How to get back in this thing

joe dokes

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Bullpen roles:

It appears that Cora has moved towards using Schreiber as his setup guy and Strahm as his closer. If those roles are settled, I think that will help the rest of the pen so that the players can better mentally prepare themselves for the game situation. I know that in a perfect world these guys should be fine with being mixed and matched and used in various roles, but human nature being what it is I have long thought that for the regular season you're better off just giving them roles and sticking with that.
Sounds right. I think a rested Houck probably would've gotten some time last night.
 

Coachster

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Bullpen roles:

It appears that Cora has moved towards using Schreiber as his setup guy and Strahm as his closer. If those roles are settled, I think that will help the rest of the pen so that the players can better mentally prepare themselves for the game situation. I know that in a perfect world these guys should be fine with being mixed and matched and used in various roles, but human nature being what it is I have long thought that for the regular season you're better off just giving them roles and sticking with that.
Houck has a role, as does Hansel Robles when he returns.

Interesting that Strahm now has 3 career saves, all this season. Not a lot of experience, to be sure, but anybody who survived Neosho County Community College (I interviewed there.... the worst place I've ever been) has to be tough.
 

Rovin Romine

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An avoidable loss is still an actual loss. The 10 game road trip is now 6-1, because of our AAA lineup last night.
If the Sox become miraculously red-hot (e.g., "Story - The Sequel") and go 10-0, they'll stand at 34-27, and a 90 win target (likely a solid postseason chance) in the remaining 101 games would require 56 wins (.554):
10-0 - .554
9-1 - .564
8-2 - .574
7-3 - .584
6-4 - .594
5-5 - .604
4-6 - .614
3-7 - .624
2-8 - .634
1-9 - .644
0-10 - .654


This is the set for the more modest 87 win target, which is maybe? a 50% chance of making the postseason. Hard to factor as more teams will be trying to win late in the season:
10-0 - .525
9-1 - .535
8-2 - .545
7-3 - .555
6-4 - .564
5-5 - .574
4-6 - .584
3-7 - .594
2-8 - .604
1-9 - .614
0-10 - .624
 

DJnVa

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An avoidable loss is still an actual loss. The 10 game road trip is now 6-1, because of our AAA lineup last night.
Our ML lineup had 2 games against the Angels in last few days where they scored only a single run. Can't be too sure they would've done much better.
 

Van Everyman

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Are we going to be bumping this thread every time we lose a game we “should’ve” won?

The team has been on a roll. Last night they were facing one of the best pitchers in the game, who was pretty damn great. It’s a 162 game season and your guys need some nights off. This was as good of a time to give Xander one as any.
 
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Archer1979

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Are we going to be bumping this thread every time we lose the game we “should “won?

The team has been on a roll. Last night they were facing one of the best pitchers in the game, who was pretty damn great. It’s a 162 game season and your guys need some nights off. This was as good of a time to give Xander one as any.
This thread is probably going to be bumped after every game regardless of outcome... but that's the type of season this is.

While we all should be satisfied with taking three out of four on the road, I am a little concerned with the offense that's scored four runs in the last three games though. Seattle's pitching should be a slump-buster though.
 

Rovin Romine

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tims4wins

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I believe after last night the Sox are finally back to an even .500 in one run games despite their horrid start in that department.
 

BaseballJones

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Well, I wouldn't say he's already on one, but through his first 40 games, he was hitting .159/.248/.234/.482 (!!!), with 1 hr (1 homer every 121 PA) and 6 rbi.

Since then, in his last 14 games, he's hitting .310/.362/.71/.933, with 3 homers (1 homer every 15.7 PA) and 9 rbi.

So not nuclear, but certainly.... a hell of a lot better. The Sox are 11-3 in those 14 games, by the way. Him swinging a hot bat REALLY changes the lineup for them, because when he's on, he's basically hitting at an MVP level, but in the bottom of the lineup. Gives the opposing pitchers no breaks at all.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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Well, I wouldn't say he's already on one, but through his first 40 games, he was hitting .159/.248/.234/.482 (!!!), with 1 hr (1 homer every 121 PA) and 6 rbi.

Since then, in his last 14 games, he's hitting .310/.362/.71/.933, with 3 homers (1 homer every 15.7 PA) and 9 rbi.

So not nuclear, but certainly.... a hell of a lot better. The Sox are 11-3 in those 14 games, by the way. Him swinging a hot bat REALLY changes the lineup for them, because when he's on, he's basically hitting at an MVP level, but in the bottom of the lineup. Gives the opposing pitchers no breaks at all.
He got hot last season after Schwarber was acquired and this season after they started playing Franchy at 1B.
Seriously though- how can anyone be THAT streaky???
 

BringBackMo

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Him swinging a hot bat REALLY changes the lineup for them,
Exactly. You only get it for 40 percent of the season, but it’s insane when you get it.
Seriously though- how can anyone be THAT streaky???
It is crazy, but this is precisely who he has been during his entire time in the organization. All the way through the minors it’s been peaks and valleys.
 

tims4wins

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Was just perusing the schedule - how dumb is it that the Sox play 14 straight games against just two teams (TB and NYY) going into the break? The schedule makers couldn't have avoided that? I'm not complaining from the perspective of that stretch being hard - they have to play both teams 18x anyway no matter how you slice it - but that's just not enjoyable from a fan's perspective.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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Was just perusing the schedule - how dumb is it that the Sox play 14 straight games against just two teams (TB and NYY) going into the break? The schedule makers couldn't have avoided that? I'm not complaining from the perspective of that stretch being hard - they have to play both teams 18x anyway no matter how you slice it - but that's just not enjoyable from a fan's perspective.
Oh they carefully made sure this was happening. It’s terrible but I’m pretty certain it was designed to create a horse race.
 

Rovin Romine

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Back on fantastic track for the 10 game road trip. We're now 7-1. Although I may have to get my Arauz tattoo laser-erased, a replacement player who had some plausible expectation for success against this particular foe scored a run in a 4-3 victory.

If the Sox become miraculously red-hot (e.g., "Story - The Sequel") and go 10-0, they'll stand at 34-27, and a 90 win target (likely a solid postseason chance) in the remaining 101 games would require 56 wins (.554):
10-0 - .554
9-1 - .564
8-2 - .574
7-3 - .584
6-4 - .594
5-5 - .604
4-6 - .614
3-7 - .624
2-8 - .634
1-9 - .644
0-10 - .654


This is the set for the more modest 87 win target, which is maybe? a 50% chance of making the postseason. Hard to factor as more teams will be trying to win late in the season:
10-0 - .525
9-1 - .535
8-2 - .545
7-3 - .555
6-4 - .564
5-5 - .574
4-6 - .584
3-7 - .594
2-8 - .604
1-9 - .614
0-10 - .624
 
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Petagine in a Bottle

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Getting more innings form starters, establishing a bullpen hierarchy, using Houck in a more traditional role have all been instrumental in the team playing much better baseball, IMO. A slow start given the truncated spring training is probably not surprising and it’s nice that the frustrations of the early season are becoming more distant memories by the day. The Yankees are on a 117 win pace, that the Sox aren’t in the division race is mostly because of the Yankees.
 

Rovin Romine

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8-2. Remarkable for a west coast road trip.

Going into it, their 90-win target required a .594 clip, and the 87-win target required a .567 clip.

10 games at .500 would have raised those numbers, but the 8-2 trip has reduced them to 90: .574 and 87: .545.

They're back in it.

If the Sox become miraculously red-hot (e.g., "Story - The Sequel") and go 10-0, they'll stand at 34-27, and a 90 win target (likely a solid postseason chance) in the remaining 101 games would require 56 wins (.554):
10-0 - .554
9-1 - .564

8-2 - .574
7-3 - .584
6-4 - .594
5-5 - .604
4-6 - .614
3-7 - .624
2-8 - .634
1-9 - .644
0-10 - .654


This is the set for the more modest 87 win target, which is maybe? a 50% chance of making the postseason. Hard to factor as more teams will be trying to win late in the season:
10-0 - .525
9-1 - .535

8-2 - .545
7-3 - .555
6-4 - .564
5-5 - .574
4-6 - .584
3-7 - .594
2-8 - .604
1-9 - .614
0-10 - .624
 
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BringBackMo

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Painful. I think you’re gonna see some of the promising young fireballers come up eventually. When is the question, of course. Most have just made it to Worcester.
 

Rovin Romine

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streeter88

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I kind of think of it as a "roulette" loss. Wacha didn't last long, so Cora rolled the bullpen die 5 times. What are the odds he gets a "1" at some point with this crew?
Nice. I posted the definition of “meltdown” in the bullpen thread. When a player decreases his teams chances of winning by more than 6% by his appearing in the game.

Edit: based on the fact that Robles blew the save after having to pitch 3 days in a row after spending two weeks on the IL with back spasms, and I’m leaning toward “bonehead loss”.
 
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Rovin Romine

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Whoops - edited the AM post instead of copying it.

8-2. Remarkable for a west coast road trip.

Going into it, their 90-win target required a .594 clip, and the 87-win target required a .567 clip.

10 games at .500 would have raised those numbers, but the 8-2 trip has reduced them to 90: .574 and 87: .545.

They're back in it.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Really really hard to quibble with an 8-2 west coast swing. As Ian Browne's tweet suggests, some really good Sox teams haven't had that kind of success out there over the last 30 years. They caught those teams at just the right time, that's for sure.
 

Lose Remerswaal

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Really really hard to quibble with an 8-2 west coast swing. As Ian Browne's tweet suggests, some really good Sox teams haven't had that kind of success out there over the last 30 years. They caught those teams at just the right time, that's for sure.
This season has lead to some questionable decisions by Cora. From relying on his bullpen and pulling his starters after 50 pitches after it become apparent he had no bullpen, to batting guys like Refsnyder and Arroyo at lead off, there have been a lot of head scratchers. It kind of feels like he wants to demonstrate he is the smartest guy in the room.
Nope. Not hard at all to quibble. You'd think it would be, though
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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I'd say the only disappointing thing about the road trip is that despite going 8-2, they lost a game and a half in the standings to the Yankees (10-1). As much as it pains me to say, they're really, really good this year.
 

joe dokes

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I'd say the only disappointing thing about the road trip is that despite going 8-2, they lost a game and a half in the standings to the Yankees (10-1). As much as it pains me to say, they're really, really good this year.
NYY is steamrolling everybody. Toronto has the 6th best record in MLB and they're 8.5 back. It's easy to say the Sox took themselves out of the division race with the 4-12 stretch (after starting 7-7), but that's only part of the picture.
 

BigSoxFan

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I'd say the only disappointing thing about the road trip is that despite going 8-2, they lost a game and a half in the standings to the Yankees (10-1). As much as it pains me to say, they're really, really good this year.
Just got to get a ticket to the dance. I would love nothing more than a scrappy Sox team getting another postseason chance at a 110+ win first place Yankees team with all of the pressure on their shoulders.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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NYY is steamrolling everybody. Toronto has the 6th best record in MLB and they're 8.5 back. It's easy to say the Sox took themselves out of the division race with the 4-12 stretch (after starting 7-7), but that's only part of the picture.
Exactly. The Jays were expected to be the class of the division based on pre-season predictions, they're on a 96-win pace right now so it's not like they've been disappointing, and they're still 8.5 back through roughly 60 games. The Sox did themselves no favors with how they started, but keeping pace with the Yankees so far would take extreme over-achievement since day one. They're in a decent spot right now. They need to keep it up.
 

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If the Red Sox were in the other divisions, they'd be this far back...

AL Central 2.5
AL West 4.5
NL East 7.5
NL Central 2.0
NL West 4.5

Winning the NL East may be tough, but they'd have a decent shot at any of the others with nearly 4 months to go. It's just the Yankees making everything look worse. Somehow they have their magical pixie dust that makes washed up players superstars as soon as they're picked up. There was never a doubt that Matt Carpenter would hit like Barry Bonds as soon as they picked him up. If Rizzo went down they could sign Justin Morneau out of retirement and he'd hit 8 homers in his first month.
 

8slim

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Maybe I'm just a simple man, still fat and happy from the success of the past 18 years, but the #1 objective for me is to have the Sox be a playoff-contending team throughout the summer. Sure, I'd like more, but that's the baseline expectation. Right now they're achieving that.
 

tims4wins

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Maybe I'm just a simple man, still fat and happy from the success of the past 18 years, but the #1 objective for me is to have the Sox be a playoff-contending team throughout the summer. Sure, I'd like more, but that's the baseline expectation. Right now they're achieving that.
Had this same thought last week. There is little more depressing to me in sports than baseball season being over before the 4th of July, with nothing to pay attention to all summer long. Hopefully they can survive the 14 game stretch prior to the ASB and keep us engaged into August and September.
 

8slim

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Had this same thought last week. There is little more depressing to me in sports than baseball season being over before the 4th of July, with nothing to pay attention to all summer long. Hopefully they can survive the 14 game stretch prior to the ASB and keep us engaged into August and September.
Precisely. New England summers are tragically short, and they are so much more enjoyable when the Sox are playing well-ish. Obviously I love playoffs and pennants, but by Fall football is here, school's back in session, and life returns to its usual hectic pace. I just crave competitive baseball to follow when I can sit out on the deck with a beer.
 

CR67dream

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Nope. Not hard at all to quibble. You'd think it would be, though
Well since he made the post in the Alex Cora thread and not in here, I'd say he was (properly) discussing Cora's (somewhat puzzling) moves and not "quibbling" about the road trip. Disingenuous at best to move that quote here.
 

joe dokes

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Maybe I'm just a simple man, still fat and happy from the success of the past 18 years, but the #1 objective for me is to have the Sox be a playoff-contending team throughout the summer. Sure, I'd like more, but that's the baseline expectation. Right now they're achieving that.
Had this same thought last week. There is little more depressing to me in sports than baseball season being over before the 4th of July, with nothing to pay attention to all summer long. Hopefully they can survive the 14 game stretch prior to the ASB and keep us engaged into August and September.
Precisely. New England summers are tragically short, and they are so much more enjoyable when the Sox are playing well-ish. Obviously I love playoffs and pennants, but by Fall football is here, school's back in session, and life returns to its usual hectic pace. I just crave competitive baseball to follow when I can sit out on the deck with a beer.
Sign me up. Yesterday afternoon and early evening in the hammock with a beer and Joe Castig in a tight game was really the start of summer.
 

Archer1979

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Exactly. The Jays were expected to be the class of the division based on pre-season predictions, they're on a 96-win pace right now so it's not like they've been disappointing, and they're still 8.5 back through roughly 60 games. The Sox did themselves no favors with how they started, but keeping pace with the Yankees so far would take extreme over-achievement since day one. They're in a decent spot right now. They need to keep it up.
NYY play TB, Toronto, TB, and Houston over the next thirteen games. They've been steamrolling contenders and cupcakes alike during this stretch. I really hope the next thirteen games knock them down a little if for no reason other than seeing the NYY at the top of the standings bothers me at a visceral level.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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NYY play TB, Toronto, TB, and Houston over the next thirteen games. They've been steamrolling contenders and cupcakes alike during this stretch. I really hope the next thirteen games knock them down a little if for no reason other than seeing the NYY at the top of the standings bothers me at a visceral level.
It doesn't really matter. The Sox went 8-2 on the road trip and LOST a game in the standings. The Yankees are playing out of their minds, but the Sox are 12.5 games out because they got off to their worst start in 50 years. We'd all feel better if the gap were 6 games, but instead it's already insurmountable.

The Sox made their bed, and it's the WC or bust now.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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It doesn't really matter. The Sox went 8-2 on the road trip and LOST a game in the standings. The Yankees are playing out of their minds, but the Sox are 12.5 games out because they got off to their worst start in 50 years. We'd all feel better if the gap were 6 games, but instead it's already insurmountable.

The Sox made their bed, and it's the WC or bust now.
We've seen teams erase larger deficits in fewer remaining games than there are now, so it's not insurmountable. But it is definitely a very tall task that requires not just playing very well, but having the Yankees cool off considerably.

Absent playing out of their minds themselves since Opening Day, WC or bust was going to be the likely path regardless.
 

Archer1979

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It doesn't really matter. The Sox went 8-2 on the road trip and LOST a game in the standings. The Yankees are playing out of their minds, but the Sox are 12.5 games out because they got off to their worst start in 50 years. We'd all feel better if the gap were 6 games, but instead it's already insurmountable.

The Sox made their bed, and it's the WC or bust now.
Absolutely. Sox would be a minor miracle

It would take an epic collapse by NY now to even let Toronto or TB back in... which is why I want it to happen..
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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We've seen teams erase larger deficits in fewer remaining games than there are now, so it's not insurmountable. But it is definitely a very tall task that requires not just playing very well, but having the Yankees cool off considerably.

Absent playing out of their minds themselves since Opening Day, WC or bust was going to be the likely path regardless.
Yes, but right now it's the LAST WC spot. Not much room for error there.

It just pisses me off to see the Yankees playing .733 baseball and the Sox not in the same stratosphere. Yankees have the best record in baseball, Sox are 13th out of 30. After beating them last year in the standings and the playoffs, this wasn't the plan.
 

joe dokes

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It doesn't really matter. The Sox went 8-2 on the road trip and LOST a game in the standings. The Yankees are playing out of their minds, but the Sox are 12.5 games out because they got off to their worst start in 50 years. We'd all feel better if the gap were 6 games, but instead it's already insurmountable.
For the gap to be 6 games (lets say 38-22), the Sox would have to be on a 102-win pace; .633 winning pct. As of today, the Mets are the only not-Yankee team at that pace. So if you're saying that "if only the RedSox had the 2nd or 3rd best record in MLB, we'd all feel better," I agree with you. OTOH-If the Yankees weren't playing at a MLB-record pace but only a 108-win pace, (40-20), the Sox would be with Toronto, 8.5 games back.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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For the gap to be 6 games (lets say 38-22), the Sox would have to be on a 102-win pace; .633 winning pct. As of today, the Mets are the only not-Yankee team at that pace. So if you're saying that "if only the RedSox had the 2nd or 3rd best record in MLB, we'd all feel better," I agree with you. OTOH-If the Yankees weren't playing at a MLB-record pace but only a 108-win pace, (40-20), the Sox would be with Toronto, 8.5 games back.
The Sox have the most blown saves in baseball, if say they had 4 or 5 fewer blown saves they'd be comfortably in the middle of the WC standings.

It's the stuff on the edges that's killed them this year. For all the talk about a shortened spring training, that certainly didn't hurt the Yankees. Or the Mets, for that matter, a notoriously clownshoe operation.
 

tims4wins

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Here’s how good the Yankees have been: if the Sox matched their 2018 season, which was the best Red Sox season in most of our lifetime, they’d still be on pace to finish 12 games out!

Agree with others that a couple of avoided blown saves would provide some much needed cushion, but the bed is made at this point. Now it’s a game of holding off the other 9 teams.

And while 6th place isn’t ideal - it would mean the Sox avoid all of the other AL East teams until the ALCS. So given that the division is long gone, I’d prefer 6th to 5th or 4th, record be damned.
 

joe dokes

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The Sox have the most blown saves in baseball, if say they had 4 or 5 fewer blown saves they'd be comfortably in the middle of the WC standings.

It's the stuff on the edges that's killed them this year. For all the talk about a shortened spring training, that certainly didn't hurt the Yankees. Or the Mets, for that matter, a notoriously clownshoe operation.
I'm not sure what "comfortably in the middle" means here. 4 more wins is better, but would have them roughly tied with TB and Tor. In that case, all 3 of them would only be 3-4 games ahead of a group of 5 teams. I dont know that anyone would say that's "comfortable" in June. And maybe with a real ST the NYY play at .800.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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It's the stuff on the edges that's killed them this year. For all the talk about a shortened spring training, that certainly didn't hurt the Yankees. Or the Mets, for that matter, a notoriously clownshoe operation.
I can't speak for anyone else, but the only thing I'm willing to associate with the shortened spring training is the usage of the pitching staff (short leashes, low pitch counts for the starters, etc). What can't be blamed on the short spring training is how the offense started. The biggest difference between the Yankees and Red Sox at the end of April was offensively. The Yankees were scoring runs, and the Sox were not. It's not coincidence that the Sox' record got substantially better when the offense started producing better than 3.5 runs a game.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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The Yankees are on 120 win pace. That’s why they are so far ahead, I think you kind of have to tip your cap to them for that. Sure, the Sox could be closer if they had played better. Or they could be farther out if they had played worse.

They are clearly playoff contenders despite a lousy start, so the idea that the season was over in May has been proven to be incorrect. There’s a ton of games left, and any team that makes the playoffs has the potential to win it all. Works for me.