As The World Turns Backward: Sox-Rangers Gamer III

Not how we expected, is it? The Boston Red Sox are the best team in the American League, thanks almost exclusively to its dominant offense. Seven of nine starters feature OPS+ over 100 — led by the red hot Manny Ramirez, the equally scathing Kevin Youkilis, and the merely hot J.D. Drew and Dustin Pedroia.

The arms? Not so much. Josh Beckett is returning to normal, Jon Lester is trying to figure out the strike zone, Clay Buchholz has an ERA over 6 and Daisuke Matsuzaka isn’t giving up many runs, but he’s also not going many innings. That leaves today’s starter, Tim Wakefield, another pitcher who has yet to go seven innings this season but hasn’t given up many runs in the innings he has pitched.

He’s going against Kevin Millwood, who has been very good so far, though he has the misfortune of playing for an awful Rangers team (as we’ve seen the last two games).

So, here are the 2008 Red Sox so far: Second in the league in runs per game and third from the bottom in runs allowed. The bullpen could use a break; let’s see if Wake can’t turn in one of his patented eight-inning knuckleball beauties.

Comment away!

Boston Red Sox

1. Jacoby Ellsbury, CF .231/.415/.385 114 OPS+
2. Jed Lowrie, 2B .429/.375/.571 148 OPS+
3. David Ortiz, DH .141/.247/.225 27 OPS+
4. Manny Ramirez, LF .342/.415/.712 194 OPS+
5. Kevin Youkilis, 3B .357/.413/.557 156 OPS+
6. J.D. Drew, RF .321/.403/.528 146 OPS+
7. Sean Casey, 1B .333/.409/.436 125 OPS+
8. Kevin Cash, C .200/.200/.300 31 OPS+
9. Julio Lugo, SS .274/.308/.306 64 OPS+
P. Tim Wakefield 3.18/1.65/.239 140 ERA+

Texas Rangers

1. Ian Kinsler, 2B .288/.357/.370 99 OPS+
2. Michael Young, SS .233/.305/.356 80 OPS+
3. Josh Hamilton, CF .301/.365/.562 149 OPS+
4. Milton Bradley, DH .345/.448/.473 151 OPS+
5. Hank Blalock, 3B .339/.414/.532 156 OPS+
6. Frank Catalanotto, LF .244/.320/.422 101 OPS+
7. David Murphy, RF .288/.351/.455 118 OPS+
8. Gerald Laird, C .218/.295/.345 74 OPS+
9. Ben Broussard, 1B .191/.269/.383 76 OPS+
P. Kevin Millwood 2.42/1.46/.264 175 ERA+
132 comments… add one
  • My local Little League scheduler appears to hate me. I’ve had to coach a game or practice at exactly the same time as the Sox game for the last 4 days. I plan on making the entire family take a 4 hour vow of silence today so I can at least listen to one game.

    rootbeerfloat April 20, 2008, 1:15 pm
  • I hear ya, RBF. News has conspired to take me away from the Sox for the last two weeks. The wife has agreed to give me uninterrupted Sox listening time today…

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 1:19 pm
  • Tim Wakefield uses Just For Men… Hmm. More info than I ever needed…

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 1:30 pm
  • Well thats not how I wanted this day to go.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 1:36 pm
  • Wow, that sucks. Wake gets ahead of Kinsler 0-2, then gives up a homer…

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 1:36 pm
  • Now Young is on. *prepares to vomit*

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 1:37 pm
  • can you really have an OBP lower then a batting average?????

    TJ April 20, 2008, 1:37 pm
  • No you can’t TJ. Thats impossible.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 1:38 pm
  • Double play. Nice…

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 1:38 pm
  • Nice double play!

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 1:39 pm
  • Despite the leadoff homer a quick inning for Wakes. It’d be nice if he went 6+

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 1:40 pm
  • Shitty at bat by Ellsbury. Should have taken a few more pitches.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 1:43 pm
  • Not impossible, actually.
    Sacrifice flies count against on-base percentage and not against batting average. So if you have more sac flies than walks, your OBP will be lower than your BA.
    Cristian Guzman’s OBP was lower than his BA from April 7-12 because he had one sac fly and zero walks. Once he walked April 13, his line reverted to normal..

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 1:45 pm
  • Paul SF April 20, 2008, 1:46 pm
  • That was a tough pitch. Still, good ab by Lowrie

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 1:46 pm
  • The Rangers have a 1-0 lead on 2 hits to the Sox 0.. and Wake still threw fewer pitches. Ah, the knuckler

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 1:51 pm
  • four hits now. I dont think the knuckler is knuckling as much as it should

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 1:52 pm
  • 2-0 Rangers, 2 down.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 1:54 pm
  • K.
    Lets get some runs back boys.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 1:56 pm
  • Manny ejected in his first at bat. This game sucks… First game I get to actually follow from beginning to end, and the Sox are going to be terrible. Fan freaking tastic.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 1:59 pm
  • damn it manny just make em pay next ab dont argue UGH!

    TJ April 20, 2008, 1:59 pm
  • Oh Manny. You idiot.
    Who bats fo rhim NOW?

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 2:00 pm
  • The Umps zone HAS been a little large,but Manny should have just went back to the dugout. We NEED his bat

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 2:01 pm
  • likely Thurston unless Crisp is totally ready

    TJ April 20, 2008, 2:02 pm
  • What about moving Youk to left, Lowrie to third and putting Pedroia in at second? That would make Pedroia the cleanup hitter, a better choice than either Crisp or Thurston…

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:05 pm
  • Oh Manny was EJECTED? Thank GOD!
    I went to the bathroom and came back and Remy and DO were talking about who would replace Manny in left field, and I thought he went down with an injury or something. I know it sucks that he was ejected, but it ain’t bad compared to what I thought was up.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 2:05 pm
  • they could do that and then try again to give Pedroia a day off tomorrow.

    TJ April 20, 2008, 2:06 pm
  • So it is Thurston. That sucks… Maybe he’ll surprise us and be a hero. That’d be a cool story.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:11 pm
  • Jacoby’s lady-friend is pretty hot! Not as hot as the supermodel Buchholz is dating, but not too shabby either.
    Since Manny has been on fire so far this year I suppose it’s okay for him to get ejected. We’ll give him a pass here.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 2:11 pm
  • Well, and the ump didn’t exactly make much effort to walk away or let Manny vent. It was almost immediate, which raises my eyebrows… Either Manny said something outrageous right away (doesn’t seem likely), or the ump is a bit sensitive.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:17 pm
  • Ellsbury is turning into a walks machine. Great to see.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:19 pm
  • Now the SB/E-2 puts Ellsbury on third. I’ve never seen speed change a game for the Red Sox like Ellsbury’s has.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:20 pm
  • No dice. Lowrie flares out, Ortiz grounds out. Gotta bring those runs home when they’re willing to give em to you.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:23 pm
  • Yeah, I thought for sure one of them would bring Ellsbury in. Too bad.
    Great to see him drawing walks though. We’ll need that to get his speed on base.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 2:29 pm
  • Wake’s settled down nicely. Sox bats need to do something with the runners they’re getting on base…

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:30 pm
  • If Wake keeps this up hes gonna get a complete game and give the pen a nice rest.

    TJ April 20, 2008, 2:39 pm
  • The good news is that we’re making Millwood work hard. He probably won’t last through 6, and the bullpen will come in and give up the game.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 2:44 pm
  • DOUBLE STEAL!

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 2:45 pm
  • Ooooh, double steal! 2nd/3rd, 1 out. Bring them home!

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:45 pm
  • Woooooooooo Ellsbury single! Now would be a fantastic time for a big hit.
    NICE Lugo and Ellsbury do the double steal! Great break by Lugo, Ellsbury followed him a split second later. Great heads-up play by both of them.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 2:46 pm
  • This strike zone is huge. That was a god damn ball

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 2:46 pm
  • Argh, bad time for a strikeout from Lowrie, a guy who doesn’t strike out much. Now we need the hit. Radio guys say the pitch was not a strike.
    Now the Manny ejection really hurts. Ortiz IBBed for Thurston…

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:47 pm
  • First base open with two outs. SIGH, we’ll probably see Papi walked here.
    Youk had better make them pay!

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 2:47 pm
  • Pinch hit Pedroia. Pleeeaaase.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:48 pm
  • Not Youk. Thurston, Atheose. So yeah. Squander.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 2:48 pm
  • And there we go. Huge squander.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:49 pm
  • First pitch god damn swinging. *glares at Manny on the bench*

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 2:49 pm
  • Errr, meant THurston. Sadly he grounds out, Millwood out of trouble.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 2:49 pm
  • Kevin Millwood needs to buy the ump a beer after this game…

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:49 pm
  • Absolutely, Paul. That was NOT a strike to Lowrie.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 2:51 pm
  • It does seem like the Sox have come closer and closer to scoring each inning. Maybe the sixth is when it all comes together…

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:52 pm
  • Well, now it doesn’t matter so much. Damn.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:54 pm
  • Fucking Bradley

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 2:55 pm
  • The knuckler ain’t knucklin. 5-0 Rangers.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 2:55 pm
  • Meh. Can’t win ’em all. At least the pen gets a rest.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 2:57 pm
  • Can’t win em all, but I’d rather they win the ones I actually have time to freaking see…
    *sigh*

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 2:59 pm
  • Other good point: Youk is a hitting machine

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 3:01 pm
  • Youk 3 for 3 today. Too bad he’s always batting with no one on.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 3:01 pm
  • Casey gets a single, but with Cash up…

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 3:06 pm
  • The hole left by Manny is huge. You’ve got Ellsbury and Lowrie, with no need to pitch to Ortiz because there’s a gigantic hole there. Then you’ve got Youk and Casey hitting, but Cash is an automatic out. Rough to drive anyone home when the holes are perfectly placed like that.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 3:08 pm
  • Oh snap, bases loaded now for Ellsbury.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 3:10 pm
  • And Ellsbury pops up on the first pitch. Goddamnit.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 3:11 pm
  • Hey, that’s one way to not get an out. Youk up with two on.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 3:25 pm
  • And Youk picks the absolute worst time to GIDP. What a terrible game.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 3:26 pm
  • Drew comes through. Three-run game…

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 3:28 pm
  • Well, making progress. But now we’re really going to miss Manny in the last few innings.

    rootbeerfloat April 20, 2008, 3:31 pm
  • 5-2 now, thanks to a Drew single. I’m really liking his poise at the plate this year. He’s not forcing anything.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 3:32 pm
  • If Youk even just strikes out, we have runners probably on second and third with the same score and just one out after Drew’s single. Ah well…

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 3:36 pm
  • Wakefield going the distance, almost 8 IP with zero walks. Granted he’s given up two homeruns, but it’s still nice to see a starter go deep.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 3:37 pm
  • Agreed Atheose. In the long run, a deep game by Wake, even a loss, will be more benificial to this team than a win where he only went 5 or so. Way too many innigns have been put on this Pen of late.
    Manny and Dustin in the lineup tommorrow, so a better chance.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 3:41 pm
  • Ellsbury scores from first on Lowrie’s double. Papi up as the tying run!
    Ohhh how it would be nice to not have Joe Thurston batting behind Ortiz…

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 3:47 pm
  • i love these kids….. Pedroia, Ellsbury, Lowrie LOTS OF FUN!

    TJ April 20, 2008, 3:48 pm
  • Lowrie! 5-3 now for Ortiz. Rangers closer coming in. REALLY missing Manny’s bat right now.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 3:48 pm
  • Pedroia has had a logn enough day off. PH him for Thurston!

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 3:49 pm
  • depends if theres runners on TYek prolly hits if its bases empty prolly Pedroia

    TJ April 20, 2008, 3:51 pm
  • Ortiz beats out the hit! 5-4!

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 3:53 pm
  • PAPI!

    TJ April 20, 2008, 3:53 pm
  • ORTIZ BEATS OUT THE THROW! A run scores from 2nd! Way to hustle Ortiz!
    Great call by the ump, Ortiz beat him by a step.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 3:54 pm
  • Wow.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 3:54 pm
  • PEDROIA TIES IT!!!!!!!!

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 3:56 pm
  • dPOD!

    TJ April 20, 2008, 3:56 pm
  • MAN I LOVE THIS TEAM! NO QUIT IN THEM!!!!!

    TJ April 20, 2008, 3:56 pm
  • OH MY GOD!!!!

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 3:56 pm
  • PEDROIA!

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 3:57 pm
  • Drew up with the go-ahead at third…

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 3:58 pm
  • WHo do we brign in to pitch in the 9th if it stays tied?

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 3:58 pm
  • If Drew gets a hit here, Wakefield would be in line for the win. Wild game, this baseball…

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 3:58 pm
  • Ah, OKi.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 3:59 pm
  • Okajima is warming, as is Papelbon. So I assume Okajima if it’s tied, Paps if they’re ahead.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 3:59 pm
  • I love this team, and I love the Rangers relief corps.

    Jackie (SF) April 20, 2008, 4:01 pm
  • Casey up with the bases loaded. What a game!

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 4:02 pm
  • Casey. Please.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 4:02 pm
  • 1-0.
    1-1.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 4:03 pm
  • Foul. 1-2.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 4:03 pm
  • foul on a checked swing. high pitch. 1-2 it remains.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 4:04 pm
  • Ball. 2-2

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 4:05 pm
  • Whoa. 3-2

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 4:05 pm
  • RBI WALK!!!!!!!

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 4:06 pm
  • Sox Lead

    TJ April 20, 2008, 4:06 pm
  • WALK! CASEY! SOX LEAD!

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 4:06 pm
  • CLUTCH WALKS! HUGE INNING!

    Devine April 20, 2008, 4:07 pm
  • CASEY gets the go-ahead RBI walk! I’m really loving this come-from-behind-every-single-night team.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 4:07 pm
  • I LOVE THIS TEAM. I LOVE THIS TEAM SO MUCH.

    Micah-SF April 20, 2008, 4:07 pm
  • Surprised they didn’t pinch-hit Tek for Cash there, as he’s the easy out… Still, the lead! And Papelbon coming out (presumably)!

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 4:09 pm
  • I dont understand why they didnt PH Tek to stretch the lead there, but here we go the the nitnh. Papelbon time.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 4:09 pm
  • By the way Paul, just noticed that the thread states that Lowrie’s BA is .429, but his OBP is only .375.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 4:09 pm
  • Wakefield 86 pitches 68 strikes 0 walks… aside from those two homers one hell of a game for him and resting the bullpen.

    TJ April 20, 2008, 4:11 pm
  • Lugo in LF ^o)

    TJ April 20, 2008, 4:12 pm
  • That’s accurate, Ath. Entering the game, he had one sac fly but no walks. As I mentioned earlier, sac flies count as a plate appearance but not as an at-bat, so your OBP is negatively affected by sac flies, while BA is not, so if you’ve got more sac flies than walks, your BA will actually be higher than your OBP.

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 4:13 pm
  • HEHE, Lugo in left field. Tough to make errors there.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 4:13 pm
  • Another amazing night for the former PawSox batters
    Youk 3-4 with a walk.
    Ellsbury 2-4 1 BB 2 SB
    Lowrie 2-5 with an RBI
    Pedroia 1-1 with a clutch hit.
    Lugo in Left? I dont liek this at all.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 4:13 pm
  • we discussed that the 0 walks and a sac fly = lower OBP

    TJ April 20, 2008, 4:13 pm
  • One.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 4:13 pm
  • Two!

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 4:14 pm
  • Ahhh, gotcha Paul. Sorry for making you repeat yourself!

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 4:15 pm
  • Red Sox Win!!!!! I can’t believe it!!!

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 4:15 pm
  • THREE!!!!! BALL GAME!!
    W A T E R!!

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 4:15 pm
  • Game over! Sox win!

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 4:15 pm
  • Sox win! awesome

    TJ April 20, 2008, 4:16 pm
  • No problem, Ath. I hadn’t even noticed that when I was typing it in…
    Great win! What a great fantastic awesome win! :-D

    Paul SF April 20, 2008, 4:16 pm
  • DIRTY WATER! I cannot believe we won this game!
    I’d like Paps to get a couple days off though, he’s gotten hit fairly hard his last few appearances even if he hasn’t blown anything.

    Micah-SF April 20, 2008, 4:16 pm
  • Yay!

    Brad April 20, 2008, 4:16 pm
  • Wow, Papelbon has 7 saves so far. He’s on track for 56 over the year if he keeps this up.

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 4:17 pm
  • The late-inning comebacks are out of control. Our winning percentage is .650. It’s been soooooo cool!

    Devine April 20, 2008, 4:18 pm
  • This whole team needs a night off Micah. April has been a beast which makes our 13-7 record so far truly impressive.

    Dionysus April 20, 2008, 4:19 pm
  • What a game, the 2 doubles by Lowrie were beautiful, he’s got a pretty swing and also showed some opposite field power. I really don’t care if he’s jeter-esque in the field seems like he has the bat.

    Bob April 20, 2008, 4:19 pm
  • Besides it’s not like Lugo is the second coming of Ozzie Smith.

    Bob April 20, 2008, 4:20 pm
  • So yeah… how many years does Lugo have left on his contract?

    Atheose April 20, 2008, 4:48 pm
  • This team is really starting to show some fire. Gotta love the contributions by the supporting cast of young players (Lowrie) and vets (Casey).
    If Papi continues on the road back to where he should be, Manny keeps raking, Youks maintains his usual high OBP, and Drew and Tek keep hitting well above their last year’s averages, this lineup is fearsome with its speed, power and depth.

    Anonymous April 20, 2008, 5:32 pm
  • This team is really starting to show some fire. Gotta love the contributions by the supporting cast of young players (Lowrie) and vets (Casey).
    If Papi continues on the road back to where he should be, Manny keeps raking, Youks maintains his usual high OBP, and Drew and Tek keep hitting well above their last year’s averages, this lineup is fearsome with its speed, power and depth.

    Hudson April 20, 2008, 5:39 pm
  • Believe it or not, I think the Ranger bullpen must be missing Eric Gagne something awful now.

    SoxFan April 20, 2008, 10:08 pm
  • Sox & Dawgs is speculating David Pauley was kept out of his scheduled start at Pawtucket today because Clay Buchholz has the flu and may not be able to pitch in the morning.

    TJ April 21, 2008, 12:26 am

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