Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Boston 13, Toronto 12

Odds and ends...
  • When the Red Sox scored four in the third inning to take a 5-0 lead over Toronto last night, I thought of what I'd written yesterday morning, that they haven't had a comfortable victory yet this year, and briefly considered that this might be the first, but decided it was far too early, and Beckett's been far too shaky, to start thinking about it right then. Beckett's performance quickly validated the skepticism.
  • They're now 5-2 in their last seven games. Each of the five wins was by exactly one run. That's not a formula for long-term success, but it is the way to significant overperformance of your pythagorean record.
  • Dave O'Brien, in the top of the fourth inning: "Josh has had a night almost as bad as Eveland." Me: "Almost? Beckett's still in the game - it could very well end up being worse." Each starter ended up going 3+ innings, sriking out and walking three and throwing almost the same number of pitches (Eveland 82, Beckett 83). Beckett allowed one more hit and one more run. So, as I feared, it was actually the case that Eveland was almost as bad as Beckett, rather than the other way around...
  • Josh Beckett has been bad. Very, very bad. His second start was OK, the third very good, but the other three have been dreadful. On the season, he's now allowed 50 baserunners by hit or walk in fewer than 29 innings pitched. His ERA after five starts is 7.22.
  • Dave O'Brien, in the fourth inning: "This has been an off night for Beckett." Me: "Is that 'off' as in 'offal' or 'awf' as in 'awful?'"
  • Hidecki Okajima has been every bit as bad as Beckett, and his inability to get anyone out last night meant that it ended up closer than it needed to be, AND Bard had to pitch again. Is Okajima hurt? Is he done? Is the magic entirely gone? Or is it just a slump? Whatever the cause of the ineffectiveness, they can't keep getting that performance in key spots and be successful.
  • There were bright spots last night. Delcarmen, Bard and Papelbon combined to give them four perfect innings. Scutaro, Pedrioa, Youkilis and Beltre all had productive nights. They won, despite allowing 12 runs, because they managed to score 13. They took a lead early, they built on a lead, they came back from a deficit - all of this is good. But if the pitching doesn't get fixed, none of it matters.

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