Monday, June 20, 2011

Monday Pythagorean, 6/20/2011

When you have a 6-0 week, there's no place to go the following week but down. And down they went, but 4-2 is a good week at any time, if your down weeks involve winning 2/3 of your games, well, you're going to win a lot of games.

  • Have they overcome that 2-10 start yet? On a pace to win 98 games, I'm thinking that the answer is a resounding "Yes."
  • It's interesting to note that run-scoring was so far down in the AL this week that Boston's 2.83 runs allowed/game was only 7th-best among the 14 AL pitching staffs. Two AL teams (Seattle and Tampa) scored fewer than two runs per game, while four more (Toronto, Cleveland, Chicago and Texas) were under three.
  • Adrien Gonzalez' 100th hit of the season was the 1000th hit of his career. And it was his 11th career triple.
  • The injuries that the Red Sox have faced thus far have been nothing like the injury storm they dealt with in 2010, but there have been issues, and a couple more cropped up this week. In fact, they put one of their top three starting pitchers, their starting left fielder and their starting shortstop onto the DL.
  • First, Carl Crawford headed to the DL with a pulled hamstring. Now Crawford has started slowly, in his Boston career, as he's hit just .243/.275/.384/.659 thus far in a Boston uniform. And even though that's largely a result of a dreadful April, he's still only .295/.318/.476/.794 since the first of May. He's had a few timely hits, but on the whole, he certainly hasn't been carrying them. Obviously, they'd rather have Crawford out there than Darnell McDonald or Josh Reddick or Mike Cameron, but for two weeks, which is all that this is expected to be, they've got adequate coverage. It shouldn't have much impact.
  • Another notable injury of the week involves the third member of the starting rotation to hit the DL, as Clay Buchholz is going to miss a couple of starts with a strained lower back. Unlike Crawford, Buchholz has been a key part to their success thus far, albeit with ERA and Win numbers which are nowhere near as good as last year's. (Which no one [OK, some people, but certainly not me, as I said on several occasions] reasonably expected him to duplicate anyway.) Like Crawford, though, the Sox have coverage. In fact, Buchholz' injury corresponds nicely to their contractual need to do something with Andrew Miller, the lefty will make his Boston debut tonight afer dominating the International League for the past couple of months.
  • And finally Jed Lowrie, who had won the starting shortstop job, and who's torrid streak in early April was one of the key catalysts that restored them to the land of the living, went down with a shoulder injury and he'll also be gone for at least a couple of weeks. And again, the Red Sox have coverage, as Marco Scutaro is a good Major League starting shortstop. It's an injury that affects depth, but should have little to no impact on team performance over the short term.
  • The offense was timely more than productive this week. For example, Kevin Youkilis (.227/.292/.545/.837) struggled, but did hit two three run homers, both of which significantly altered game situations in Boston's favor and were keys to victories. David Ortiz (.263/.440/.316/.756) got on base (6 walks) but hit for no power; Youkilis hit for power but didn't get on base. J.D. Drew (.267/.313/.267/.579) was awful, but better than every other outfielder other than Jacoby Ellsbury (.238/.304/.429/.733) (and three at-bats of Josh Reddick). On the whole, they "created" fewer than 28 runs, but managed to score 31. (For the season, they've "created" 385 and scored 381).
  • Red Sox Player of the Week - While there were a lot of mediocre, or worse, performances on the team this week, Adrian Gonzalez (.435/.519/.870/1.388) continues to demonstrate that he's worth whatever it cost to get him.
  • Red Sox Pitcher of the Week - One night after James Shields held the Red Sox scoreless in ending their nine-game winning streak, Josh Beckett returned the favor with possibly his most dominant outing in a Red Sox uniform. He was nearly perfect, as only one of the 28 Tampa batters that he faced reached first base, and that was on a weak ground ball down the third base line.

AL Pythagorean Projection Report - 4/18/2011
New York5.31(2)3.94(5)0.633(1)44264129-3
Tampa Bay4.07(10)3.82(3)0.529(4)383439331
Los Angeles3.71(12)3.86(4)0.482(10)353835380
Kansas City4.47(6)4.99(14)0.45(12)32403141-1

Top 5 projections (using current winning %)
New York9567
Tampa Bay8874

Top 5 projections (starting with today's record, using Pythagorean winning %)
New York9963
Tampa Bay8775

Standings for the week
New York6(1)3(9)0.78(1)52520
Tampa Bay1.62(14)1.15(1)0.649(6)8543-4
Los Angeles3.83(6)3(9)0.61(8)42420
Kansas City4.17(4)4.67(14)0.448(11)3324-1

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