[QUOTE]You know the one--if we'd only kept Pap, the Sox bullpen and record would be just fine right now. Me, I was fine with not paying him a king's ransom. He's fine too--an ERA of 1.29 and 5 of 5 saves already. But his team is 7-8 and at the bottom of the NL East and well behind the Nationals. It's early, I know. But my point is that Pap could not have helped that much this season to date. Yesterday, probably. And certainly game 3 against Detroit when the Sox gave up 3 in the 9th and 3 more in the 11th. But after that I'm not so sure. In game 1 at Detroit, the Sox tied in the 9th against Valverde. If Pap pitched the 9th, it's a good bet that game would have gone to extra innings, but there is no guarantee the Sox would have scored in extra innings or that this bullpen would have held the Tigers in check. And so on and so on. Papelbon's forte is saves, not wins, and to get a save you gotta have the lead in the 9th. Relatedly, the same theory applies to using Bard as the closer this year. Go ahead and give him credit for the same two saves, but it is unlikely he could have done much more good for this team than two saves. Or put it this way. The Sox have 12 pitchers, including five starters, and one guy cannot save a lousy pitching staff. Our big three starters, for example, all have ERA's over 5. And, as Peter Abraham keeps reminding us, this pitching staff has been lousy since about September 1 of last year. Actually, even longer because it was overall lousy in 2011, 2010, and 2009. In that context it is also hard for me to get mad at Cherington because it seems obvious that a long term weak pitching staff should be blamed on Theo. He got out just in time.
Posted by maxbialystock[/QUOTE]