October 2, 2005

Wild Is The Win

The Red Sox control their own destination. With a win this afternoon, they head to Chicago to begin the ALDS on Tuesday afternoon.

A Monday playoff game for the wild card -- only possible if Boston loses and Cleveland wins -- would feature Matt Clement pitching on three days rest for the first time in his career.

Art Martone writes that the Red Sox
are in better position now -- both to make the postseason and in the playoffs themselves if they get there -- than they were before yesterday's game. ...

[T]he Sox probably get the easier opponent as the wild card than they would have as division champ. The Yankees have to play the scorching Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, who have won 12 of their last 14 games and are 19-9 since Aug. 31. The Red Sox get the lukewarm White Sox, who have barely been a .500 team (36 wins and 33 losses) since July 18.
Manny Ramirez's second homer yesterday gave the Red Sox 900 runs for the third straight season. The last AL team to do that was the 1936-39 Yankees (the Rockies did it in 1999-2001).

Unless the Yankees win by 16 runs today, Boston will lead MLB in runs scored for the third consecutive year. The last teams to achieve that were the Brooklyn Dodgers (1951-53) and the Red Sox (1948-50).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Celebrate, Celebrate, Dance to the Music!

Or something like that: “He’s always battling to get good!” Francona on Schilling, in a champagne soaked locker room, to NESN’s Eric Freid.

I guess my prediction came in pretty much on the money (Schilling 7 Ip, 5r or less allowed, and a big win) (from the post,Yankees 8 Red Sox 4) so we didn’t really have to worry about Cleveland, since Schilling went 6 and only gave up one run. I’ll take that any day.

I’ve been telling people that Schill will contribute big down the stretch all season and I believe he already has. That win in New York, his bullpen work, I think his contributions have already been under-rated. Schilling’s bullpen work was crucial to the Sox backing into the playoffs.

Despite his less than stellar stats out the pen, where would we be if he hadn’t stepped up in that situation. Up shit creek without a paddle, is my guess. I’m no big Schilling fan, I just admire his intensity and his professionalism between the lines. And his ability to contribute when it counts.

Yeah, we backed into the playoffs, and thank you Cleveland for running out of gas and collapsing. We had a 4 game lead, for christsakes, and we went 16 & 12 for September while the Yanks went 19 & 7. It was ours for the taking without any eleventh hour heroics or drama. Our Red Sox did not get the job done and the Yankees did. Hats off to the Yanks and Torre, and Joe, shed all the tears you wish, you earned them all.

I continue to be surprised by the second guessing of individual plays or choices during a game, such as the comment made yesterday about the fastball Wake threw to Scheff that Scheff hit for a HR. You might as well 2nd guess any random pitch as that one. “Why, if Wake hadn’t thrown that ball on the 0 – 0 count in the ? inning then the whole game would have turned out different.” It makes as much sense. Our own lives teach us that we can’t second guess our life choices, only regret them, or thank our lucky stars. Besides, Wake was only second guessed on that pitch because of the home run: if Scheff had struck-out of even fouled it off, no mention of it being a bad choice. Wake did not place the pitch where he wanted it, that was the problem, not the choice of pitch. Wake’s fast ball is a change of pace pitch and mixes up pitch speed much like a speed-baller uses a change-up.

On NESN, Remy recounted a conversation with Francona, today, about how well the manager slept on Saturday night. Tito said that he had dreamed of basketball lay-ups and that he couldn’t make them and that he woke up around 3am. Any Freudians out there?

Looks like it will be Clement, Wells, Wake, and Schilling going up against the White Sox. What will win this series, pitching or hitting? Conventional wisdom states that pitching wins in the post-season. If you are a believer in conventional wisdom, then our Red Sox are in trouble.

I enjoyed the rant about Fox TV. They get all A’s from me, though, for their insightful coverage: A, for Abysmal, A, for Abominable, and A, for Atrocious.

It’s been my pleasure to enjoy the Sox NESN coverage this season. I’ve enjoyed it immensely. They have put together the best pre-game and post-game coverage I’ve ever seen. They have put together a wonderful team of personalities, very entertaining. A collective groan goes up all over New England whenever ESPN or FOX takes over.

Wait till Tuesday.