The Baseball Desert

Friday, May 04, 2007

How do you like me now?

Is it me, or have the Sox won a bunch of games so far that they had no real right to win?

A five-run first inning for the Mariners? No problem - we'll just put up five of our own in the second... Matsuzaka only going five innings? Also no problem - we'll just get our relievers - sans Papelbon and Okajima - to throw four innings of one-hit baseball...

I was going to say that at some point these charmed wins are going to stop coming, but maybe they're not as lucky as they seem. The pitching has been solid, and on the occasions when it's been only so-so, the Sox have proved that they're willing to grind / wait it out as a team until the right moment comes along.

If you have any doubt that it is all about pitching, pitching and more pitching, just look at the stats. The Sox and Yankees have almost identical team batting averages: .270 to .272, despite the Yankees having 4 of the top 15 batting averages in the AL (A-Rod, Jeter, Posada, Giambi) to the Red Sox' one (Lowell). The Yankees have scored just 7 more runs than the Sox (150 to 143), but they've given up 31 more, and the Sox' team ERA is a very tidy 3.50, good for the fourth spot in the majors, whilst the Yankees' team ERA is 4.67, good for twenty-sixth.

Anyway, on to the Dome to face the Twins. Someone tell Papi to go easy on the monster home runs, 'cos in Minnesota, they only count for one base. Still, that incident led to one of the definitive quotes on the Metrodome, so it wasn't a complete washout:
"It's like playing putt-putt golf where you've got to go around the windmill," said manager Terry Francona.
So let's putt-putt 'em to death tonight, gents, one easy single at a time.

Obsessive Anal-Retentive Game Counter: 25