Bird Watching: Sox-O’s Gamer XV

It’s time to jump in a taxi
For Thirty-third Street
Knowing I’ll be watching those ‘Birds’ go,
Watching Weaver’s Show

After waving goodbye to the Jays and Fenway, the Sox find themselves at Oriole Park in Camden Yards for a four-game road trip.  Tim Wakefield missed has last start due to a sore back, resulting in a chance for Clay Bucholz to start, and we all remember how that turned out.  Now Wake returns to action, riding a three-game winning streak in which he pitched 22 innings and didn’t allow a run.  At 16-10, he is not only pitching for a share of the major-league win lead, but also to record a decision in each of his 27 starts, a feat not accomplished since Jack McDowell did so with the White Sox in 1993.

Garrett Olson has had the misfortune of facing Boston twice already this season.  He’s allowed six runs in just over 10 innings, taking the loss in each outing.  Boston holds the season series lead, nine games to five.  Lineups follow, comment away.

Boston
J. Lugo ss .239
D. Pedroia 2b .329
D. Ortiz dh .317
M. Lowell 3b .329
K. Youkilis 1b .288
B. Kielty lf .262
J.D. Drew rf .254
C. Crisp cf .266
D. Mirabelli c .212
T. Wakefield rhp 4.16
 
Baltimore
B. Roberts 2b .298
C. Patterson cf .269
N. Markakis rf .294
M. Tejada ss .307
K. Millar 1b .262
A. Huff dh .273
M. Mora 3b .266
R. Hernandez c .245
J. Payton lf .255
G. Olson lhp 7.22
371 comments… add one
  • Throwback uniforms tonight

    Rob September 6, 2007, 7:07 pm
  • Looks like the ChiSox are the only ones doing it.

    Rob September 6, 2007, 7:08 pm
  • Lugo chops to 3rd. Out.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:09 pm
  • Pedroia flies to center.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:10 pm
  • 4 pitches (I think) as Ortiz flies to left.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:11 pm
  • Damn quick inning. Sox showed no patience letting Olson off the hook quickly.

    Rob September 6, 2007, 7:12 pm
  • 6 pitches, Devine. WTF?

    stuck working September 6, 2007, 7:12 pm
  • Leadoff guy on, steals second. This is not starting well.

    Rob September 6, 2007, 7:15 pm
  • Nah, there’s 1 out. Still not great or anything.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:16 pm
  • Shaky Wake in full effect – walk follows the hit/steal. I hate watching this version.

    SF September 6, 2007, 7:16 pm
  • Wakefield scoreless streak is all over.

    Rob September 6, 2007, 7:17 pm
  • Sh*t. 1-0 on Tejada’s single.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:18 pm
  • Gah. This could be over fast…
    I tuned in at 712 an the Orioles were already up — what, did the Sox see three pitches in the first?

    SF September 6, 2007, 7:19 pm
  • A question: I have Gameday up and it appears that the box marking the strike zone is gone (presumably because it so often conflicted with what the umpire called). When did this happen??
    Apologies if this came up in another thread I missed.

    stuck working September 6, 2007, 7:20 pm
  • Checked the thread – six pitches. Nice job, guys!

    SF September 6, 2007, 7:20 pm
  • Wake has zero control tonight. Bases about to be full, if the 3-0 fastball isn’t crushed.

    SF September 6, 2007, 7:21 pm
  • yuck…Wake looking very rusty.

    Rob September 6, 2007, 7:21 pm
  • Nope, a 3-0 knuckler loads them. OK, we have ” brutally nwatchable” Wake pitching, so I am going to take advantage and go make some dinner.

    SF September 6, 2007, 7:21 pm
  • Eeeeeeeeeeeek!

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:22 pm
  • If Wake keeps putting guys on at this pace, we won’t have to worry about that decision steak ending!

    SF September 6, 2007, 7:23 pm
  • Thank goodness Wake’s out of there with the one run.

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 6, 2007, 7:23 pm
  • streak, not steak. Steak is for eating.

    SF September 6, 2007, 7:23 pm
  • Grounder to 2nd. Okay, people, runs, runs, runs.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:23 pm
  • I’m almost as excited about the 4-pitch at-bat from Youk as I am the single, here.

    stuck working September 6, 2007, 7:28 pm
  • We got nothin’ thus far.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:31 pm
  • Brian Roberts’ at-bat longer than the Sox’s half-innings.

    stuck working September 6, 2007, 7:38 pm
  • 1-2-3 2nd for Wake, though not completely in control the entire time (went to 3-1 on first batter, full count on third).

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:39 pm
  • Crisp singles to right.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:42 pm
  • Mirabelli singles…and possibly injures himself (again) as he limps close to 1st. Crisp to 3rd.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:43 pm
  • Mirabelli’s sticking in the game, apparently.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:44 pm
  • Lugo singles! Tie game, runners at 1st and 2nd, none out.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:46 pm
  • Mirabelli leaving game. Clayton pinch-running.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:47 pm
  • Lugo keeps it going. The bottom 3 coming through this inning.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 7:47 pm
  • Pedroia hits it to the pitcher…instead of throwing to 3rd (he saw Clayton headed back toward 2nd), Olson throws to 1st. Millar, instead of throwing for an easy out at 2nd, throws to 3rd and is late. So it’s 2nd and 3rd, 1 out for the Sox.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:50 pm
  • Wow…Olson has done a couple of dumb things here. He throws to 1st instead of heading for Clayton, who would have been caught halfway between 3rd and home. The Orioles announcers are, rightfully, pretty disgusted.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:53 pm
  • And then Ortiz grounds out, pitcher to 1st base. Clayton scores, Lugo to 3rd.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 7:53 pm
  • And Garret Olson muffs another play, letting Clayton (WHO?) score and throwing instead to get Papi at first.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 7:53 pm
  • Fairly long flyout for Lowell. 2-1 Sox.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:54 pm
  • I dont think Ive ever heard the Os annoucner so sickened. Thos were to crappy crappy plays

    Dionysus September 6, 2007, 7:55 pm
  • Clayton is a backup infielder. They got him in late August, I think. Can’t remember if he was DFAed by another team or something.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:56 pm
  • Markakis doubles with 1 out.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 7:58 pm
  • Lowell takes one for the ride but Jay Payton nabs it. Inning over, the Sox get a couple of cheap runs. (I’ll take it.)

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 7:58 pm
  • Maybe Clayton is the PTBNL they got for WMP?

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 7:59 pm
  • Tejada flies to center. 2 out, runner on 2nd.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 8:00 pm
  • Diamondbacks 1B Chris Carter was the PTBNL, Hudson. Sadly, he wasn’t a Sept call-up. Woulda been fun to see him.

    stuck working September 6, 2007, 8:01 pm
  • Ach, Millah homers, 3-2 O’s.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:01 pm
  • Millar homers. Booooooooooo. 3-2 O’s. Time to go home and hope the score changes in the meantime.

    Devine September 6, 2007, 8:01 pm
  • Cowboy hits a 0-2 homerun, 3-2 O-birds.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 8:01 pm
  • Millar- Red Sox killer.

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 6, 2007, 8:01 pm
  • Now Huff doubles. The time off did not serve Wakes well.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:02 pm
  • (What is the point of having a TypeKey if you still have to respond to the spam challenge thingy every time you post?)

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:02 pm
  • And Mora drives Huff home with a single. Jeepers.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:03 pm
  • I’m thinking like Grady Little here, but I hope they give Wakes a chance to get out of this inning, and for the lineup to give him a lead back.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:04 pm
  • Mora steals second.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:04 pm
  • Wakes gets a ground-out to end the carnage.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:05 pm
  • Youks leads off with a walk.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:10 pm
  • Olson walks Drew, and then the runners advance on a wild pitch. This kid is a mess, the Sox can’t let the Orioles get a win with him tonight.

    Anonymous September 6, 2007, 8:15 pm
  • COCO!!!

    Rob September 6, 2007, 8:16 pm
  • Coco goes boom?
    COCO GOES BOOM!! :D

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 6, 2007, 8:16 pm
  • COCO! LONG BALL! 5-4 Sox, and Wakes is back in line for a win!

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:16 pm
  • Wheeeeee.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:17 pm
  • Where’s Atheose???? GOD BLESS COCO!

    rootbeerfloat September 6, 2007, 8:17 pm
  • (I can’t tell if there are just the usual raft of Sox fans in Baltimore, or if the O’s fans are getting p!ssed off.)

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:17 pm
  • Cash Ks. 2 gone.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:18 pm
  • GOD BLESS COCO!

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 8:19 pm
  • Is Clay available in relief?

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:19 pm
  • Olson out. Julian Tavarez’s adult film sidekick Rocky Cherry coming in for Baltimore.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:21 pm
  • Sorry for being late everyone… cooking up some grub. Who got injured? Garrett Olson?

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 8:23 pm
  • JLug pops out to end the inning.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:24 pm
  • Yeah, Olson came out, for whatever reason.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:24 pm
  • With Wakefield struggling, isn’t this potentially an ideal time for a long relief appearance by Buchholz?

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:25 pm
  • Hudson,
    I think I read an article somewhere about how Buchholz would be used a lot like Joba, only 1 inning at a time. Can’t back that up, though.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 8:28 pm
  • Two fly-outs for Wakes. Is he settling down?

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:28 pm
  • >>>I think I read an article somewhere about how Buchholz would be used a lot like Joba, only 1 inning at a time. Can’t back that up, though.
    How can he go from throwing 9 complete innings in a row to only being able to throw one occasional inning in relief? Take off the kid gloves.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:29 pm
  • Redman single to right with two outs.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:30 pm
  • How can he go from throwing 9 complete innings in a row to only being able to throw one occasional inning in relief?
    Because this kid has enormous potential–at the rate he’s going right now (a no-hitter every 2 starts) he’s going to retire with over 100 no-hitters. You gotta be careful with a kid like that!
    In all seriousness though, they want to make sure he adjusts slowly to the bullpen. After last week’s no-no, I think we can all agree we don’t want to take any chances with this kid.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 8:31 pm
  • Bleccch, Markakis doubles Redman home, tie game. Miggy batting.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:32 pm
  • The Sox brass is trying to keep Buchholz from throwing moer than X (can’t remember the amount) innings.
    If her were to be used in a emergency starter slot, he would be supposedly limited to 80 pitches.

    Rob September 6, 2007, 8:32 pm
  • enough of Wake – he has NOTHING. Get him out, Grady, er, Tito.

    SF September 6, 2007, 8:33 pm
  • I’m guessing this is the game where Wake finally gets no decision. Yuck.

    stuck working September 6, 2007, 8:33 pm
  • >>>After last week’s no-no, I think we can all agree we don’t want to take any chances with this kid.
    I just don’t see how 2-3 innings is “taking a chance with this kid.” Wasn’t he starting in AAA?
    Honestly, it’s pathetic how we baby pitchers nowadays.
    How on earth did Luis Tiant throw 187 — 187! — complete games over 19 years? He was hardly a fitness freak. Just one example among many.
    – – – – – – –
    Now Miggy singles home Markakis, Wakes is coming out for Snyder. Dammit.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:35 pm
  • Wake gets pulled. Either he’ll get a loss (I hope not) or he’ll get a no-decision. Damnit.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 8:36 pm
  • thanks,Tito.

    SF September 6, 2007, 8:36 pm
  • You may be right Hudson, but why take the chance? Different people react differently to different situations, especially when you begin to stretch someone’s max IP during a year. I don’t mind erring on the side of caution with a 23 year old who has his entire career ahead of him, rather than using him inappropriately in a September that we already have won.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 8:38 pm
  • um, how is this month “already won”? Not being pessimistic, just factual. Nothing is won yet.

    SF September 6, 2007, 8:40 pm
  • The Cubs have two pitchers who were the prime case study of over used young arms. The yhave not recovered from being rushed up to the bigs and overused.

    Rob September 6, 2007, 8:40 pm
  • Should the Sox lose tonight, they will be five up in the loss column in the division with 21 to play. They have three left against the Yankees. There is a very good chance that the Sox win the division, and an even better chance they make the playoffs. But let’s not kid ourselves: nothing is guaranteed, and nothing is wrapped up at this point. The closer it gets before next weekend the more pressure there will be next weekend, something the Sox surely want to avoid. The Sox can only “win the month” by winning some more games, and Wake crapping the bed like he did tonight and Tito sleeping during a terrible pitching outing isn’t the way to do it.

    SF September 6, 2007, 8:43 pm
  • VIVA PAPI!!

    Rob September 6, 2007, 8:43 pm
  • PAPI! Homer to the warehouse.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 8:43 pm
  • Papi blasts the Sox back to a tie. No decision for Wakefield.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:44 pm
  • That’s better. Six runs in 4+ innings and we aren’t leading. That sucks!!!

    SF September 6, 2007, 8:44 pm
  • If Lowell goes down I am headed to a bridge.

    Rob September 6, 2007, 8:44 pm
  • Why take the chance? By that logic, it was highly irresponsible for Francona to let Clay finish his no-hitter, I mean, his pitch count was way over 100! Was that irresponsible?
    For most of baseball history, players were much more durable, despite the lack of training rooms and trainers and sports doctors and expert surgeons and whirlpools and the like. The more benefits players have, the less anyone seems willing to let them be athletes.
    /rant

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:47 pm
  • You’re right, we haven’t won anything yet. The Yankees could very well comeback and pass us. But in general, if you look at this team’s strengths and weaknesses, we’re most likely going to finish out ahead. That’s being factual too.
    By the way, Wakefield didn’t have a COMPLETELY bad night tonight. He got the first two outs in the 4th early, which suggested that he had settled down.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 8:49 pm
  • What about that third out, Atheose?
    As for the Buchholz pampering issue you raise, Hud, I sympathize. But those days of complete games are over: arm strength is something built up over many years. Buchholz wasn’t even a starter until a few years ago, he was a converted fielder. So he doesn’t have the same history of throwing a ton of pitches, and keeping him on a count is nothing but smart. That doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t use him, ever, but they DO have to be careful: he’s an investment, not a windfall.

    SF September 6, 2007, 8:52 pm
  • Hudson, I do not disagree with your position. Eventually these players have to be prepared to go a full season. The team letting him throw 15 pitches about his high amount this year was not irresponsible, but if he had been smacked around that game instead of throing the no-no does not mean he will be successful all the way around. I would rather the team prep him, keep him in the majors for the remainder of the year getting used to pitching at this level so we can insert him into the starting rotation next year.

    Rob September 6, 2007, 8:53 pm
  • Yeah, I guess you’re right for the most part Hudson. And when it comes to older players, I agree with you.
    But for a guy who pitched only 119 innings in 2006, I don’t think it’s very unreasonable to take a few precautionary actions. And I think you’re completely right–it was dangerous for Tito to leave Clay out there during the no hitter. It worked out well, but it could have been bad.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 8:53 pm
  • Can we just get three consecutive outs please!?

    SF September 6, 2007, 8:54 pm
  • (in the same inning, that is)

    SF September 6, 2007, 8:54 pm
  • What about that 3rd out?
    Which is why Tito took him out ;-)

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 8:55 pm
  • Come on, scrub, get another out.

    SF September 6, 2007, 8:56 pm
  • Thanks, scrub!

    SF September 6, 2007, 8:56 pm
  • (Buchholz is warming, apparently. I’ll chill out.)
    Hernandez walks. C’mon, Snyder, don’t give the O’s their seventeenth lead of the game.
    He gets Payton out 5-3, inning over. OK.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 8:57 pm
  • Kielty makes contact this time at least.

    Rob September 6, 2007, 8:59 pm
  • Tito never seems to pinch hit when he should. Why can’t he bring in Jacoby?

    SF September 6, 2007, 9:00 pm
  • Drew K’s…..shocker.

    Rob September 6, 2007, 9:01 pm
  • I love that there were cries for Kielty to start over Drew just because he had a good couple of games. The idea that a guy who was dumped by a mediocrity and hasn’t ever been a very good player should take over for a player with a track record like Drew’s is just silly and short-sighted, reactionary.
    That said, I don’t understand why Ellsbury (admittedly not proven) wouldn’t come in for Kielty now that the lefty is out.

    SF September 6, 2007, 9:02 pm
  • >>Why can’t he bring in Jacoby?
    Because that would make sense.

    Rob September 6, 2007, 9:02 pm
  • It’s like Tito has this “it’s not late enough in the game to pinch hit” attitude, kind of like “it’s too early to bring in a closer for an inning”, disregarding situation, leverage, etc. It’s so “by the book”.

    SF September 6, 2007, 9:04 pm
  • If Buchholz is coming in, this smacks of Papelbon’s first late-season appearance – coming in in mid-innings, with a handful of spot starts.

    SF September 6, 2007, 9:04 pm
  • I agree, I want to see more of Ellsbury. The kid has been MONEY so far.
    Also, I’m glad to hear Buchholz is warming. I wanna see him kick some ass.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 9:05 pm
  • Here’s Clay, looking to extend his streak of hitless/scoreless innings, no doubt…

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:07 pm
  • Poor start.

    SF September 6, 2007, 9:08 pm
  • Buchholz walks Roberts to start things off.
    (On the above topic, I think Francona takes the “showing faith in players” thing to an extreme, which accounts for the lack of seemingly obvious substitutions in many cases.)

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:09 pm
  • Nolan 2.0 walks Roberts, who never lifts his bat. Settle down, Nolan.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 9:09 pm
  • PNFU.

    SF September 6, 2007, 9:09 pm
  • Buchholz: 6 balls, 1 strike, 1 coaching visit to the mound. Must be full of nerves.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:10 pm
  • And Yankee fans everywhere chuckle, their belief in the superiority of every one of their youngsters reinforced while Buchholz fails to get the ball over the plate…

    SF September 6, 2007, 9:11 pm
  • Please No Fuck Ups?

    Anonymous September 6, 2007, 9:11 pm
  • “Post No-No Fuck Up”.
    A riff on the “PBF”, a common golf term.

    SF September 6, 2007, 9:11 pm
  • There goes Clay’s no hitter. One week too late, lol.

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 6, 2007, 9:12 pm
  • Redman singles, 1st and 2nd, no outs.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:12 pm
  • utter disaster brewing

    Rob September 6, 2007, 9:14 pm
  • OK, so this isn’t working out. Oh well.
    The worst thing about the linescore is that the Sox scored in the tops of two innings, giving Wake the lead, and he just barfed it right back. So deflating.
    I have no confidence tonight, definitely still feeling ticked off about blowing last night’s game in the final two innings. Every time it seems like the Sox are going to do something famous (five or six in a rown, seven of eight or something like that) they just cough games back, turning four of five into four of seven, middling stuff.

    SF September 6, 2007, 9:14 pm
  • Bases loaded, no outs. Tejada up. Shit.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 9:15 pm
  • Now Markakis walks. Bags loaded, no outs. We’re getting Bizarro Buchholz tonight.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:15 pm
  • nice DP there…

    Rob September 6, 2007, 9:17 pm
  • great double play. thank god.

    Max September 6, 2007, 9:17 pm
  • Well, we know the stats: the Sox fall behind here, there’s only a tiny chance they come back.
    There’s a huge start! One more big out…

    SF September 6, 2007, 9:17 pm
  • 5-2-3 double play! Hell yeah.
    Now just get Cowboy Kevin out and escape untouched…

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:17 pm
  • GIDP, no one scores! Holy shit!

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 9:18 pm
  • Baltimore fans booing as Boston fans chant Let’s Go Red Sox, loudly.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:18 pm
  • Kevin Millar, I am forever indebted to you.
    Now make an out, please!

    SF September 6, 2007, 9:18 pm
  • That dp was yoodge. (In Yankee speak)

    no sleep til brooklyn SF September 6, 2007, 9:19 pm
  • Note to Clay…no need to do that crap to impress us. I think you did that with the no-no.

    Rob September 6, 2007, 9:20 pm
  • CBuc v. KMil, two in scoring position, two out:
    — Foul
    — Ball
    — Foul
    — Ball (close call)
    — Ball
    — Swinging strike!
    Phew. Big phew.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:21 pm
  • Cowboy K’s! Nolan 2.0 gets out of a major jam.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 9:21 pm
  • >>>Kevin Millar, I am forever indebted to you.
    Yep, that high Mariano ball four, with Millar bending back out of the way of the pitch, which brought in Roberts to pinch-run, is forever etched in my memory (and is easily forgotten as a crucial turning point).

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:24 pm
  • (I think Buchholz currently weighs about half of what Nolan Ryan did, but that can change…)

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:25 pm
  • Jim Hoey — whose Gameday pic screams “doofus” — is making quick work of the Sox here.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:26 pm
  • Aaand the top of the 7th is over in 9 pitches.
    Interested to see who pitches the bottom half.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:27 pm
  • Bucky coming out for inning #2. Guess I was wrong about them only using him one inning at a time.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 9:30 pm
  • Glad to see the Sox using Clay for a more extended (but still quite short) outing. It also gives him a chance to get his confidence back after that rocky 6th.
    And he gets three quick outs. Nice.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:37 pm
  • two more scoreless innings for the young man. Nice.

    rootbeerfloat September 6, 2007, 9:37 pm
  • There should be a sitcom about the Oriole bullpen, where they get into crazy hyjinx like the 3 stooges did. Instant hit.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 9:38 pm
  • Noted: Bucky (if that’s the preferred nickname, certainly easier to type) is now in line for a potential win if the Sox go ahead.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:38 pm
  • Papi with a humorous bunt attempt.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:39 pm
  • But then he flies out.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:40 pm
  • it’ll only be humorous if we win this game.

    rootbeerfloat September 6, 2007, 9:40 pm
  • Ahh, it’s Chad “Reno 911” Bradford.
    (See his Gameday picture, I can’t resist saying this every time he throws against the Sox.)

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:41 pm
  • HEHEHEHE I agree completely Hudson. All he needs now are short-shorts and a bicycle.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 9:43 pm
  • RKO is speculating that Clay will go for a third inning in the 8th.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:43 pm
  • Lowell with a patient, 8-pitch walk, one out.
    Youks coming up. Hoping Francoma may wake up and pinch-hit Jacoby for Kielty next.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:47 pm
  • Single drops in! 1st and 2nd, one out…

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:48 pm
  • Lowell draws a walk and Youk gets a single. He’s 2 for 3 tonight, maybe he’s finally getting out of his slump.
    Ellsbury pinch-hitting here, thankfully.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 9:48 pm
  • And Ellsbury comes in.
    (I seem to be getting my wishes all of a sudden. I’d like to win the lottery and meet Scarlett Johanssen, please.)

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:49 pm
  • Can Ellsbury also pinchhit for Drew?

    stuck working September 6, 2007, 9:51 pm
  • Ellsbury continues to prove that he’s Jesus reborn, singling to left field. Lowell held at 3rd though, which means bases loaded for Drew.
    Red Sox Nation to Drew: Don’t fuck it up.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 9:51 pm
  • Ellsbury singles, loads the bases for JD… Who promptly GIDPs. For chrissakes.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:51 pm
  • Drew to RSN: I’m a fuck-up.

    stuck working September 6, 2007, 9:51 pm
  • Wow. Drew GIDP on the first pitch.
    His mediocrity is becoming comical.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 9:52 pm
  • and drew fucked up.

    TJ September 6, 2007, 9:52 pm
  • Memo to third base coach: If the next batter coming up is Drew, SEND THE RUNNER NO MATTER WHAT.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:52 pm
  • Theo has done an amazing job since coming to Boston… but Drew is definitely a chalk-mark in the Loss column.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 9:53 pm
  • I’m going to briefly calm myself by saying that evens it out for Buchholz’s miracle DP escape act.

    stuck working September 6, 2007, 9:53 pm
  • (Especially if it’s a tie game.)
    Jacoby now batting .444.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:53 pm
  • ok how bout this…. SF thinks the OF can be good with Crisp and Ellsbury 2 speedsters.. so lets release Drew and imagine Ellsbury is him…. sure3 we’d be paying drew what 55 million to stay at home for 4 years, but atleast Ellsbury is making minimum to offset it

    TJ September 6, 2007, 9:53 pm
  • Crisp makes another great catch off Payton.
    Perhaps having Ellsbury nipping at his heels is lighting a fire under Coco.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:54 pm
  • Nolan 2.0 out for the 8th. Payton lines out on the first pitch.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 9:54 pm
  • Roberts also flies out, less dramatically.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:55 pm
  • As Drew was announced I said, “ugh” but I still hoped; my bad.

    DW-sf September 6, 2007, 9:56 pm
  • K! Inning over.
    Though he was dreadful for the first few batters of this outing, it remains that Bucky (Bucchy?) has now thrown 12 consecutive scoreless innings.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 9:58 pm
  • Glad to see Bucky settled down. Three scoreless innings, the last two perfect.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 9:58 pm
  • “Theo has done an amazing job since coming to Boston”
    Ahem:
    David Wells
    Wade Miller
    Edgar Renteria
    Jay Payton
    JD Drew
    Julio Lugo
    Firing Trot
    Firing Orlando Cabrera
    Firing Alex Gonzalez
    Don’t get me wrong — great things have happened since Theo came aboard. And he’s to be applauded for many moves — Schilling, Beckett, good draft picks, etc. — but in light of his total record Theo is astonishingly overrated.

    Adam September 6, 2007, 9:59 pm
  • Baez in for the O’s, with his 0-5 record and 6.32 ERA. This one is winnable.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:00 pm
  • GOD BLESS COCO! Crisp gives us a lead-off single–Bucky still eligible for the W.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 10:01 pm
  • God, I totally forgot Wade Miller.
    Who hired Clement?
    Crisp gets to first after Roberts juggles a weak grounder.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:01 pm
  • There are a ton of other Theo misfires. I can’t count (or remember) many of the relievers, e.g. Riske. There was another big one last year who didn’t last the first month or two…

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:02 pm
  • now bunt?

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:03 pm
  • Crisp steals… Very nice. Get it done, Tek.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:04 pm
  • Toast!

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:04 pm
  • YESSSS! Single brings Crisp home. Sox go up 7-6.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:05 pm
  • Adam,
    He won us a World Series. That’s enough for me.
    Also–Edgar Renteria wasn’t a mistake, he just did poorly here. He’s thrived in Atlanta, so I wouldn’t call that a mistake on his part. Firing Trot was not a mistake–he’s having a horrible year. Alex Gonzalez was amazing defensively, but is batting .255 this year. Not a bad move.
    Also, Lugo is rebounding and batting over .350 since August 1. I would rather a player get hot in the end of the season rather than the beginning.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 10:05 pm
  • Lugo bunted but runs into the ball, one out.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:05 pm
  • Lugo and JD showcasing themselves.

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:06 pm
  • ‘Tek comes through! Two pinch-hitters with hits. Lugo then bunt-grounds out to the pitcher, failing to advance the runner.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 10:06 pm
  • Gonzo was amazingly overrated on D, in fact, despite the flashiness.

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:07 pm
  • Gonzo should have won the Gold Glove–he had the highest fielding percentage in all of baseball, not just the American League. How was he overrated on D?

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 10:08 pm
  • Riske is a reason Theo is overrated? Seriously?

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:08 pm
  • OK, adding to the list (and yes, Theo gets huge credit for being the first GM to get a ring in, uh, a few years)…
    Trading Arroyo for WMP
    Rudy Effing Seanez
    J.T. Snow? Can’t even remember what he looked like.
    Losing Hanley Ramirez
    More…

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:09 pm
  • what a gun from Tejada.

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:10 pm
  • “Losing Hanley Ramirez”? Come on, Hudson. It’s not like the Sox didn’t get something in return, you know.

    stuck working September 6, 2007, 10:10 pm
  • “losing hanley”?
    Is this sarcasm?

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:11 pm
  • Here’s an article looking at Theo’s performance from back in March 2007… Some interesting tidbits:
    http://redsox.wordpress.com/2007/03/31/the-best-and-worst-of-theo-epstein/

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:11 pm
  • We lost Hanley Ramirez and gained Josh Beckett. I’ll take the young Ace pitcher any day of the week over Hanley, despite his awesomeness.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 10:12 pm
  • “Who hired Clement?”
    I think that Clement was actually a great hire. He was fantastic until “the line drive.”
    I hope that he gets a one-year deal to come back next year and work in the bullpen. He deserves a lot of credit for coming back from that surgery.

    Adam September 6, 2007, 10:12 pm
  • Lowell ends it with Ellsbury on deck. Phooey. But at least they got the go-ahead.
    I assume it’ll be Paps for the 9th…

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:12 pm
  • Yeah, I liked Clement a lot, and not just because he looked like Abraham Lincoln. You can’t blame a freak line-drive on Theo OR Clement.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 10:13 pm
  • Atheose:
    I believe most fielding rating systems rate Gonzo far lower than the traditional measure of FP. I need to dig up the info, can’t do it now (posting from a mobile device next to my sleeping wife!).

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:13 pm
  • Atheose, I would call Theo a genius if he had gotten Beckett without losing Hanley (especially given Boston’s revolving door at shortstop). That was a good deal, but not an inspired one, given the downside.
    As far as Clement, I believe others have pointed out that he was already declining before the hardball to the head, but we’ll never really know.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:14 pm
  • every gm has hits and misses, even the best of them. Theo is no different. He’s done an excellent job in the grand scheme of things, if not anything close to a flawless one. I have been plenty critical of him at times, but I still think he’s gotten it right more than enough times to keep me happy.

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:16 pm
  • Fair enough, good points all around.
    Markakis K’s on 4 pitches to start the 9th. Miggy and Millar still to go, though.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 10:18 pm
  • To clarify: A great deal is one in which you get way more value than the other team. Beckett is arguably more valuable, overall, than Hanley, but I can’t consider it a great deal because Theo didn’t exactly fleece anyone — he gave a lot at a position where Boston’s been very weak, in order to get a lot in return.
    (If I give you a 95 cents because you need change for a parking meter, and you give me a dollar bill back, yeah I’m ahead — but it’s not exactly genius finance on my part.)
    – – – – –
    Paps gets Markakis, who has been trouble all night. One gone.

    Anonymous September 6, 2007, 10:19 pm
  • And he gets Miggy to pop out. One out away.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:20 pm
  • Here’s KMil.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:20 pm
  • Hudson: do you recall the events surrounding the Beckett deal?
    The Rangers had a deal in place with Blalock (at the time a fantastic player), and the Sox swooped in, Theo wasn’t technically the GM at the time. There was probably no way the Sox get Beckett without Hanley in the deal, considering the Sox’ farm system at that moment and who Florida would have taken.

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:21 pm
  • Paps brought his A-game when we needed it–2 K’s to end the game, the last one on 3 pitches. Great come-from behind victory, largely due to Buchholz inducing that DP in the 6th.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 10:22 pm
  • Strike one.
    Strike two. (late call)
    Strike three.
    Don’t mess with Paps. Game over. Paps save #34, Buchholz win #3.
    Sox up 6.5. Magic number 16, I believe, with 21 left to play. Getting there, folks, getting there.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:22 pm
  • A nice, semi-ugly win. Buck is big again, and I love that Coco!

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:24 pm
  • Sox win!
    AL East magic number: 16
    Wild card magic number: 14

    Devine September 6, 2007, 10:25 pm
  • >>>There was probably no way the Sox get Beckett without Hanley in the deal, considering the Sox’ farm system at that moment and who Florida would have taken.
    It’s all pretty speculative what could or couldn’t have happened.
    Another GM might have passed on Beckett, kept Hanley, and gotten another good pitcher instead with a different set of bargaining chips (if not quite one of Beckett’s caliber) … and we’d all be saying how smart Theo was to hang onto Little Ramirez.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:25 pm
  • I’m loving Ellsbury.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 10:25 pm
  • Back on tonight’s game… I’m only sorry, now that the win has been logged, that Wakes’ decision and win streaks had to end. Hope he can recover his form in the next outing.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:27 pm
  • One last thing: at the time of the Beckett deal Hanley was no sure thing. A good trade isn’t just one where you fleece someone (yes, that’s desirable but in the context of the bigs — not rotisserie baseball — unnecessary), but one where you sell high to fill major needs or obtain rare talent. In this case, both teams made an excellent, smart trade.

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:28 pm
  • By the way, Coco had better win a Gold Glove this year. I hope they don’t just hand one over to Torii Hunter like they do every year. Coco’s defense has definitely made up for his .270 batting average.

    Atheose September 6, 2007, 10:29 pm
  • How is Ellsbury in right? Is his arm strong enough?
    Because once Manny’s back, it is hard not to suppose that Boston would be better off without J.D. there a lot of the time. But I suspect that the size of his contract will prevent Theo/Tito from biting that bullet.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:31 pm
  • sox 2 wins away to match their win total from last year :)

    Ric September 6, 2007, 10:34 pm
  • I supported the Beckett trade at the time, and overall it has been a plus. But let’s not forget that Hanley was perhaps the most promising prospect in baseball at the time and this was hardly a secret. I’m just saying that it *was* a loss, for if there had been any way to keep him it would have ended Theo’s endless search for a shortstop.
    Like I said, in theory there might have been a way for Theo to get someone like Beckett *and* keep Ramirez, and in any case if that deal hadn’t gone through plenty of people would now be singing Theo’s praises for his “foresight” in not dealing Hanley… Because we’d never know what Beckett might do for us. Indeed, we’ve only gotten one season of primo Josh so far, though I see no sign of him letting up now.

    Hudson September 6, 2007, 10:35 pm
  • based on some of Tito’s lineups this year, I’d speculate that Theo’s power doesn’t extend to dictating who should play. ;-)

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:36 pm
  • Hanley was a top prospect, but he wasn’t the top prospect in all of baseball, I don’t believe. Any way to check this, Hud?

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:39 pm
  • just checked – on 2005 Hanley was BA’s #10 prospect overall, behind Felix Hernandez, Casey Kotchman, Scott Kazmir, Ricky Weeks, Delmon Young, amongst others, just ahead of Lastings Milledge at #11.

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:42 pm
  • #9?
    Andy Marte.

    SF September 6, 2007, 10:43 pm
  • “Like I said, in theory there might have been a way for Theo to get someone like Beckett *and* keep Ramirez, and in any case if that deal hadn’t gone through plenty of people would now be singing Theo’s praises for his “foresight” in not dealing Hanley…”
    I don’t really think that’s true. What other team was holding a firesale where they’d be willing to give up a pitcher of Beckett’s caliber and potential for nothing but prospects? And not just prospects; Hanley Ramirez/Jon Papelbon-less prospects. Nothing like that trade has happened since. And Ramirez didn’t show anything, statistically speaking, to indicate that he was ready to perform at this level this quickly. Good numbers in AA for his age before the trade, but they weren’t exactly mind-blowing; I thought he had a few more years before he came up.
    As for singing his praises if he’d kept Hanley…I think Boston’s Beckettless 2007 rotation would have left the team in a pretty miserable situation. They’d have sacrificed contention through 2007 at a minimum, and probably wouldn’t have been back in it in terms of the staff until 2008 or so. And the core of the team wasn’t exactly getting any younger.
    Oh, and Hanley’s a future outfielder. A great offensive future OF, and probably a solid one defensively as well, but right now he’s one of the worst defensive shortstops in baseball.
    Also Ellsbury’s arm is supposed to be pretty weak; I don’t think he can play RF, somewhat unfortunately.

    Josh SF (D1) September 6, 2007, 11:25 pm
  • David Wells
    Wade Miller
    Edgar Renteria
    Jay Payton
    JD Drew
    Julio Lugo
    Firing Trot
    Firing Orlando Cabrera
    Firing Alex Gonzalez

    Honestly, we could take any GM in the game, round up all the moves he’s made in a four-year period and list 20 each that didn’t pan out. Bringing on low-risk, low-cost guys that don’t work isn’t really a failure. I also wouldn’t say losing Hanley, Nixon or Gonzalez were failures (who they were replaced with is a different story), and if I recall, Wells won 15 games for the Red Sox in a playoff season. No GM is perfect. It’s when you add those failures and how they stack up against a list like this:
    1. Orlando Cabrera
    2. Dave Roberts
    3. Josh Beckett
    4. Bill Mueller
    5. Kevin Millar
    6. Curt Schilling
    7. Daisuke Matsuzaka
    8. Hideki Okajima
    9. letting Johnny Damon go
    10. letting Nomar go
    11. Mike Lowell
    12. draft classes that included
    a. Dustin Pedroia
    b. Jacoby Ellsbury
    c. Clay Buchholz
    I’ll take Theo, thanks. And I’d agree with calling it an “amazing” job.

    Paul SF September 6, 2007, 11:41 pm
  • Andy Marte. Nuff said
    Any day you can trade a ‘known’ for an unknown you are doing well. Who the hell knows how the head case Hanley would do with Shaunessey giving him crap every other day?
    Good trade, Theo.

    BostonRAW September 6, 2007, 11:41 pm
  • …not sure he’s a head case. The MO on him was that he played better in front of bigger crowds–I can’t back that up with anything but my own memory, though…

    Josh SF (D1) September 6, 2007, 11:43 pm
  • I have a problem with Theo in that the word ‘loyalty’ is not in his vocabulary. In my opinion, it is dispicable how he treated the 2004 champs, absolutely dispicable.
    I hope he works on that.

    BostonRAW September 6, 2007, 11:45 pm
  • Josh, didn’t Hanley throw a bat at an ump at one point?
    Those type guys don’t work in Boston.

    BostonRAW September 6, 2007, 11:46 pm
  • I have a problem with Theo in that the word ‘loyalty’ is not in his vocabulary. In my opinion, it is dispicable how he treated the 2004 champs, absolutely dispicable.
    How would you have rathered he treated them, RAW? I understand the sentiment, but the realities were that team was getting old fast. The club was largely intact in 2005 and got swept out of the first round and looked like crap the final two months of the season. Would you have rathered Theo pay huge money for Pedro, Damon, et al. and kept aging, crumbling players like Mueller and Millar?
    I really do understand the sentiment because I love that team, too, but there was nothing else to do…

    Paul SF September 6, 2007, 11:49 pm
  • I am going to retire now, as I am pretty sure I am pissed off after reading this blog tonight.
    Great blog, BTW. I love being able to catch the play by play when I get home.
    but..
    BUT!
    some of you guys really need to cool your jets. JD sucks, Lugo sucks, Wake sucks, Tito is a moron…. Come on, people, your team this year is a damn wetdream. No matter what happens fom here, we have all enjoyed the emergence of a new type squad; one built on pitching, defense, speed, and Manny/Papi.
    They are statistically and defactually the best team in baseball and they deserve your support. Trust me, if the Yanks were doing as well, their ‘Nation’ would not be picking their team apart.
    Be positive and hope for the best. Shit does happen so maybe a WS championship is not a given this year. But rest assured, we won’t be waiting another 90 some odd years for the next one as long as the current organization continues to exist.
    Out

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 12:02 am
  • I reserve the right to get irrationally angry at any given time. I can’t really function as a fan otherwise. Sorry, RAW, I just don’t have your level-headedness, I guess.
    And Lugo does suck.

    Devine September 7, 2007, 12:09 am
  • Delmon Young threw a bat. Don’t think Ramirez did…it’s not on Wikipedia, anyway.
    “They are statistically and defactually the best team in baseball and they deserve your support. Trust me, if the Yanks were doing as well, their ‘Nation’ would not be picking their team apart.”
    *shrug* I think most somewhat well-informed, baseball fans have to find something to bitch about. It’s nice to sit back sometimes and just sort of bask in the glory of what’s been a damn good season, but far more interesting to argue about what should and should not be done in games or otherwise. Maybe you disagree, Raw, but I have almost as much fun arguing, complaining, and second-guessing as I do watching the games.
    I don’t live in the heart of Yankee nation, nor do I come in contact with gaggles of Yankee fans in my day-to-day life in Boston. But what exactly do their fans do when the team is going well? Pat each other on the back 24 hours a day and look down on the rest of the league? Seems to me like the only logical alternative to argument, and I’d take argument over condescension any day of the week. (I’m not trying to rag on YF’s. I just really can’t fathom sitting back and not complaining about or second-guessing anything for an entire season.)
    And Lugo’s been solid since the break…

    Josh SF (D1) September 7, 2007, 12:17 am
  • Yes, since the break, he is regressing (sort of) to the mean. The best Lugo is ever going to be, though, in a given year, is slightly above average. He can run, and he has very good range in the field, and that’s…it.
    I’m not saying he won’t do good things or be a helpful piece (tonight’s RBI single made me happy), but I just don’t think he’s very good.

    Devine September 7, 2007, 12:29 am
  • Fun fact
    Dustin Pedroia of all Rookie postion players in the AL ranks thusly in the following categories
    OPS – 1st (840).. second is 782
    Hits – 2nd (142)
    Ks – 1st (36).. second is 76
    OBP – 1st
    AVG – 1st
    Slug – 1st
    2Bs – 1st
    RBIS – 3rd
    Runs – 2nd
    RBIS – 3rd
    BB – 3rd
    HR – 3rd
    There are no stats sortable by rookies for fielding, but Pedroia’s .990 fieldign percentage ranks him in a tie for fourth in the league.

    Dionysus September 7, 2007, 12:59 am
  • Th epoitn of all that is:
    Dustin Pedroia = Rookie of the Year.
    His onyl real competitors are pitchersL Jeremy Guthrie of the Os and Brian Bannister of the Royals.
    Guthrie really has stumbled lately, tkaing himself out of the Cy Young debate and probably ROY too. He jsut doesn’t have the Wins either. Bannister, however, is pitchign amazingly well for a weak team.
    That said, I think when it comes down to voiting the fact, while not fair, that Pedroia is on a winning team and contributing to that winning season will secure him the title.

    Dionysus September 7, 2007, 1:55 am
  • On the fielding percentage note. thats fourth for second basemen.

    Dionysus September 7, 2007, 1:56 am
  • RAW:
    Glad to have you around these parts. I think that there’s an important distinction between game threads and other full threads. Game threads are a place for emotional swings, for ranting and raving. They are an outlet for in-game emotion, and I suppose that many times stuff is written in game threads that is far more extreme than one would expect if you sat down and thought through every idea before posting. That’s kind of the point of them, I think – to give us a place to act as momentary lunatics. When the common, long-form posts get consistently insane, then that will be an issue.

    SF September 7, 2007, 7:55 am
  • Looks like I missed a fun time here last night. Good game. Buchholz did a great job getting out of his mess and settling down. I wonder when he’s available next.
    As for the Theo discussion, I disagree with the “awesome” assessment. He’s been good, no doubt, but I’d say far from awesome. I simply ask: is he top 5 in baseball? And I don’t think he’s top ten, but somewhere around there.
    Not only the past moves, but I look at this past off-season. Those signings (Lugo and Drew) were completely uncreative and only possible because of financial advantages. I thought those were the sorts of moves an ‘enlightened’ approach to baseball management is supposed to avoid.
    On Beckett, even as good as he’s been this year, his value is still dwarfed by Hanley (even if he ends up an outfielder) who is already one of the best players in baseball (based on VORP – second only to A-Rod). It’s sad but true. For as good as Beckett has been, he has yet to reach the true upper echelon. But in a win now town, there may not have been another choice. And I don’t think they get Beckett without Hanley. Even then many people thought Boston had fleeced the Marlins. Still, there were other similar pitchers that could have been acquired (Hudson, Penny, Escobar) in the surrounding years and I thought they should have never let Lowe leave (esp not to give the same money to Clement).
    The drafts have been good, but not spectacular. They’re getting one major league player a year. That will keep them young, but they still need impact position guys. And the closest they have in Lowrie plays a position where they just signed a guy for four years. I wonder now if they’d think about moving him to 3B next year.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 9:46 am
  • Boston did fleece Floria. You guys are debating this now because Hanley has turned out good (which many people thought would happen but it was no sure thing). Top Prospects do not always succeed. Beckett already proved himself at the major league level. The sox only had to give up 1 top prospect (I think Oakland was asking for 3 for Zito, Texas wanted 1 for Gagne) because they were willing to take on a supposed dead weight salary. Lowell has been a very nice addition. Florida is lucky the the trade worked out well for them too. I think this is one of Theo’s best moves as a GM.

    Seth September 7, 2007, 10:26 am
  • “On Beckett, even as good as he’s been this year, his value is still dwarfed by Hanley (even if he ends up an outfielder) who is already one of the best players in baseball (based on VORP – second only to A-Rod).”
    At the time, Hanley was a completely unproven prospect, an absolute question mark. So if you’re going to judge the trade now using what the people have done, you have to include Lowell.
    This was a great trade for both teams and that’s the best you can hope for.

    LocklandSF September 7, 2007, 10:28 am
  • Let me put it another way, Seth. Is a rotation with Hudson or Escobar really that different from the current one? Meanwhile, I don’t think they give up Hanley for Hudson and Escobar was a free agent. Or they re-sign Lowe and maybe there isn’t the need for Beckett.
    I take Hudson or Escobar or Lowe and Hanley over Beckett and Lowell. And they could have gotten just Lowell very cheap as a salary dump.
    Beckett has been very good this year. But I still think he’s on the road to where he needs to go. Not that he’s gotten there already. And if he’s always a 2/3, then that trade, albeit in hindsight, leaves something to be desired. But let there be no doubt – Hanley at 23 is already one of the best players in all of baseball. And those don’t come around very often.
    Gagne is already looking like a bust while Gabbard and Murphy have proven themselves as major leaguers. And Beltre could easily be another Hanley. It was too soon to give up on him.
    I think Theo has done a good job (see Schilling and Cabrera) but he deserves an honest assessment. It’s not liek they should fire him or anything. Just that the job I thought he was doing (“Moneyball”) no longer seems to be the philosophy (last off-season and Gagne).

    Pete September 7, 2007, 10:40 am
  • Let’s use history:
    The Yankees had Tony Fernandez at SS in 1995. For 1996 they also had a need for starting pitching and some valuable trade chips (Derek Jeter – top 10 talent). They had the choice to acquire pitching in a trade or go out and get less valuable pitching in free agency and keep their prospects. To me, the philosophy they showed is always going to payoff more in the long run. Live and die with prospects, supplement with free agency, and be very careful with trades.
    Not surprisingly, the Yankees started to lose when they moved away from that philosophy.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 10:47 am
  • Interesting debate on Theo as GM. Some good: David Ortiz from the scrapheap in Minnesota (incidentally a club whose GM is nearly always counted among the best in baseball); not re-signing Damon, not re-signing Pedro, the Nomar trade, Bill Mueller…. Schilling, Okajima, the drafts
    Some bad: JD (so far), Lugo (so far, though he has been much better second half), Clement, lots of relievers(!)…..
    Overall, I think it is easy to forget the mistakes avoided – Damon and Pedro chief among them – when looking at the track record. I think he has done an outstanding job.
    A major challenge will be to re-tool the offence (Manny – stay or go?, how long will Ortiz be Ortiz?) and what to do with Crisp and / or Ellsbury. Also, is a Beckett, Dice-K, Clay-boy, Wake, Lester Rotation going to work for 2008. Interesting times!
    On the Hanley-Beckett trade, there were two other players involved were there not. One Mike Lowell and an Anibal Sanchez (dodgy injury history but a no hitter last year). I think this was a great trade for both teams given repsective budgets, a trade that has turned out to have good value for Boston – Potentially Cy-Young and MVP-type season for Lowell this year, and one that provided Florida with an All-Star SS cost controlled for a few years. My guess is that both teams would pull the trigger on the trade again with the benefit of hindsight.
    Great site BTW.

    UKSoxFan September 7, 2007, 11:06 am
  • I think Pete’s assessment of Theo as a top 10 GM is totally fair. And that means he’s a damn good GM. Honestly I don’t give a crap if people want to say he’s “awesome” or “excellent” or whatever word they want to use. He works in a system that gives him great latitude, and he’s made good and bad moves. Generally he’s made more big-impact good moves than bad ones, and he’s funneling young talent to the bigs through the draft. What more can we ask for?
    However, I don’t agree with Pete’s speculations about the Beckett/Ramirez deal, simply because that deal would not have happened without a player like Ramirez involved, it simply never would have happened otherise. And frankly the deal was more expansive than just these two players, so isolating them is flawed. You can speculate all you want about whether or not the Sox could have put Hudson in that slot instead of Beckett (what would Beane have demanded for Hudson, though?!) or Escobar, or Gil Meche this offseason, or whomever, but the bottom line is that the Sox have the best record in the league in large part due to Beckett and Lowell, the players obtained in that trade. Ramirez + Lowell replacement + Beckett replacement is the hypothetical alternative, and we simply have no idea what combination that would have been. As it is, the trade was productive for both teams, hence it was an excellent, mutually beneficial trade. Fleecing another team isn’t a prerequisite for judging a trade to be good, productive, or clever.
    And I do agree with the Lugo/Drew deals, though, and Pete is right: these were not artful, clever, anything like the Beckett deal (which I think was artful and clever and opportunistic, and also done when Theo was technically in remission from the GM position, we should all remember). This has been one of my criticisms of Brian Cashman in the past, and it applies to Theo as well. They were defensible acquisitions, but not at all creative. The jury is out on them; the Sox are in first right now, and Drew may yet prove his value come October, or in 2008, or beyond, if he sticks around, Lugo has been a reasonably serviceable player contributing to a first place team.

    SF September 7, 2007, 11:11 am
  • By the way, looking back at that transition between the 1995 to 1996 Yankees is fascinating. Here’s a team that was close and didn’t go crazy with signings or trades. They trusted their in-house talent (Pettitte, Jeter, Rivera, and later Posada), signed free agents where necessary (Rogers and Gooden), and made smart trades (Cone and later Knoblauch). That’s a very good template. But every time I think the Sox are moving one step forward (Paps, Pedroia, Buchholz) they take another step back (Drew, Lugo, Gagne).

    Pete September 7, 2007, 11:23 am
  • Quick note: the Beckett for Hanley deal was done during the brief span of time when Theo wasn’t the GM . I don’t think you can include that one when evaluating him.

    JitteryMcFrog September 7, 2007, 11:24 am
  • Quick note: the Beckett for Hanley deal was done during the brief span of time when Theo wasn’t the GM . I don’t think you can include that one when evaluating him.

    JitteryMcFrog September 7, 2007, 11:26 am
  • Pete:
    How do the Lugo and Drew deals do anything to hamstring the organization? Sure they look like (or are) daunting contracts, but the Sox have already shown (with Renteria) that they are willing to eat contracts to remain flexible. Why should we expect them to act differently with Lugo and Drew if an acceptable offer arises and the Sox decide they can move on them, even expensively? There’s just no reason to think that Drew and Lugo hamstring the team’s ability to integrate talent in the coming days, weeks, and years. Especially if the talent taking over the positions are at Major League minimum.
    And lastly, if the Sox win with Lugo and Drew this year, is it because of them or in spite of them or somewhere in between?

    SF September 7, 2007, 11:29 am
  • Lugo has been a reasonably serviceable player contributing to a first place team.
    For SF, that’s high praise, considering his former status as LFRS!
    I agree that the Lugo and Drew acquisitions were defensible but not clever. On the other hand, the Daisuke Matsuzakla acquisition was about as clever as a hammer — but it’s worked quite well. I want my GM to be clever when the situation requires (I count the Beckett and Gagne deals both as clever deals in which the Sox received excellent pieces for less than might have otherwise been expected), but not every situation requires being clever.
    Likewise, Pete, I’m not sure why you consistently underrate Josh Beckett. I agree he still has room for improvement, but he’s not a 2/3; he’s an ace. A No. 1. He’s one of the five-to-seven best pitchers in the game right now — better than Hudson (whose success is in the National League, don’t forget), and four years younger than Hudson and Escobar. As SF said, without Beckett and Lowell, where are the Sox? Derek Lowe in the AL does not come close to equaling Josh Beckett. Without Lowell, who mans third base? Youkilis. So who mans first? To simply look at a trade and deem it a success or failure without looking at the context of the players involved, the holes they leave behind, and the performance of their replacements is essentially useless. To compare a trade to hypothetical deals we don’t even know were on the table for players who clearly aren’t even as good as the ones the Sox got doesn’t strike me as being particularly useful either.

    Paul SF September 7, 2007, 11:35 am
  • Also, I meant to mention that it was pretty clear that the four-man team replacing Epstein in the interim was pretty clearly taking his advice when it came to player transactions…

    Paul SF September 7, 2007, 11:37 am
  • Hey guys…. Can we get a “Take Drew out back and shoot him post”???

    LocklandSF September 7, 2007, 12:08 pm
  • On Lowell, Ortiz, Okajima: No one gets credit in my mind cause no one could have predicted those results. And none were prospects where a huge upside could even be hoped for. Sure, someone thought something, but that’s different from what they got which has been outstanding.
    On Lugo and Drew: The flexibility is still there, but much more limited. There are only so many contracts you can eat. But if they win, that’s still only one ring. I want a blueprint that produces a dynasty. And I’m not seeing that after early promise.
    On Matusuzka: I left that out cause it’s a special case. But I’m not sure a bid 20 million more than the closest competitor can be considered “clever” nor a deal that cost the organization 100 million. And I think he still needs to improve to justify that cost. That said, he could end up being very good and so the move would have been very good. But the jury is still out.
    Beckett may be the ace of the staff (this year), but that’s not close to Santana/Peavey truly dominant territory. And to give up one of the best young players in the game, that’s what I expect in return. And I’m not sure he’ll ever get there.
    Since we forget, Lowe had an an outstanding 2002 – better than anything Beckett’s ever done anywhere. There’s no telling what he would have done had he stayed. But money spent there would have at least been better than on Clement.
    And nothing says Lowell couldn’t have been acquired by himself – for a relief pitcher (as a salary dump).

    Pete September 7, 2007, 12:22 pm
  • Wow. I don’t even know where to begin with you Pete.
    Well….
    “But I’m not sure a bid 20 million more than the closest competitor can be considered “clever””
    I hate this, want to know why? None of us actually know what the other bids were, all we have is rumors and speculation.
    “Lowe had an an outstanding 2002”
    It’s 2007.
    “And I’m not sure he’ll ever get there.”
    Beckett is still very young.
    “There are only so many contracts you can eat.”
    Really, how many? Do you have access to their books? Have you seen the estimated Fortune magazine value increase of the team since the new owner group took over?
    “Lowell, Ortiz, Okajima”
    Lowell was a surprise, sure, but people in the organization saw something in the other two and acted on it. They don’t bring people on the team unless they think there is a chance for them to perform well at the MLB level. Okie was not a “hired friend” for Matsuzaka as some people like to joke about. MLB teams don’t work that way.

    Anonymous September 7, 2007, 12:33 pm
  • That was me.

    LocklandSF September 7, 2007, 12:33 pm
  • Again, I’m just calling it as I see it. No need to get frustrated.
    On the Matsuzaka bid and contract: I’m just saying it wasn’t “clever”. It was a good risk. And it may yet turn out as a very good move.
    Lowe left after 2004 – a season which was very much like Beckett’s 2006. There’s no telling what he would have been, but he could be the 3 on the staff right now. Without Beckett, I, for one, feel very good about a four of Schilling, Wake, Lowe, and Matsuzaka with Hanley batting 3rd.
    Beckett may or may not get there. But even this year he’s still at a level he’s been at, but never exceeded, before (2003).
    On eating contracts, I have no idea. But Rentaria was one. Should they be in the habit of eating a bad contract every year? Just cause they can?
    Whoever saw something in Okajima or Ortiz, they didn’t see what they got. Both have been absolute revelations. I’m not going to call it luck, but it’s pretty close. Nothing in their histories suggested that’s what they were getting.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 12:44 pm
  • “On Matusuzka: I left that out cause it’s a special case. But I’m not sure a bid 20 million more than the closest competitor can be considered “clever” nor a deal that cost the organization 100 million.”
    I might be wrong, but wasn’t part of that John Henry?
    “On Lowell, Ortiz, Okajima: No one gets credit in my mind cause no one could have predicted those results.”
    Umm…then why does Florida get credit for Hanley Ramirez? Minny for Santana? Look at his numbers, there was nothing there to suggest he was going to be this good this quickly. He hit better in the majors last season then he ever had in the minors. That’s virtually the same situation.
    I also think the biggest, most overlooked aspect of the Beckett deal was what happened after it was done: the contract extension. They have the guy locked up through 2009 at $10MM per, an absolute bargain. And I don’t really think it’s fair or reasonable to expect Beckett to be Jake Peavy or Johan Santana in order for that trade to be deemed a success.
    Do agree about Lowe, though. But I also think that the “he needs a change of scenery” way of thinking makes a certain amount of sense sometimes, and Lowe may have been one of those guys.

    Josh SF (D1) September 7, 2007, 12:48 pm
  • “That’s virtually the same situation”
    Sorry, but they’re not even in the same ballpark. It’s not even apples and oranges – it’s grapes and grapefruits. Hanley was Derek Jeter circa 1995 – everyone thought he’d be fantastic. The same is most certainly not true of Papi or Oki. That to me, in my mind, creates the high expectations for Beckett. Agreed, the extension was fantastic. But he still needs to find that next gear – the one he’s never found.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 12:52 pm
  • If you believe Boston bartenders, Lowe would have been dead by now if he stayed in Boston.

    LocklandSF September 7, 2007, 12:53 pm
  • It does not seem fair to not give credit because no one could have predicted the results, but take away credit when Drew and Lugo underperform based on those same past results. Also, Santana was rule 5 drafted so some teams missed the boat on that (granted maybe he was not worth the roster spot at the time). But Beckett was as much of a sure thing you could ask for and had proven himself on the biggest of all stages. He was young and entering his prime. Hanley was still a prospect. If the trade was using Joel Guzman, another top SS prospect around that time, would you think differently?

    Seth September 7, 2007, 12:53 pm
  • “The same is most certainly not true of Papi or Oki.”
    That’s what makes them good decisions, obviously people in the organization saw something nobody else did.

    LocklandSF September 7, 2007, 12:54 pm
  • “Hanley was Derek Jeter circa 1995 – everyone thought he’d be fantastic.”
    Yeah. Some day. Not last year, give me a fricken break. Jeter had 100 points of OPS on him in his ’95 season and he did it at a higher level. I know there’s more to scouting then statistics, but once again: his 2004-2005 minor-league stats were very mediocre. Good for his age, and tons of promise, but not even close to what you’d expect a major-league star to put up.
    And what is this “next gear” you keep talking about, Beckett’s been the fourth or fifth best starter in the league this season. In fact, by FIP, he’s been the number one starter in the AL, and third in baseball behind the ridiculous Jake Peavy and, to my surprise, John Smoltz.

    Josh SF (D1) September 7, 2007, 1:01 pm
  • I would put Theo at closer to the top. I’d place him number one except for his penchant for damning team continuity in favor of statistics. Let me tell you why I believe so.
    Some trades work, some do not. Likewise, some acquisitions work while others don’t. Not necessarily because the talent was missing, but most often because of other factors, like pressure, environment, expectations, attitude, team. Theo understands that stuff.
    Lugo is a 5-tool player who could be a lights out leadoff guy if given a chance to grow within his new environment. He has worked hard and not once buckled under the pressure of the boo-birds (well, once; he buckled in attempting to steal 3rd back when). JD, the same (how could this guy, in all his frustration, NOT be a nuisance by now?). Coco has shrugged off disappointment in his offensive game and become the best CF’er in the world. Schill and Beckett, two front line starters who thrive in pressure pots, were a statement. Same could be said one day of Dice, although the upcoming playoffs will become a proving grounds of sort for him.
    Theo understands that stuff as no other GM in recent SOX history does. Since his arrival, he has transformed the team from a group of independants to a group of tough bastards who want, above all else, for the ‘team’ to win.
    No longer can the SOX be looked upon as a group of 8 DH’s who tail off after the Allstar break, and pitching staff that buckles under pressure. No longer is getting to their bullpen a winning formula. The weak kneed SOX of the past have left the building.
    Theo has been steadfast in acquiring those players who are not only talented but also strong willed ‘men’ able to cast off the jackoff Dan Shaughnessy’s of the world with a shrug, because they know who they are. That is a mandatory requirement within the Boston sports scene, but one not addressed in prior years.
    Youk, Ped, Beckett, Lowell, and Pap’s are the face of today’s SOX franchise, and I like that. Gritty bastards who will not pop out to short LF ending a series.
    New players entering the system will learn from those guys and the team will prosper, just like the Patriots have.
    Theo did that.

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 1:06 pm
  • Nah, they took a small risk on Papi and Oki like Carlos Pena and Kielty and Donnelley. Some of those work out and some don’t.
    On Guzman, who knows? But it’s not like Beckett is guaranteed to be this good from this point forward. He’s been at this level before and regressed. Hanley is much eaiser to project as a position player. And already he is fantastic.
    I understand this griping is sour grapes (I must be hungry and I love fruit). But the knee jerk reaction to call it a great deal, when it happened, went down last year and now is back. And I actually heard that Theo was opposed to that deal but Larry pushed it through. To me, that reading makes sense. I don’t think Theo would have given up on Hanley so soon. It was too premature.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 1:07 pm
  • RAW, you’re exactly why I speak up. That blind following works well for some folks – not for me.
    I remember a very good Sox team in the 1980’s and 1990’s before Theo arrived. For a while I thought he had a great approach. Last off-season and now Gagne taught me to be very skeptical going forward.
    Josh, chill out. You don’t have to agree with me but I think I can at least expect civility. Or else, these forums go to crap very quickly.
    On Hanley: The Sox would have had him in AA to start 2006. By mid-season he would have been ready for the PawSox. Meanwhile, it’s not like Beckett made a positive contribution in 2006. Hanley would have been the starting SS this year, and thus no need to sign Lugo for 40 million.
    On Beckett: For VORP, he’s 14th among pitchers (and I trust that more than FIR). Meanwhile, he’s been this good before – in 2003. He’s just never been better. For all his quirks, at least Lowe was. Indeed, before anyone calls it a fabulous trade, let’s see Beckett match Lowe’s 2002. Better, let’s see him do it for the next four years.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 1:19 pm
  • I guess I just wonder what the team would look like had that deal not been made. I can’t recall any quality 1st or 3B hitting free agency since, and a trade for someone anywhere near Lowell over the last two years would have cost a lot in prospects. Assuming Hanley would have been as good in Boston, 3B wouldn’t have mattered as much…but then who’s playing CF? We probably don’t have Crisp, after all, and the starting rotation would have been complete garbage.
    I don’t know, even if someone had told me what Ramirez, Lowell, and Beckett were going to do–assuming 2007 Beckett is legit and last season was just a bump, and I’ve no reason to expect a regression–I think I’d still make the deal. If only because as good as Hanley is, the pitching staff without Beckett would not have been competitive; Brad Penny and Tim Hudson both would have sucked in Boston, IMHO, and I can’t think of any other starters available at around the same time.

    Josh SF (D1) September 7, 2007, 1:19 pm
  • “And I don’t really think it’s fair or reasonable to expect Beckett to be Jake Peavy or Johan Santana”
    Come on. I’ll give you Santana, primarily because he’s a leftie, but Peavy?
    Ha! Let Peavy come to Fenway and ply his wares here. Under the pressure, with that left field wall, with our foul territory.
    Good luck, Jake.

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 1:19 pm
  • …what? I’m not angry, and I don’t think anything I wrote was particularly aggressive…I guess ‘give me a fricken break’ was a bit uncouth but I didn’t exactly mean anything by it…
    Peavy’s sick. Just nasty, and his road stats are better then his home.

    Josh SF (D1) September 7, 2007, 1:22 pm
  • I was wrong on VORP – Becket is 13th. Top 20 is:
    1. Peavey
    2. Penny
    3. Webb
    4. Sabathia
    5. Santana
    6. Bedard
    7. Escobar
    8. Haren
    9. Buehrle
    10. Oswalt
    11. Carmona
    12. Hudson
    13. Beckett
    14. Smoltz
    15. Harang
    16. Young
    17. Blanton
    18. Lackey
    19. Wang
    20. Halladay
    I don’t know – that list just seems right to my eyes.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 1:27 pm
  • Pete,
    /I remember a very good Sox team in the 1980’s and 1990’s before Theo arrived/
    I don’t. I do, however, remember some talent laden teams who had trouble in the spotlight.
    /Last off-season and now Gagne taught me to be very skeptical going forward/
    So Gagne with 12 innings under his belt, the BEST closer in baseball 2 years ago, is a bust, but Joba, with the same innings but nowhere near the pedigree, is the best thing since sliced bread. Typical YF
    /On Hanley: The Sox would have had him in AA to start 2006. By mid-season he would have been ready for the PawSox/
    Hanley is not even a credible SS. He ranks almost at the bottom of all NL SS’s and, IMO, is misplaced there. Can he play OF? (I don’t know)
    /On Beckett: For VORP, he’s 14th among pitchers/
    One reason Beckett was traded for, I’m sure, is the manner in which he blanked the Yanks in the WS. I’m looking forward to a repeat if your 21 year kids can get you there.

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 1:28 pm
  • Seems strange to me that pitcher with the third-best FIP in the game could be ranked lower by VORP then 12 other starters. Wonder how that works out…

    Josh SF (D1) September 7, 2007, 1:32 pm
  • Oh yeah, it’s a ridiculous game trying to rejigger the past. I just react cause I still think Beckett has the hardest level to meet while most fans think he’s already there. By contrast, Hanley is already there. And I’m a sucker for young talent. Paps is the only star to emerge from the Theo system with Pedroia now and Clay behind him. But it would have been really nice to have an offensive force at SS.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 1:34 pm
  • I’d go along with Wang being the 19th ranked pitcher. At least that part of the list is accurate.

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 1:35 pm
  • RAW – My skepticism is different from your optimism, but I bleed red.
    Hanley – An argument can be made that he’s the second most valuable player in the game right now. And, no matter how bad he is, I’m sure at age 23 he’s not as bad as Jeter (Sorry, Yankee fans).
    Gagne – I’m comfortable calling him a bust because of what they gave up. Meanwhile, Oki is piling up innings.
    Me, too, Josh. VORP just seems to fit better what I see and know (with the occasional surprising year – Penny). If anyone knows, I’m curious about the difference with how FIR is calculated.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 1:41 pm
  • I’m bored with this…
    So.
    Why are there not lefty catchers? Also, has there ever been a good left handed catcher?

    LocklandSF September 7, 2007, 1:44 pm
  • “Hanley – An argument can be made that he’s the second most valuable player in the game right now”
    The question is not how good Hanley is playing for a team that most do not even believe exists, it is which of the two would be more valuable if the trade never happened.
    Since we will never know how Ramirez ‘tude’ would have fared in the Boston spotlight but we do know Beckett is a top 5 starter, your argument holds no water.

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 1:58 pm
  • An argument that itself holds no water presented as a counterclaim to an argument said to hold no water.
    I love recursion!
    I have a funny feeling that you and I, RAW, will have little to talk about especially because you think Lugo is a five-tool player.
    And sorry, LocklandSF, but I wasn’t trying to entertain you. Good luck on that left-handed catcher thing though.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 2:04 pm
  • “Why are there not lefty catchers? Also, has there ever been a good left handed catcher?”
    maybe, since most batters are righties, too much of a risk of inability to throw out base runners-stolen bases…

    Ric September 7, 2007, 2:08 pm
  • On Lowell, Ortiz, Okajima: No one gets credit in my mind cause no one could have predicted those results. … Nothing in their histories suggested that’s what they were getting.
    So because YOU didn’t see those results coming, no one else did and thus no one gets credit for them? As someone else said, we must immediately remove Drew, Lugo, Renteria and Clement from the negatives list because “no one” saw their disappointing seasons coming either. So your logic still leaves Theo much better than you describe him to be.
    On the Matsuzaka bid and contract: I’m just saying it wasn’t “clever”.
    No one else called it clever either, so why continue to bring it up?
    I, for one, feel very good about a four of Schilling, Wake, Lowe, and Matsuzaka with Hanley batting 3rd.
    I would, too — if I rooted for the Yankees.
    I understand this griping is sour grapes (I must be hungry and I love fruit).
    “Sour grapes.” A familiar phrase used often by certain YFs here to try to discredit an argument without actually addressing its merits. Since Sox fans consider the trade a success — you are the only “one” I have seen pan it this season — what have we to be sour about? Your arguments have been not even close to convincing, while consistently ignoring the facts we have brought up.
    let’s see Beckett match Lowe’s 2002. Better, let’s see him do it for the next four years.
    Um, let’s see Lowe match Lowe’s 2002. He was worse in a Boston uniform in each subsequent season. His 2004 was much, much worse than Beckett’s 2006. In 2006, Beckett had stretches of brilliance. Lowe had no such stretches in 2004. He was consistently horrible. It’s revisionist history to wish for a pitcher that was years removed from any consistent success at the time of his departure.
    Paps is the only star to emerge from the Theo system with Pedroia now and Clay behind him.
    Considering Theo’s had exactly four draft classes — and considering that success for a draft class is producing one, maybe two solid MLB starters — that’s a silly thing to say. In fact, what you cite is evidence of Epstein’s success with the draft.
    My skepticism is different from your optimism,
    Wrong, Pete. You have expressed no skepticism. You have expressed an unremitting stream of pessimism and negativity, the likes of which I have never seen from someone calling themselves a Sox fan. It’s convenient for your argument to step away from the fight, hands raised, saying: “Hey. I’m no fanboy, so I’m just calling it how I see it” — thus implying that those who disagree with you must be blind fanatics who cannot see things objectively.
    I have been as critical of Epstein as anybody — over the hideous Bard/Meredith-Mirabelli deal, over giving up on Renteria too soon (though I’m glad to have him gone), etc. But I refuse to give in to your false objectivity and claims of “skepticism” when in fact you have shown little inclination over these last two days to say ANYthing positive about the Red Sox unless as a token setup to a more substantial criticism.
    This collection of statements is perhaps the best evidence I can collect that Pete, if he truly is a Red Sox fan, is far and away the most pessimistic, cynical Red Sox fan I have ever met.

    Paul SF September 7, 2007, 2:13 pm
  • Are there two “petes” posting here with completely different biases? I think I’m confused or behind or something!

    Brad September 7, 2007, 2:13 pm
  • I guess calling him a ‘five tool player’ is exaggerating somewhat, but I look at those 5 tools and believe Lugo has them in him.
    He has displayed power.
    Based on his years in TB, he is a .300 hitter in Fenway.
    He is ‘pretty damn good’ defensively
    He is a rabbit on the basepaths
    Whatever the case, he is not a flop, nor, given his historical stats, should he be anything less than a very strong leadoff hitter if this year proves the aberation, and history the rule.
    I will not discount these guys after one year in Fenway. I learned my lesson on that many times before. It takes time for some.

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 2:23 pm
  • …I’ve only read what he’s written today, but I don’t really see why there’s so much animosity towards Pete right now. Only thing I don’t understand is what he said about Beckett; nothing else has seemed irrational or anything. Harshly critical and strangely anti-Beckett, but I don’t really think it’s a YF in sheep’s clothing. Or if it is, he’s been rather tame for a would-be troll
    Just my 2 cents.

    Josh SF (D1) September 7, 2007, 2:31 pm
  • “over the hideous Bard/Meredith-Mirabelli deal”
    I think you mean “the hideous Bard/Meredith-Wakefield deal”
    And Bard has not proven anything, Meredith I discount because he’s pitching in SD, and Wake has 15 wins this year.
    Not great, and I know what you mean, but Bard was coached to catch Wake and he failed. Dumping Wake would have been the bigger mistake.

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 2:33 pm
  • I just don’t think Bard was given enough time to try to succeed, is all. Either letting Mirabelli go initially was a mistake or bringing him back was a mistake. In either case, it cost the Sox more than it ever should have…

    Paul SF September 7, 2007, 2:34 pm
  • He posted as a SF, then as a YF, then dropped any stated affiliation. Often times, on fan sites, or team message boards, opposing fans will pose as a peer in order to deride the team with impunity. “Hey, I’m on of you, I can say what I want!” It’s as old as the internet.
    Judging by writing style, I think we have WooFrankPhilPete.

    LocklandSF September 7, 2007, 2:39 pm
  • That may be the case in Boston but he was given a chance in SD, and has failed to date. Lest you forget, he opened their season as the starting catcher and cleanup hitter for them.
    Oh, how he has regressed from those roles.

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 2:45 pm
  • Paul, you’re claiming to know me after two days of posts. That’s pretty awesome. How about you hold the personal attacks and stick to arguing the facts? I’m not usually this pessimistic, but I was shocked to arrive here and see all the statements bloated by fanboy perspectives. i thought if anything the Yankee fans would beat that down, but they seem to be nowhere to be found. Otherwise, for me, it’s easy to respond to those. But I’m sure there are a lot of things we could agree on (Great season, good to see youth, etc). It’s just more interesting, for me, to point out where we don’t agree. That’s what interesting baseball discussions are about, to me at least. And I would appreciate you toning it down a bit.
    “So because YOU didn’t see those results coming, no one else did and thus no one gets credit for them?”
    No. And I’ve said consistently you can agree or disagree with me, but they’re still MY opinions. If you give me a good reason to change them, I will. Otherwise, YELLING at me isn’t going to do any good.
    On Lugo, Drew, Clement: I thought all of those were terrible signings. And sadly, I was right. Rentaria was a good signing and they did give up too soon. Now they’re stuck with an even more inferior product with Lowrie in the system behind him.
    On Matsuzaka: I misread your metaphor. I apologize.
    Hanley batting 3rd would be obscene. I’m sorry if I’m the only one that sees, and is fascinated by, that.
    Lowe in 2004: 90 ERA+
    Beckett in 2006: 93 ERA+
    Who’s revising things?
    Meanwhile, after this year, Beckett will have a average ERA+ in a Sox uniform of 115. Let’s see him continue his improvement before we get all ape shit happy about that trade. And while Beckett’s performance has bounced around throughout his career, position players are so much easier to project, especially when they’re phenoms at 23. But I suppose if you squint real tight with your Sox jersey on, Beckett has turned a corner. I say he’s stepped strong in the right direction, but if this is his peak, I’m very disappointed and disheartened. Seeing as he’s never pitched better than this, I’m better prepared than you, I think for that future. In fact, I expect Matsuzaka to be a better pitcher than Beckett next year and from that point forward. Indeed, I wouldn’t be surprised to look up in September of ’08 and see Clay and Dice-K having better seasons than Beckett. Sure, i might be down on Beckett – or I’m reading the rest of his career.
    On the draft: You serious? Four drafts (2003-06) has produced a closer and a 2b. That’s really impressive to you? Meanwhile, I look across baseball and see guys like Braun and Young and Miller etc. Sorry, Theo has a way to go in the draft. Clay is a nice step in the right direction. Next they need an impact bat.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 2:46 pm
  • The trade has looked better as time has gone on, I’ll grant you that, but Doug Mirabelli ain’t worth two prospects. The Sox miscalculated Mirabelli’s worth, then were forced to overpay to bring him back. It was a bad move, no matter how necesssary it was.

    Paul SF September 7, 2007, 2:48 pm
  • I was posting as Pete SF and typing it out every time. But on one post I posted as Pete YF, I think because I was talking (and thinking) about Chamberlain and his purpose pitches.
    Because of that typo, I decided to drop the affiliation because I was sick of typing it every time (and the possibility for a future error with no way to correct it) but more sick of spam email if I register. So I’m Pete.
    For the rest of you, is Paul always this aggressive? I called him out for implying that Youk is an outstanding 1B (top 3 in the AL) and now he’s all over me. What gives?
    And thanks Josh.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 2:54 pm
  • I was shocked to arrive here and see all the statements bloated by fanboy perspectives. i thought if anything the Yankee fans would beat that down, but they seem to be nowhere to be found.

    But I suppose if you squint real tight with your Sox jersey on, Beckett has turned a corner.

    I cannot take you seriously after these two statements. Sorry. As a regular poster and reader here, the idea that the Sox fans here approach the team from “bloated fanboy perspectives” is risible. It’s completely untrue, and while it may be your opinion, it is ill-informed and outrageous. You would do well to take your own advice about personal attacks. Sorry to say, Pete, but you have used all the touchstone phrases used by the more inflammatory Yankee fans who visit this site.
    Thanks for your efforts to preach to us poor unwashed fanboy masses, but we’re pretty happy with this team, flaws and all.

    Paul SF September 7, 2007, 2:54 pm
  • I disgree with you on this. I repeat, Bard was coached to catch Wake and he failed, and Wake is far more valuable than the whole traded lot. Maybe you are right that they should have held onto Mirabelli until Bard worked out his problems but from what I understand ‘Belli is not exactly full of laughs, if you know what I mean.

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 2:54 pm
  • Anyone who opines about Chamberlain’s “purpose pitches” but Beckett’s suckiness has an agenda not in the best interest of rational discussion.

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 2:57 pm
  • Dude, you implied that Youk is a outstanding 1B. If that’s not fanboy perspective I don’t know what is. He’s good, but better at 3B.
    Same deal on Beckett versus Hanley. Beckett has had a good year. But saying anything more than that is again that fanboy perspective. especially because it just involves making excuses for last year. Worse is saying Beckett is so much more valuable (wasn’t hat also you?) than a offensive force at SS. That’s simply not true, and luckily there are stats to answer that.
    You criticize me for being critical, but then all you’re doing it being critical of me. Hey, I can take it. Just stick to the facts.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 3:03 pm
  • Also, since 2002 Jake Peavy has an ERA of 4.0 when facing AL teams. Take out the two starts of TB and KC, and that skyrockets to over six, where he (like most others) pitched very well.
    Lest we forget where the man pitches and to whom he pitches most of the time while holding comparison to Josh Beckett.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 3:04 pm
  • On Chamberlain: Please, RAW. You tried to say he lost his stones. I saw a guy throw two heaters back to back in the exact same spot. That’s hardly succumbing to the pressure. That’s a guy throwing it exactly where he wants to.
    But I suppose, around here, RAW, is the typical poster, Paul?

    Pete September 7, 2007, 3:06 pm
  • And for the record, I can’t hold a tempered conversation with anyone who can’t bring themselves to admit how fecking good Josh Beckett has been this year, and how far he’s come since coming to the AL. So, I’m out. Anyone who would rather have a SS than a 26 year old probably CY Young winner in the American League East isn’t worth arguing with – it’s unwinnable with unreasonable people.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 3:07 pm
  • No squinting required. Eyeballs should do it, and in fact, you’d have to look completely away from the game to NOT see it.
    But, alas, I’ve never made this mistake of posting under two different (very different) names, so maybe I don’t see things the way he does.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 3:09 pm
  • Also…probably CY Young winner… and sorry if this posts twice, in advance.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 3:10 pm
  • Brad, I don’t know where you’re getting your numbers, but here are Peavey’s stats against AL clubs in his career:
    17 games 104.1 IP, 3.19 ERA, 29 BB, 97 K
    From his BR page (Interleague games).

    Anonymous September 7, 2007, 3:10 pm
  • Beckett’s 27 and putting together consecutive 200 inning seasons for the first time in his career. Injury concerns–of which I have none–aside, I don’t really understand why anyone should predict a regression. His FIP bests his ERA by .03, so it’s not like he’s been getting lucky; even if he doesn’t improve, a 3.3-3.5 ERA in the AL East is legitimately ace-like, in my opinion, though his continued struggles against New York are a bit grating.
    I’m not getting involved in the other stuff…I didn’t see the start of it and it’s not really my beef. Though the “bloated fanboy” line is more then a little inappropriate, particularly given the general attitudes of the site’s three current SF authors. And taking defense into consideration, Youk is among the best in the league…not saying a whole lot, as 1B in the AL has apparently entered a decline phase. But by winshares, only Carlos Pena has been better this season in the AL–overall, Youk still rates 8th. Again by winshares, only Derrek Lee has contributed more at 1B with the glove. The guy (legitimately) deserves a Gold Glove and gets on at a .400 clip. Not your prototypical power hitter, but I’ll take defense and OBP at the expense of power. I’d be curious to see a move to 3B, where his bat would play better, but his glove would most likely look much, much worse.

    Josh SF (D1) September 7, 2007, 3:13 pm
  • shat. PROBABLE

    Brad September 7, 2007, 3:15 pm
  • See, what I mean, everyone with the Beckett worship.
    I have no problem saying he’s having a good year. But I’m not jumping on that bandwagon. Not yet at least. And not after last year. And not after looking at his whole career.
    Meanwhile, VORP tells me everything I need to know about what’s more valuable a 137 ERA+ from a starting pitcher or a 150 OPS+ from a starting SS. Perfect example of where I let the stats come before my team preference.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 3:15 pm
  • No, from 2002, and I got it from Yahoo. They only gave from 2002, so I have to assume that he dominated before that.
    But, here are his games ERA’s in games since that time.
    4.5
    5.4
    0.0
    4.5
    1.1
    7.2
    4.5
    3.75
    1.69
    4.76
    4.05
    012
    1.5

    Brad September 7, 2007, 3:17 pm
  • which, cleary is the Yankees. But, whatever.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 3:18 pm
  • On Youk: I was just responding to the misleading way of presenting the evidence. Saying top 3 in the AL is not saying much. Like I said, he’s good but defense at 1B is over rated. That’s why hitters who can’t field go there.
    But his defense at 3B has actually been very good – something like 8 runs above average in his career, I think. There his defense is more valuable in combination with his bat. As I said yesterday he’d be just outside the top 5 3B in the game.
    Lastly, I apologize for the “fanboy” comment. I haven’t been around long enough to peg the community. I was just responding to what I read. And RAW has a certain way of standing out along with a few of the more self-assured comments.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 3:22 pm
  • Eh, whatever. You can have Hanley Ramirez all you want, but I’ll take the dominant starting pitcher in game one of the playoffs every day of the week. Well, me and everyone else in the world, including the front office in Boston, which to the best of my knowledge, you’re not a part of. If you don’t like him, or Youk, or the draft results, or Theo, or Terry Francona, or Mike Lowell, or Buchholz, or Lester, or Boston, or even the color red it makes little difference to me.
    The term “fan” is a shorter version of “fanatical”, which I’m sure you knew. So, maybe you’re not a fan of anything Boston other than the team as a whole, but when you really look at it, they sure have won a lot of games with a sub-par first baseman, Josh Beckett, and Julio Lugo.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 3:30 pm
  • Josh, I don’t think I predicted a regression for Beckett. That would be going too far, I think. I’m more comfortable saying he’s more likely to do a bit worse than a bit better.
    Where do I get that intuition from?
    The whole rest of his career. Sure, he’s never had two seasons of 200 innings until this year. But he’s also never had two consecutive seasons of 110 ERA+ (and yes, that’s a completely arbitrary cutoff). He bounces around. Some years he has it. And some he doesn’t. That’s what I expect going forward. It might also be a defense mechanism because of last year. Who knows how my mind works?

    Pete September 7, 2007, 3:32 pm
  • Well, kinda hard to do much better than a CY, now isn’t it?
    Brilliant thought, Yank scum :)

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 3:35 pm
  • Well, kinda hard to do much better than a CY, now isn’t it?
    Simply brilliant

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 3:36 pm
  • Wow, Brad, that’s a strange response. And you’re putting a lot of words in my mouth that never came out of it.
    Beckett/Hanley: Beckett is easier to replace than Hanley, thus less valuable. It’s the difference between Derek Jeter and Andy Pettitte.
    Youk is a fine 1B. But he’s better at 3B. But for now, I said Papi/Youk are the best 1B/DH combo in the game.
    Draft – well they can do much better than a 2B and closer in four years. And if they don’t, we can look forward to many more Drews and Lugos.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 3:41 pm
  • Saying Youk is one of the best 1B in the league is a fact. The fact that the league’s first basemen as a whole aren’t that impressive means little because Youkilis plays in that league and his value is derived from how he performs relative to the league. Meanwhile, he’s still top third in all of MLB, which is certainly not an unenviable position in which to be.
    I stand behind my statement that a stud hitter is not as valuable to a team as a stud pitcher. If that means disagreeing with statistics I generally find useful, so be it. Baseball is all about stats combined with scouting and experience. Chien-Ming Wang somehow is a good pitcher, even though the stats don’t really back that up. You learn to accept these things and move on. A stud starter impacts as many or more at-bats over the course of the season as/than a stud hitter. A weakness at one of nine positions is not as harmful as a weakness at one of your five starting spots; conversely, a dominant No. 1 starter — which Beckett has been this year — is a more valuable asset than a stud hitter, unless that hitter is Babe Ruth or David Ortiz.
    Perhaps the discussion we need to be having is whether Hanley Ramirez is at such a level. I’d say no. But remember this: the main difference between the Sox last year and this in terms of personnel is the starting pitching — personified by Beckett and Daisuke Matsuzaka. Would having Ramirez instead of Lugo, Youkilis instead of Lowell, question mark instead of Youkilis, and huge question mark instead of Beckett make this a better team? I don’t think anyone who has followed this team over the past three years would say yes.

    Paul SF September 7, 2007, 3:43 pm
  • Heck, if you want a CY winner, they should go out and sign Colon this off-season! And how’d they let Zito get away last year?

    Pete September 7, 2007, 3:46 pm
  • And when I said David Ortiz, I actually meant Alex Rodriguez. Hehe, that’s an interesting slipup.

    Paul SF September 7, 2007, 3:46 pm
  • And when I said David Ortiz, I actually meant Alex Rodriguez. Hehe, that’s an interesting slipup.

    Paul SF September 7, 2007, 3:47 pm
  • Actually, Pete, a ERA+ of 110 is definitely not a arbitrary number you pulled out of your head to support your argument. He missed that “arbitrary” number by thirteen points in 2002, two points in 2004, and by far his worst year was a 92, and now it’s back up over the mark.
    Exclude rookie year, which was crazy: 282
    97
    132
    108
    119
    92 – First year in Boston.
    138 – to date.
    At least try to be arbitrary if you’re claiming to be. Or just post the numbers. Being arbitrary rarely ever means arbitrary.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 3:48 pm
  • Stupid work Internet. Sorry for the double.

    Paul SF September 7, 2007, 3:50 pm
  • That’s a 5/7 mark of being over 110.
    Do you not count Jacoby, Moss, Buchholz, Lester, and Lowrie as good draft pics? Or, should they already be playing everyday to garnish that compliment by you?
    Dude, I’m done talking to you. If you don’t like Boston, then don’t comment on them.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 3:51 pm
  • Guys… Don’t get sucked in, it’s so obvious.
    WooFrankPhilPete

    LocklandSF September 7, 2007, 3:54 pm
  • Looking at those numbers is you seem to have a maturing pitcher who, as he improves, is also adjusting to league adjustments against him. With each adjustment the league makes (the 108, the 92), he responds that much better.
    Nothing to back that up, of course. Just what it looks like to me:
    97 — first full season
    132 — figures his crap out
    108 — league adjusts
    119 — continuing improvement
    92 — AL smacks him around
    138 — he adjusts again

    Paul SF September 7, 2007, 3:54 pm
  • After looking at the Pettitte’s career and comparing it to Beckett’s, I love that Pettitte:Beckett as Jeter:Hanley comparison. Indeed, Pettitte had the better career at the same point. And putting it that way, I’m sure very few of you, if any, would choose Pettitte over Jeter. But that’s exactly what you’re doing.
    Saying that Youk is is top 3 in the AL ignored the crucial fact that the AL sucks for 1B. That’s picking your evidence to suit your argument. In the old days they used to call those people sophists. Now they’re called lawyers. I’m truly sorry that I had to correct you.
    As for rewriting the past, there are a lot of things I would have done differently. Re-signing Cabrera and Lowe are at the top of that list. Not trading Arroyo is another. After that, who knows if 2006 would have been so bad? Me, I don’t think so.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 3:57 pm
  • here’s the logic gap for me:
    Drew and Lugo are failures to you, Pete, after .8 seasons in Boston. But Beckett isn’t yet worthy of being deemed a big success, despite his performance over the same period of time. That’s a double standard.

    SF September 7, 2007, 3:59 pm
  • I seem to recall an article written last year on how Boston’s medical staff(?) or other worked with Josh’s mechanics to cut down on the blisters. That may have at least a little to do with his perforance in ’06.
    Not 100% sure though

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 4:02 pm
  • Brad, I’m not sure what your point is, but mine was that he’s bounced around throughout his career – from below average to just above average to very good. I don’t think it’s roket science to expect that going forward.
    But everyone here thinks he’s going to post a 130 ERA+ year after year from this point going forward?
    Meanwhile, Paul’s reading tea leaves when he “interprets” those years. Plain and simple.
    But Paul, explain to me how A.J. Burnett didn’t get “smacked around” his first year in the AL?

    Pete September 7, 2007, 4:02 pm
  • my point is you chose a completely “arbitrary” number to perfectly fit your argument, and I happen to think that Paul’s explanation hold water. What’s your theory? That he’s just not a good pitcher?

    Brad September 7, 2007, 4:06 pm
  • I haven’t been at the Internets at all today and I’m late to the discussion. I don’t know how the subject of Hanley v. Beckett came up, but whatever…Anyway, I think Hanley is a more valuable commodity in baseball, given his age, his salary, his general brilliance. I also think he’s more valuable than just about anyone else in baseball not named Reyes or Miguel Cabrera. So I’m not attacking Beckett when I write this despite my historical hatred of the guy. And by the way, he’s a great pitcher. Crow eating continues…
    BUT…
    if this is a discussion of the trade, again we have to factor in a player named Mike Lowell. You know, he’s kind of decent and valuable and combined with Beckett, he’s a big reason why the Sox are the best team in baseball. Again, it was a good trade for both teams. And given both teams’ needs and financial circumstances, it makes a ton of sense for both franchises.

    Nick-YF September 7, 2007, 4:06 pm
  • SF –
    I didn’t call Drew and Lugo failure. I just don’t think they were good signings. And I think, deep down, we all would agree.
    As for Beckett, how many times do I have to say he’s had a very good year. But for me, I still have two problems. One, they gave up the second most valuable player in all of baseball right now. And two, I don’t see Beckett getting much better to justify that. They traded Jeter to get Pettitte. Trading Jeter to get Santana is a lot easier to swallow.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 4:06 pm
  • 9. Buehrle
    If you can’t question VORP at all, then at least note that Buehrle is a top 10 pitcher in MLB. Ahead of Beckett, Lackey, Smoltz, Harang, Oswalt. Is he really better than ANY of those guys? Is that believable?
    Meanwhile, Paul’s reading tea leaves when he “interprets” those years. Plain and simple.
    By the way (and this is just an example of why I say this): STFU.
    Ask for courtesy and then make these kinds of comments? Outrageous. I realize this is just the internet, but how do you conflict yourself like this and also sleep at night? MFY-ridiculous.

    QuoSF September 7, 2007, 4:09 pm
  • my point is you chose a completely “arbitrary” number to perfectly fit your argument, and I happen to think that Paul’s explanation hold water. What’s your theory? That he’s just not a good pitcher?
    And, SF : you beat me to it!

    Brad September 7, 2007, 4:10 pm
  • Brad –
    Sorry, but saying he once had three straight seasons of 108 ERA+ isn’t saying much. Indeed, that sort of defeats the whole “Beckett is God” argument.
    Nick –
    Would you have traded Jeter for Pettitte and Broscious?

    Pete September 7, 2007, 4:10 pm
  • RAW, re: the Beckett blister thing. It was actually earlier in the season, maybe just before it began. They think they identified what the root of his blister problem as relating to excema.

    Nick-YF September 7, 2007, 4:11 pm
  • pete, that’s nearly an impossible question to answer given that I would have to know the team’s roster and needs at the time (for instance, was the staff lacking starting pitching at the time. Who was playing third? Who do I have at short to replace Jeter?).

    Nick-YF September 7, 2007, 4:15 pm
  • Seems you’ve got some anger management issues around here. That’s pretty brilliant, Quo. I not only asked for respect, I apologized when I was wrong. Better than anything I’ve received.
    To interpret the ups and downs of a player’s career is completely meaningless. It adds no value whatsoever.
    All I can do is see that and expect more of the same until I’m proven wrong. I can’t take one year out of context and make up reasons for why it came out that way. That’s absurd.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 4:15 pm
  • Tic…Tic…Tic…Tic…

    LocklandSF September 7, 2007, 4:16 pm
  • Hey, by the way guys.
    No. And I’ve said consistently you can agree or disagree with me, but they’re still MY opinions. If you give me a good reason to change them, I will. Otherwise, YELLING at me isn’t going to do any good.
    In addition, those opinions that are mine? The only ones that count. Bow before me. You’re wrong. My opinions are the only ones that are correct. You can’t make the choice of whether you’d prefer Beckett + Lowell over Hanley. Only I can make those kinds of decisions.
    Truth be told, this team would’ve been better for many years if we had just kept Heathcliff Slocumb. I know he was abominable for a little while, never a consistent force, but he had one very good year with us. I’m certain he would’ve repeated that over a period of four years following his awful one.
    This has been an impersonation. Thank you.

    Anonymous September 7, 2007, 4:16 pm
  • Thanks. I knew I read something.
    As far as Petey; anyone know where I can post my thoughts on how:
    Beckett sucks…. but he’s really not bad
    Jugo and JD were tragic mistakes…. but they’re ok
    Youk blows as a 1st baseman…. but he’s one of the better one’s
    ?

    BostonRAW September 7, 2007, 4:19 pm
  • Sorry, Nick, but that’s a cop out. Indeed, the Yanks had the choice to trade Jeter in 1995 exactly because they needed pitching. They chose wisely and won accordingly.
    As a fan I hope Beckett proves me wrong. But in being objective, I don’t think he will. I think what we see is what we get. That’s a very good thing by itself. But at the price of Hanley, that makes me want to puke.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 4:20 pm
  • okay, Pete. You win. The Red Sox are the worst. Their first baseman is terrible, their ace is hiding behind his true self, their front office is below average, they can’t draft, they give away stars for garbage, they play an easy schedule, Varitek is aging, and worst of all…they’re not the Yankees!
    ha.
    You’ve officially found your way onto my Woo list.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 4:21 pm
  • Since I don’t know where to put this, and I don’t feel like I’m threadjacking whateve rit is you guys are doing anyhow, the tiebreaking coinflips are out:
    http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20070907&content_id=2194382&vkey=news_nyy&fext=.jsp&c_id=nyy&partnered=rss_nyy
    Seems like the Yanks won it all (or enough) to be at home for any tiebreaking games.

    Lar September 7, 2007, 4:22 pm
  • Wow, I’m still shocked at how many angry Sox fans there are. I love baseball, and my team, and I’m not sure why I’m more dispassionate. Might have to do with being a scientist and having a father that didn’t live and die with every ballgame.
    My grandfather however…

    Pete September 7, 2007, 4:24 pm
  • I think what we see is what we get
    Man, what a problem to have. Yep. I’ll take 20 wins and a below 4 ERA every single year, so hopefully you’re right.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 4:24 pm
  • Jesus.

    Devine September 7, 2007, 4:26 pm
  • Anyone who says the fanboy perspective isn’t running rampant around here is fooling themselves. I officially take back my apology.
    Here, I thought I’d get more reasoned analysis in the presence of Yankee fans. Instead it’s:
    Youk = God of a 1B
    Beckett = God of a starting pitcher
    Draft = every player will be a superstar!
    Theo = “awesome”!
    To the few of you with objective perspectives, I appreciate that minority. To the rest, I don’t think we’re going to have much to say to each other.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 4:30 pm
  • Alas, you’ve spend the entire day shitting on the Red Sox and all things Boston, so how is that being “dispassionate”? I think it defines passion perfectly. No?

    Brad September 7, 2007, 4:30 pm
  • “The Red Sox are the worst. Their first baseman is terrible, their ace is hiding behind his true self, their front office is below average, they can’t draft, they give away stars for garbage, they play an easy schedule, Varitek is aging…”
    I agree 100 percent :)

    Andrews September 7, 2007, 4:31 pm
  • I think Lockland probably has the measure of this “discussion”…

    Devine September 7, 2007, 4:35 pm
  • It’s a blog. If you’re looking for tempered opinions on what many of consider to be a significant part of our daily lives, and something that we all like to take part in, you’re in the wrong place. You, as everyone here, is passionate about something, and for most of us, the Red Sox and the Yankees are one of said passions. Don’t fucking belittle any of us for having strong opinions on the Red Sox or the Yankees while on a Red Sox and Yankees blog. You’ve posted more on this thread than anyone, and most of them full of bile and negativity towards something that we all love, and you look for sympathy or apology for us not being more like you? You didn’t think you could just show up here, pretend to be a Red Sox “fan” and talk shit about them all day and not recieve any feedback from us, did you? Beckett is going to win 20 games, and carry his team into the postseason after fifty years of finishing in second place to the Yankees. Youk may not be the best, but he’s ours, and we like him. Same with the rest of the guys. You can’t shit on them at will and not expect us to stand up for them.
    You’re right, we don’t have much to say to each other at all.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 4:41 pm
  • ha, Andrews.
    I was wondering how long it would stay there before that…

    Brad September 7, 2007, 4:43 pm
  • Shitting? What? Are you that blinded by your own fanboy perspective that you haven’t seen the nuance in anything I’ve said?
    Here:
    Youk – good 1B, better 3B
    Beckett – very good this year, but if a Pettitte is all we got, I’m not pleased about giving up a Jeter.
    Theo – not “awesome” but right around top 10.
    Draft – decent but could be much better. Clay is a step in the right direction. Position player, please?
    Lugo/Drew/Gagne – have me more worried about the future than embracing it.
    And Brad, relax.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 4:43 pm
  • yeah, ok.
    You’re right. Where is my head today?
    I’m sorry. Please accept my apology for being a fanboy. I’ll try harder to be more objective about the best team in baseball in the future. I’ll try harder to come up with ways to shit on them whenever possible.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 4:47 pm
  • but if a Pettitte is all we got, I’m not pleased about giving up a Jeter.
    We who? Which fanbase are you talking about now? Is it “we” as in “us Yankee fans” or “we” as in humans who aren’t passionate about the Red Sox?
    hahah.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 4:49 pm
  • Brad, I will old you to that.
    And yes, that is my only contribution to this intra-SF debate.

    IronHorse (yf) September 7, 2007, 4:50 pm
  • It’s anything but said debate, IH.
    Glad to have you, but really, your side has already been well represented today.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 4:51 pm
  • Brad, I think you need the kindness I’m about to spark more than I do.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 4:52 pm
  • So…here’s a random question. Do you remember which game this year pissed you off the most/left you in a bad mood for the longest afterward?
    I think my winner by a landslide was the third Gagne debacle (after the Sox took the lead with a 4-run 8th), but I might be forgetting a few games from earlier in the season. Man, I was mopey for hours afterward, and angry for a few after that…

    Devine September 7, 2007, 4:53 pm
  • We who? You said “we”, as if you’re lumping yourself into a group of people.
    I know any self-respecting Red Sox fan would have loved to get rid of Jeter, so which “we” is upset over this? Which “we” is bothered by this trade theory?
    We – those/these people and myself = we.
    …all “we” got back… ummm…?

    Brad September 7, 2007, 4:55 pm
  • I think it was the Roger no-hitter bid after getting trounced by such worse teams. But, it did more harm that good to the old man, so maybe not.

    Brad September 7, 2007, 4:56 pm
  • Agree and Disagree with you on some points Pete, as for Beckett, he has to be the AL Cy Young favorite at this point and although he’s not on Santana’s level (no one is) I’d actually say he’s as good as Peavy, remember the two faced each other this year and Beckett won that contest.
    Giving up Hanley for Beckett was a smart move, people knew he was good, but not this good this fast, read stuff from the beginning of the year, most people thought Hanley would always be a sort of second fiddle to Jose Reyes in the NL East.
    I think Theo deserves a lot of credit for the Papi signing since he saw what the small ball Twins missed with Ortiz, a monster power hitter.
    Theo has consistently drafted well on top of it all, Pedroia is awesome as are Ellsbury and Buchholz, look out for Michael Bowden (who struggled a bit this year, but is very young) Justin Masterson and Lars Anderson in the future. Expect a steady stream of Major League Talent to come from the minors in the coming years.
    I really think that there’s only a couple GMs I’d take over Theo. Beane, Schuerholz, Dombrowski, and possibly Kevin Towers, I’m not thinking about it too hard, but if you can think of anyone else feel free to correct me.

    Bob September 7, 2007, 4:57 pm
  • Are you already high?

    Pete September 7, 2007, 4:57 pm
  • OK, that wasn’t my only two cents. Here are 50 more, or so:
    1. I wouldn’t choose to pick on a starer in the midst of a top-3-Cy-Young-contender-year, whoever he is. If it’s true that this is his peak of peaks, I’ll be happy.
    2. I do think the Drew/Lugo acquisitions are questinable and I thought that about both of them at the time they were made (in other words, as a YF I was glad the Sox made them).
    3. I don’t know how you could bash the Gagne deal except in total 20/20 hindsight. At the time it was made, practically everyone said it was a great deal and sealed the RS place in the post-season. As it turns out, they will get there despite him, but other than some people saying they didn’t NEED him, I don’t know anyone who thought it was a bad deal at the time. And if Okajima really is wearing out this year and Gagne comes back strong, the RS will be very happy they made that move.
    4. As for Youkilis, I find RS fans think a lot more highly of him than I do, but then again, I know from previous debates here that I feel a lot better about Melky than many RS fans are willing to acknowledge or see for themselves.

    IronHorse (yf) September 7, 2007, 4:59 pm
  • I like Youk, mostly because of the book Moneyball, though he hasn’t shown the power that is/was typical of 1B’s.
    Still, if Youk was on the Yanks, the opposite pitchers will never go beyond 4 innings! Well, Giambi is always around top something in pitches seen too, so..

    Lar September 7, 2007, 5:13 pm
  • Also, for the Gagne trade, it’s probably still too early – we’ll see what happens in the playoffs..

    Lar September 7, 2007, 5:14 pm
  • Bob –
    There’s not a lot to disagree with there. Not cause I agree, but those are your opinions and, after today, I really appreciate that you stated them respectfully. I’ll just add a few things.
    I think as soon as Hanley gets out of Florida, he’ll be appreciated much more.
    Theo deserves a lot of credit for taking a chance on Papi. But it’s still the same type of chance they took on a Kielty or Pena, though Papi was younger at the time.
    On the Draft, no complaints on Pedroia. He deserves the label of “awesome” especially after the first month. Ellsbury I’m still not sold on whether he’s a Roberts or Damon. He needs to develop his power. That’s the big question mark for me. I don’t think any Sox fan can say anything negative about Buchholz. Bowden I’m disappointed in his year. Masterson I was high on for a while, now I’m more tempered. And Anderson had a solid first pro year. Hopefully he builds on it next year.
    Other GM’s, in addition to yours, I take ahead of Theo – Ryan, Shapiro, Minaya, Byrnes and I’d have to look more closely at it. This past off-season got me more down on Theo than I’ve ever been. Cashman also seems to have done more with their farm since 2003. That’s impressive (and here come the barbs) but I was surprised at how many holes he allowed their team to have going into this year. Still, all that leaves Theo right around the top 10. That’s pretty good, and it could be a lot worse.
    Iron – I didn’t like the Gagne deal as soon as it happened. They gave too much for a relief pitcher. Beltre was horrible as a throw-in.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 5:16 pm
  • Lar, if it’s is pitches-seen you are looking at, no one on the Yankees (and I am pretty sure only 2-3 in the entire league) match Abreu’s average year, though I think this has been a below average year for him in taht regard. Anyway, point being, he sees even more than Giambi and POSSIBLY more than Youk, though I don’t know where one looks up such a stat in order to verify.

    IronHorse (yf) September 7, 2007, 5:20 pm
  • Thanks, I always try to be respectful. Shapiro is a good one, I though about him, but left him off because this is the 1st year his team is doing anything, but thinking about it now, I can’t really think of any awful moves that he’s made, and he managed to get Hafner from Texas for nothing, so I’d put him at least on a par with Theo. Ryan is good, I’d love to see him with a bigger budget, if the team can somehow keep Santana they will have a future rotation of Santana, Liriano, and Garza (who is really good). I’m not that high on Minaya, he’s a good GM, he’s just not all that creative, goes for the big names always at the big dollars (Theo does this to an extent too). I can’t take Byrnes ahead of Theo simply because he hasn’t been a GM long enough, he will be a good one though I think (he’s a Theo disciple).
    As for Cashman, NO WAY IN HELL, he gets unfairly bashed a lot and deserves credit for the nice pitching crop they have, but he makes way too many moves that make no sense. When they got Pavano, I said to a friend, “He will SUCK, he’s had one pretty good year, but he’s clearly a head case and will fail terribly in NY”
    At least with Theo every move he’s made has logic in it. Yes, even Drew and Lugo. They overpaid both, but they can, let’s stop pretending that the Sox aren;t like the Yankees now. Drew especially, had a track record of being a very good hitter and one of the best defensive right fielders in the league. I know because he’s quiet it might look like he doesn’t care, but watch him get down the line or make plays in the field, he hustles and I think his teammates notice that. He will definitely have a better year next season when his son is healed and he completes the AL adjustment, I have no doubt about that.

    Bob September 7, 2007, 5:37 pm
  • Ya, I’m a big pitches-seen guy (and you can usually tell in the game threads).
    We have Giambi, Abreu, Damon (this year).. which is pretty good.
    Here are the numbers for last year, AL:
    http://snap.stats.com/premium/sfa/stats/getleaders.asp?rank=039&Submit=Go
    If someone has the numbers for this year it would be great.

    Lar September 7, 2007, 5:45 pm
  • http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/stats/batting?split=0&league=al&season=2007&seasonType=2&sort=pitchesPerPlateAppearance&type=exp&ageMin=17&ageMax=51&state=0&college=0&country=0&hand=a&pos=all
    Is the ESPN link for this year.
    Wow, would’ve never though Willits would be near the top. In any case, Giambi doesn’t have enough PA’s, so he would’ve been 5th or so.
    Youk is 7th. Matsui is 20th.
    Ya, so if Youk was on the Yanks, that’s a lot of pitches..

    Lar September 7, 2007, 5:50 pm
  • I think it is hard to judge Cashman too much for his performance from 2000-2006 only becasue it is very hard to tell which deals he masterminded and which ones he was told to make. The Tampa meddling seemed to heighten with each of those years without a title. I do think he was for the Pavano deal though, which doesn’t help him. But judging from this first year of “full control” for him, I am very happy. And I can’t really fault him from losing out on Dice-K – Boston deserves to have him with a $50 million bid and anything more than that (and even that amount in my mind) would have been foolish for a guy with zero games in the big leagues.
    Of course, how he handles/mangles the A-Rod thing is the next big test.
    Thanks Lar for the stats – I am surprised not to see Abreu in the top 20. Guess I was wrong on that.

    IronHorse (yf) September 7, 2007, 5:54 pm
  • YF – the first link was misleading on Abreu – he changed leagues so probably didn’t get enough AB’s for either league. Baseball reference had him at 4.45 last year.

    Lar September 7, 2007, 6:03 pm
  • That’s fair, cause he does have to deal with more shit than any other GM, like I said he’s treated unfairly a lot, I just don’t think that he’s a great evaluator of pitching talent (Pavano, Wright, Igawa were all his calls), he definitely deserves credit for knowing when to hold on to prospects.

    Bob September 7, 2007, 6:04 pm
  • I agree on Ryan. I too would love to see what he could do with a proper payroll. And that rotation next year is sick.
    On Byrnes, I’m shocked that they’re still in 1st ahead of San Diego and LA. That may be the toughest division in baseball. I think he gets mad credit.
    On Cashman, up to last off-season I would have agreed. But the Drew/Lugo/Gagne triumvirate really killed me. By contrast, I don’t think Cashman signed one free-agent besides Pettitte. And there farm just keeps producing. For Cashman vs. Theo, I’m just going to call it too close to call. And you’re absolutely right – there’s very little difference between the organizations. They’re both in a league by themselves.

    Pete September 7, 2007, 6:07 pm
  • I can’t fault Theo for Drew or Gagne, they made sense, if Drew produced like he had in his career this would be a monster lineup (I still think he will next year) and Gagne made sense given that they didn’t give up any guys that factored significantly in the teams present or future plans. Given the way Okie has pitched lately (he clearly needs some time off) Gagne made sense and Theo had no reason to believe that he would be so terrible (he was good in Texas)

    Bob September 7, 2007, 6:37 pm
  • Also, Gagne hasn’t been terrible in his most recent starts, after he adjusted for what some have said was a motion that was tipping his pitches. So I don’t know about terrible. Not good thus far, certainly. But the Gagne deal was alllll about the playoffs. So like Lar said, we’ll just have to wait until October.

    Paul SF September 8, 2007, 4:30 am

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