Thursday, September 01, 2005

4 In A Row

These wins have been fairly impressive, no doubt about that. However, a pattern is starting to develop. We fall behind early and then battle back to win. The last two games we were down big by the second and third innings, respectively. Our pitchers then woke up and took care of business, and the offense continued with its usual onslaught.

I still contend that there are no teams with the starting pitching to hold this offense down. Except one that seems to be emerging, that is....the NY Yankees. Chacon has seemed to solidify a very shaky rotation. Out of all the teams that look playoff bound, this is the one team that I don't want to face.

With that said, if the last series of the season rolls around and we've already won the division (say we're 4 up with those last 3 to play), and the Wild Card is still up for grabs, and you were the Sox, would you play the minor leaguers just to get them experience (and rest your players), or would you play to win those games? If it meant the difference of facing, say, the Indians over the Yankees, I'd take the Indians...

Back to the 4 in a row...Millar seems to be coming around. Hopefully, with all the home games, this continues and he gets his confidence back. He could be a big part of the puzzle come post season.

Tampa Bay is a team that was playing very well. We've cleaned up so far. One more tonight and then on to a struggling Baltimore (at Fenway).

This is when I look at the schedule, and our past posts, and wonder how we thought this month was a walk! We have one against Chicago (although, now struggling..we've almost caught them for best record...), 3 against Anaheim, 3 against NY (in the Bronx), 3 in Toronto, 4 against Oakland (Fenway)...The rest of the season then lets up a little with 3 in Tampa, 3 in Baltimore, 4 against Toronto (probably with them letting AAA guys get their feet wet) in Fenway, and finally the 3 against the Yankees. That is a pretty hairy run we have over the next 17 days...By the way, the Sox don't have a day off until the 22nd!

Anyway, in my opinion, we'll know how this thing is going to play out at the end of the Oakland series...

4 in a row, and counting???


  1. I still contend that there are no teams with the starting pitching to hold this offense down.

    To borrow from President Bush, "You forgot Oakland!"

    Zito/Harden/Haren/Saarloos/Blanton is an absolutely terrifying rotation in my mind. Never mind the fact that the A's are 2-4 against Boston; that was in May, when they were a different team, in free-fall (losing 17 out of 20 games, with two of those wins against Boston). Even then, the Sox never scored more than 4 ER off their SP (usually only getting 1-2 ER).

    Their starters lead the AL in ERA (3.67), OPSA (.679), BAA (.237), and WHIP (1.21). Those are all sick numbers. Especially the OPSA. The average Oakland A starting pitcher makes the average major league batter look like...Mark Bellhorn. Worse, actually.

  2. If you look at Haren's numbers against good teams...
    Opposing Batting Average
    TEX-.265 but a 6.75 ERA (20+ innings)
    not very impressive
    His wins have come against Bal, KC, Seattle (2), Texas (2, but not great numbers), Tampa, SF, Atl, and Toronto...

    Saarloos (sp?) is pretty good, but not a strikeout pitcher. His ERA is up in the second half, and a lot of his numbers also come from lower echelon teams.

    Harden is a stud...can't argue that.

    Zito does not scare me with this lineup.

    They do have an excellent pitching staff. It is impossible to argue that. They also have had excellent pitching staffs in the past with Hudson, Mulder, and Zito leading the charge. Those three intimidated me more, and I think our lineup is better now...

  3. Also, the A's offense is not exactly prolific. We might not score 8 or 10 runs against them, but I can't see them doing the same to us, either.

  4. "Also, the A's offense is not exactly prolific. We might not score 8 or 10 runs against them, but I can't see them doing the same to us, either."

    Again, wrong. They are fourth in the AL in runs scored - second since the ASB all while playing in the most sever pitchers park in the AL. And sure there is a sizable gap between us and them - about a run per game - it is more than made up for by their ERA which is 1.3 lower than ours.

    And, we have played them 6 times this year and they scored - 36 runs. Granted that is skewed a bit by one 13 run loss, but they put up 5 or more runs in 5 of the 6 games. And that was before they had Payton and Crosby was hurt (although he is hurt now), and Chavez was waaaaay underperforming (he was hitting about .200 at the time).

    I wouldn't be so quick to write them off. Or at least do the full research.

  5. I wasn't just making stuff up, X. Thanks for the insult, though. Always nice to chat and have stuff like "Do the research" thrown at you. I put a lot of numbers in my post. The one you take a shot at is an opinion.

    I don't think they have a prolific offense. So what? We've scored 115 more runs than them...and we are now in a stretch where we play a ton of home games where that gap will more than likely widen. And while they scored those runs against us, we scored more and we won 4 of 6. I believe I also said that they won't be scoring 8-10 runs off of us either...Comment on the whole post.

    I think that we match up well. I never wrote them off. I said they don't scare me. I put up some numbers about their pitching staff. You can go ahead and double check those if you like.

  6. You know what? I apologize for the aggressive tone in my last post. I just hate it when stuff like "Do the research" is thrown in to a post...It is a worthless shot at someone and I tend to take offense at stuff like that.

    Throw the numbers up there. I'll debate them, but I will no longer get involved in quips. If I knew how to edit previous posts I would withdraw the following: "Comment on the whole post" and "you can go ahead and double check those if you like"...

    When you read my previous comment try to disregard those...Those were just out of frustration.

    I don't just post stuff to post stuff. I put thought in to the things that I write and I do look up the numbers. If our opinions don't match, that's cool, let's just keep the shots out of it...

  7. It wasn't an insult. Not even close.

    what I really meant was you had done some research which I didn't refute but then made a statement (which okay was an opinio) but didn't check to see if it was accurate. That's all. sorry if it offended.

    And sure we have scored 115 more runs than them, but our pitching has given up almost 180 more runs.

    OAK doesn't scare a lot of people. Never have. But they always find a way to play meaningful games in Sept and Oct. Hey they haven't made it out of the first round in 15 years, but then again the Sox hadn't won a WS, ah well we all know that story.

    Really at the end of the day, we all agree no team is a lock/top favorite, but I also think it is foolish to write anyone off. at this point, I 'm not even going to try to bother analyzing schedules, matchups, etc on a day to day basis. I'm going to sit back ad enjoy the ride. I'll be in OAK this weekend cheering my ass of for the A's.

    I would love to see a crazy 3or 4 way tie for the WC in one of the leagues. (Preferably with the Sox sitting home awaiting the winner)...

    Again, no insult was intended.

  8. Messages crossed. No biggy.