Tag:Mike Timlin
Posted on: October 14, 2008 5:26 pm
Edited on: October 14, 2008 5:34 pm
 

Are the Red Sox still great? Maybe we'll find out

BOSTON -- Interesting to see how Manny Ramirez reacted when people suggested that Boston's two ALCS comebacks (in 2004 and 2007) should give hope to the Dodgers, who are now down three games to one to the Phillies.

"That's in Boston," Ramirez told reporters at Dodger Stadium. "That was a great team."

The Red Sox famously rallied from a 3-0 deficit against the Yankees in '04, and came back from 3-1 down against the Indians last year. But as Manny said, those were great teams.

Now the Sox down two games to one to the Rays, with the chance that they could fall behind 3-1 tonight.

Of course they could come back from that. But is this still a great team?

One thing's for sure. It's not the same team. There are only four players left from the '04 team (Tim Wakefield, David Ortiz, Jason Varitek and Mike Timlin). There are 17 players back from last year.

But Manny is gone, of course. Mike Lowell is missing due to injury, and the Red Sox said today that Lowell will have surgery on his hip next week. Josh Beckett seems to be hurting (although the Red Sox continue to deny it), and Ortiz may be hurting, too.

Are they great? Maybe we'll find out.

*****

With Jacoby Ellsbury hitless in his last 20 at-bats, Red Sox manager Terry Francona went to Coco Crisp in center field tonight, and went to J.D. Drew as his leadoff hitter.

Drew has led off 59 times in his career, including 17 times for the Red Sox in 2007 and eight times this year.

"Last year we hit him leadoff to get him going," Francona said. "This year, it was more out of necessity."

The reason today, Francona said, is that Rays starter Andy Sonnanstine holds runners on so well that it's almost pointless to have a base-stealing threat in the leadoff spot. There were only four steals attempted while Sonnanstine was on the mound this year, and just one was successful.

 

 
 
 
 
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