A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

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    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    Every Sox player who slumps over the last several years goes on the DL at some point. They suddenly have an injury. Not every slump is tied into injury but the Sox spin machine makes it easier and buy time for the slumping player and the team. Every time the Sox open a roster spot and want to replace a slumping veteran, the veteran goes to the DL. It's happened so often, to me it's the same as Belllichick using the "questionable' list to fool opponents who don't know if a star player is playing at game time.
     
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    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    In Response to Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III : If you accept 2010 injury to Josh as a mitigating factor, then the same should hold true for Lackey. And there are similarities. Beckett in April/May (2010), pitching with a back issue: 45.6 IP  57 H  37 ER  7.30 ERA  1.667 WHIP Lacket in April/May (2011), pitching with an elbow issue (2 Cort. shots in May). 49.3 IP  53 H  35 ER  6.39 ERA  1.440 WHIP Beckett since his return off DL (2010): 82 IP    94 H  45 ER  4.94 ERA   1.463 WHIP Lackey since his return from DL: 64.6 IP  78 H  37 ER  5.15 ERA  1.393 WHIP This may be further indication of Lackey being/pitching hurt: SO/BB ratio in April/May: 19 SO/18 BB (2 SO/10 BB in May) SO/BB in June/July/August: 52 SO/ 12 BB (28 SO/ 3 BB July/Aug.). You may recall the July 4th "fireworks" vs. Toronto: He got lit up and said "I was looking for help but didn't get any". Typical Lackey. What he was referring to was the fact he had no command whatsoever of any of his breaking stuff. He didn't know how to correct the problem (mechanical). Isn't that Young's job? To point out something so flagrant? Yeah, it was a direct slight on Young, but pitching coaches are supposed to know the mechanics of their pitchers like the back of their hands. This is the only time I ever saw Lackey with just his FB command. Hitters were sitting dead red. 2.3 IP  9 H 7 ER. Beyond this outing, these are Lackey's numbers HEALTHY in 2011: 62.3 IP  69 H  30 ER  4.33 ERA  1.300 WHIP Lackey in 2010:   215 IP  230 H  105 ER 4.40 ERA  1.419 WHIP (Note: Lackey's WHIP after May of 2010 (June - Sept.) was 1.344. I think the first two month last year were the biggest transition). Now, if you want to call Lackey a 6.10 ERA/1.548 WHIP pitcher and think that's looking at the forest for the trees , good luck. That means Josh was a 5.78 ERA/1.535 WHIP in 2010. To me, Becket was 4.93 ERA/1.463 healthy, or healthier , last year, and I believe he was compromised to a degree by VMART. I don't measure a player hurt/playing hurt. Sorry. As for his perceived #3 status when signed, Dice was a #2 perceived signing. Buch surpassed both. I saw him projected around 15 wins/ 4.25 ERA/ 1.3-1.35 WHIP in Fenway. 17 mil on the open market buys just that. That is a "distant" #3 on the Redsox. With Buch down and Bedard an unknown, Lackey's numbers HEALTHY still put him in that position, at least until Bedard passes him. Cue the "cherry-picking"...
    Posted by harness[/QUOTE]

    One factor that is hard to quantify is how much the injuries effected their numbers after they returned. 

    Beckett has been injured and pitched injured several times in his career. He has 2 seasons that appear to be outliers (2006 and 2010). He has had pretty consistent numbers in all the other years (3.04 to 4.10 and 1.141 to 1.324)

    Lackey has pitched 30+ starts in 6 of 8 years before 2011. The other 2 were 24 and 27 starts. It's hard to tell how often he pitched while hurt over the years (same as Beckett). His differentials: ERA 3.01 to 4.67 & 1.210 to 1.419 WHIP.

    Career ERA+ (supposedly adjusts for player's park)
    Lackey:   110 (116 with LAA/86 with Bos)
    Beckett:  116 (118 with Fla/114 with Bos)
     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from dannycater. Show dannycater's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    No one pitches better when they are hurt. Everyone on the Sox seems to get hurt. What's the point? It's part of the game. If you apologize for every Sox player who played while injured, then let's add 150 homers and 500 RBI to Yaz's career and let's just throw out all seasons where guys had bad years. They can tell you after the fact that they were pitching with a torn labrum, or plantar fascial disorder, or a bad back, or a stress fracture, or broken ribs. Maybe we should just stop evaluating performance--we don't know if someone is on designer drugs (lot of home runs this year), lot of near no hitters, and lot of injuries. It's part of the game. If Lackey is really pitching injured, then DL him, 60-Day DL him and then you can go on and tell me he was often injured guy in 2008, 2009, and 2011, which makes HIM AN EVEN WORSE SIGNING THAN YOU CAN EVER IMAGINE.

     
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    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    m
     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from fivekatz. Show fivekatz's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    We are getting into the tortured numbers and hunch theories to sustain an argument that isn't all that sustainable. And even if it was sustainable that John Lackey really hasn't been all that bad, adjusted for Fenway, adjusted for Curt Young, adjusted for VMart and Salty, or for his personal issues, so what?

    The result is the truth and the result is ugly. The W-L argument is not one that would carry very much water with most folks because they recognize the pitcher has no control over his run support. The facts are he had an OK year in 2010 but hardly what Epstein invisioned when he signed Lackey and he has been a grease fire far too often in 2011.

    Now while it is short sighted to bury Lackey 1 2/3 season into a 5 season deal as of today he is not a playoff caliber starting pitcher, certainly not the 3rd starter.

    One of the things I have sort of figured out on BDC is once folks are determined to label a guy a bust only some big time performance will ever mute that, numbers that mitigate the claim are not readily accepted.

     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from fivekatz. Show fivekatz's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    In Response to Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III:
    [QUOTE]No one pitches better when they are hurt. Everyone on the Sox seems to get hurt. What's the point? It's part of the game. If you apologize for every Sox player who played while injured, then let's add 150 homers and 500 RBI to Yaz's career and let's just throw out all seasons where guys had bad years. They can tell you after the fact that they were pitching with a torn labrum, or plantar fascial disorder, or a bad back, or a stress fracture, or broken ribs. Maybe we should just stop evaluating performance--we don't know if someone is on designer drugs (lot of home runs this year), lot of near no hitters, and lot of injuries. It's part of the game. If Lackey is really pitching injured, then DL him, 60-Day DL him and then you can go on and tell me he was often injured guy in 2008, 2009, and 2011, which makes HIM AN EVEN WORSE SIGNING THAN YOU CAN EVER IMAGINE.
    Posted by dannycater[/QUOTE]Well whether you meant to or not, you hit on something. He was injured in 2008 and had some issues in 2009.

    Facts are there aren't too many guys that have had 6 years pitching in MLB that aren't going to have some injury history to sort through. Were the RS too hopeful in their evaluation of Lackey's med history? Perhaps. The Mets were with Pedro, the Angels did it with Kazmir. For all it is medical science, there is still al ot of guess work. Curt Schilling should have been done before he was ever traded to the D-Backs by conventional medical wisdom. The chances of his putting up the years he did with Az and the RS was pretty low. 

    As far as  putting him on the DL perhaps they would if Dice-K and Buch weren't already there.  It doesn't change the present if he is or isn't playing impaired, the result is the truth. It should mitigate the emotion that fans throw at though IMO but that isn't the way it works I guess. Unless it is a bad back in 2009?
     
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    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

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

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    In Response to Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III : Truly sorry to hear of UR wife's illness. Those who have never been in UR shoes, or Lackey's, don't have a clue as to the mental anchor of it all. It's unbelievable. If Bedard is right, he's a solid #3. First time he's ever played for a winning franchise. Yet he has a good W/L career record. Hughes pitched a gem for NY tonight. Now maybe we know why Cashman stood patt.
    Posted by harness[/QUOTE]

    My wife is fine. It was my Mom and she overcame the challenge to go on for another 15 years or so afterward, when she died from a heart ailment. I think most of us know that cancer or another such illness within a family member or loved one can be devastating for everyone around them. We all wish Lackey the best. We just want a better #3 starter option!

    The Yanks are formidable and should not be underestimated. The stars seem to have aligned for them this year and they are right there with the Sox for sure. It might end up coming down to home field advantage making this weekend pretty important still.

    We all know the #3 starter slot is our achilles heel right now. It could be what knocks us right out of the playoffs at some point, assuming we get it as it appears now.
     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from dannycater. Show dannycater's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    five, except the bad back in 2009 for Wakefield occured after he had a brilliant first half. When has Lackey had a brilliant anything for Sox? And I am tired of excuses for this guy. He starts pitching to his capabilities or he gets jetisoned from the rotation. Simple as that. 

    In Response to Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III : Well whether you meant to or not, you hit on something. He was injured in 2008 and had some issues in 2009. Facts are there aren't too many guys that have had 6 years pitching in MLB that aren't going to have some injury history to sort through. Were the RS too hopeful in their evaluation of Lackey's med history? Perhaps. The Mets were with Pedro, the Angels did it with Kazmir. For all it is medical science, there is still al ot of guess work. Curt Schilling should have been done before he was ever traded to the D-Backs by conventional medical wisdom. The chances of his putting up the years he did with Az and the RS was pretty low.  As far as  putting him on the DL perhaps they would if Dice-K and Buch weren't already there.  It doesn't change the present if he is or isn't playing impaired, the result is the truth. It should mitigate the emotion that fans throw at though IMO but that isn't the way it works I guess. Unless it is a bad back in 2009?
    Posted by fivekatz[/QUOTE]
     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from moonslav59. Show moonslav59's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

     ...[Lackey] has been a grease fire far too often in 2011. 

    While lackey's 2011 numbers have been bad, he really doesn't have a bad percentage of bad games. As with Wake, most of his ERA inflation comes from just a handful of games.

    In 18 starts the Sox are 9-9.
    He has 5 games with 8, 8. 8, 7, and 6 ERs.
    He has 2 games of 5 ERs (3.1 dn 5.2 IP)
    That's about 7/18 bad games

    He then has 2 games with 4 ERs (6 IP & 8 IP) and 9 with 0-3 ERs.


     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from fivekatz. Show fivekatz's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    As I often find myself doing here on BDC, I sort of straddle the middle ground on the topic of Mr. Lackey.

    Danny says he should be jettisoned from the rotation, but for who? Andrew Miller because he was a high draft pick once upon a time?

    And Moon I get your point but 7 out of 18 is 39%. And getting hammered 39% of the time IMO puts far too much pressure on the BP and the offense. If the RS gave Lackey the run support they have been giving Beckett this year they would be 9-9 in his starts.

    He is having a bad year and 2010 was OK and not an alarm until it is followed by this year. But this is not the pitcher they envisioned, it is not close to good value on the contract. It doesn't seal the fate of the entire contract but no amount of deep stat analysis changes the fact that 40% of the time he puts the team in a great position to lose. 

    But I don't see where the RS have options as long as they think they are in the hunt, they have to try and get this guy right. And back to Danny, yes that contract matters. It is an $80M commitment and getting him right is more important to the long term business health of the Boston Red Sox than honoring Tim Wakefield's years of service was last year. That might be cruel but that's the industry they are in for you.  

    But no matter how you clean it up with stats, circumstances etc. the results are far from what is desirable for a team that has serious WS aspirations. And ther best shot is getting him back to where they hoped he be when they signed him, not bannishing him to the BP or 60 day DL in disappointment.

    It is IMO a grin and bear it situation and hope for the best.

    Just my take. 
     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from dannycater. Show dannycater's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    harness has said that throw salary out of the equation, but if you did, then even then, Wakefield has outpitched Lackey. So I don't get the man-love for Lackey. There are more than a few posters on this forum who insisted that Lackey was market value, that Lackey was not signed to be anything more than a No. 4...That's horse manure. He was an ace of the Angels staff in '07, and he was a top 2 starter for them even in the injured years. That's how Lackey was perceived, and that's why Theo went after him. If that wasn't the case, then Theo is a moron. 
     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from dannycater. Show dannycater's posts

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    Since I have to explain posts, my point is that Lackey becomes more of a failure due to the fact he has a top-of-the-line starter history. Theo spent 82 million and I will defend him only in the respect that he positively was expecting Lackey to do better things, and be something of a solid No. 3, and even possibly have another '07 like season in the future. He's 32. So isn't that a reasonable expectation of Lackey? I think it is, but if he's hurt or he's not focused not much one can do.
     
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    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    If you want to take a shrug your shoulders approach to Lackey, then maybe we all should cut Wakefield a lot more slack. 
     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from dannycater. Show dannycater's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    I really believe Wakefield is scrutinized in each and every start. And I've noticed that in 2010 and 2011 that there are always media buzz about the Sox acquiring a starter to replace him, and these articles come out right after a good start. I felt his ChiSox start was significant and should show that he is capable of coming up with a big start for the team. No one has expectations from him, I do. I expect Wakefield to throw 6 to 7 solid innings and leave the game either tied or with the lead. That's what I expect out of him, and that's what he expects out of himself.
     
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from fivekatz. Show fivekatz's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    In Response to Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III:
    [QUOTE]harness has said that throw salary out of the equation, but if you did, then even then, Wakefield has outpitched Lackey. So I don't get the man-love for Lackey. There are more than a few posters on this forum who insisted that Lackey was market value, that Lackey was not signed to be anything more than a No. 4...That's horse manure. He was an ace of the Angels staff in '07, and he was a top 2 starter for them even in the injured years. That's how Lackey was perceived, and that's why Theo went after him. If that wasn't the case, then Theo is a moron. 
    Posted by dannycater[/QUOTE]Yes Wakefield has outpitched Lackey so far this year, so what? We compete with the rest of MLB not each other. Wake's current position is assured and frankly the way the two have pitched, neither one puts cream in my coffee matched up against Cole Hammels in a must win.

    Throwing "rotation slot" numbers at this discussion is not neccesarily the most useful way to go. A number #4 on the Phillies isn't a number #4 in Houston. So I would agree with you that Lackey was a above league average pitching addition in the RS view.

    His money based on where his career stats laid was in line with what pitchers with similar career stats had recieved in FA in the recent past. Any assertion that the RS believed they were getting a guy with near 5.00 ERA and a WHIP near 1.500 is a highly unlikely conclusion. 

    Now this #4 thing, well the RS would have been very happy if he turned out to be a #4 because of great performance by Buch or Dice K. I am sure they went into thinking Beckett and Lester were their one-two horses and Lackey darn near as good. That is what his career stats suggested. They liked his bull dog nature IMO (even with the faces and stuff that so many in RS Nation freak out about). They thought he would be a big game, big stage fighter for them. 

    Rather than the number in the rotation here's what I think the RS hoped they would get from John Lackey. 200+ IP, ERA 3.90 - 4.20, WHIP 1.275-1.350.

    So far they haven't. They aren't going to write-off $80M+ a year and a half into it, so here we are, with them trying to get him back to where he was.

    This is the risk that comes with having the $$$ to be able to sign veteran FA pitching. They don't have these problems in Kansas City or Pittsburgh.   
     
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    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    Rather than the number in the rotation here's what I think the RS hoped they would get from John Lackey. 200+ IP, ERA 3.90 - 4.20, WHIP 1.275-1.350. 

    I agree and I think that was a reasonable thing to ask for. If he pitched something like that, the team would have more of a chance of winning. His win-loss record is a complete misrepresentation of him just as Josh Beckett's win-loss record is also not indicative of that pitcher's performance and ability to help his team win.
     
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    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    and that is why harness is full of it. he thinks pitching is all about the pitcher's win-loss record. If you win 4 straight, it's the pitcher's credit. If you lose 4 straight, it's the lack of offense, the defense, and not the pitcher's fault. The pitcher is predominant. The offense means nothing.
     
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from fivekatz. Show fivekatz's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    In Response to Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III:
    [QUOTE]and that is why harness is full of it. he thinks pitching is all about the pitcher's win-loss record. If you win 4 straight, it's the pitcher's credit. If you lose 4 straight, it's the lack of offense, the defense, and not the pitcher's fault. The pitcher is predominant. The offense means nothing.
    Posted by dannycater[/QUOTE]Not to speak for Harness I don't think he means to state that the W-L is ultimate measure of a pitcher's performance.

    He is using the RS record in games he pitches to mitigate the doom and gloom surrounding Lackey. He has done that before, as has Moon and yourself have with Wakefield when folks were blasting him.

    It has some relevance if the pitcher kept you in the game and put you in a position where you could win so it has some merit as a talking point but it is certainly isn't the primary measuring stick of excellence.

    Just my takes
     
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    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    I don't know about that, he certainly believed that winning pitchers are winning pitchers and that it's the pitching that is predominant in a pitcher winning.
     
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    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    I only defend Wakefield because I really do think he is reliable and has proven to be reliable. He may not be a guy who can go past 7 anymore, but he can get you there. On Lackey, he should be that and more.
     
  22. You have chosen to ignore posts from dannycater. Show dannycater's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    On Crawford, I think what hurts the most is the Sox have guys who struggle v. lefties like an Ortiz, who has been reverting back to the Ortiz who couldn't buy a good swing v. a lefty for much of last year. Gonzo has been a little less effective v. them. So what does this all mean? Well, it means that if you are an opposing manager with lefty reliever specialists, you can have a field day with the Sox. I think Guillen actually did a great job in the Sunday loss v. Sox in preventing Crawford and Ortiz from hurting a righty. Gonzo I think finally got a hit off a lefty which was an insurance run. Crawford does seem to be becoming Drew and that means Francona will be running out the below-Mendoza line McDonald more and more. It's a tough situation. I hope Carl can snap out of all of this.
     
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    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    Wakefield is certainly capable of giving us a bunch of quality starts in a row but I would hate to rely on him against the Yanks. They have seen him SO MANY TIMES that he would probably get beat like a drum. The whole novelty of the nuckler can be beaten over time as hitters make better decisions facing it.

    I faced a knuckler once. The ball seemed to jump from one side of the plate to the other and then nosedived to hit the plate. I thought about swinging at it but it would have been hopeless to hit it. I've never seen anything like that in my life. I have no idea how they get that pitch over. I guess they even try to calm down the knuckle effect some because there was no way the guy I faced could get it over the plate consistently.

    I have no problem with Wakefield in the rotation but look at the opposing staffs. Even the Yanks have a great rotation now. Look at SF. Philly with Lee, Hamels and Halliday. How are we going to win against Hamels, Lee and Halladay?

    We have a problem at the #3 guy is extremely important. Maybe it's Buchholz still. to me it's probably our best shot. I do have hope for Bedard though, especially against Philly or the Yanks in the opposing field.

    Dana
     
  24. You have chosen to ignore posts from dannycater. Show dannycater's posts

    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    Well, believe it or not, it's not just about starting pitchers. I think people are forgetting the following:
    1. Sox have 5 to 6 guys who are terrific offensive threats
    2. The Sox have better overall defense than in previous seasons
    3. The Sox have maybe its most consistent bullpen or effective bullpen I've ever seen in one regular season (to this point).
    4. The games after the 6th or 7th inning go into the hands of the bullpen except for maybe a Lee, Halladay. The Sox have shown they can hit bullpens of other teams. 

    So the over-dramatization of starting pitching that everyone seems to be worried about may not be as important as many believe it to be. I really am not worried myself about what the Sox do after Lester/Beckett. In a 7-game series, they get to start at least 4 games. You can't automatically think the negative for the other Sox SPs, whoever they are. There are no guarantees for your opponent SPs either. Great or not, it's what happens when the game occurs. The best pitchers don't always win.
     
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    Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III

    In Response to Re: A Realistic Look at 2011: Part III:
    [QUOTE]Well, believe it or not, it's not just about starting pitchers. I think people are forgetting the following: 1. Sox have 5 to 6 guys who are terrific offensive threats 2. The Sox have better overall defense than in previous seasons 3. The Sox have maybe its most consistent bullpen or effective bullpen I've ever seen in one regular season (to this point). 4. The games after the 6th or 7th inning go into the hands of the bullpen except for maybe a Lee, Halladay. The Sox have shown they can hit bullpens of other teams.  So the over-dramatization of starting pitching that everyone seems to be worried about may not be as important as many believe it to be. I really am not worried myself about what the Sox do after Lester/Beckett. In a 7-game series, they get to start at least 4 games. You can't automatically think the negative for the other Sox SPs, whoever they are. There are no guarantees for your opponent SPs either. Great or not, it's what happens when the game occurs. The best pitchers don't always win.
    Posted by dannycater[/QUOTE]That's the right attitude to have as a RS fan but I think you would agree they would not be favorites if their rotation was Beckett, Lester, lackey and Wakefield and the 4 guys all pitched like their season to date stats.
     

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