Mark Teixera comes at too high of a price from what I am hearing from the "Experts." Do not get me wrong, I would love to have a middle of the order that consists of: Ortiz, Ramirez, Teixera, but not at the cost of sacrificing the future. The Rangers are rumored to be asking for Buccholz AND Ellsbury. That is too, much. And if we make this trade happen, then the Yankees will be sitting there saying, "Haven’t they learned anything from us." The Yankees are not going to part ways with Joba Chamberlin or Philip Hughes, and they shouldn’t. They understand now, after several years, that without the proper pitching, the postseason will end in failure. They also understand that a Hughes, Chamberlin, Wang, front end of the rotation looks delightfully good…and delightfully cheap. And so doesn’t a Lester, Beckett, Buccholz, Matsuzaka arrangement. Buccholz should be untouchable unless something almost unrealistic comes along. And if the Red Sox believe that Coco Crisp will be the Coco that they traded for, then I am fine with them trading Ellsbury to get something in return that can favor us come postseason time. Just not "Clay."
This Indians/Red Sox series was as entertaining as any series I have watched this season. The first game was emotional for all fans, not only the ones who reside in Beantown. Lester came out and pitched pretty well. He had some balls hit hard off of him, but gave up only two earned, and settled in nicely the last few innings. Westbrook settled in too, but he gave up five runs quickly and it was too much to overcome.
The next two games were what baseball fans dream of. Back-to-back 1-0 games. The first was Sabathia vs. Dice-K. Sabathia showed once again that he was the ace of the Cleveland staff, and that he is a bonafide ace in general. Matsuzaka had a few balls that were hit to the warning track, but he didn’t give up any runs. It felt more like Dice-K should have given up 2 or 3 runs, but the balls were hit in the right spots, and was impressive nonetheless.
Game 3 of the series was the best from an objective standpoint. But even as a fan of the losing team it was a great game. Beckett was absolutely dominating, making only one mistake (that was hit anyway), and giving up one run in eight innings. Carmona was slightly better, giving up zero earned and not giving up a hit until the fifth inning. Granted, the Red Sox have never faced the revived mentality that Carmona has now stumbled upon. But he was simply unhittable. Who knows what will happen next time around the league with this guy. But he has great looking stuff, and he is only 23 years of age. He could turn out like Ramon Ortiz (statistically), but I think he will be closer to the production of an ace. Although, I do not think he will be an "ace," more of a number two, but he could move up to that number one slot in the average rotation eventually. But I am going a lot by this one start, which is unhealthy. His WHIP isn’t great but is good, and he has had sufficient run support to help him obtain his thirteen wins. But this is at least a sign of what could come down the road.
Anyway, game four was okay. I didn’t want to see Gabbard fall apart like that for obvious reasons. I still have faith in him, but he had a meltdown and could not control his pitches. He simply fell apart. He pitched well for four innings then quickly crumbled like he was made of a castle made of sand…all crumble to the sea…eventually. Luckily, the Sox bats came through every time the Indians made it interesting, giving them a 14-9 victory. It was very different from the rest of the series, but I enjoyed the end result of course.
Eric Byrnes hit a walk off and still leads the NL in "Win Shares" this season.
How do you replace my choice for NL MVP? You do not. Utley is irreplaceable. The Phillies have to hope for some hot hitting by Nunez and co. to step it up. Seems unlikely however. The Phillies may be finished. Unless they pull a miracle at the trade deadline.
I like to give credit where credit is due. And when ESPN had the panel the other night covering Bonds and PED’s, it was much better than simply covering the story in an uninteresting manner. I cannot stand the coverage of Vick, the NBA referee, and of course Bonds. And every single day they cover it religiously. But this was different, and of course made it bearable. I do recall Bob Ley saying to Ellis Burks, after Burks commented on how his home run total went up when he arrived in Colorado. Ley said, "But the altidute had something to do with that." Burks goes, "a little bit," holding his fingers up with a small separation in space. Ley was being honest, but it felt like an insult to Burks. I also didn’t like Burks saying that every player has a "career year." It is true, but saying that Bonds’ "career year was when he was 35, is a little ridiculous. I don’t know what happened for sure, but that argument didn’t seem valid. The career year argument actually hurts Bonds’ cause.
And putting Dusty Baker in a position like that wasn’t all that fair. Baker was the manager and did not choose his players, right? He wanted to win, and may actually have had no real evidence if Bonds cheated. So was he supposed to call him out during his tenure in San Fran? Was everything that Baker went through there, a fabrication of some sort? I am not saying Bonds definitely used. I would lean towards it, but I am not sure. But now everyone that was affiliated with that team and was clean, has to look back and question all of it. Bonds was by the far the most important part of their run. And the clean ones should not suffer because they had to play with a guy they didnt necessarily choose to play with, if in fact he "used." Enjoy your 2002 success "clean" Giants players, it probably was not your fault. Same goes for the 89′ A’s. This is even more certain and more of a "fairy tale." Canseco came out, and that put in question the ring they received. Without Canseco’s production from 88′-90′ they would not have been nearly as dominant. It makes my case less convincing because the year they did win the World Series, Canseco played only 65 games. But he played well in the 89′ postseason, which obviously helped. But really I hate addressing this subject most of the time anyway.
Baseball is BIGGER than Bud Selig or Barry Bonds or Jose Canseco.