Sunday, April 8, 2012

The Sun Did Rise...

No question yesterday was a frustrating day for Sox fans.  You know with Josh Beckett pitching batting practice for the Tigers and all.   While yesterday was filled with the optimism that we would bounce back from an opening day loss, today it is much harder to be optimistic.  According to multiple interviews the players are all saying the right things: "it's just two games", but for the fans it harder to feel that way after what we experienced last year.  Right now it feels like last years start all over again and we all have the memories of last year fresh in our minds so a repeat seems inevitable.  Similar to last year's start it seems as though all of the Sox weaknesses have been exposed in the first two games and none of the opponent's have surfaced.

As easy as it would be to equate last year's start and lasts year's finish to this year it doesn't have to be that way.  It is a different season and there will certainly be different results (that's the scary part).  It feels like this team could spend the season fighting for 4th place with the Orioles or they certainly have the ability to fight for a playoff spot (thank goodness for the 2nd wild card spot).  We don't know what's going to happen all we can do is watch the games and hope for the best!!

Here are a few of the hot topics facing us today:
Is Bobby V capable of righting the ship?
Where do you think the Sox are going to finish in the AL East?
How badly do the Sox need Crawford to come back and can he be the player he was in Tampa?
Is Beckett a lost cause and this year's Lackey? (pun intended)

Let's hash out these topics and more in the comments section...

11 comments:

  1. It certainly has not been the beginning we were hoping for. But despite yesterday crapfest it is JUST TWO GAMES' only one of which was a stinker. The offense which by all accounts, even by the pundits not picking the Sox for the playoffs, will be among the best in MLB has scored in ONE inning out of 18. I picked the Sox to win the division two games ago and I still do. I will grant you if the offense scores in only in 1 of 18 innings or anything approximating that they will be in trouble and yes maybe a 4th place team.. But the offense won't be that bad, and neither will the Sox. If these two games were in the middle of July no one will even blink.

    If Beckett tosses meatballs again in his next start ( see my comment under yesterday's Game 2 thread about the home opener) then we can BEGIN to talk about Beckett and the Chin in the same breath.

    It would be nice to have Carl C back as soon as he is healthy, but they do not need the Tampa CC. They just need him to not be the 2011 CC.

    I think the jury is still out on Bobby V's off the field ability to handle this team. Something to watch going forward. But the more the lose at the beginning, the more he will try to show how smart he is. Example, apparently today's lead off hitter is NICK PUNTO
    And he is in for Youk. Youk is a topic for discussion soon.

    Since I am 0 for 2 predicting Sox wins. let me just say the Sox will return home next Friday at 3-3.

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    1. It certainly is only two games and we've got to consider the opponent. The Tigers are very good well at least their 3-4 hitters are very good (reminds me of days of Manny and Papi). It will be nice to get out of Detroit however. They need to find a way to win this one today. It's now 7-7 in the 4th.

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  2. I like having Jacoby in the 2 hole instead of the lead off spot if he can even come close to hitting this year like he did last year. He will have the opportunity at #2 to get more RBI's. I also like Pedroia in the 3 spot, Gonzalez in the cleanup spot, and Ortiz in the five hole. I would drop Youk into the 7 or even 8 hole until he gets straightened out. But this brings me back around to the top of the order...clearly Nick Punto is not going to be a long-term answer. I do think he could do something to spark the offense today (despite lining out to short in his first AB), but he is obviously on our bench for most of the year. And so I believe our leadoff hitter for 2012 should be Carl Crawford. He should be in a spot in the order where is trying to get on base, not trying to drive runners in. If he can get on base with his speed and Ells, Pede, Gonz, and Papi coming up, he could score a ton of runs. He is wasted as the #6 hitter. The best OBP guys in our lineup ahead of him there and also clog up the bases in front of him with our slowest runners. So I believe our "everyday" lineup for 2012 should be:

    Crawford LF
    Ellsbury CF
    Pedroia 2B
    Gonzalez 1B
    Ortiz DH
    Ross LF
    Youkilis 3B
    Salty C
    Aviles SS

    What do you all think?

    As for today's game...we need to find a way to get a lead. And, without question, we need Buchholz to be strong. My prediciton: Sox 5 Tigers 4

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  3. End of 3; 7-5 Sox. The offense has come alive and not a second too late!

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  4. 9-7 Sox in the middle of the 7th. I believe I got the poll question right from the live chat yesterday. AGon with the first home run of the year for the Sox. I really went out an a limb with that one ;)

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  5. In reference to Crawford's slot in the order. I have felt since last winter that he needs to be near the top of the lineup. Supposedly, he prefers 2nd or 3rd no leadoff. But after a year or bouncing around and hitting mostly seventh, leadoff would likely look pretty damn good to him. I like the idea of Carl and Jacoby back to back wreaking havoc on the bases. My ideal would be

    Ellsbury
    Crawford
    Pedroia
    Gonzalez
    Ortiz
    Youk
    Ross/Sweeney
    Salty
    Aviles

    But I have no problem dropping Youk to 7th behind the RF platoon if he is still struggling. I actually wondered today if trying Punto at leadoff, as well as some of the miscellaneous leadoff hitters in ST (Aviles, Youkikis) was not an attempt to "bookmark" the top spot for Crawford when he is ready. I think the upside of a productive Crawford is worth the risk of pushing some or all of the rest of the top of the lineup down a spot. Pedroia for one would be just as effective at 3 hole as second.

    They need to hang on today's game, disappointing Buchholz outing ( although at least he was back on the mound) but Padilla is giving them a vintage 2011 Aceves performance.

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  6. We Have a full blown bullpen crisis a la 2003

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  7. it certainly appears that Aceves is not gonna be the guy

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    1. It's not gonna be Melancon either. So the two guys who were supposed to pitch the 8th and 9th innings just went down in flames.

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  8. We either have a full blown bullpen crisis or the Tigers have the greatest offense since '27 Yankees. If someone wrote this start as fiction no one would believe it. For those calling for Bard as closer... other than Lester, he and Doubront have a chance to pitch the best game first time around the rotation.

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  9. Stephen King had to write this script. I don't know what to think about this team right now. I do think that we all under estimated the Bailey injury because of our blind optimism in the hours leading up to opening day. I know I did. We are a closer away from being 2-1.

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