Friday, April 08, 2005

Game 4 (2-2). Bush - League? Win 6-5.

The Sox journeyed to Rogers Centre (nee Skydome) to help the Blue Jays open their home schedule. Rogers Centre features a new, more grass-like 'Field Turf' surface.

Things you never see. The Jays opened with promising righthander Dave Bush (the poor man's Alan Sele?) and when he departed, they followed with sidewinder Brandon League. Bush - League?

Whatever became of Homer Bush anyway? The former Yankee prospect and Blue Jay second baseman had his career derailed by nagging injuries, including hip problems.

With manager Terry Francona remaining on the shelf, acting manager Brad Mills sought to extend his winning streak.

Bronson Arroyo pitched six innings yielding 3 hits, a walk, and two runs for a quality start. People 'pooh-pooh' the quality start as a statistic, but it has meaning. A quality start is any start lasting at least six innings and yielding three runs or less. David Smith produces a scholarly treatise on quality starts at Tom Tippett's Diamond Mind Baseball site. http://www.diamond-mind.com/articles/qstart.htm The point is that quality starts produce an almost seventy percent winning percentage, and only a small percentage (about 5 percent) produce 6 inning, 3 run games (4.50 E.R.A.).

Just like old times, the Red Sox provided an Earl Weaver 'two-pack' ninth inning allowing the Blue Jays to score two runs and leave the bases loaded as Keith Foulke showed uncharacteristic wildness. Nevertheless, he closed out the win for Arroyo (1-0).

Nuts and Bolts. The MarK watch. Plus ca change, plus ca la meme chose (the more things change, the more they stay the same). As of the 8th inning, Mark Bellhorn had fanned an additional 2 times, bringing his total to 9. Unfortunately, he grounded into a double play tonight, making the strikeouts look a lot more palatable. Johnny Damon swiped the Red Sox first base tonight. The Sox had 68 stolen bases in 2004 (11th) with a percentage of 69% (7th), showing how unimportant the collective statistic is. But we all remember how important Dave Roberts' stolen base, so it's no how many so much as when that counts.

Useless facts category. The Hard Rock Cafe above centerfield at Rogers Centre served absolutely the best nachos I've ever had. The Renaissance at Skydome Hotel, built in 1989, has 404 rooms, an indoor pool, and has rooms from 177 US dollars per night. Courtesy of Larry Mahnken at www.thehardballtimes.com , the Yankees fielded an All-Star at every position on opening day, and had 17 active players who have been All-Stars a collective 71 times.

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