October 15, 2008

Kazmir to Start Game 5

Maddon explains the move:
It's something we thought about since prior to this thing beginning. Being in the position we're in, we like the idea of pitching him with the day off to follow. ...

We like the fact that [Kazmir is] pitching with an open day following, the ability to utilize the entire bullpen. We also like the idea of him pitching [at Fenway], and we like the idea of Shields being able to pitch at home, if necessary.

Joe Maddon has bumped James Shields from Thursday's Game 5 start and will give the ball to Scott Kazmir, who will be pitching on four days rest.

A reminder:
Meanwhile, in New York:


ish said...

That's interesting. Do you expect a counter-move by the Red Sox to bump Lester up to Game 6?

To me it seems like Maddon's looking at match-ups. Dice-K beat Tampa and Shields in Game 1... Beckett and Kazmir were similarly bad in Game 2, so putting Kazmir on Game 5 gives the Red Sox an excellent chance to win, but it also means matching Shields to Beckett in Game 6. Makes Game 6 a very very tough game to win.

I'm confident that Lester just had a bad night and will be back to playoff Lester in his next game, so an interesting decision indeed, and it makes you wonder what matchups for Game 6 and Game 7 you like best. Beckett/Shields 6 and Lester/Garza 7? Or Lester/Shields 6 and Beckett/Garza 7?

redsock said...

Yeah, gotta go with Lester in Game 6. The Sox can't risk a weak Beckett losing that game while Lester sits in the pen praying for a Game 7.

Lester/Shields 6
Beckett (& everybody else)/Garza 7

ish said...

Did a little bit of research on the regular season between these two teams, in games started by at least one pitcher who will pitch in Games 5, 6, or 7. Here's how those six pitchers fared this season... (takes up space but I thought it'd be interesting to look at the numbers (innings/earned runs).

0702 G87 @TB (vs. Kazmir): 5 IP, ER, L (7-6 TB)
0909 G144 @ BOS (Kazmir): 5/3 ND (5-4 TB)
0915 G150 @TB (Kazmir): 5/1 W (13-5 BOS)

0504 G31 @BOS (Lester): 4/3 ND (7-3 BOS)
0702 G84 @TB (Matsuzaka): 5/4 ND (7-6 TB)
0909 G143 @BOS (Matsuzaka): 6/2 ND (5-4 (TB)
0915 G148 @TB (Matsuzaka): 3/9, L (13-5 TB)

0427 G27 @TB (Shields): 7/1 L (3-0 TB)
0503 G32 @BOS (Shields): 8/4 W (12-4 BOS)
0604 G62 @BOS (Jackson): 6/1 W (5-1 BOS)
0910 G145 @BOS (Sonnanstine): 6/1 ND (4-2 TB)
0916 G151 @TB (Sonnanstine): 8/1 ND (2-1 TB)

0427 G25 @TB (Beckett): 9/0 W (3-0 TB)
0503 G30 @BOS (Beckett): 3.2/7 L (12-4 BOS)
0605 G60 @BOS (Lester): 1/4 L (7-1 BOS)
0630 G82 @TB (Masterson): 6.1/2 W (5-4 TB)

0504 G33 @BOS (Kazmir): 6/1 W (7-3 BOS)
0605 G63 @BOS (Shields): 6.1/1 W (7-1 BOS)
0908 G143 @BOS (Jackson): 7.2/0 W (3-0 BOS)

0425 G23 @TB (Wakefield): 5/3 ND (5-4 TB)
0603 G58 @BOS (Masterson): 5.1/5 L (7-4 BOS)
0701 G83 @TB (Wakefield): 7/0 W (3-1 TB)
0917 G150 @TB (Wakefield): 4.2/3 ND (10-3 TB)

ish said...

In a nutshell...

Dice was very good. Low run support and only went 5 innings.

Beckett was excellent. The one game he gave up more than an earned run (4), he still won. But that Beckett didn't have velocity problems and oblique problems like this Beckett.

Lester was also excellent. He gave up 2 runs in 3 games and the Red Sox won all three.

Kazmir is definitely beatable. 0-1, averaging 4.5 innings per game.

Shields is also beatable. But when he's on, he can be unstoppable. Patience and timely hitting will do him in.

Garza is quite beatable. Three bad games and a very good game. Three against Wakefield, one against Masterson.

Bottom line: Our pitching is good enough to win the series. They're going to give you innings (even Dice-K) and keep the offense to within striking distance.

The offense quite simply needs to get going again and take some pressure off our pitching. Tampa's three guys are not unbeatable.

Pokerwolf said...

I think you need to save that Daily Sports image for a time when Yankees fans state that they don't care about the Sox or how well the Sox are doing.

We won't be "joining" them anyway. We made it to the ALCS. They did bupkus.

Geoff said...

What is the story with Casey? Is he still injured?

ish said...

Casey didn't look injured when he pinch-hit last night. He took some healthy cuts.

FenFan said...

I'll be at Game 5 tomorrow night. I didn't leave Fenway until 30 minutes after the end of Game 3 and no matter what I will be there until they turn off the lights tomorrow night.

Hey, I plan to use my Game 2 WS tickets - how about everyone else?

FenFan said...

As bad as it may appear, I feel confident that the Sox can pick up the pieces and get back into this series. To me, the switch in Tampa's rotation is a bad move on Maddon's behalf; if the Boston bats, which have been downright frigid, get hot against Kazmir, that might be enough to swing momentum back in Boston's favor.

Swapping Beckett and Lester depends on Dice-K's start tomorrow - should he manage seven and the bullpen is used sparingly, that gives Francona the option to go to the bullpen early should Beckett appear out of sorts in his start. Then, if the Sox get back in the series, you have Lester ready to bounce back in the deciding Game 7.

redsock said...

Francona said this afternoon that Lester will not be moved up. It's Beckett in Game 6.

redsock said...

I hope Tito is lying.

You need good starts out of both of them, but you ABSOLUTELY need to win Game 6 to get to Game 7.

And Lester is a better bet to win on Saturday. Then you go on Sunday with Beckett and the entire fucking pen.

redsock said...

SoSHer Kremlin Watcher:
"There is only one explanation for these strange, totally non-strategic moves by Tito not to shift the rotation, and it seems likely it is due to something we just don't know. If past performance is a guide to future behavior, then we know Tito should be making moves to shake things up and go for the throat. Pitching an obviously injured and ineffective Beckett in game 6, risking burning the pen for game 7, just can't be driven by sheer stubbornness. There has to be something else there."


L-girl said...

I keep thinking that, too - it has to be something else. It seems so un-Tito-like. Many times when that happens, we later learn what he's not telling us now.

I sure hope that's the case, because Beckett shouldn't be starting Game 6.

* * * *

So the NY papers think winning the wild card and winning the ALDS are the same as coming in 3rd and playing golf in October? Yeah.

9casey said...

L-girl said...
I sure hope that's the case, because Beckett shouldn't be starting Game 6.

If he can't start 6 , then he can't start 7 either . If he's hurt then he is hurt ...just scratch him alltogether, they were both garbage , whats the difference, they both need to be themselves if we want to win.....We have to play a game 7 if we want to win this thing so Beckett will pitch in game 6 and get us there...that's all...

I am little shocked Maddon fucked with his rotation, I hope it bites him in the ass.........and enough of Big Game James, has he ever pitched in a big game outside of High School.?

9casey said...

and another thing , do you ever think Tito would announce a change before he won game 5?

L-girl said...

If he can't start 6 , then he can't start 7 either . If he's hurt then he is hurt ...just scratch him alltogether, they were both garbage , whats the difference, they both need to be themselves if we want to win.....

The difference is if we don't win game 6, there is no game 7, so we have to go with our best shot. That is usually Lester. He was off his game in this series, obviously, but he's not injured (that we know of). You can't play or manage 2 games ahead at this point. Win one, then go from there.