Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Series Preview - Boston Red Sox

Pitching Matchups:
Tuesday, 7:05 - Cliff Lee v. Josh Beckett
Wednesday, 7:05 - Vance Worley v. John Lackey
Thursday, 1:05 - Cole Hamels v. Jon Lester

Beaneaters Batting:
Runs - 409 (1st)
AVG - .277 (1st)
OBP - .352 (1st)
SLG - .447 (2nd)

Holy crap. Just look at those rankings. Adrian Gonzalez is hitting .361. He and Big Papi have combined for 33 home runs and 119 RBI. Then there's the usual suspects: Youkilis, Pedroia and Ellsbury. At least Carl Crawford is on the DL.

Beaneaters Pitching:
ERA - 3.97 (17th)
WHIP - 1.28 (8th)
BAA - .238 (5th)

Josh Beckett and Jon Lester are really good. The Phils likely won't get more than 2 runs in either game. The interesting pitcher for the Sox this week is John Lackey.

John Lackey is getting paid a bunch of money (~$15 million) to be real, real bad. In eleven starts this season, Lackey is 5-6 with a 7.36 ERA. He's giving up 10+ hits per nine innings and has a K/BB ratio of 1.46. Lackey's stats have progressively gotten worse since his terrific 2007 season. Unfortunately for the Red Sox, they still owe him 3 1/2 years and over $50 million.

In the bullpen, setup man Daniel Bard is probably their best pitcher and possibly the future closer. But right now Jon Papelbon still gets the nod in the ninth inning. His fastball is slower and he gets hit a lot more as shown in his 3.90 ERA. With the Phillies closer situation up in the air due to Madson's numb hand, it could get interesting in the ninth inning for both teams in what should be a few close games.

Their Michael Martinez:
Darnell McDonald - The 32 year old has bounced around to multiple organizations since being drafted in the first round by the Orioles in 1997. Despite only 2 Major League homeruns prior to 2010, McDonald hit 9 with the Red Sox last season while hitting a respectable .270 and filling in at all three outfield positions. This season, things aren't going so well. In 46 games, he's hitting .109 with 1 homer and 3 RBI. His .330 OPS is more than 100 points lower than Michael Martinez. Ouch.

Honorable Mention - JD Drew and his .232 average.

What We're Drinking:
Corey - Troegs Sunshine Pils - My favorite summer session beer, after Miller Lite of course, is the Sunshine Pils. It's light and crisp like you would expect but with the kicked-up hops you get citrus notes and a faint bitterness not found in most German style pilsners. However, the hops are far from overpowering (which I'm sure is a disappointment to the hop heads...) and as a result this becomes a beer that can be enjoyed for many hours on long hot summer night.

Carson - Boulevard Unfiltered Wheat. Father-in-law picked me up a 12-pack of this delicious brew when he was in Missouri last month. It's a great summer beer with a citrus aroma and flavor, that refreshes the palate rather than sit heavy on it. Also, the bestselling craft beer in the Midwest.

The Phils haven't done well against the Red Sox recently. Two of three for the bad guys.


GM-Carson said...

Sunshine Pils is one of my favorite pilsners. I typically dislike that style, but Troegs puts an enjoyable spin on it.

I agree with Corey the Phils lose 2 outta 3 and might possibly get swept because the BoSox offense is amazing.

Bob D said...

Cliff Lee continue his shutout innings streak today? Throw what 10 innings???

ripjgarcia said...

Its official. Madson to DL.

Now what?

I say Bastardo. We have that Perez dude still I think to be a situational lefty earlier.

GM-Carson said...

Wow, bullpen in the matter of a week went from a plump Kathy Bates to a wafer-thin Paris Hilton. Ugh.

Corey said...

actually, it went from paris hilton to kathy bates.

ripjgarcia said...


GM-Carson said...

corey- true, if we're going on actually weight. madson lanky, carpenter (called up) is a hefty (not that there's anything wrong with that).

Preserve Jon said...

After Victorino's homerun, I made a conscious decision to relax and enjoy the rest of the season. At 50-30, the Phils are 20 games above .500 before the midway point in the season. They're on their way to 100 wins and possibly the best record in franchise history.

Sure, the bullpen is up and down and shows signs of leaking some oil with all the injuries. Sure, Oswalt has a balky back and will be out until August. And Blanton? Who knows, but he'll make a solid 4th or 5th starter on this team upon his return. Sure, they could use a power-hitting right-handed bat. But you know what? I'm not going to gloss over the minor problems this team has, but in 2011 every team has problems.

I've said it before, but over the past several years, this team has produced better in the second half. So I fully expect a team of the Phils' caliber, with the Phils' experience to play even better. The pitching is everything we hoped it would be in the offseason. Halladay, Lee and Hamels have the three best records in all of baseball and are right up there in ERA as well.

I may complain here and there, but I've decided to just sit back, watch some great baseball, and enjoy this great, great baseball team. Not to get too sentimental, but in the future I think a lot of us agree that we'll be telling our children about watching this team, much the same way my parents and grandparents told me about the teams of the 50s - early 80s.

I'm so happy to be a Phillies fan right now. I wouldn't have it any other way.

SirAlden said...

mid 70s were the teams

Aaron said...

Easily the most satisfying game the season. Lee reminded us why the all star game is always low scoring.....because good pitching beats good hitting every time.
Our offense put up a 5 spot on maybe the best pitcher in the AL so far this year!
Good D-fense. Great to see Dom Brown swinging like that against a pitcher of Beckets caliber.

In conclusion ......Beckett is still a D-bag.

GM-Carson said...

Aaron- I too think Beckett is a total douchebag. Always disliked him.

Preserve Jon- I like you extended comment. Might use it in a post for today.

Cliff Lee has put early season concerns behind him, way behind him.