Sunday, August 10, 2008


The Sox are going to place Tim Wakefield on the 15 day DL with shoulder stiffness. With Justin Masterson pitching 2.2 innings of relief in Sunday's game, Bartolo Colon still weeks away, and Wakefield's spot coming up on Tuesday... Who should fill it?

Charlie Zink

A 29 year old undrafted career minor leaguer, Zink is 13-4, with a 2.89 ERA at AAA Pawtucket this year. He's a knuckle baller, which is probably why the Sox haven't brought him to the Majors yet. But if Wakefield really is out for 2 or 3 starts, why not give this guy a shot?

Another possibility is David Pauley, who is also 13-4 but with a slightly higher ERA of 3.32. Pauley last pitched in the Majors in 2006, making 3 starts and struggling big time. But he's doing well in Pawtucket, and could get the nod on Tuesday.


Photo Credit:
The Providence Journal/Glenn Osmundson


This team's rotation can no longer afford Clay Buchholz's ineptitude. Maybe 2009 or 2010 will be different, but 2008 isn't Buchholz's time. With this afternoon's failure in Chicago (3 IP, 7 H, 5 ER, 2 BB, 3 HR), he falls to 2-8 with an ERA of 6.32.

Since April, he's fallen downhill fast. He was 1-2 to start the season, with some hard luck losses and a decent 4.00 ERA. He had 3 Quality Starts in April. He's 1-6 since then, with a 7.77 ERA and zero Quality Starts.

Justin Masterson was called in to give the Sox a chance this afternoon. Perhaps he should be called upon to start in Buchholz's place. He was 4-3 with a 3.67 ERA as a starter. And although he's been even better as a reliever, this team is in desperate need of starting pitching. With Masterson starting, the team has a chance to win from the get go. With Masterson relieving, he can only keep them in the game after Buchholz has all but blown it.

The Sox were still close to taking this one down. They had a huge 1 out, bases loaded opportunity in the 7th, but Lowell grounded into a 5-4-3 double play. He'd knocked in 3 runs earlier with a homerun, so at least he contributed. Varitek, Ortiz, and Ellsbury once again didn't do much productive. Ellsbury was 0 for 4 from the leadoff spot. Ortiz was 0 for 3 with 2 strikeouts. Varitek was 0 for 4 with 2 strikeouts.

I like Ellsbury hitting 9th and pretty much nowhere else. Francona had little choice with Youkilis' shoulder bothering him. Although Jason Bay could be slotted in as a #2 hitter behind Pedroia leading off.

The Sox look to split the series Monday night as Beckett faces 9-4 John Danks.


Photo Credit:
AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh