Monday, April 14, 2008


Of the Red Sox 7 wins this season, very few have been pretty. Either the offense was stagnant, or the bullpen ineffective, or the starter didn't last long. Sunday's 8-5 victory over New York was one of those games.

From a positive perspective, these ugly wins feature a few bad performances, but those are countered by some great play by others.

Daisuke had the ugly performance. It wasn't hideous, but it was still thoroughly unattractive. He went 5 innings, threw 116 pitches (only 62 for strikes), walked 6, allowed 5 hits, 4 runs, and only struck out 2. It was the Daisuke we saw a lot of last year: nibbling on the edge of the plate, not challenging hitters, not getting guys out.

But Matsuzaka was bailed out by some good hitting, and great bullpen work. The Sox got to Phil Hughes for 7 runs, and chased him out of the game with no outs in the 3rd. The 4-5-6 combination of Manny, Youkilis, and Casey went 6 for 9 with 4 RBI and 4 runs scored. Every Sox starter except Varitek got on base at least once.

The much maigned middle-relievers were the savior of the game, though. Daisuke left it a 7-4 contest, still very much in doubt. Aardsma came in and threw 2 hitless innings. Timlin came in to pitch the 8th, but he looked dreadful, allowing a solo homer to Giambi, then two singles before being pulled. Out of nowhere, Javier Lopez comes in and records 4 straight outs before giving Delcarmen the ball.

This should tell you how bogus the Save stat is. Delcarmen pitched 0.2 innings to end the game, a 3 run game, but won't be credited with a Save. If he had gotten 3 outs, he gets a Save. Had a runner been on first base when he came in, he would have gotten a Save. Silliness.

The Red Sox are already in Cleveland for tonight's ALCS rematch. Jon Lester goes against Jake Westbrook.


Photo Credits:
AP Photo/Michael Dwyer
AP Photo/Winslow Townson

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