A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from Boomerangsdotcom. Show Boomerangsdotcom's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    They Yankees do have some pitching problems but help might not be far away in Colon and that Left handed prospect they still have down on the farm.

    I think the Sox can still win 95 but they have got to turn things around right now. They are not facing Sabathia this series right. That should help a lot.
     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from law2009a. Show law2009a's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    m
     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from Boomerangsdotcom. Show Boomerangsdotcom's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    Tito is changing his lineup constantly. I don't think the problem is the lineup and I still think Ellsbury is going to have a great year.

    It is great to see Pedroia cranking it up at least and Adrian looks for real. Lackey just can't hit his spots at all. I'm not seeing a lights out staff here but if Lester and Buchholz do well and Matsuzaka/Lackey/Beckett can be above average we can still get in the playoffs. I don't see any of those last 3 becoming dominant any time soon though. It's really tough to develop a great team by signing aging pitchers.

    I've been on this beat for a while now but Gonzalez is a great situational hitter. He can hit and run, knock the ball through the SS hole if someone is stealing ...etc. He even bunted for a hit today. I really think he benefits when men like Crawford and Ellsbury are on base in front of him. Hitting him 3rd after Pedroia gets the most out of him right now IMO.
     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from moonslav59. Show moonslav59's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    It's too early to make judgements, but it is nice to see AGon start out quickly after his injury.

    I'm expecting an extension press conference any day now.
     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from tom-uk. Show tom-uk's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    I don't see the EE or the Sox winning 93 this year.  That could change if the EE gets a solid starter via trade, they do have loads of chips to trade.

    I think Balt and Toronto will a few more than they have, but TB might not.

    Hughes only hit 91 twice today both were way outside I think.  He has lost 4 mph that he could not afford to lose, unlike Bard for example.  If he doesn't regain the mph he might not even be a 5th starter.

    I think the best you can hope for from Lackey is maybe a decent half season and a tick over 6 innings per.

    There is no reason to be confident in Lackey, Beckett, Dice, Garcia, Burnett, Nova, and now Hughes. I don't see how these guys lead either  team to the mid 90s in wins.
     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from harness. Show harness's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    No, it was Theo. Many of the players commented how passionate it was. They said they never heard Theo talk like that before.

    Wasn't that Tito's job?
     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from BaseballGM. Show BaseballGM's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    The O's are not for real. They have improved and will win more games than the old doormat teams, but they are not for real. They are not contenders, they are an improved team that is a 2011 pretender.

    There has always been only one place to put Crawford. Despite his continued early struggles, the lineup was set properly with Pedroia in the 2, Agon in the 3 and Youk and Ortiz behind. Ellsbury's only proper place is at the bottom to turn the lineup over better. Cameron in CF, hitting 8th, is the best overall lineup, but that isn't going to happen. Ellsbury at 8 and Scutaro at 9 is reversed from what it should be, but it's close enough as the rest of the lineup is finally what I Knew management would learn the hard way.

    Ellsbury should have been told he will hit 9th, back in the spring, and Crawford should have been told he will leadoff and needs to worry about nothing else but getting on base. The #3 move was a disaster, as he's trying to drive the ball instead of slapping it the other way and getting on base. If he's told to relax and just focus on getting on base from the leadoff spot, he will be the most efficient he can be. I suspect they still haven't written off the notion of moving him back to 3, which is nothing short of incompetent with the other players on this team. With Pedroia, the team only needs one base stealer and the top of the lineup to get on base, and Pedroia being able to hit balls out of the zone and execute the run and hit is the proper lineup. Ellsbury getting on base from the bottom makes the lineup turn over better, but Cameron should be used more in CF because he is a much better defender and the games almost always end up in the pen if a righty starts. Ellsbury could then be plugged in from the bench as pinch runner or hitter, for either Drew or Cameron. Crawford should be the only 140 to 150 game guy. Ellsbury, Cameron and Drew should divide the other 2 spots time, as Cameron's RH bat is needed more often to balance out the lineup. The mistake being made is thinking that Ellsbury and Crawford was some kind of an advantage in competition. It isn't. They do not compliment this lineup in the AL East. I don't see Ellsbury every sitting for Cameron, but at least putting Ellsbury at the bottom of the lineup is a drastic improvement in use of the roster.

    The Red Sox should near the summer trade deadline shop Ellsbury and Lackey to the NL to get out from under Lackey's contract and net back a really good young RH OF part that fits the long term future. If Lackey strings out a few decent starts, that's the perfect time to shop him and try and get rid of him.  Assuming Lester, Buchholz, Beckett, DiceK, Aceves and Doubrant are all in good health, going to the last couple of months should be fine. Atchison and other farm hands are fine as emergency spot starters over the last month or two. 

    Lackey is counting his money and is a bust. The data was there to show the huge value mistake in his contract. But 3 solid starting pitchers are all that is needed, so either Beckett and/or Dicek will need to step up and take care of that problem. Aceves could have helped in the close game losses. Now that he is up for a DL guy, the Red Sox still need to bring up another lefty to make a good pen even deeper. Wakefield needs to be DL'd or DFA.

    Big hit for Drew, and an aging out but still capable Ortiz continues to be a Yankee killer. Pen was almost perfect, thanks to Aceves and no Wakefield.

    AGon is about as poised a first base defender as one will see, and he's always been a gifted overall hitter. That's why he is a true superstar, unlike Crawford. It's past the CBT capture date for being able to sign AGon to an extension, so it's surprising that no extension has been agreed to as was reported. The Red Sox were hedging on the shoulder injury, so it stands to reason that they should have to pay a premium for waiting to see that AGon's health is fine and he's still performing as the young superstar that he is. Given the total payroll for 2011 and what comes off in 2012, the Red Sox will pay just about whatever premium AGon's agent demands.  Whatever they were trying to save on the CBT should go into AGon's pockets, in addition to a premium for ownership hedging. Given the absurd 6M that Agon gets from his Padres assigned contract, the extension premium will still make AGon a fair value as the new superstar face of the Red Sox.

    The division will come down to the Red Sox and the Yankees, unless a core starter has a long term DL. It will come down to which team gets better starting pitching, with the Yankees likely making a summer move. Epstein is handcuffed on any quality pitching acquisition mid-season moves, and will simply have to hope that Beckett, DiceK, and perhaps Doubrant and Aceves collectively get it done for the rotation year end production. The Rays offense and pen got worse, and the starting pitching did nothing more than go sideways. They will not be a 2011 contender. The O's and Jays are improved, but the first month of the season is a completely false picture of the standings at the end of the marathon.

    With 155 games to go, I'd say the Red Sox are still in the AL East race. The right adjustment was made to the lineup, with Pedroia, AGon, Youk in proper place. A few more adjustments should be made, but the GM is slow to make even the obvious adjustments that shouldn't even be needed in the first place. The lineup was just one of them.

    Go Red Sox!
     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from moonslav59. Show moonslav59's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    Really? I think that's the next alternate lineup they use. I personally don't care as long as the speed stays together.

    I was being a bit sarcastic, but Tito is irritating me enough now to get close to advocating change. The problem is that I am not sure if Theo even thinks the order is an issue. I do not think Tito will ever drop Papi from the line-up against most lefties or even put him below #6, so in that sense, I do not think we will ever see my favorite line-up vs LHPs.

    But the season is still young, not enough of them are hitting well enough to have success in any batting order. So, I guess what I mean is that the batting order isn't the problem. The batters in it are. But this will change, it has to.

    Again, I am not saying change the order because we are 0-6. I do not use small sample size to make definitive judgements. I have been saying AGon and Youk should bat 3/4 or 4/3 since the day we traded for AGon. This is not a knee-jerk reaction on my part. I have stated my reasons, supplied ample evidence to support my position, and am just voicing my opinion again.
     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from moonslav59. Show moonslav59's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    And I do not fault Francona for where he is placing Ortiz against LH (most LH) since dumping him way down in the order serves less purpose when the game is inevitably turned over to the bullpen.

    It isn't as though Francona isn't look at the numbers at all when he asks Drew to sit out opening day because a filthy LH is going.

    katz, with all due respect, I do not see that benching Drew, who is better vs LHPs than Papi, but ot daring to move Papi down makes any sense. I don't get it.

    When a lefty starts, usually the order gets 2-4 PAs before the pen comes in. Then they bring a righty in and maybe, just maybe, Papi might face one righty in a key situation dictated by his #5 slot. The opps can always bring back in a lefty if it's really crucial. It's just not anywhere near worth trading in 2-4 near automatic outs (vs some lefties) for the off chance that his spot in he order just may possibly get up late in the game for 1 crucial PA an the opps have no lefty releif pitcher to use.

    Last year Papi had just over 1 PA vs LHPs that he had a poor career record against beforehand. In those PAs, he had a .500 OPS... all while batting 5th or better. I'm sorry but I can't see how having him 5th a few times late in the game, instead of 7th or on the bench as a PH'er is going to come close to making up for this loss.

    My guess is that if Cam or Lowrie is playing instead of Papi, we'd get them vs the lefty starter for 2-4 PAs, then when they bring a righty in, we'd have Papi to come in and PH for a AB or more if he can PH for the DH.

     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from BaseballGM. Show BaseballGM's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    Hideki would be an improvement over Wakefield. It doesn't matter what Jenks, Papelbon and Bard numbers are against lefties, they can't pitch every night or in the middle innings of many games. Having another lefty helps as it provides another pen middle and earlier innings option. In reality, there should be no such thing as "a mop-up role". Another lefty is a useful part, something Wakefield is not. Having him waste a roster spot as this gold nugget starter when someone hits the DL is cause for great laughter. The Red Sox have ample other batting practice "innings eaters" to roll out on the retread role.

    As bad as keeping Lowell on the roster was, Wakefield is about the worst case I've seen in a long time. What Wakefield has been doing is on the level of girl's softball, where those girls could chip the ball to him and still beat him to the bag. He looks fat, old and bad. He his fat, old and bad. When he comes in, it does make me laugh. I'm sure it makes the other team smile and salavate.
     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from moonslav59. Show moonslav59's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    I said in January:

    1) Crawford
    2) Pedroia
    3) Youk
    4) AGon
    5) Ortiz
    6) Drew/Cameron
    7) SS of the day
    8) CA of the day
    9) Elles

    There is no reason to not stick with this line-up.  Another juggling of the machine will not be the answer.

    This is a nice line-up, except I move Cam to 5 vs LHPs and sit Papi unless he is within 150 OPS points with the other choices (Lowrie/DMac/Drew) vs that particular pitcher.

    I wouldn't be surprised if we never see this line-up all year.
     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from harness. Show harness's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    Who gave the Knute Rockne speech that fired up the team: Tito or Theo?
     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from BaseballGM. Show BaseballGM's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    I'm not "softy", I hated Lugo who was another foolish contract from the mind of Theo. Whoever "softy" was, it's pretty easy to see that he or she must have embarrassed you enough to where you feel the need to keep invoking that moniker. Don't be so defensive, you might want to rethink the need to be defensive. It makes you look inferior.

    Save the O's quote all you would like, and I will make a note how you saved it when you later deny buying into the O's being for real. I repeat, the O's are not for real. Now, save that;)
     
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from moonslav59. Show moonslav59's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    Boom, don't you think 95 wins will get us in?

    95-61 is .609 ball.
    94-62 is .603 ball.
    93-63 is .596 ball.

    96-60 is .615 ball.
    97-59 is .623 ball.
    98-58 is .628 ball
     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from BurritoT. Show BurritoT's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    John Lester just pitched a good game didn't he?  I see hope.
     
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from fivekatz. Show fivekatz's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    On the whole Salty thing a few thoughts.

    First the organization (Theo) makes certain decisions and the manager's job is to implement them. The organization has made a commitment to give it a go with Salty as the primary catcher. While Tito now gets get credit for sticking with Pedroia in 2007, I am sure Francona was tempted to play Cora much more often in April of that season.

    As far as the prowess of the two catchers versus LH pitching, given that the organization is committed to Salty, there was little chance that Tek was going to get 3 of the first 5 starts. And as far as starting the opener versus Cleveland versus Salty I can understand Tito's reluctance on two fronts. He is trying to get his young catcher going first of all and probably does not want to set up the whole personal catcher thing with Beckett and Tek.

    Tonight's game certainly does not fuel the case that Salty is what ails this team. Untimely poor pitching (yes it was Reyes and not Tek who could not find home plate) and a lack of timely hitting are killing these guys.

    But I can just imagine if it was Salty who played a tag play at home like a force out the screaming about his failings as a catcher. That play total changed the complexion of the inning and the home run that followed at this point (I am writing as the game is in progress) certainly is making for a difficult hill to climb again tonight.

    It was nice to see Gonzalez hit a HR :)
     
     
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from moonslav59. Show moonslav59's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    harness, I went out of my way to say I felt this way the day they signed him and I was not judging in a 6 game sample size. You know me better.

    I was responding to katz sayin we were "missing a card" in the OF. I did not feel that way then, and I still feel that way now. I think we should have spent the money on higher need areas. It has nothing to do with 6 games.

    Anyways, some of the guys I wanted intead of Crawford are doing just as bad.
     
  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from moonslav59. Show moonslav59's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    Yeah, it's Wake fault that Wheeler and Reyes have plus 10 ERAs.

    Too bad we didn't cut Wake and his 4.50 ERA so we could keep more plus 10's.

    Opponent's BA off...
    Wake : .143
    Buch:  .238
    Beckett: .263
    Lester: .273
    Dice-K: .300
    Reyes:  .333
    Papelbon: .400
    Wheeler: .417 
    Bard: .444
    Lackey: .476

    All Wake's fault.

    Wake's faced more batters than any other relief pitcher on our team, and it's his fault others are overworked. Interesting theory by the clown.
     
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from harness. Show harness's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    Well Katz, the best time for a true line-up shake-down is in desperate times.
    That's when even "unhappy"layers will sacrifice for the team's good.
    I agree hitting Pedey 3rd takes him out of his element, and distorts the line-up.
    One of the speed guys will have to hit 9th.

    I also think the fan base is better served by redefining team expectations.
     
  20. You have chosen to ignore posts from fivekatz. Show fivekatz's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    The RS are finding so many different and "interesting" ways to lose games right now it is impossible to point at any one thing. Games they get enough pitching, they get little to no offense. They score a few runs and the bullpen or the starters put the game out of reach.

    Human nature is to find a person and assign them the blame but these six games tend to prove you win as a team and you lose as a team.

    Few other thoughts:

    Pedroia does not belong in the three slot but with the two lefties at the top of the order Youk would seem to be the logical choice and he just has looked awful since he arrived in Ft. Myers this year. It is hard to rip Francona on this because of that but on a team with Gonzalez, Youk, Ortiz and even Drew, you have to be kidding me that the self proclaimed Laser Show is the best hitter for the 3 spot.

    IMO the line-up reflects the fact that RS really did not know what do with Carl Crawford but they were enamored with his talents and knew they were a card short in the OF. The fact that he proclaims he is uncomfortable at lead-off has created different line-ups almost every game as Tito tries to find where he fits in the line-up given the other players the RS have.

    Maybe it is time to make two players unhappy and move Ellsbury to the 9 slot and Crawford to lead-off. Neither is taking advantage of being in slots of their preference any way and it would stop the merry-go-round of line-up changes where guys are out of slot while the RS figure out where to put CC. For a manager who believes that players perform best when their role is established and consistent, the current situation must be driving Francona nuts and it is not producing offense either. 

    Home cooking could be helpful but having to right the ship against the NYY is not ideal. On the flip side it would do a lot to wash away the bad taste in their mouths if they caught fire this weekend against a club that not only is excellent but is THE rival. OTOH the NYY have a chance to virtually put the 2011 RS to sleep with a sweep. Who would have thought it a week ago?

    While we can analyize it to death in the detail why the RS have not won yet because they are giving up too many runs and scoring too few. This start is even more perplexing than last year's when the new "run prevention RS" were kicking the ball all over the diamond. 

    Only half kidding when I say Francona should take the entire team out tonight and get them good and drunk. They clearly are too tight at this point. Where's this generations Kevin Millar?

    Just my takes...oh yeah and GO Celtics!
     
  21. You have chosen to ignore posts from harness. Show harness's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    Hack writer. His job is to create controversy.
     
  22. You have chosen to ignore posts from moonslav59. Show moonslav59's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    Well, the O's won again. Only Texas has a better record than them. I think ur right Moonwhen ya say 95 wins will be enough to get into the playoffs. Might even be less. I never bought into the 100-win hyperbole. Not after what I saw last year - and I'm not just referring to the injuries

    I think the AL is too good and balanced to have the wildcard be over 95 wins. I still think we can win 99-100. Is 100-56 that improbable?
     
  23. You have chosen to ignore posts from emp9. Show emp9's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    But the other team knows how to bunt evidently.
     
  24. You have chosen to ignore posts from moonslav59. Show moonslav59's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    Yes, highly improbable. This is a very flawed team. Basically, they replaced vmart and beltre with crawford and agon, they tried to fix the bullpen which hasn't worked out to well as of yet and they have the same shoddy rotation as last year.

    No, basically they had a .793 OPS at catcher last year and are replacing...
     
    VMart/Cash/Molina/VTek with Salty/VTek.
    They are replacing Beltre with AGon
    They are replacing an awful pen with some guys that should do better.

    What you are continually leaving out is that they are also replacing...

    1) Nava/Hermy/DMac/Hall/etc... with Ellsbury & Cameron

    2) BHall/and others ... with Pedey

    3) Lowell/Anderson/others ... with Youk.

    If you think that doesn't/shoudln't make a difference over last year's record, then there's really nothing more to discuss.

    I'm not saying 100 wins is easy or will happen. I'm just saying it is still possible.

     
  25. You have chosen to ignore posts from harness. Show harness's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part II

    I think you are right Katz.
    I was of the belief that the organization was committed to Salty as they were committed to VMART. Tito is simply carrying it out.

    This slump proves one thing: This team may not be as good as advertised. They won't win on talent alone.
    They've got to be motivated to play as if they had a chip on their shoulder.

    I guess we should now expect to hear:

                     "We have to get back to the fundamentals..."

    Which means a return to ST.
     
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