May 2007

Scared of a collapse?

     I am not scared of a collapse.  Some Red Sox fans seem to be, and some Yankee fans have referenced this.  I look at these situations as a team never being down and out until they are basically mathematically eliminated.  When I am playing sports I am thinking the same way.  That "never give up" attitude.  If I am playing basketball, which I do quite often, I do not just give up when it is 10-4 and the game is to 11.  I never give up, because what does that solve.  It solves the outcome, which is defeat. 

     So I have to look at it from both sides.  If we or I am up big, dont just coast.  Keep pouring it on.  If I am up 10-4.  Finish the team off.  Just like the Red Sox must do to the Yankees, finish them off.   You have to end their season yourselves, it is the easiest way because it is all you can control.  I believe in this team.  I believe they are very talented and have great chemistry.  We don’t have guys like Jose Guillen or AROD throwing temper tantrums and playing "slightly" dirty.  Sidenote:  Even if Arod’s antics are miniscule, they become magnified around baseball and become distractions for the Yankees.  We do have JD Drew who looked afraid of the wall last night on a Sizemore home run.  But we have great chemistry, great talent. 

      WIth all the rambling, my point is:  This team can win the division and the World Series and I believe that they can win 100+ games and win in the playoffs, kind of how the White Sox did in 05′ (speaking only of the playoffs in this reference, as the Chi-Sox almost lost the division).  But I am also not counting out the Yankees, or more realistically as of now; the Indians, Tigers, or Angels.  Do I feel we are the best team right now?  Yes.  But it is a long season and we have to let it play out all the way.  Red Sox teams of the past do not represent this team!

UGH

     JD Drew you are starting to anger me now.  Hit the ball out of the infield please!

Beckett dominant too!

     Before last year I said that Beckett was an "Ace."  People mocked me for that and I don’t blame them.  He was garbage last year.  But this year I think their opinion is changing.  He must do it for a full season to be considered an ace.  A pretty good start, don’t ya think?  8-0.  And just watching him you know it isn’t a fluke.  He has everything going for him and has been among the 5 best pitchers in the game so far.  His Era is 2.65.  He is hitting his spots.  And those curve balls are devestating hitters, he dint have anything near that kind of consistency in his breaking ball last year.

     Kevin Youkilis is awesome right now.  He is a perfect example of what the Yankees are missing this year.  Someone who is playing great and has a vast amount of energy and intensity.  And it does help that he is producing I would think.  Some of the players might not take a guy like that very seriously if he were hitting .230 and playing poorly.  It also helps that we have more than one guy like that.

    This team is playing way above everyone else right now.

13.5 game lead

     The rearviewmirror actually consists of the Blue Jays and the Orioles now.  But we all know that the Yankees are still the second best team in the division.  But they are 13.5 games back and continue to struggle. 

     JD Drew.  Three straight games with an RBI.  Drew reached base three of his four times at the plate, and had an RBI on a 2-strike count against the left hander Cliff Lee.  We won without Ortiz too!

     Kevin Youkilis is on fire!  Amazing, in baseball terms, what he is doing during this 20 game hit streak.  He had an inside the park home run to go along with a double.  Pedroia had three hits.

     …Almost forgot.  Schilling was absolutley dominant.  His fastball was clocked at 94 near the end of his outing.  His splitter was dominant too. 

     Speaking of dominant…Beckett is back.  So far he has been incredible.  And hopefully he can continue what he had been doing thus far tomorrow night. 

     Once again we are going to throw the same three pitchers we threw in the previous series against the Yankees;  Wakefield, Tavarez, and Schilling. 

     The Red Sox continue to play inspired baseball, great baseball.  We have done it without Lester, and now without Beckett the past few weeks.  This team has everything going right now.

Dog-Fighting

     How can people be so inhumane and take part in dog fighting?  Absurd.  And now because of that I have to watch this boring segment dedicated to it.

Zito on Bonds

Actually just read an article I found by Barry Zito on Barry Bonds.

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2880193

Now this is what I mean.  I mentioned it about Clemens.  I don’t like what I see, but we don’t see everything, or even close to half, of what a person is all about. So we have an opinion of all these guys, but we really know little about them.  Now after reading this article, I am not saying that Bonds is a good guy by any means.  It is just that Zito seems to think highly of him.  And that is better than no one thinking highly of him, right?  So maybe he is learning a little about life.  Better late than never (cliche,’ my apologies). 

I couldn’t resist

Here are my All Star votes:

1B: Kevin Youkilis-Everything about him I am loving right now.  It was either him, Morneau or Ortiz.  I went with Youk because of his, seemingly, solid defense.  It was tough between he and Ortiz, but he has really stepped it up since Beckett has been out. 

2B:  BJ Upton-His OPS was just too tough to ignore.  He is defensively chllenged, but his offensive numbers stand out so much that I felt I had to take him. 

3B:  Alex Rodriguez-Who else could I possibly have taken?  Carried this team to a below .500 record, which is not his fault at all.  Sorry Mike Lowell, but you just arent Arod, and you arent even Mike Lowell on defense so far this year. 

SS:  Derek Jeter-This was tough because Carlos Guillen has such impressive numbers again, and is going to be overshadowed…again.  But he might be worse than Jeter on D, it might be a toss up though.  So I go with the guy who gets a hit in every game. 

C:  Jorge Posada-Well, Joe Mauer has been hurt.  He is the best catcher in the AL.  But Posada has been the best so far.  His OPS is ridiculous.  And my entire infield consists of AL East players.   

OF:  Vlad Guerrero-May end up being my MVP.  I picked him before the season anyway.

OF:  Torri Hunter-Very good season in his…ahem…contract year.  But he is good anyway.

OF:  Magglio Ordonez-Unexpected that he is playing this well.  He has been good, but right now is great. 

NL:

1B:  Todd Helton-This was very hard for me to choose.  Helton is playing well on the road and is good with the glove.  Lee isnt bad with the glove either, and Gonzalez has been tearing up the numbers in a pitchers park.  But I went with Helton, best OPS, good glove.  Sorry to Prince Fielder as well.

2B:  Chase Utley:  Pretty easy pick for me here.  Even with Howard struggling, Utley is playing great.

3B:  Chipper Jones-  With the other Jones playing atrocious ball, he is crushing the ball. 

SS:  JJ Hardy-There are a few too many good to great SS’s in the NL.  I went Hardy, because he is tearing it up.  But Reyes is playing well, Ramirez is too, cannot forget Rollins.  This was a very difficult choice.  And Hardy seems like he is a defensive liability, which made it even more difficult.  The Brewers are in first, and I feel like he has been a huge piece of that.

OF:  Barry Bonds-Best OPS in the NL.  Seems to be, dare we say, becoming a better teammate?  Maybe he is learning a little.  Still a below average teammate though.   

OF-Ken Griffey Jr.-Awesome year!  His team is pathetic, but it isnt because of him.  He actually deserves this vote as of now, not just because he is Griffey either. 

OF: Aaron Rowand-I like the way he plays.  All out style.  Has very good offensive numbers.  Tough to choose between he and Beltran, but I took Rowand.  I do think that by seasons end, or even closer to the break, that Beltran will overtake him.  But I am voting based on what has happened so far. 

C:  Russ Martin-Tough choice, because I don’t see a lot of these players except on "Baseball Tonight."  I don’t know how good of game callers they are.  But I know Martin has a reputation for being good on both sides of the ball.  And his numbers are much better than Mccann’s as of now. 

Which reminds me…

     If you’re drowning in a river and there are three people standing on the rivers edge. Which one would you feel confident would help you:  Pete Rose, Ty Cobb, or Barry Bonds? 

     Pete Rose might pop some amphetamines and swim as fast as possible in order to save you, but then head in another direction because there was some mischief he could partake in.  Ty Cobb would probably steal a rock from the river bed and run off for no apparent reason.  Bonds would probably juice up while popping amphetamines and then start doing pushups.  Then when the authorities asked what happened, they would all lie, or blame it on one of the others.  Point is I would be screwed!

   

10-6 victory

Well tonight Dice K looked pretty good through 3, then crumbled for an inning.  He went 5 and gave up five earned.  Maybe it was due to his "strained oblique" or whatever that slight injury looked like.  But he left fastballs on the inner half of the plate and up which resulted in two home runs.  He was actually leaving everything up after his slight strain.  But the offense was dominant, patient, yet again.  Thanks again JD Drew for going 0 for 4.  Please show up.  You look foolish lately, like you have no business playing major league baseball.  Missing pitches badly, grounding out weakly.  You still have a good eye of the strike zone, but can’t hit it solid when it is in that zone.  I do know that Drew will come around, but it is very frustrating watching him play this poorly.  Youk had a few more hits and extended his stellar play.  He is simply on fire lately.  I am beginning to grow quite fond of this guy.  When hustle and determination team up with hits and OBP, then he becomes pretty likeable.  He has always had three of those qualities, but lately he is hitting the ball better than he ever has, better than anyone on the team.  Sox take the division lead by 10.5 games…again.  Tomorrow it is Wakefield vs. Padilla.

Thoughts about random stuff…again

     Dice-K rolling up to the hill tonight to hopefully throw the lights out of the ball.  He is pitching great of late.  We face B-Mac.  The young 26 year old (I Think), who is pitching well of late also. 

I enjoy that Steinbrenner is placing more of the blame on Cashman in this article, http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2882684 ,rather than Torre.  Now I believe Torre has been overrated throughout his career to an extent.  From what I have seen he is a good manager, but not great.  I believe other managers could have done what he did.  But I also don’t believe that all of that winning was strictly because of the players he had.  He deserves some credit, but sometimes he gets more than he should.  Now he is getting more criticism than he deserves. 

    And Cashman on Pavano from Olney’s blog:

     "Talked with Brian Cashman Thursday, and he thinks that Carl Pavano — probably the least productive free agent signing, dollar-for-results, of any player in club history — got an unwarranted rap as someone who wouldn’t play hurt. "In every instance, when he felt he had a problem, it turned out he was hurt," Cashman said. "He’s got a torn ligament in his elbow now; he can’t pitch. When he was out with a back problem, one of the foremost back specialists in the country did the work on him and said he was hurt. When he was out with a bone spur, [noted surgeon] James Andrews told me that the spur was the size of a marble. It hasn’t worked out the way we wanted [with Pavano], but he has worked hard to come back [from his injuries], and the bottom line is, he’s hurt. And there’s nothing he can do about that."

     I try and read most ESPN chats, usually after they are finished.  Sometimes if I am around I try and take part in them.  This question was posted in a Jerry Crasnick chat earlier today:

JB (Dallas): Are Ellsbury and Bucholz a reasonable offer from Boston for Teixeira…?

SportsNation Jerry Crasnick: JB,

I’m sure Texas would love it. But there’s no way the Red Sox package Ellsbury and Buchholz in the same deal for a guy approaching free agency. And in case you haven’t noticed, Kevin Youkilis is doing just fine at first base."

     Is this a joke?  No way we trade a young CF with star potential along with a young pitcher with ace potential, for a guy we can sign as a free agent.  Plus, Youk is sufficient, and even more than that if he continues to play this way.

     In a follow up to Stark’s most overrated list, he now has his most underrated list.  The guy I disagree most with is the Hanley Ramirez one.  It is only his second year and he seems to be overshadowed by Reyes even though they are very similiar in production.  But outside of that comparison he doesn’t seem to be underrated.  He has a lot of talent and is producing.  Anyone who knows baseball knows this.  And Rob Neyer and BaseballAnalysts.com have made this clear in the past few weeks.  They mention him all the time in regards to the Beckett trade on BBTonight.  I don’t think he has enough of a track record to be truly "rated." 

     MLB should implement an electoral college for the all star voting. 

     I havent had a drink in roughly 500 days. 

     Even as Bonds struggles to hit home runs, he is still helping his team with the best OBP in baseball.  At .503.  And he also carries the best OPS in the NL.  One of the few guys that can help his team while his average declines. 

     Go Red Sox!

    

    

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.