Monday, August 18, 2014

Monday pythagorean - 8/18/2014

4-2 on the week. "Too little, too late" is apparently the way the Red Sox are going to play the rest of the way...
  • Offensively, this was one of Boston's best week's of the year, as they were third in the AL with 5.167 runs scored per game.

  • That was offset somewhat by the weak pitching. De la Rosa and Kelly both had very tough starts against Houston over the weekend. The offense bailed Rubby out on Saturday, but they did nothing on Sunday in Kelly's first Boston start in an AL park, leading to a bad loss.

  • So, there's a theory that moving Bogaerts from 3B to SS "broke" him, screwed him up, that he went from a good hitter to a bad hitter because he moved 45 feet to the right on defense. It's pretty clear, at this point, that, if he was, in fact, "broken" by the move to 3rd, he wasn't "fixed" by moving back to SS. This is what his season looks like by defensive position in order:
  • Xander Bogaerts (SS) (.296/.389/.427/.816, 33.08 runs created, 5.70 RC/25 outs)
  • Xander Bogaerts (3B) (.182/.217/.300/.517, 8.26 runs created, 1.40 RC/25 outs)
  • Xander Bogaerts (SS) (.115/.172/.154/.326, -.06 runs created, -.03 RC/25 outs)
  • If he has to be a shortstop, and that's the issue, then he should be better now, and he isn't - he's worse. (It's also worth noting that his first week at third was outstanding - Xander Bogaerts [.318/.375/.682/1.057, 5.52 runs created, 9.20 RC/25 outs]). If he can't handle a defensive shift mentally, then he's not going to be the player that we all thought he was going to be. More likely, in my mind, is that the initial shift over to third roughly coincided with Major League scouting and pitching realizing that he can't hit a slider, and he's seen pretty much nothing but since.

  • Bogaerts' defense at short also figured prominently in both of the Sox' losses this week. On Friday night, they had a one-run lead with two outs and two on in the 8th. On a ground ball to SS, he shoveled the ball (late) to Pedroia, rather than taking the almost certain out at first, and the tying run scored in a game that Boston would lose in the 10th. On Sunday, he threw the ball to first before stepping on the bag at second, costing them the double play which should have ended the 2nd inning. Instead, the inning stayed alive, with two men on, and Kelly proceeded to allow a walk and a grand slam. Instead of 2-0, it was 6-0, and the game was effectively over. Now, it's certainly not Bogaerts' fault that Kelly was horrible, but giving teams extra outs results in bad things more often than not, and it was a bad mental mistake - there's no excuse for making the throw before touching the base in that situation.

  • One of the positives last week was the performance of Rubby de la Rosa and Joe Kelly in three excellent starts, combining to allow just three runs in 20 innings. In three starts this week, they combined to allow 15 runs in 14 innings.

  • In the 10 starts since coming off of the DL, Clay Buchholz has an ERA of 4.86. Better than before he went on the DL, of course, but not what they need from him if he's going to be the veteran presence in the rotation.

  • Yesterday's replay leaves me wondering what, exactly, is the definition of the "neighborhood play." Farrell certainly blew his top after replay confirmed that Bogaerts threw to first before stepping on second, and extended the inning. MLB has said that the "neighborhood play" is not reviewable, but I'm not aware of a specific definition of what qualifies. There's no question but that Bogaerts never touched second base with possession of the ball, but for player safety reasons, umpires don't always require that, and MLB doesn't want them to. So what, exactly, would qualify? Had the runner been closer to the bag, would that have done it? If Bogaerts had gotten his foot down beside the bag before releasing, would that have done it? What are the criteria? One understands Farrell's frustration, though it should mostly have been aimed at his pitcher.

  • Has any other manager garnered multiple ejections for arguing calls post-replay? Farrell's done it at least twice now.

  • Red Sox Player of the Week - Several good performances this week, from David Ortiz (.350/.409/.700/1.109, 5.29 runs created, 10.18 RC/25 outs) and Brock Holt (.333/.429/.417/.845, 4.66 runs created, 6.86 RC/25 outs) and Mike Napoli (.357/.500/.643/1.143, 3.99 runs created, 9.97 RC/25 outs). The best performance came from Daniel Nava (.500/.526/.778/1.304, 5.61 runs created, 14.02 RC/25 outs)

  • Red Sox Pitcher of the Week - Clay Buchholz had another good outing, allowing two runs in seven innings against the Astros. But that's not a special performance, just good. So I'm going to go with Burke Badenhop, who has been effective all year, and threw 3 2/3 perfect innings over four appearances this week.
AL Pythagorean Projection Report - 8/18/2014
LA Angels4.7(2)3.99(6)0.575(3)705272502
Kansas City4.12(9)3.89(5)0.527(6)655868553
Tampa Bay3.97(13)3.78(3)0.522(7)65596163-4
NY Yankees3.94(14)4.25(8)0.466(10)576563596
Chicago Sox4.29(6)4.73(13)0.455(12)566859653
Top 5 projections (using current winning %)
LA Angels9666
Kansas City9072
Top 5 projections (starting with today's record, using Pythagorean winning %)
LA Angels9567
Kansas City8973
Standings for the week
Tampa Bay4.86(6)2(3)0.835(2)6143-2
LA Angels4.6(7)3.2(5)0.66(4)32411
Kansas City5(4)4.43(6)0.555(6)43521
Chicago Sox5(4)5(9)0.5(9)32320
NY Yankees2.6(13)5(9)0.232(13)14231

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