Blog Entry

Wk 10 AL East: Athletic Sox roll past rivals

Posted on: June 12, 2011 11:15 am
Week 10 in the East:   Athletic Socks roll past rivals

Boston Red Sox       (32-26) --> (38-26)   wk 6-0
New York Yankees   (32-24) --> (35-27)   wk 3-3   2 back
Tampa Bay Rays       (30-28) --> (34-30)   wk 4-2   4 back
Toronto Blue Jays      (29-29) --> (32-33)   wk 3-4   6.5 back
Baltimore Orioles       (26-30) --> (30-32)   wk 4-2   7 back

Red Sox swept, but the division is hanging close.  A NY ouch with bruises.  The surprise is that everyone is nearby, with the uncertainty of interleague games ahead.  How well have the Sox played?  Over the last 7 days, they hit 124 points better than opponents (the next best team was only at 67 points), scored 31 more runs, 6 wins, slugged at 550, and pitched to an ERA of 3.50.  Best yet, these were on the road where they haven't usually played as well as at home, and against AL East rivals.  Add sunscreen for the Rays.

I had warned that their hitting with RISP was due to get better  -  last month it was 220, 37 points *below* their BA then of 257.  Now it's up 38 points to 258 with a BA rise of 17 points. The true value theory at work, along with the resulting surge in runs.  They still have too many runners left on base.  For now.  

How does the streak hold up against NL pitching in Milwaukee, San Diego, Pittsburgh and Philadelphia (I won't mention Houston)?   How well do the starters hold up at the plate... shades of Chin Ming Wang?  But the standings reflect what we all expected:  Good hitting leads a close division, with improvement possible on the pitching side.  The DL is getting crowded everywhere  -  buy stock in TJ surgery.  Does anyone have emerging AAA phenom's?  Bring 'em.

About 100 games to go so no one should be crowing.  Enjoy the nitrous injection and hold the wheel tight.  Theme of the week seems like Hit That Batter.  Hold the hamstrings and pray.

Category: MLB

Since: Aug 14, 2009
Posted on: June 16, 2011 9:14 am

Wk 10 AL East: Athletic Sox roll past rivals

Yankees put up a 2nd 12-4 beatdown on a good set of Texas pitchers, with Tex homering from both sides of the plate (and flashing the leather as well) and both subs Nunez and Pena going deep.  Message to the codgers?  How's ARod feeling?

Meanwhile, Beckett 1 hits the tidal bay x-devilrays apparently deciding to hold off the meltdown until after the hockey parade.  Congrats Boston Brewin's - hope the duckboats don't mae traffic a mess.

The Jays and Rays are hanging in as well, so the AL East continues to show why it's elite.  Look at the era / slugging of these 5 teams.  It's not close so don't even try to argue.

Since: Aug 14, 2009
Posted on: June 15, 2011 11:42 am

Wk 10 AL East: Athletic Sox roll past rivals

A HUGE gold nugget in the Boston sluice box StatGuy, biggest one I've found this year

Fool's gold?  So much for that nugget as the Red Sox get shut out 4-0 by Shields as the Yankees beat a 7-0 pitcher 12-4.  Nice to see the Yanks hitting with runners on to erase the embarrassment of that last Cleveland 1-0 shutout where they (and Swisher in particular) left a small city on base.

 2 more 'normal" games before the weirdness begins:  no DH, pitchers hit, and NL managers do double swaps.  Wrigley here we come.

Since: Aug 14, 2009
Posted on: June 14, 2011 9:33 am

Wk 10 AL East: Athletic Sox roll past rivals

How well have the Sox been playing?

Last 7 day theys have been #1 in MLB by a long shot.  Fans better enjoy the ride while it last since these kind of numbers are brief.  Boston Red Sox:  BA better than opponents = 145, Run differencial = 41, 6 wins, Slugging = 583, ERA = 3.17.  BA-Risp has come up 42 points in a month or so.  BA up about 20 points.

Room for improvement?  1st in slugging, 20th in ERA.  Runners left on base is 2nd most in MLB.

I hate to say it, but I foresee pitchers with hammy issues in interleague baserunning.  By the way, will we see Ortiz play 1st?  Pinch runner, maybe?

Since: Jul 1, 2009
Posted on: June 12, 2011 6:29 pm

Wk 10 AL East: Athletic Sox roll past rivals

The Red Sox go to Tropicana Field, a tough place for the Red Sox.

Maddon had the series on his mind because he set his rotation up pretty well.

5-4 Shields, who has a low 2.85 ERA.
7-4 Hellickson, 3.03 ERA. Will he rebound from an ugly loss in Baltimore
     after getting AL Pitcher and Rookie of the Month in May?
7-5 Price, 3.51 ERA, who has always been tough on Boston.

Big schedule advantage for the Red Sox. The Rays were looking at a day-off, at home,
after a ten-game road trip, to rest up for the series. MLB scheduled a make-up game, in Detroit,
on the Rays way home. The make-up game makes the road trip an 11-gamer with no rest before the
Boston series. On top of that, the Detroit make-up game is a late game.

A HUGE gold nugget in the Boston sluice box StatGuy, biggest one I've found this year.

If Joe Maddon halts the Red Sox rampage in this series, I'm going to rename the man.

Since: Jun 9, 2008
Posted on: June 12, 2011 1:51 pm

Wk 10 AL East: Athletic Sox roll past rivals

Great insight, i think you could use the example of Bucholz instead of Wang to highlight your point. The hitting is going to be there and you are correct about the runners left on base. When averaging over 5 runs a game even with the crappy start they will win a lot of games even while leaving all the runners on base. The Red Sox have always done well in the interleague games so i wouldnt be to worried about those games, though i will be fun to see the series against the Phillies. Hopefully the Orioles arent on the schedule any time soon. They seem to own the sox the last few years.

Since: Jul 1, 2009
Posted on: June 12, 2011 12:53 pm

Wk 10 AL East: Athletic Sox roll past rivals

Pleasant read StatGuy, thank you once again.

Hope the Yankees don't drop because of injuries. It was painful watching the Sox go through that last year. However, it was exciting, right upto the end, watching Francona work his line-up, with all the different things they tried, to counter the injury bug. Cashman and Girardi will do the same if the bug decides to hang around. If Cano takes off, watch-out.

Every team in this league is fiesty. Red Sox having their way in Rogers Centre this trip but it was a big setback when Toronto swept Boston in the two-game set their previous trip there. Sox caught the Jays with an off Bautista, he may be hurting, was holding his back after a couple of swings yesterday. Any team who believes the Blue Jays don't play good ball will pay for it.

Great series going on between the Orioles and the Rays right now, dogfight. 

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