Friday, April 06, 2007


The Red Sox swung on the first pitch 11 times this game. This is part of the reason Robinson Tejada went 7 innings, throwing a mere 77 pitches. That's right, 77 pitches. The Sox had 34 total plate appearances, the Rangers threw 101 total pitches. Three pitches per plate appearance just doesn't cut it, unless the pitcher's throwing meatballs and you're crushing them. The Sox were not doing this.

Wakefield actually pitched well, but we wasted it. You don't get too many Quality Starts from your 4th guy in the rotation, especially in Arlington, TX.

We've all seen this before, the Sox go up against a pitcher for the first or second time, and struggle. Then you throw in Mirabelli being in the lineup, Ortiz not hitting yet, Coco having poor at-bats, and you've got a three hit shutout on your hands.

Here's a question. You're down 2-0 in the 9th, 2 outs. You've got a man on first. Why not pinch hit Wily Mo Pena for Coco Crisp in that spot? You've got Mirabelli behind this at-bat, so even if Coco gets a hit and moves Manny over, the game is most likely going to end anyway. Just why not put in Pena, who can hit for power, to replace Coco, who really hasn't looked good at the plate at all this season or in spring.

Man of the Game:
Robinson Tejada, 7 IP, 2 H, 0 runs, 3 BB, K, 0 HR

Wakefield: 0.1 - 2 runs, ER
Pedroia: 0.2 - Error, 0 for 3, K
Lugo: 0.1 - 0 for 3
Youkilis: 0.1 - 0 for 3
Ortiz: 0.2 - 0 for 4, 2 LOB
Lowell: 0.2 - 0 for 4, 2 LOB
Mirabelli: 0.1 - 0 for 3


I know it's early in the season, but my Schadenfreude that comes from watching New York struggle knows no calendar.

Carl Pavano went 4 innings on Opening Day. Last night Andy Pettitte matched that feet. The Yankees best pitcher, Wang, is on the DL until late April or early May, and the never injured Johnny Damon is missing time with a calf strain, and might be seeing the DL in very short time.

So should New York be worried? They did manage to go 1-1 against Tampa Bay, but this was thanks to the Devil Rays' bullpen blowing the Opening Day game open. The $195 Million Men* fell to the $24 million Devil Rays 7-6. Now imagine if they hadn't rained out Wednesday's game. What would have happened?

New York sends Mussina to the mound tonight. Mussina, as we all know, is one of the most overrated pitchers in baseball. He's capable of brilliance, but also highly capable of mediocrity. Then there's Kei Igawa. As much question marks as the Sox rotation had this season, Kei Igawa? That's a friggin' question. Then Darrell Rasner fills out the rotation. Another question.

Is New York worried? I don't know. Up where I live, the Yankee fans don't seem to be concerned. They still have that unjustified and downright silly cockiness. They still beat their chest and give their war cry "26 rings" and laugh with each other as if they had seen more than a fifth of those titles. They have more question marks than we do, folks. They should be worried, or at least, concerned.

* = I know the Sox have the 2nd highest payroll, but it is still $52 million LOWER than New York's. Five TEAMS have lower payrolls than the difference between us and New York.


Wow! Wow!


Daisuke Matsuzaka's line from his MLB debut: 7 IP, 6 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 10 K, 1 HR

Not too shabby. Now, we shouldn't get carried away. This was against the Royals, a group of inexperienced hitters. And this was the first time ANY of these guys have seen Daisuke, which means getting used to new arm angles, new movement on the ball, and so on.

Nevertheless, WOW!

Daisuke is obviously the Man of the Game. 10 Ks, 7 innings, one sole earned run. After allowing a single in the first, Matsuzaka held the Royals hitless until the 5th.

Honorable Mentions go to:
Jonathan Papelbon: perfect 9th inning, 2 strikeouts, first Save of 2007.
Manny Ramirez: 2/5, 2B, 2 out RBI.
Zach Greinke: 7 IP, 2 R, 1 ER, 7 K

On to Arlington.