Friday, March 12, 2010

Time to Get Back into It

Where does one begin when discussing baseball? Oddly enough, perhaps the Jim Bouton opus magnum, Ball Four is the starting point. Bouton's work exposed the clubhouse and its denizens as frequently immature men playing a boys' game. He concludes however, with the observation that you spend your life with a grip on the ball, when really it's the other way around.

And so it is with being a fan, locked in a grip of men whom you know intimately but really not so well. Those whom we thought we knew well, sometimes turned out to be mere mortals, losing easy temptation to alcohol, hard medicine, and soft women.

But  spring brings renewal, and so the Red Sox launch this decade with a new emphasis on the skill set of run prevention, rather than their 'atavistic' approach of the three run homer.

We expect the trio of Beckett, Lester, and Lackey to put up fifty wins...and the best 'raw stuff' on the staff might belong to the youngster of the group, Clay Buchholz, with the potential for three plus pitches.

The defense has strength at every position except one, where Victor Martinez' offense outweighs his defensive prowess. What is this likely to mean?

Tom Tippett's Diamond Mind has a relatively proven track record of forecasting season results. One early projection has the Red Sox finishing second in the AL East. This occurs with the Sox allowing more runs than the Yankees and the Mariners.

Random thoughts.

  • I expect the Red Sox to have a more potent offense this season than last, with more Martinez, and more production from short, second, and DH to compensate for the loss of Jason Bay.
  • Boo Bay? Why? Because he made a business decision that was best for his family?
  • I can understand Mike Lowell's frustration, but from a business decision, he made out well.
  • Will Jonathan Papelbon be a multipitch pitcher or something else?
  • I still marvel at how Hideki Okajima gets people out with what seems like underwhelming stuff.
  • Will Beltre's defense be as advertised?
  • Don't go away mad; just go away...I don't have a problem with Nomar, or Dan Shaughnessy's critique of the lovefest.
  • Would Jeremy's fans be Hermida's Hermits?

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