Monday, July 11, 2005

i Por la Revancha !

That game sucked. So did that series. So did the last 2 weeks. Back on June 26, Sox had won 12 of their last 13. RSN was ecstatic, the CHB stupidly declared the AL East race over, and I wrote (somewhat more cautiously) "if the Sox go just 7-6 they'll hit the ASB 15 games above .500, 5 better than at the same point in 2004." Well, they went 5-8 instead. All 12 games were against good teams, but 6 of those games (and 4 of the losses) were at home. They're now 11 games above .500, basically the same as they were at this point last year. This year the weaknesses are more glaring, as opposed to last year's feeling that the team "just wasn't playing like they should." So I guess that's good.

Meanwhile, Rodrigo Lopez, the ex-Tomatero, continues his ownership of the Red Sox, with an ERA of 3.5 (though that's massively inflated by a single shelling, 8ER in 3.1IP). Only this time he did it at home - he typically dominates when he pitches in Fenway, oddly. Anyone know what about his pitching makes him so effective against the Sox (while so average against most everyone else)?


  1. Yes, not a very promising lead into the second half. And the schedule for the next month does not look promising - at least in terms of putting together a hot streak. 3 games versus good teams, 3 versus bad. repeats for about a month.

    Oh well, lets enjoy the break and hope thye get hot like last year.

    And at the risk of souding like a broken record/grumpy old man - has just reached a new low. Gammons' latest article is an insider, which is, I think, a first.

  2. One difference between this year and last...We are in first place right now.

    If you had told me before this season started that without Pedro and Schilling we would have the same record as last year and be up by 2 games at the break I would never have believed you.

    I would still say that I don't think that this team is playing up to its potential.

    We have had problems in our pen, but it looks like Foulke and Mantei were hiding injuries. And Theo will fix that.

    As for Lopez, I think his ability to spot the high fastball gives Sox hitters fits. The thing is, if you miss with those pitches, they are homers. He doesn't miss...

    With that said, if you look at the matchups in the upcoming series against the Yankees, we have the advantage.

    I also am now on the (or starting the) trade Johnny Damon "bandwagon". This guy is now a loudmouth dope who cares about nothing but his contract. He made a bunch of statements about Kotsay's contract extension and how it is "one more center fielder off the FA market." We could get a top of the heap starter for him...Hell, trade him for Pedro...hahahahaa

    I don't know who would take him. He is going to hit the FA market this off-season no matter what. Maybe send him to Houston...They might be crazy enough to take him.

    I hate this guy now...I like what he brings to the leadoff spot for the Sox, but he is the source of a lot of this descension...I know they have no one with which to replace him. Hell, can they get Payton back?

    You know who might be available??? Ben Grieve!!!

  3. I agree that I would not have expected the team to be where they are. That being said I would also say that for the O's, Yankees, and the BJ's for that matter. It's an odd year in the East.

    Anyway, as for Damon, according to the Fox interview this weekend, Tito seemed to brush it aside. Apparently, reporters were reading into it a bit.

    Finally, I know we missed an opportunity to pick up a bit of a lead here, but I think all things considered we are still within striking distance of winning the division. If we were 2 games back, that's what we'd all be saying anyway.

    My big concern is that Yankee series right after the break. We really need to bring the "A" game.

  4. Wow, trade Johnny Damon. I completely disagree with that. The guys is in the top 5 in the league in runs scored and its not just because Manny and Ortiz are hitting behind him. He is in the top 10 in OBP and is a very good baserunner. He really has jump started the offense. With him gone, who bats leadoff? Who plays CF now that Payton is gone. Plus you say we could get a "top of the heap starter for him." There are zero top of the heap starters available.

    And any team that had one to deal would presumably be out of the playoffs and wanting top, top prospects, like TB gettin Kazmir last year. They certainly wouldn't want a free agent to be CF.

    The only names I've heard as availalble starters are Schmidt (debatable as front line, this year anyway) and the Giants are done, Burnett - FLA has Juan Pierre, Clemens (not likely), why would Houston want him? And if not for Clemens, why who would Houston send to us.

    Of course you realize that in the next sentance when you say you're not sure who would take him. The Yanks would love him, but don't see Theo and Brian getting together on that one.

    Sure its frustrating to hear a player bitch about his contract, but don't let that get in the way of appreciating his talent. Sidebar - great comment from Terry on whether he thought there would be any problems w/ any of the players getting back for Thursday - "that problem signed with another team." Classic.

    Plus, I dont think he was really sounding off about his contract, it seemed more an observation.

    This was the quote from the globe:

    ''It knocks off one more free agent center fielder," Damon said of the Kotsay signing. ''A lot of teams need one. We'll definitely keep our eyes open when the season ends."

    And there was no quote in the Herald that I could find, so unless I'm missing something....

    Loudmouth, yes. Caring only about his contract, no. If that were the case, what would he care if Schilling was to pitch as a starter, a reliever, a closer, or RNC spokesman?

    So, I say let him bitch (if he indeed has). Keep putting up numbers, playing damn good defense and thinking about next year. It worked with Pedro, Lowe and Varitek last year. Its not like he is sulking and sitting in big games like Nomar. I think the media just took the quotes and ran with them on a slow media day.

    And I'm not really sure he is a source of "descension." we'll see if stories come out tomorrow about players wanting Johnny to shut up and play, but I doubt it.

    Oveall though, agree that all things considered 2 games up is not bad. A lot of BB left to be played. If this team gets healthy and a couple of extra parts, they should be able to make a serious run at it. Lets hope so.

  5. Well, I agree with X about him being way too valuable to move, but his off-field moaning is just too much. The Herald did have this nice tidbit: when asked by SI whether he'd follow Steinbrenner's grooming rules if he signs with the Yanks, Damon responded "Absolutely, I'd definitely abide by his rules." I mean, come on -- how hard is it to laugh and say something like, "I'm not even thinking about stuff like that now". Why insult the fans like that? He's really being an egocentric jerk. And that egocentric jerk will probably be a Yankee next year.

  6. Okay, I did not see that and agree, he should say "we'll worry about that when the time comes." But then again, he is an idiot. Pretty stupid on his behalf to talk about it like that. I just hate judge a player on what I read in a paper/magazine, because you never really know the context - the reporter could have said "what if the Red sox refuse to meet your price and Steinbrenner offers you 5 years $20 Million per year. Would you abide by his rules?"

    Not to defend him to much, however.

  7. Just to clarify, I just don't like the guy. I know that it would be next to impossible to trade the guy, and that it is probably the last thing on Theo's mind right now.

    I didn't just read the quotes, they played the full interview on NESN. The guy went from an idiot to a know it all...