Re: 10 Simple Moves Required to Make Play-Offs.
posted at 8/9/2012 11:18 AM EDT
1. Beckett doesn't pitch in a major league game again until next April.He has stunk so consistently and so brutally all year. No more chances. Demagnetize his parking pass at Fenway if you have to.
If you are going to bench Josh for being inconsistent, then bench all our starting 5:
Quality start %
(League Avg 50%)
Cook 56% in 9 GS'd
Morales 50% in 6 GS'd
Dice-K 20% in 5 GS'd
2. Pull Jon Leaster once he has given up 3 runs, no matter what the inning. Put him on a very short leash. He has improved a bit.
He has looked better, but is clearly not the Lester of 2008 to near the end of 2011. If we replace Beckett with Morales, I guess Mortensen becomes the longman or 7th starter.
We have heard people complian about this team all year. But if Beckett and Lester would have been replaced by two .500 pitchers, the Sox wouldn't have the problmes they have had. The offense scores enough runs. The only reason the bullpen has had any problmes is that they're over-worked because of Beckett and Lester.
Our bullpen has not had problems, except for blown saves. Aceves has not been "over-worked" with too many save situations. Our real closer has been on the DL all year. Our 2011 star closer bolted. Our best set-up man, Bard, was made a starter. Our best long man, Aceves, was turned into our closer. Bullpen numbers:
inn WHIP ERA OPS against
2012 345 1.212 3.39 .679 (4th best WHIP in the AL)
2011 517 1.200 3.67 .662
3. Make Morales a starter.
Agree, but for Cook (1-2 7.47 his last 3 starts) not Beckett.
4. Let Valentine select his own coaching staff. Clean house if you have to, just let him select who he wants. A coaching staff that is not united will fail and the team won't respect them.
I don't see our coaches losing games, especially at 3B.
5. Drop Salty in the batting order. Give him less chances to strike out in a game.
Once Papi returns, and with CC up 2nd, your wish will come true.
6. Play Shoppach more. Salty is tired. Maybe he's been busy getting tattos or something, but he is tired.
Once Papi returns, Shoppach will be dealt on a waiver deal and Lava will start vs LHPs and maybe a few righties.
7. New consistent Batting Order once Ortiz returns:
Ellsbury; Crawford; Pedroia; Ortiz; Gonzo; Middlebrooks; Ross; Catcher of the day; Aviles/Pedro.
Keep Crawford at # 2. He performs there. Alternating Lefty-Righty is overrated. Valentine has had som many batting orders and the team is out of sync because of it. It really doesnt matter who bats 3 or 4, technically. After the first inning, anyone could be the clean-up hitter. So use this order and establish a flow.
Let's hope CC's freakish success vs LHPs in the tiny 2012 sample size continues.
8. If Ryan Sweeney's right hand heals, get him to punch another concrete wall with it. Having a 6'4" 200lb outfielder who can't hit a home run is a waste of oxygen on the bench that could be going to other players.
He's our best defensive OF'er and would be a nice 4/5 OF'er next year, and he gets on base vs RHPs pretty well.
9. Don't bring Wake back. Then we'd only have another starter that puts us in a 4-0 hole after 1 inning.
Are you softy in disguise?
10. Hate the enemy. I have seen enough flirting between Sox players with members of other teams. Ortiz and Cano are all but lovers and so are Pedroia and Jeter. Create some bad blood. Hit a few more batters. Gonzo is too nice. He needs to get fired up. And on the topic of Gonzo, where has the power gone. It is great to have those hits and those doubles and RBIs, but where oh where are the HRs?
He gifted them to his friends on other teams.
11. Bonus suggestion that is too late to follow: a deal should have been made long before the deadline to show we were serious. Ditch Beckett or Lester. They suck (see problems 1 and 2). Ship them out in a package deal for someone like Reddick or Lowrie. WHy can't we get guys like them?
Not gonna happen.