Brian.And ya know what,I stand with Brian.How can you diss New England Sports teams?In the last 7 years,New England sports teams have been dominant.So shut up Johnt.

Francona could be the cameraman for the Patriots. Who would expect Francona on the sidelines with a camera. If they saw him, someone would say he there’s Francona, he is sleep walking again.

This loss tonight really bothered me. Everyone could see it was time for relief, namely Papelbon. Why???? Why????

I wonder who will take out the Skanks this year?Perhaps Anaheim AGAIN?

Brian,hopefully Francona learns from all these failures lately.

johnt

The Philles are a 3 hour ride from N.Y.

Are the Phillies New York’s team? That is a new one to me.

Since your taken Philly sports teams as your home team, Eagles are 0-2.

New York’s area football teams are 0-6!!! Add the Bills and it is 0-8!!!!

Philly is suddenly a N.Y. area sports team johnt!!!

When geography class was in session did you go to class?

I am taken a guess here johnt that you failed geography.

johnt,

Your a typical Yankee fan. You come out when the team is playing real well. Your not a fan pal. Yankee fans that root for them, thick and thin should be disgusted by your actions. Calling Philly a New York sports team. Go to N.Y. and say that pal, they’ll throw you from the top balcony and send you to Philly where you belong!!

johnt,

All you need for Christmas is a map. Find Philly and N.Y. and figure it out. Good luck if they give you a lifesize map!!!

chman. do me a favor please. i won’t be here tom nite. go out and get yourself a good bottle of scotch. assuming you’re old enough. i recc highland park but balvenie is good for the $$ also and enjoy the game, it could always be worst. any day above ground is better than a lot of people have even if the sox continue to s-u-k. point out all the stupid stuff he does and then come on here and and cuss tito for me. even if he doesn’t deserve it tom he will deserve some residual cussing for tonite! don’t abuse the scotch just savor it and the game.

Excuses from Bostonians are as common as New England clam chowda.

Let’s hope the Sox come out quick out of the gates tomm night.

What will happen to Gange now?

I would assume the chances of him being in there with a lead is not going to happen. He showed his true form tonight.

Obnoxious Yankee fans are as common as…Philly Cheese Steaks?

And who is this Ian Browne guy. Do bostonians really read the **** he spews?? At least the NY/NJ papers trash the local teams when they so bad. What does Ian do… rah rah rah… tell it like it is Browne.

Just heard a good rumor!!!!!!
Francona to be fired after the season is over. Bye Bye stupid!!!!!!!!

i am an absolute die hard red sox fan and ive tried to give gagne another chance but idont think i can anymore.. the guy has done nothing but lose games for us.. i can think of 4 off the top if my head. he is a cancer to the team. and what gets me the most is he blew a great game by lester.. its unreal how rattled i am about him. also i think tito should of brought papelbon in for the last out in the eight i didnt like him leaving gagne in

Looks like Francona’s explanation is that he has to assemble a bullpen (with specific pieces, e.g. Gagne) for the playoffs at all cost. They may feel/know that Okijima has lost it more than we know (probably the whole Gagne move precipitated this down turn in Okijima). Whatever their reasoning, seems to me you may put more pressure on yourselves (and the guys who seem to be causing it) by not managing to win (at this very late stage) and thereby release some of that pressure. Seems like Francona’s unstated message is — if I don’t have a bullpen (with Gagne ready to fullfil his role, cause apparently there is no other piece in the bullpen that can, really?) then we will exit the playoffs early, and what good is the division title in that case anyway.

Personally, I would enjoy a division title, there is no reason to lose it (until now) and it may be all you get.

i agree with that.. i think francona is an amazing coach he just made a bad choice last night.. a win tonight is massive because thatmeans we are goin in to the weekend with our three best pitchers throwing and should get siome injured players back. is there anywhere that i can see franconas interview after the game last night?

Did Francona ever consider going to Papelbon once the situation began getting sticky for Gagne?

“We wanted Gagne to get out of it,” Francona said. “Two quick outs, that’s his inning to get out of.”

i think this quote pretty much sums it up for me. he just doesn’t get it. this is sept NOT april/may. you can’t massage egos at this point.

More on Francona reasoning, if Buchholz can win tonight, and Beckett can beat Kazmir in Tampa (no easy task) — then we are could win the next four straight. Toronto goes into NY for four games (with Haladay and Marcum) to start — hopefully they drop a game, but the games are in NY. If the SOX win four in the row, and Yanks drop a game, we could have a little breathing room again at the end of Tampa series, after which we return home.

But the Yanks could win out, going 13-0 down the stretch after the Boston series. After 4 with Toronto, they have 3 at Tampa and 3 at Baltimore. Looks like the Sox have only one more game to give, period. Cause if the Yanks win the makeup game with Toronto, that means we really only have a 2 game lead, not 2.5, tie goes to the Yanks cause of the 10-8 season series record.

bosox. i honestly don’t think he’ll shy away from using gag at all. that’s just not the way our boy tito operates.

After last night’s debacle, the Sox fans are starting to agree what I have been saying all along. No Gagne in a close game. If Oki is not available use Cory, Timlin and any little league pitcher but Gagne.
smckinny is right, we need a hitter not a pitcher.

Ok guys, we still have 2.5 games lead. Let the season begin tonight. The team did not choke. We have a decent starting pitchers and best bullpen (minus Gagne and Snyder). All we need is a little timely hitting and a manager with little common sense. In my book. we beat the Yanks 2 out of 3 if not swept the series.

Get Manny and Youk back and move JD to 8th spot. The Sox is in business and is playoff bound one way or the other.

If FranCOMA let Gagne pitch ever again in a close game, even if he prevails, I will quit as a Sox fan until a new manager comes.

dgneubert. i don’t think you can logicaly use the words francona and reasoning in the same sentence. i do know you can’t ever plan on other teams losing or your team winning later. you should always do your best to put your team in position to win EVERY nite. some you win, some you don’t. but far too often this man hangs this team out to dry trying to plan for a future situation they may never get here.

What make you say that Francoma would not shy away from Gagne. OK let him start an inning with 4 run lead. 3 run lead is not safe. This f****** guy will get 2 easy outs then 2 walks and give up a game tieing HR.

smckinny

although I absolutely agree with you, and simply cannot fathom the choice Francona made, you simply have to conclude that it was so obvious and so critical that it was a deliberate conscious move, knowing the grief he would take if Gange failed again.

He consciously chose the tougher road to victory, feeling it was still more important than the win last night.

While I don’t agree with this at all, and find it very difficult to believe that Torre (for instance would make the same choice) — the only hope I have at this point is that Francona’s move in the end is better than the obvious move. If it pays off, and Gagne snaps out of this in the nick of time, we will all have to admit that Francona had way more resolve than the rest of us.

Its not stupidity (in the over-site sense) — the options we apparent even to the dullest of intellects if you will — its a strategy he believes in, and is sticking with, right or wrong, hopefully not fatally in the end.

You have to conclude (though not agree with) that Francona stuck to his plan knowing the consequences, I just hope he proves to be right in the end — as unimaginably difficult it is to see it that way now.

People win and lose elections due to superior or flawed strategies, sometimes incredulously. We can only wait and see at this point, however infuriating or mind-boggling.

Please please please bring on the egg to my face :) Go Sox.

Man, I am still frustrated thinking (made me forget to get off the train stop this morning) about the 4 games that f****** guy blew and Friday night’s game against Yanks. That’s 5 big games in winning column. Give Francoma the benefit of the doubt – that is the Sunday night’s game.

007. not saying he shouldn’t. just saying he won’t. it’s not what he does. i don’t disagree w/you at all. but look at his track record. he just doesn’t operate like that.

dgneubert. i understand what you’re saying. no doubt it was a deliberate/conscious choice and i understand the “logic” for lack of a better word. however given the situation it’s a senseless risk to me. plus if you take gagne out before the bases were full and pap saves it then gagne doesn’t fail at all. as a result of him ( tito ) doing nothing he ( gagne ) failed horribly.

Some things sox nation can do!
1.Increase your prayer life!

2.Visit the babes gravesite!

3.Increase your booze intake!

LOL

The combination blunder of Gagne/Francoma is just mind boggling. We have no margin of error right now and it just doesn’t look like Francoma realizes it. Maybe now that Gagne’s RedSox ERA is 9.00 in 15 games, it might finally hit home that the guy is a complete and total bust. Would anyone on earth dare put a guy in the game with a 9.00 ERA with the game and entire season on the line? Since Gagne is technically on our payroll (Yanks too?), we should at least foot the bill for a psychiatric stay for him. I don’t believe he could sabotage our season further from a nice 10×10 padded cell.

smckinny

Agree completely. What else can be said — hopefully we come out out top somehow in spite of this — but it looks so very costly at this point.

Hey, rayman came up with the real explanation, I would start looking into gambling debts or secret donations into bank accounts — that would be a better explanation for Gagne’s pitching or Francona’s move — LOL !

I couldn’t believe what I watched last night. But in retrospect, I’ll offer the following thoughts:

First, going to Gagne was the right thing to do. He could be an important contributor in the post season.

Second, Gagne gets the first two outs with relative ease, few pitches, and appears to have good command of all his pitches.

Third, Gagne pitches Thomas beautifully, putting three fastballs exactly where Tek wants them and gets none of the calls.

Gagne gives up a ground ball single on a 2-0 pitch. AT this point I’m probably staying with him.

But then after getting an 0-2 count, he tries to throw the ball 100 mph and can’t get close. That being said, I believe he could have screwed Stairs into the ground with that great changeup on the 0-2 count. I don’t know what Tek was thinking about with all those fastballs. In any case, another walk.

Here is where Francona fails. He should have gone to get Papelbon when it became apparent Gangne lost command.

This is the problem I have had with Francona all year. He views many things more important than winning the game in front of him. Sometimes it has worked out, sometimes it hasn’t. Last night, it didn’t. After a while, those decisions catch up with you and the result is losing a 14 game lead.

Does anyone know why Coco Crisp didn’t play last night? Was it another rest day? I like Brandon Moss, but Crisp should have been out there.

I still think the Sox are in good shape. They have been a resilient team all year and I think they come back over the next few games.

OKay guys, I’ve had to be out of the loop for the past 2 days. I know that they’ve taken the 1st two from us. What are our #’s now. What are the variables that will have the division in our pocket??
I told y’all thta I had 2 tickets to Friday nights game. Well my husband doesn’t want to leave me here, but I’m insisting that he go and make my voice heard for our Sox. We’ll all have to look for 2 guys behind 3rd base behind the visitor dugout with signs (that I’ll make of course). There will be a message for the Brownie points bloggers!!!

Keep me up to date please, this medication stinks!!

In fairness to Francona all managers may seem to make mistakes including Joe Torre!But it still up to the players to come through.Baseball has a lot of luck involved,bad and good.

You’re right dandri2, that’s why they play the games. But still, it’s the manager’s responsibility to recognize when things aren’t going right and make necessary decisions to give his team its best chance to win. Last night, Tito didn’t do that when there was an obvious decision to be made.

gsm, Coco has been battling a stiff back for a while now so Francona is trying to get him all the rest he needs before the playoffs.

Can anybody recall the last time the Sox put out their best lineup? It’s been a while, but it looks like this:

Pedroia

Youkilis

Ortiz

Ramirez

Lowell

Drew

Varitek

Crisp

Lugo

Looking at a lineup bottom-heavy with Hinske, Moss, and Cora is getting to be pretty aggravating. But I guess once it all comes together and all of the injuries are gone, it’ll be worth it when we can put out our best 9 along with Beckett for Game 1 of the ALDS.

With that lineup, Beckett on the hill and Papelbon closing, I honestly believe we are the best team in baseball.

Managers do make mistakes. But I haven’t seen one who has made the same mistakes 3 important games in a row.
I have no problem starting Gagne since Oki is unavilable. Just like Schilling’s situation, when you have 2 runners on and the pitcher has control problem and the game is on the line, this is where Francoma fails horribly.

B/w, what was Francoma’s excuse for leaving that F###### guy on the mound that long?

gsm. as far as viewing the future more imp than the present couldn’t agree more. that’s why him and theo are such a perfect team. the amzing thing to me is they recognized gagne had totally lost it but they left him in because and i quote ” we wanted gagne to get out of it. two quick outs it’s his inning to get out of.” what kind of logic is that? if you have the 8-10 game lead they should have okay but that has to be the most assinine logic i’ve ever heard for the situation involved.

That winning runs hit could have as well been a ground ball out,but was’nt.Could have went either way.Lucky,sometimes better than good!!

Francoma’s excuse is pathetic. Did he realize this is the third week of Sept and in the middle of pennant race with red hot Yanks just a length behind.
It is unfair to put Buchholz in a must win game.

Francoma was thinking if Gagne could get out of the jam, it would bring his confidnce back. Francoma gambled and lost. It would be fine if the Sox had at least 5 games lead. Did Francoma ever look at the scoreboard that the Yanks were beating up on Baltimore. A lost would put Yanks 2 back in the loss column.

Francona’s mistake tonight was in walking Zaun, who hasn’t got an important hit all year. Instead he elected to face Lind and Adams, both good young hitters up from AAA, trying to impress their bosses and earn a job for next year.

There was only one out-one of the two would get a hit or hard high fly ball. If he had pitched to Zaun, he’d likely either strike him out-cause Papelbon owns Zaun or have him hit into a weak grounder.

After walking Zaun, Lind strikes out-so Boston would have been out of the inning.

I’m surprised Tito didn’t know about Zaunies numbers against Papelbon and pitch to him- I think he’s like 1 for 25 or something-suffice to say Papelbon owned him.

Bad mistake-cost you guys the game. And now the Yanks are only 1.5 back.

Good luck from here on in; I think you’re gonna need it.

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