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Posts Tagged ‘Jake Westbrook’

Bring on the Rockies!

Posted by Brad on October 22, 2007

The Sox won Game Seven of the 2007 ALCS yesterday by a score of 11-2, to move on to the World Series against the surprise (understatement) of the year, the Colorado Rockies.  Dice-K pitched surprisingly well in the win.  Jake Westbrook also pitched well, but the bullpen pitched horribly (well, mostly Betancourt).

Dice-K went a solid five innings, giving up two runs on only six hits and struck out three.  Although there were some moments where you could have been concerned that the Indians would break out for a couple runs, he was able to get out of trouble (finally, he has done that).  Then Hideki Okajima (the Okie-Dokie) came in in the sixth and pitched 2+ shutout innings, giving up only three hits.  Then, Jonathan Papelbon pitched a one hit eighth and ninth, do get his first career two out save, and a berth in the Series (not to mention a little jig, afterward).  They walked nobody, meaning they haven’t walked anyone for two straight games.

The Indians pitching staff got a great start from the starter, Jake Westbrook, who went six innings, giving up nine hits and three runs while striking out five.  But, then Rafael Betancourt came in.  He came in and gave up seven runs (six earned) in only one and two-thirds innings.  This is why they lost.  Jensen Lewis gave up one run in one and a third innings.

The Sox bats came alive for the second straight game.  Dustion Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis went three for five, Mike Lowell was two for three, Jason Varitek was three for four (finally he did something) along with a few one for threes.  The game was broken open when Dustin Pedroia hit a two run homer in the seventh inning off Betancourt.  Youk also chipped in a homer in the eighth.  Pedroia had five RBI on the night, Youk had two, and Manny, Lowell and J.D. Drew (finally heating up, alleluia) had on apiece.

The Indians bats got a good amount of hits, but they hurt themselves by leaving seven runners on base in the course of the game.  Every player had a hit except Victor Martinez (very surprising… he’s done well), who was 0-4 and left two runners on base.  They got RBIs from Grady Sizemore and Ryan Garko, who were 1-3 and 1-4, respectively.

Okajima really saved us last night.  His doible play in the seventh inning was a big turning point.  Another was when Kenny Lofton did not score on a double into left field.  He was on second and a double was hit into left.  He was rounding third and did not score, and this was a HUGE mistake at the time.  And, Coco made a nice over the shoulder catch to end the game.  This was a nice way to cap off a great defensive year for him (I don’t expect hime to play much in the Series). 

We are almost spoiled here in Boston, as we all expected them to be able to get this series done.  It was never a matter of “if”, but when.  This team has worked hard and deserves to be where they are (I know, get on with it, but I can’t say how bad someone did, they did great so I have to put something here).  Hopefully they’ll be able to bring home another championship.

I actually hope that it snows during the series up in Colorado.  Wouldn’t it be great if it started snowing and we won the Series in the snow.  We’d see Manny making snow angels (just Manny being Manny), throwing Josh Beckett in the snow and more.  Unfortunately, they’d probably call off the game before that happened (darn it, I thought we’d see that…).  Anyway, congrats to the Sox.

Now, lets take our minds off the thought of snow and back to the weather here in Boston (80 degrees today).  As we prepare to begin the World Series, the Sox really helped themselves yesterday.  Since Beckett didn’t have to pitch, he’ll be able to in Game One on Wednesday.  So, we’ll have the rotation the way it should be for the series.

I think this is going to be a quick series.  Although the Rockies have that home field advantage (of snow) in games 3-5, I think we’ll win all the games here, and we’ll only have to take a few on the road.  This should be a 4-5 game series (at least, I hope, my stress level is only now decreasing).  I expect it to be similar to the Series in ’04, quick with some mistakes from the other team (i.e. pitcher getting caught in rundown at third, *coughs* Jeff Suppan *coughs*).

I think Josh Beckett is a guaranteed win in Game One Wednesday (even though he goes up against a very underrated Jeff Francis), and Schilling should be able to pick up the win in game two, going against Ubaldo Jimenez (who?).  When the series shifts, though, I am worried about D-Mat (as usual…).  Luckily, he should be able to get it done, for the Rockies bats have been bad in the playoffs, their pitching has gotten them through the playoffs.  As for Wake, his knuckle will dance in the snow in Denver, and the Sox should win the series.

The Rockies do have a pretty good offense, though.  They have young players like Matt Holliday, Garret Atkins, Kaz Matsui and Troy Tulowitski.  Although Atkins and Tulowitski have been slow (combined .182) in the playoffs, you have to be wary they will break out of their slump (they ARE good players…).  Although I think we will win in four or five, I am not taking them for granted.  I would NOT be surprised if they make it a series, but I don’t expect it.

So, we believed in the Sox all the way (so we say, lets face it, did we…?) and they got it done for us.  I think they have proven to us they can get it done even when down by a large margin.  So, keep believing and… BRING ON THE ROCKIES!

By the way: BC ranked number two in BCS standings, play Virginia Tech on Thursday night. 

Talk at ‘ya later.


Posted in Curt Schilling, Daisuke Matsuzaka, David Oriz, Jacoby Ellsbury, Josh Beckett, Manny Ramirez, Red Sox, Tim Wakefield, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Pats Roll Over ‘Fins, Sox Game Six, Sox Game Seven, B’s Win

Posted by Brad on October 21, 2007

Big day in Boston Sports.  Not only did the Patriots play the Dolphins earlier today, but the Sox are playing the Indians in Game Seven of the 2007 ALCS.  It sure is a big day in Boston.

The Pats played the Dolphins earlier on today, and absolutely dominated (steamrolled, creamed, destroyed, etc) them by a final score of 49-28.  Unforunately, the score does not indicate the actual murdering that the Pats put on the Dolphins.  And, Tom Brady had a monstrous day.

Tom Brady went 21/25 for 354 yards and an unprecedented six touchdowns.  He had a perfect passer rating of 153.3, the eighteenth man to do this in the history of the NFL.  By the way, he had limited action in the second.  I’m not going to explain the math of the passer rating to you, because that would take an entire post, but it is really hard.  If you really care, check out Wikipedia (just don’t try doing it yourself, it’s a pain).  He was unbelievable.  Wes Welker had another huge game, with nine catches for 138 yards and two TDs, as he made his return to Miami.  Randy Moss had a huge game, with four catches for 122 yards and two TDs.

Cleo Lemon actually had a pretty good game as the Dolphins quaterback.  He went 24/37 for 236 yards and one interception.  It’s no 153.3 passer rating (it’s actually 71.5) but it’s still pretty good for a backup with no Chris Chambers anymore.  Ronnie Brown rushed for 76 yards on 17 carries (he left game in third) and Jesse Chatham ran for 73 yards on only seven carries.

Rodney Harrison had seven tackles and one sack in the game.  Tedy Bruschi also had ten tackles.  Randall Gay had an interception for the Pats defense.  Laughingly, Matt Cassel came in and was 0/2 with one interception that went for a TD (a passer rating of zero).  Nonetheless, Tom Brady came back into the game as that made the game 42-21. 

Since the Pats played an almost perfect game, all I can talk about is how bad the NFL passer rating system is (verrrrrrrry bad).  Although it makes sense, the system they use in college is better.  Tom Brady came into the game with a perfect passer rating and threw a touchdown.  But, it can’t go up (because he was at the Maximum, for you lazy readers).  That is the problem, the NCAA has a max rating of 1,261.6 and a minimum of -200.  This is better because it is almost impossible to do (How do you do it?  Throw a 99 yard TD on EVERY pass attempt).  This makes much more sense because you can improve.  I would suggest using the NCAAs system so it makes more sense.  It essentially has no maximum, so if you do something like Brady did, it actually goes up.

Anyway, moving onto the Red Sox.  They beat the Indians last night in Game Six of the ALCS by a score of 12-2.  Curt Schilling threw a great Game Six, which also gives us some bullpen flexibility for Game Seven (see below).  We also got some help from a former enemy…

Yes, I admit it.  J.D. Drew won Game Six for us (please pause as I rinse my mouth out with soap… thank you).  No matter how you look at it, he is the reason why we won.  He went 3-5 with a Grand Slam in the first and five RBIs.  He was the player of the game (along with Curt Schilling, of course).  According to MY scoring (I’m tough on guys…), Kevin Youkilis was 3-4 with one RBI and two runs.  My man Jacoby Ellsbury was 1-5 with an RBI single (he makes stuff happen!).  He also had a line shot that would have been three bases, but Grady Sizemore made a spectacular catch.  Julio Lugo was 1-4 with an RBI base hit (really?).  Manny Ramirez broke up his 15 game hit streak in ALCS games.  He and Varitek were the only guys without a hit (wait, J.D and Julio played well, but Manny didn’t?  The world is coming to an end).  Varitek was the only guy not to score a run, and he, Big Papi and ‘Youk were the only ones not to score in the third, in which they scored six runs.

Curt Schilling went seven innings, giving up six hits  and two runs while striking out five batters.  He picked up the win in a game in which he gave up a homer to Victor Martinez and an RBI sac fly to Jhonny Peralta.  In a game that could have been his last start, Curt cam through.

The Indians batters did not look good.  Victor Martinez was 2-4, Ryan Garko 1-4, Trot Nixon 2-3 and Casy Blake 1-3.  Those were all the hits the Indians could muster off of Schill, Javier Lopez and Eric Gagne (see below).  Their first three batters (Sizemore, Cabrera, Hafner) were a combined 0-12 with two strikeouts.  If the Indians want to win, they’ll have to play better than that.  The Red Sox pitching also gave up ZERO walks, which is encouraging.

As for Eric GAGne.  He was able to prevent himself from gagging last night.  He pitched a perfect night (God forbid).  And he was facing the heart of their order (Hafner, Martinez, Garko).  Of course, though, he wasn’t able to do this in the eleventh inning of Game Two (not that I’m still holding a grudge).  Also, Jacoby almost made a great play in center field on a Ryan Garko liner.  He backed up to the wall, leaped, and the ball went off his glove.  Why is this relevant?  The idiot Tim McCarver thinks Crisp would have made the play (HAHAHA Tim, you’re hilarious).  He wouldn’t have, trust me.  Jacoby is as good of a fielder.

Now, lets do a quick preview of the Red Sox Game Seven matchup.  Dice-K will be going up against Jake Westbrook at the Fens tonight at 8:00.  Westbrook pitched really good in Game Three, going 6.2 innings giving up only two runs.  Dice-K wasn’t so good, he gave up four runs in 4.2 innings.  He’ll have to pitch much better if the Sox are going to win tonight.

I would like to see Jon Lester on the bump tonight, but I’m fine with him coming out of the bullpen as long as he comes out as soon D-Mat gets in trouble (probably around the 3-5 inning mark).  To me, Lester is the choice, especially after his nice performance a couple of games ago.  I would also like to see Josh Beckett come out of the pen.  If he is ready to go, we should get 2-3 solid innings out of him.

Also, not only will the Sox need some production out of Manny, Papi, etc, they’ll need production out of their bottom-of-the-order guys, including Jacoby.  He needs to be the spark plug in this game.  The key will be getting to Westbrook early and often, and I think they will.  Westbrook isn’t that good of a pitcher and he might not be able to stand the pressure.

The key for the Indians will be to get to Dice-K early, as he is another pitcher who is bad (especially Dice-K) when he gets into trouble.  If they can do that, they should be able to score some runs.  If they let him get in a groove, we should be able to pull out the victory.

Quickly, the (fourth place *gasps*) Bruins defeated the Rangers in a shootout yesterday, winning 1-0.  Both goaltenders were amazing.  Boston keeper Manny Fernandez gave up no goals with 26 saves, including the shootout (no way!), while New York keeper Henrik Lundqvist gave up no goals in regulation and one in the shootout, with 19 saves.

The only goal went to second year pro Phil Kessel, who has three goals on the season.  He had three SO winners for the Bruins in his rookie campaign.

The Bruins improved to 5-2-0, fourth in the Eastern Conference (wow).  No-one could have predicted this kind of start (if you claim you did, you are a liar).  Although I expect them to stay in the playoff hunt, I expect them to come up short in the end (darn, and I thought Kessel would be hoisting The Cup).  But, at least they are relevant again. 

Talk at ‘ya later.     

Posted in Bruins, Curt Schilling, Daisuke Matsuzaka, David Oriz, Jacoby Ellsbury, Manny Ramirez, Patriots, Randy Moss, Red Sox, Rodney Harrison, Tom Brady | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Pats Win 48-27, Sox Game 3

Posted by Brad on October 15, 2007

The Pats beat the Dallas Cowboys 48-27 yesterday, in a game hyped to be one of the best of the year, great game, etc, etc (so much for that).  Despite the fact Brady had his head out of the game (see previous post), he was still able to go 31/46 for 388 yards and five touchdowns (a career high). 

Suprisingly, Kevin Faulf was the leading rusher for the Pats, running for 50 yards on only thirteen carries.  The leading receiver for the Pats was Dante Stallworth who had 136 yards on 7 catches and one TD.  The surprise, though, was Wes Welker.  He had 124 yards on 11 receptions and two touchdowns.  Randy Moss was heldo to six catches for 59 yards and his weekly TD.

The Cowboys, on the other hand, played better in the first half than the second half, which is a typical (did I use that correctly?) for them.  Tony Romo only went 18/29 for 199 yards, two touchdowns and an interception to Junior Seau (luckily, he didn’t hold it out like he was flying this time).  Julius Jones led the way rushing, gaining 51 yards on six carries.  The Cowboys had only FIFTEEN rushing plays in the entire game.

Although the Cowboys did hold a lead for a short time in the first half, it didn’t last long, and the Pats controlled the entire game.  If not for some bad Brady incompletions, the Pats might have been able to double up the Cowboys.  I can’t explain the Brady incompletions, but I just hope it doesn’t happen against the Colts, because they’ll make you pay for it (even though their defense isn’t elite, the turnovers on downs will just give Peyton the ball).  Also, the O-Line seemed to struggle against the Dallas defense.  They allowed three sacks, equal to the number they had allowed up till yesterday.

Nonetheless, it was a great game played by the Patriots.  Although the Cowboys made it interesting in the first half, they just couldn’t stop the Pats in the second half. 

Also, I can’t believe the people who already are talking about the Pats going undefeated this season.  yes, they are looking amazing so far, but ask me AFTER the Colts game.  That will be the true test.  If they can win that game, they’ll have a shot at going undefeated.  Until then, don’t even mention it (*coughs* idiots on ESPN).

Moving on the the Red Sox.  They’ll be playing Game Three of the ALCS against the Cleveland Indians tonight.  Daisuke Matsuzaka will go up against Jake Westbrook.  The series is tied 1-1.  As the series moves to Jacobs Field, I worry about the Red Sox.  After the Terry Little debacle, I worry that Dice-K won’t show up tonight.

Although he has had a good rookie campaign overall (emphasis on GOOD, not great), I don’t have any faith in him to pitch well consistently.  Does that mean he won’t pitch well tonight?  No, but I am not counting on it.  Also, the Indians bats are confident after demolishing Curt Schilling, one of the greatest postseason pitchers ever.   Matsuzaka did not pitch amazing against the Angels, and the Indians are much better.  Look for him to get into an early jam.

As for the Indians, they have all the momentum going into Game Three.  Although this isn’t an amazingly pivotal game, it is still very important.  I do think Wake will get it done in Game Four, but that is not a guarantee.  This is a HUGE game for the Sox.  If they lose this game and Wake loses the next, we’re down 3-1.  If we win, I think we are guaranteed to win the series, as Josh Beckett will be pitching Game Five (an automatic win).

As for the bats, the Indians come into the game fresh off a big eleventh inning in Game Two.  Although I think we would have won the game had Gagne not pitched yesterday (not that I hold a grudge…) they still scored seven runs in the inning, giving them confidence.  They had seventeen hits in Game Two, and every starter except Casey Blake recorded at least one hit.  Also, their biggest power threat has looked good in the series, going three for eight with one homerun. 

The Sox bats looked good on Saturday, as every starter got on base at least once.  Ramirez and Ortiz slowed down a bit, only going two for eight combined (although Manny hit a homer), so expect them to light it up tonight (I mean, only .250 combined in the game, that’s no good).  J.D. Drew and Mike Lowell both went two for five.  Despite that, I’d rather see Bobby Kielty or Jacoby Ellsbury in there in right.

As for Eric GAGne, just don’t use him, Terry (notice my lowered level of criticism).  He is horrible.  I know you can’t stick him on the inactive roster now, but please.  I’d rather see ANYONE.  Anyone at all.  I bet if you asked Fox, almost all of NEw England probably turned the station when he came into the game.  PLEASE.  Use JD Drew if you want, I don’t care, just don’t use Eric.  Thank You.

Talk at ‘ya later.    

Posted in Daisuke Matsuzaka, David Oriz, Manny Ramirez, Patriots, Red Sox, Tom Brady, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »