Wide World of Blogs: The Calm Before The Storm

For the next four days, all you’ll be reading about is the Milwaukee Brewers-San Diego Padres series. Enough already! We get it. It’s the best rivalry in sports. Blah blah blah. If I have to hear about how clutch Khalil Greene is again, I think I’ll vomit. Hey, ESPN, how about you turn the spotlight away from those two teams for once. The Yanks and Sox are playing. There’s some news in that. The blogosphere and news outlets are getting ready… 

  • "So as the Red Sox enter the Bronx beast’s belly tonight for the start of a four-game series, here’s one fun morsel to chew on: The Yankees are better." I didn’t say that. The Boston Herald’s Michael Silverman did. The crux of his argument is that the Yankees have outperformed the Sox in almost all offensive and pitching categories, and that the Pinstripers have done a better job against the AL’s elite teams so far. Kudos to Silverman for taking a brave stand. I’m sure New England loves him right now.
  • In his latest Pinstriped Blog, Steve Goldman covers sundry topics including Andy Phillips’ potential use as a utility player (it will never happen as long as Joe Torre’s and Miguel Cairo’s love affair continues), Aaron Small’s predictable demise, and a suggested new nickname for Kevin Youkilis: The Mohel of Swat.
  • Curt Schilling has an opinion and he’s going to tell the press! He thinks Joe Torre is the manager of the year so far. I’m suspicious. Is Curt beginning an early campaign to get into pinstripes by 2008? If that happened, would I still cheer on my beloved Bombers? Seriously, I root for the uniform each and every year, but Schilling wearing the Yankees stripes is a little much…Of course, I’d root for the Yanks. Heck, I’d defend Schilling daily on YFSF. I lack true moral courage. I am not Michael Silverman. 
  • A note relating to SF’s "Sleeping With The Enemy" post: Before I proposed marriage to my lady friend, I asked her to put on a Sox hat. I felt dirty but sometimes those urges are overpowering.

14 comments… add one

  • Re: Item #1 – we all know how absolutely irrelevant the mainstream media has become, particularly with regards to insightful baseball critique.

    SF June 5, 2006, 2:28 pm
  • It’d be one thing if Silverman could actually build an argument, instead of repeating this lame canard:
    “The Yankees have played less AL East teams than the Red Sox — who are 15-4 against Tampa Bay and Baltimore — meaning they have more gimme games against those cellar dwellers remaining.”
    Yes, those sweet gimme games the Yanks play against Tampa Bay… how did that season series go last year?
    Apparently Silverman is the last person to figure out that the AL East is strong across the board, with no gimmes.

    airk June 5, 2006, 2:57 pm
  • Irrelevant aside, Silverman does bring up some factual points that have some value to insightful baseball critique. How does one explain the statistical differences between the two teams? Does it mean anything that the Yankee M*A*S*H unit is offensively outperforming the Sox? Or that Yankee pitching (whom many view as inferior) is the 3rd best in the AL? Who the hell knows, but by this Thursday night we’ll all have a better idea.

    bloodyank78 June 5, 2006, 3:06 pm
  • # of position players w/ at-bats on the M*A*S*Hees: 17
    # of position players w/ at-bats on the Red Sox: 17

    airk June 5, 2006, 3:21 pm
  • The best part is that Silverman cites the fact that the Yankees have trimmed the Sox’ season series to just 4-3 as one indication of their superiority.
    While some of Silverman’s ideas may have merit, the manner in which he summarizes them is poor. The column is insubstantial, whether it is right or not is overshadowed by the weakness of it all.

    SF June 5, 2006, 3:30 pm
  • Look pretty evenly matched to me.
    Yanks RA: 261
    Sox RA: 261
    Yanks WHIP: 1.37
    Sox WHIP: 1.35
    Yanks SLG: .447
    Sox SLG: .447
    Yanks OPS: .820
    Sox OPS: .813
    Yanks batters 340 SO
    Sox: 331 SO
    So the chasm between the teams comes down to .12 in batting average, and .31 in ERA? Woop!

    airk June 5, 2006, 3:35 pm
  • Airk, I agree w/you. Whatever the numbers say I percieve them to be pretty evenly matched overall. However, as I said earlier, a 4 game set is a great litmus test. We all will have a better idea of how our ball clubs matchup by Thursday night. Now I’m off to the Drugstore for my ulcer medication, these Sox/Yanks games are gonna be the end of me.

    bloodyank78 June 5, 2006, 3:45 pm
  • I love stats. It’s part of why I like the game (though the inherent tension/drama is more the thing–more inside my own head than in the crowd, though that’s nice too).
    But sometimes I just want to throw them all out the window (winning or losing) and point at the win/loss column and say, “There ya go.” I predict a split on the upcoming series.
    I’ll be there tonight…and at Fenway on Saturday vs. the Rangers. At that point, all three games I’ve seen in person will have involved Beckett (barring injury). I hope it goes as well as the first one I saw at Yankee Stadium this year (14-3 Sox).

    Devine June 5, 2006, 3:49 pm
  • Oh, I just realized there’s a double-header Saturday…maybe no Beckett then…

    Devine June 5, 2006, 3:50 pm
  • Have fun! tonight’s matchup should be a great one.

    airk June 5, 2006, 3:59 pm
  • I was just about to post on the Silverman column myself. Having been annoyed multiple times by his and Masarotti’s apparent belief that to be a good beat writer, you must constantly trash the team you cover (Masarotti explains this by often posting reader complaints in his Sunday columns, then dismissing them by saying they ignore the positive pieces he’s done — withhout giving any examples of the positive pieces he’s done), this is not suurprising.
    If the situation were completely reversed — with the Sox narrowly leading in the BA/ERA categories and the Yanks narrowly in first and narrowly leading the season series, believe me Silverman would have noted the small statistical margin, given great weight to the series edge and noted that “despite the Red Sox’ statistical advantage, the Yankees clearly have found a way to win and overcome their disadvantages.”
    I suppose he got what he wanted on what I imagine should already be a good day for Boston newspaper sales (I’m sure I wasn’t the only kid in New England who bought copies of the Globe and Herald, and the Daily News, and the Post, to see what the Sox-Yankee coverage was like) — tongues are wagging, which means more copies are selling.

    Paul SF June 5, 2006, 4:02 pm
  • Silverman also doesn’t mention any of this (Sox-Yanks since Opening Day 2003):
    RED SOX YANKEES
    40-38 RECORD 38-40
    .283 BATTING AVERAGE .255
    453 RUNS SCORED 390
    120 HOME RUNS 92
    .469 SLUGGING PERCENTAGE .417
    .356 ON-BASE PERCENTAGE .334
    4.63 TEAM ERA 5.42
    13-17 (76.5%) SAVE OPPS. 19-34 (55.9%)
    That last number is most surprising. Yankees not very good at saving games against the Sox. I guess I always knew that — Mariano’s struggles against Boston in recent years are well-documented, but I didn’t think it was that bad.
    The way the record doesn’t match the domination of the stats, I’d guess this means the Sox tend to win by blowout and the Yanks win the close ones. Judging by how the teams were set up before this year, I’d say that makes sense.

    Paul SF June 5, 2006, 4:36 pm
  • Those figures courtesy the Globe’s Sox blog this afternoon, btw.

    Paul SF June 5, 2006, 4:43 pm
  • Earlier this year, Sox won 14-3 (incidentally, Beckett’s previous start against NYY); last year there were a pair of 17-1 debacles. So those would definitely pad the stats….

    yankeemonkey June 5, 2006, 4:45 pm

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